Maillemaker Posted September 14, 2011 Share Posted September 14, 2011 This might seem like a bit of a rant, but I do mean well. Here we go. One of my greatest pet peeves is being asked to make swords three seconds after I tell someone I'm a blacksmith. I understand that swords are semi-legendary weapon forged in the fires of King Arthur, knights in shining armor, samurai, the ninja, and countless other fantasies, and that they have a magic all their own. I also hear many beginner smiths declare proudly "I'm going to make a SWORD!!!". Oftentimes, there are requests on IFI that essentially say: "Hi! I just started three weeks ago, and I want to make a sword! How do I....?" I've seen two "camps" on IFI: the "Go-For-It's", and the "If-You-Have-To-Ask's". Both bring up valid points. Swordsmithing is a very well regarded skill (or set of skills), and the only way you'll learn those skills is to actually do it. Reading books is no replacement for actual forge-time. However, producing a quality sword is an extremely difficult task that takes years to master. Asking for help is a wise decision, but if you don't have the basic skillset necessary for the advanced techniques, you will not make a quality blade. It's like trying to build a house without a foundation: it's not going to work. At the end of the day, it's your choice: if you are dead set on producing a sword right off the bat, then by all means go for it. You'll learn to select the right steel, hammer control, how to establish bevels, heat treat, sharpen, polish, attach fittings and crossguards by actually doing it. But that's not the only way to learn the necessary skills: smaller, less complicated projects will give you the same knowledge, along with the RESEARCH YOU DO BEFORE YOU START. Personally, I suggest starting small and gradually working your way up; at the end of the day, however, it's your call. Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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