Search found 153 matches

by Philip Tom
Tue Jul 26, 2011 1:41 am
Forum: Chinese Historical Arms
Topic: Historical Geometries and Variations
Replies: 8
Views: 4420

secondary bevels vs lenticular x-sections

With steel-bladed swords, you see preferences for one or the other in different cultures and for different applications. It may be instructive to look at sword cultures outside of China for illustrative examples. Start with India. The classic style of blade on a typical talwar has a prominent second...
by Philip Tom
Tue Jul 26, 2011 1:22 am
Forum: Chinese Historical Arms
Topic: Guan Dao project
Replies: 14
Views: 9557

choice of steel

I recently talked to a knifemaker buddy who's been making some almost indestructible survival machetes and pig-killer knives out of the steel that those diamond-studded masonry disc saws are made of. The alloy is probably L6, it hardens by water quench (if you have no experience heat-treating, I sug...
by Philip Tom
Mon Jul 18, 2011 12:09 am
Forum: Chinese Historical Arms
Topic: Guan Dao project
Replies: 14
Views: 9557

distal taper / butt spike

Distal taper needs to be part of the picture, otherwise you are likely to run into problems with weight and balance. There is a reason that just about every antique blade you see, whether it be a hilt weapon of any length or a pole arm, tapers in thickness from the forte to the tip. Impact to a blad...
by Philip Tom
Wed Jul 13, 2011 11:51 pm
Forum: Chinese Historical Arms
Topic: Guan Dao project
Replies: 14
Views: 9557

suggestions for fabrication

You have a big job on your hands, good luck on this one and keep us posted. What kind of steel are you going to use? One of my old hunting buddies is an amateur knifemaker, he uses steel from discarded industrial circular saws, you might want to look into how big a blade you can get, in fact next ti...
by Philip Tom
Tue Jul 12, 2011 11:58 am
Forum: Chinese Historical Arms
Topic: new forumite with question
Replies: 11
Views: 5188

fullers vs facets

If proper design and placement of fullers can affect the weight and balance of a blade, sword makers are going to take this into account when designing blades for specific purposes. A two handed weapon used for fighting on foot is going to require different handling characteristics from one wielded ...
by Philip Tom
Tue Jul 12, 2011 1:07 am
Forum: Chinese Historical Arms
Topic: new forumite with question
Replies: 11
Views: 5188

how they play in the hand

Let me kick off the discussions by prevailing on Scott to share his experiences in test cutting with sabers of various designs from contemporary manufacturers in China and elsewhere... When you ask for comparisons between faceted (ridged) dao blades on the one hand, and fullered blades on the other,...
by Philip Tom
Tue Jul 12, 2011 12:42 am
Forum: Chinese Historical Arms
Topic: Guan Dao project
Replies: 14
Views: 9557

Blade profile and balance

I'd say that if you are making this replica with the intention of it being usable for martial arts practice, then you need to pay careful attention to design and functional characteristics before you even lay out a template. Fighting technique that calls for thrusts demands less backward curve of th...
by Philip Tom
Mon Jul 11, 2011 11:14 pm
Forum: Chinese Historical Arms
Topic: Qing Cannon
Replies: 9
Views: 3822

Qing iron cannon (3 examples)

The one in the period photo, ca. 1900, is of Western style, on a traversing carriage designed for use on fortification parapets. This gun would be at home on any Civil-War era fort with masonry gun emplacements in the US. Without looking at markings it would be hard to say if it were imported, or a ...
by Philip Tom
Sun Jul 10, 2011 1:02 pm
Forum: Chinese Historical Arms
Topic: Opening for Dao Sword Guards
Replies: 8
Views: 4155

Jade saber guards

There are several examples of Korean sabers, byeolun geom , in museum collections in S. Korea, with jade disc guards of tsuba form. They do not appear appreciably thicker than their metal counterparts. A few have been published in the exhibition catalog The History of Steel in East Asia (Macau: Muse...
by Philip Tom
Sun Jul 10, 2011 12:33 pm
Forum: Chinese Historical Arms
Topic: Qing Percussion Hunting Gun
Replies: 1
Views: 1709

Re: Qing Percussion Hunting Gun

Cat. no. PR.45, Pitt-Rivers Museum (Oxford) DESCRIPTION: Barrel length 47 1/2 in., caliber 0.45 in. (per Blackmore, Guns and Rifles of the World (1965). Smoothbore octagonal barrel, lavishly damascened in silver. Lack of a rear sight indicates use as a fowling piece, firing a load of lead shot rathe...
by Philip Tom
Sun Jul 10, 2011 2:01 am
Forum: Chinese Historical Arms
Topic: Guan Dao project
Replies: 14
Views: 9557

variety is the spice of life

The group shot of several blades tells us something quite interesting -- the considerable variation in blade proportion, edge contour, and tip geometry show that over the centuries that this weapon has been in use (at least back to the 11th, AD up through the 19th), a variety of fighting systems had...
by Philip Tom
Sun Jul 10, 2011 1:35 am
Forum: Chinese Historical Arms
Topic: Photo of Qing Taiqiang
Replies: 3
Views: 2592

Matchlock taiqiang in the West Point collection

This is a classic example of a Qing wall-gun of the type in use prior to the introduction of Western technology (percussion locks, metallic cartridges, etc) in the late 19th cent. BRIEF DESCRIPTION: Overall length approx 7 ft. 9 in. Barrel approx 5 ft. 10 in., caliber 0.96 in. Round smoothbore barre...
by Philip Tom
Sat Jul 09, 2011 2:54 am
Forum: Chinese Historical Arms
Topic: Photo of Qing Taiqiang
Replies: 3
Views: 2592

Qing Mactchlock Taiqiang

An example from the West Point Academy museum.
by Philip Tom
Sat Jul 09, 2011 2:34 am
Forum: Chinese Historical Arms
Topic: Guan Dao project
Replies: 14
Views: 9557

correct historical terminology

You chaps might wish to keep in mind that all the historical Chinese texts refer to this class of weapon as "yanyuedao" or reclining moon knife. It's been known by this name in military writings since the Song Dynasty (when the first recognizable examples appear), and the name also appears in the 18...
by Philip Tom
Sat Jul 09, 2011 1:34 am
Forum: Chinese Historical Arms
Topic: Photo of Qing Taiqiang
Replies: 3
Views: 2592

Re: Photo of Qing Taiqiang

This late 19th cent. photo shows a rampart gun, known by the generic term taiqiang or "big musket". They were designed to be rested on the parapet of a city wall, or if deployed in the field, on a tripod or the shoulder of the shooter's assistant. Due to their size, they were served by a crew of at ...