Which of our ancestors made the most sturdy, and effective battle ready swords

Discussion in 'Weapons and Tactics' started by MadSquabbles500, Oct 18, 2015.

  1. Gregolian

    Gregolian .45 ACP Platinum Member

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    Do you need to update the design THAT much when the damn steel you are making said tool out of basically shit on everything else for a long time? And still produces some of the sharpest edges in the world used in chef's knives still to this day?
     
  2. MadSquabbles500

    MadSquabbles500 Gold Belt

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    there was another poster, I believe @Doughbelly who said that Katanas are masterfully crafted because the Japanese used and only had inferior metal to work with.
     
  3. KBE6EKCTAH_CCP

    KBE6EKCTAH_CCP Arrow sash belt with Lederhosen

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    I have read from many sources that japanese steel was of poorer quality that euro steel. If you are interested I ll find some links for you.

    Also, the design does have many shortcomings. Small guard, short blade, very long handle, many moving parts.

    It is likely that the katana would have had to evolve if it had to face euro / middle easter weapons. But Japan was isolated.

    I think these are all facts and there is no evidence of the katana shitting on anything. Rather there are reports of portuguese sailors killing samourai in duels using a rapier.
     
  4. Gregolian

    Gregolian .45 ACP Platinum Member

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    I was always of the understanding the ones built from the ground up (not the mass produced BS the standard "cannon-fodder" used) the steel was better. Granted I am Japanese and do kendo so a lot of what I know comes from those things but generally Japanese swords have fewer weird impurities in it that European swords have.

    I'd argue, if say I were a headsman (pretty limited scope but there is a reason for this) I'd rather swing a katana to off someone's head rather than some massive bastard sword from Europe.. especially if I had to do a lot of them in a day.
     
  5. 00 Buck

    00 Buck Purple Belt

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    Meh. Folding so many times was necessary to work out lots of impurities because they had to work with inferior materials.

    And folding doesn't really mean better. Fold it and beat it too many times and you will reduce all the carbon content. Making it too soft.

    The design itself is so-so, most of them being comparatively heavy for such a short two handed sword.

    The guard is kind of lacking and the curved design is less optimal for thrusting.

    But hype doe!


    Edit: Typical authentic hand and a half/bastard swords aren't that heavy. It really comes down to the balance.

    This one being a little over 3 lbs.

    [​IMG]

    http://www.albion-swords.com/swords/albion/nextgen/sword-medieval-earl-xviiia.htm

    Even the massive 2 handers aren't that much heavier:

    [​IMG]

    Not even 5 lbs. Typically around there.

    http://www.albion-swords.com/swords/albion/nextgen/sword-medieval-danish-2-hander.htm

    There were some truly huge ass historical swords but they were probably only used for display or ceremonies.

    Only in Skyrim is a single handed sword like 10 freakin' pounds, laaawd...
     
    Last edited: Mar 21, 2017
  6. SweetDaddySiki

    SweetDaddySiki Orange Belt

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    European swords tended to have fewer impurities. Europe had better iron and superior steelmaking. They did not need to fold the blades and as a result, they could produce monosteel martensite blades in large quantities. With the copious water power giving them access to powered hammers and grinders, they could mass produce quality blades. Indeed, in Renaissance England, even workmen could afford a good sword.

    Folding steel is needed to even out the carbon content in steel. But it can structurally weaken the blade because the welds between layers are imperfect, allowing microscopic impurities, inclusions and such. When the japanese smiths had access to good steel they would often forgo the laborious folding process. of course, it was still done for the most exquisite blades because the results are gorgeous (similar to the reason Europeans kept using pattern welding...twisting bars of iron together long after they no longer needed to).

    What I have always liked about the Japanese though is that they continued to maintain their blades. Some of those Koto from the sengoku jidai period are still stunning to look at.

    The europeans simply put them into storage and they degraded over time. :(
     
  7. SweetDaddySiki

    SweetDaddySiki Orange Belt

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    I cant really say tbh. I know he has respect in the community, but beyond that I do not know. My opinions on warzecha are shaped by things I have heard from people I greatly respect. From what they say he is a beast at sparring.
     
  8. SweetDaddySiki

    SweetDaddySiki Orange Belt

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    The Katana was perfectly designed for the role it was created for..an infantry saber. It was short, and stocky, overcoming some the of the structural problems associated with lamination. Its shorter size made it much easier and handier to carry around. It could be drawn very quickly, and used one or two handed.

    I actually like the disk guard. Its not as useful as the extended quillions on the euro blades, but it also does not get in the way either. japanese swords play a little more loosely in the hand and are more forgiving as a result.
     
  9. MadSquabbles500

    MadSquabbles500 Gold Belt

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    I never guess you are Japanese.
     
  10. MadSquabbles500

    MadSquabbles500 Gold Belt

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    What about the chinese metallurgy? I should have titled this thread which had the best metallurgy or weapon manufacturing science.
     
  11. BB in Crazy!!!!

    BB in Crazy!!!! Black Belt

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    I believe the giant zwiehanders and flamberges were primary used in pike line combat. Even then, they were usually around 7 lbs and 5+ feet. I don't think anyone would want to duel with one of those as their first choice, better for fighting groups of guys on a line, smashing pikes, or swiping guy on their horses.
     
  12. 00 Buck

    00 Buck Purple Belt

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    ^Yeah I am aware of the use of those specialized swords.

    I'm just saying, bastard swords aren't that big, heavy or have craptastic handling as portrayed in movies. And that even super specialized 2 handed swords like the Zweihanders aren't so.

    Wiki claims they usually weigh from 4.4-7.1 lbs and up to 5.9' long. That still does not sound too bad to me, since I know that the long handle would help balance it out.
     
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  13. KBE6EKCTAH_CCP

    KBE6EKCTAH_CCP Arrow sash belt with Lederhosen

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    I had seen this video. Pretty cool. But you have to keep in mind that this is an extremely specialised process to produce a sword like that.

    If I am not mistaken, this is from the highest grade iron available and it requires how many experts to be working on that?

    A sword like that must be pretty very expensive and take a long time to produce.

    I also disagree with your perception of the bastard sword. If I am not mistaken, the longsword weighs the same as the katana (say, 1-1.3 Kg), and the bastard sword weighs less than the longsword.

    So actually the bastard sword is likely lighter than the katana, but don't quote me on that.

    I think that movies have vehiculated many misconceptions about european swords.

    Where I think the katana is superior by design is in its cutting ability. But then it is a rather poor thruster, and the more people wear armour (mail, leather, gambison, plates) the less cutting becomes relevant.
     
  14. SweetDaddySiki

    SweetDaddySiki Orange Belt

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    Chinese metallurgy was superb.
     
  15. SweetDaddySiki

    SweetDaddySiki Orange Belt

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    From What i have seen, they seem to have been optimised for use against crowds and groups. Going face to face with one of those large swords against a pike wall will just get you killed imho. We tested this..i used an 8 foot spear, my opponent used a spadone and I murdered him. But once the pike walls closed and push of pike has everyone tangled up, you launch the spandones and zweihanders. They rush in, whirling them in huge circling sweeps, killing people and breaking up formations.

    You can see hints of this in this video

     
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  16. MadSquabbles500

    MadSquabbles500 Gold Belt

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    How does it compare to Euro or Damascus in the same time periods.
     
  17. Thycidides

    Thycidides Banned Banned

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    I did a little research on this and there were changes is Japanese sword design... swords from the 19th century were shorter than sword from the 15th century. The older swords were called tachi and were longer.

    There is even a Japanese version of western saber, but it didn't really catch on.

    Does he spar different than other people and have a unique style? 1.33 has this mystique about it and I had the impression no one was able to implement it in a sparring context.
     
  18. SweetDaddySiki

    SweetDaddySiki Orange Belt

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    Can't really say tbh. I would imagine that the chinese had access to similar or even superior metallurgical technology.
     
  19. SweetDaddySiki

    SweetDaddySiki Orange Belt

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    I have never met him personally. I relying on what people who have sparred with him say. From what I hear he puts far more hours into his training than most HEMA people. That may be the difference.
     
  20. KBE6EKCTAH_CCP

    KBE6EKCTAH_CCP Arrow sash belt with Lederhosen

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    Well from his appearance alone you can deduct that he is in shape, unlike all these fat HEMA fücks out there.

    Do you know how old he is BTW? Late 40's I assume ?
     

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