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Jason Fry

Civil War short sword

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Because why not ;)  I read several of the threads here directed toward sword newbs, but they're directed toward newbs in general.  I've not done a sword, but I've made knives for nearly 10 years and have the right equipment for the grind work.

Forged this out at a friend's house the other day, because he has a power hammer. It's like when you have a friend with a bulldozer, you dig a new tank.  

Started with a leaf spring off a wrecked Dodge truck. 
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Hammered a while, till it looked like this. 

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Spent some time grinding today.   Blade is 20 3/8. 
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Finish ground and ready for heat treat.

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Which sword are you making? One of these? 

Civil War Army Swords; A Study of United States Army Swords from 1832 through 1865 Hardcover – February 15, 2008 by John H. Thillmann  (Author)

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Exactly two pounds at this point.  Will lose some more after finish grinding, lose a little off the tang, and gain a bit from the D guard.  

Sort of like this...

http://www.historicalarms.com/confederate-and-union-civil-war-swords-for-sale/confederate-bowie-knife-for-sale.html

Great, now I need another book, lol...

When I build, I'll look at as many pictures and examples as I can find, then build in that ballpark. I don't usually do direct copies.

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Looking pretty good so far! Keep us updated. I, for one, want to see how this turns out. 

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Heat treated this evening.  Had a little warpage, but not too bad.  Got file-skating hard.  Haven't tempered yet, but I figure I can get some of the warp out during the temper cycles.  

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Hope it didn't crack over night!  Tempering should be done IMMEDIATELY AFTER HARDENING!  I had a student who quenched late at night and thought he would put off tempering till the next morning.  His blade was in 3 pieces just sitting on the workbench the next morning.

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Yep, that's a risk.  Kids and day job got in the way of my HT schedule.  I haven't had that issue before, where one cracked after HT before tempering, in over 500 knives, but I know people it has happened to.  I have cracked them in the quench a few times.  Using a new steel, heat treated by eye instead of digital, in an oil that's marginally fast for the presumed steel, it's a risk, alright. 

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Got away with it.  Clamped and shimmed to a piece of angle iron, and put in the oven at 350.  Think I may end up at 450, but I'm leaving myself two more steps, as I've figured out it straightens better with each temper bump.

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Fit up the D guard tonight. Likely handle tomorrow. Still alot of finish work to do as well. 

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Laid it out on paper first. Mild steel bar stock and dykem after that. 

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Alright folks, here we go. 25 inches overall. Osage handle, blued D guard. Weight is 2 pounds 2.6 oz. Glued up with epoxy, then peened the tang over the butt of the guard. 

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The guard looks way better then in the previous picture. Looks good overall. 

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My only significant criticism is of the photography: the busy background is very distracting and makes it hard to see the details of the sword. A simple, monochromatic background would be much better; try a wood tabletop or a weathered board.

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Just found out yesterday that this piece will be in Blade magazine's "what's new" section in upcoming months.

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Cool! It turned out great. Really like the blued guard, it contrasts the osage very nicely. 

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On 1/27/2018 at 11:04 PM, Jason Fry said:

Excessively large photo removed

Looking back over your original photos, I realize that I have failed to draw your attention to one very important detail: you appear to have cut off your thumb. 

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You fight with the strength of many men, Sir knight. 

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