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spear socket how-to


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when i first wanted to make a spear, i couldn't find a tutorial on how to do it. of course later i found out it really wasn't terribly difficult. but i figured that it still may help someone so here it is.

the bar im starting with is 3/8 by 1-1/4, and the tools used are the anvil, a cross-peen hammer, and a 1/2 inch radius bottom fuller. this size bar makes better long socketed spears, but for the sake of time the socket here is 5 inches long, 7-8 is much better but oh well.

the bar to start
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start at the near edge of the anvil and start necking down with the hammer using angled blows
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why don't i use a top and bottom fuller? i like to get more upsetting than length you can see that here.
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once it is necked down, decide which side is the inside. then in the necked area, fuller to get the upsetting on one side. then peen the "tail" wider. note: this spear has a "tab" to put a small nail in to hold it on the haft, so the tab will be forged in the center of the socket
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once the socket has been flared enough for the right size haft(take the diameter of the haft X 3.14 to get the total flaring needed at the base) sit the neck back on the fuller and break the outside edges.(you'll se these can be ground off too)
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once it cools, grind or file the edges straight to get a good joint, and grind off the outside of the neck(if it wasn't forged that way by now)
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next up, rolling the socket

Ed Steinkirchner

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i am not welding the socket, so a bickern isn't needed, the socket can be rolled between the fuller and the anvil face.
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roll as much as possible with the cross peen(a swedish pattern or similar long peen hammer works best)and close on the anvil face
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there is no good way to tell how to finish closing the socket but after one or two you get it down.
i for got to mention that the flaring of the blank must be symmetrical or the seam won't be straight. if there is a slight twist, use the vice and a wrench to get it straight again.
the finished socket.
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once the socket is finished, you can forge out the blade. the blade is the easy part. hope this helps someone.

Ed Steinkirchner

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Thanks for the tutorial Ed. I just started making some spear points and had to learn the way you did, but I did manage to make one that looked and worked well, and one that was so so. On the last one I stated to short on the socket and now it's a wall hanger. The first one turned out almost long enought, when I stuck it on a shaft it stuck so well I had to clamp it in a vice to get the shaft out. Thanks again.

BTR

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i usually start with the 3/8 only because that is what i have, here it is mild steel. with high or medium carbon, it could be thinner. i made a 14-ish inch spearhead from this stock, and cold hammered the blade when it was done. it is a very good spear, didn't bend when a poor throw at a stump made it glance off into the woods. oh, and when i say 14 inch i mean point to socket base, so overall length is 14 inches. it takes almost the same amount of steel to make the socket as it does the blade, so it should balance at about the point where blade ans socket meet. and remember that if you make the socket too long just hack-saw it off when your done.
hope that answered the question

Ed Steinkirchner

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  • 2 weeks later...

Good tutorial Ed, thanks for taking the time to make it so through. I've been making some spears for 18th cent. reenacting almost identical in shape to the one shown (just smaller). I've had the problem that one side of the socket is aligned with the body of the spear, and the rest sits offset (effectively 'crooked' though the tip is inline with the centre axis). Any tips on preventing this? Perhaps knocking the socket area over the side of the anvil to offset before rolling it? I'll add a pic if it's not clear

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  • 2 weeks later...

i see now, heat in the local area and hit the high spots, you could do that on the anvil, or better yet a wood block. the pic shows where the most heat is needed (circles), and where the hammer must hit (arrows)the heat should be low to medium orange.

Ed Steinkirchner

Did you mean to attach a photo Ed?
Edit:: It looks like it was a bitmap, but it's not showing as available to view
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