Working With Blunt Steel

Discussion of Chinese historical swordsmanship from all styles.

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Linda Heenan
Rank: Chang San feng
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Working With Blunt Steel

Post by Linda Heenan » Wed May 05, 2010 2:47 am

The Aussie GRTC Branch has two of Nik's blunt steel jian prototypes. I'm starting this thread to talk about our experiences as we work with them.

Today the kid's used them in training. I had a group aged between 12 and 17, with one 7 year old. They took turns using them for drills. We tried Dian,Dian Tiao; Liao to Zha; Four Corners; and Ya, Hua, Ci.

The first thing the kids noticed was that they were heavy. These are real weight blunt steel swords. I let each pair of kids work with them for just 3 minutes at a time so nobody go too tired. The first thing I noticed was edge deflections. When you work with round padded swords a lot of the time, the edge position becomes blurred. Shaped wooden swords are better for defining deflections with the flat, but even the kids who use wood most of the time were bouncing off the edge. Using the steel immediately began to correct waist turning and wrist positions so that the deflections could be done with the flat.

The swords held up well to this light training. As with any blunt steel swords, you have to make sure the edges are free of small burrs each time you use them.

I plan to take the prototypes to my reenactment group later in May, to see how they go with adults used to training with steel at speed, in armour.
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Scott M. Rodell
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Re: Working With Blunt Steel

Post by Scott M. Rodell » Thu May 06, 2010 9:31 am

I was able to have a brief look at these blunt edged jian when I was in Australia. My one recommendation is to increase the width of the blunt edge, it looked to be about half as thick as other blunts used for swordplay I have seen.

Nik
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Re: Working With Blunt Steel

Post by Nik » Thu May 06, 2010 10:44 am

Looking forward to more feedback. :)

Did you manage to fix the outer nut with some securing glue ? That nut that holds the pommel makes most of the noise. :( We are going to use industrial highest duty glue to do that, if the material doesn't allow hammering a bolt onto the pommel, or heating up the tang itself and hammering it flat into the pommel like done on the original I had.

And yes, the edge was too thin this time, the polisher wanted it to look "better" that way. I already asked him to make a wider, rounded edge next time. We now work with a different smith, which will allow much more competitive prices at equal or better industrial quality. I will get new samples in around 3 weeks, hopefully.

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