Wednesday, April 12, 2017

3 Ways To Identify Your Sword's Blade Is Becoming Dull



The following article will discuss some of the important indications that the edge of the sword is losing its efficacy and becoming dull. There are a plenty of questionable methods of testing the edge of the blade, many propagated by pop culture.

Nevertheless, cutting a sheet of paper, shaving the hair off an arm and scraping your thumb across the edge of the blade with a sage expression are only part of the test. To properly understand what dulls the edge of a sword, you need to be aware of a few aspects of swordsmanship and sword care that can keep your blade sharp and ready for action.

While the following tips and pointers are specifically geared toward the Japanese Katana, they have also been found effective for a wide range of sword types from the Gladius to the Rapier. Knowing the design and purpose of your blade is important to wielding and caring for the sword.

ABRASION
If you're practicing cutting with a sharpened katana, you can expect that the abrasive materials you strike will have a serious impact on your sword's edge and eventually it'll deteriorate entirely. Even bound paper and tatami targets can dull the edge of your blade. This is where you can test how dull your blade is by scraping your thumb across the edge of your blade from side to side. You'll notice immediately that harder metals are less susceptible to losing their edge after practice cutting. 

ROLLED EDGES
As a novice swords-person practices their strike, they'll invariable turn the blade against their target. When the target has a hard or even medium density the blade can be rolled to the side. Again, this is more common in blades without proper differential hardening. A blade that has been sharpened to too fine an edge will also present this problem. To detect this problem, rub your thumb from the ridge-line to the edge. If you encounter a snag, you have a problem. The rolled edge must be set right before the blade can be sharpened.

FLATTENED EDGE
Those who strike at very hard targets will notice their blade becomes dull very quickly. This can be tough to find with a standard thumb test as the blade can still feel sharp. The best way to notice the flattened edge is with sunlight falling on your steel. When you look straight at the edge you'll see the portions that have been flattened away.

FINAL NOTES ON SWORD CARE
In the end, sharpening a dull sword is an art and science and takes much practice to perfect. Without a proper respect for the geometry of the blade the sword's effectiveness will be neutralized and only professional sword crafters can undo the damage.


Furthermore, every sword will be slightly ruined with each strike made against a target or in swordplay. If you'd like to keep your fine steel sword in good conditions, get yourself a good wooden bokken for swordplay practice. This is the best way to fine tune your skills and keep your blade ready for when you're attacked by dragons and ninjas.

Thursday, April 6, 2017

The Sword Making Process: Forging. Tempering. Folding


The art of making swords has experienced renewed interest in modern society. Whether it's due to gaming, or a general interest in the war arts of the past, how a sword is made peaks the interests of many people. This solitary and efficient weapon is a favorite of every society. It is revered, and requires a dedicated passion to old arts, as well as, new notions of construction. Making a sword requires knowledge of metallurgical properties, and a love of efficiency.

Throughout history, sword makers have been tasked with the job of supplying reliable tools of killing to armed soldiers, guardsmen, and to collectors in the modern era. Tradesman swords are the product of a virtually lost craft, and certain artistic passions. Modern artists who concentrate their craft on producing authentic swords use methods from yesteryear to create unbelievably accurate models of authentic weapons used throughout history. These modern sword craftsmen use three processes to refine their craft: forging, tempering, and folding.

FORGING
Forging a sword requires several important steps. The first is extraction of metals. In ancient days, sword makers were required to collect metals in amounts that could be used for practical purposes. This included separating iron from other minerals in great amounts. Once the metals were separated, they were heated and mixed. In a forge, the collected metals were heated to a point where they became liquid, and were poured into a mold. These were rough templates that mirrored the final form of a sword. The point of forging metals into a mold is mixing the metal elements together so they evenly produce a final piece.

TEMPERING
The next step is tempering. Once a forged piece of iron is formed, it is subject to many cycles of heating and cooling. These cycles bind the molecules of metal to make them stronger. With every cooling and heating cycle, the metal is tamped by hammer into a desired form. This process represents the bulk of the sword-making process and can be quite laborious. With every tempering cycle, a rough sword form becomes stronger. 

FOLDING

Folding is an advanced sword construction process that was used by armory technicians. Just like a baker folds dough to smooth bumps in a loaf of bread, swordsmiths used folding as a way to infuse strength into each sword. When a heated piece of iron is folded, its molecules bind together to create added strength properties. Folding can be performed with a singular piece of iron, or with differing metals. The result of folding is a tempered alloy that is exponentially stronger with an enhanced construction and honing potential. 

Forging, tempering, and folding are the three most important steps that a sword maker engages in to create a functional and long-lived sword. The forge creates the desired shape, size, and volume of a weapon. Tempering delivers the elemental curing for a sword's strength. Folding is the process of infusing a sword with properties that exceed the typical properties of its design. These stages of sword construction require patience and an instinct for metal working. Well-crafted sword using techniques in each stage will appear more authentic, retain sharpness better, and provide more appropriate hilts for stylish and attractive handle design.

Thursday, March 30, 2017

3 Reasons Why The Sword Action In The Film "World of Warcraft" Was Well-Done


The film Warcraft is based on the game World of Warcraft. The film focused on both storyline and on action sequences. The filmmakers knew that to do justice to the source material, they had to create a script with a comprehensive story and characters and the best battle sequencing that they could achieve. The sword fighting in the film was particularly well done. They achieved this with creating authentic swords, training the actors to fight with the sword, and with the right film direction and editing. 

One.) Authentic Swords

The Warcraft film used authentically built swords for the Warcraft universe. The swords were built similarly to the game's designs, but they also were designed to be used for realistic looking fights. The highly-acclaimed design and effects for the entertainment industry Weta Workshop crafted the Warcraft weaponry. They are known for their prop and weaponry design work for Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit, and many other films. 

Dragon Sword is the sword of King Llane. The Dragon Sword is viewed as the unifier of the allied forces during the war. The instantly recognizable hilt of the Dragon Sword is an important aspect of the king's sword fighting. The king has a unique sword and armor, so that you immediately know it is him as he fights. Lothar and the orcs also have recognizable swords and armor designs that makes it easy to tell who is fighting.

Two.) Proper Sword Training for the Cast

Anduin Lothar is the character who sword fights perhaps the most in the film. He is played by Travis Fimmel. He did extensive pre-production training with the sword and with his arms. Travis Fimmel stated during an interview about the film that the swords were three times the size of an average sword. It was necessary to do plenty of upper body strengthening exercises to fight with the swords. 

The actress Paula Patton plays the half orc-half human character Garona. She said in an interview that she did two and a half hours of physical training six days a week to prepare for her role as Garona. Then after a while of that training, she said they went through and additional two hours of sword, knife, sticks, and stunt training.

Three.) Film Directing

Training and decent looking weaponry design are vital to capturing sword fighting in a strong manner. The last important reason Warcraft excelled at authentic sword fighting comes down to the direction and the digital universe work of the film crew. The director Duncan Jones is a longtime fan of the World of Warcraft. He knew the importance of how to frame a shot of sword fighting in a manner that was true to the game universe. The primary focus of sword fight sequences relies on filming closely by the lead characters during the important sword fights they have. They generally focus on them during important moves. There are a few sword battles that show numerous characters battling at once. These are important to show the odds and the numbers of both feuding sides of the war. 

The film crew additionally realized the need to create flawless computer generated effects for the orc battle sequences. They put a lot of effort, design, toil and realism to the creation of all the orcs battle sequences. The orcs sequences were carefully planned to be intensely physical, which makes the viewer really feel like they are a part of the action. 

The crew carefully planned each battle scene for both the computer-generated battles and the physical battles. This effort to plan the sword fighting helped them craft perfect orc Warcraft battles. The orcs and the human sword battles are also developed excellently. In some of the battles between the orcs and men they used stunt people as stand ins for the orcs. This allowed actors to battle with a stunt person, and then they went in and added the computer-generated orc into the battle. 

The Warcraft film is memorable for the sword fighting sequences and other various unique battle scenes. The sword design, the extensive sword technique and footwork training the actors went through, and the film directing made the sword play stand apart from other action films. They also ensured to keep enough of the World of Warcraft game fighting techniques for it to be recognizable to those familiar with the strategy of the game.

Saturday, March 25, 2017

29" Blade Length Aluminum Iaito Unsharpen Training Katana Practice Samurai Sword


In the study of Japanese sword arts, speed and precision are critical. Duels ended quickly with the faster, more skilled swordsman being the one to walk away.  In modern times, Japanese sword arts have moved beyond the practical and become arts of exercise and meditation, helping the practitioner to hone their bodies, minds and spirits.

If one wishes to pursue study of Japanese sword arts, one must first acquire a good beginner's sword. In iaido specifically, beginners all start with iaito, or unsharpened swords. This allows practitioners to practice with what is, for all intents and purposes, a real sword, and helps get them used to weight, balance, safety and maintenance procedures without the danger element a sharpened blade brings. It is always best to start with a light iaito and work up to heavier swords as muscle tone and skill level increase.

Our Ohané is a perfect iaito for both beginning and advanced students of iaido. It is very light and fast, aiding in proper technique application. It features a prominent bohi which offers an audible whistle when edge alignment is correct.  It's also aesthetically pleasing; it features a lovely etched hamon, sukashi tsuba, real ray skin and cotton ito. Ohané:  feather light.

Features: 
  • Blade: The blade is made of incredibly light aluminum alloy and features a beautiful aesthetic hamon. It also features a bohi which provides audible feedback when the sword is swung to ensure good edge alignment.
  • The kissaki is a chu, or medium length.
  • The blade is unsharpened for safe swordsmanship practice.
  • Saya: The saya is lacquered an elegant black and features a brass-fitted kurigata and cotton sageo.
  • Tsuka: The Tsuba is blackened Iron in an elegant sukashi style. The Tsuka features a double pinned Mekugi and a brass flower Menuki. The Same (ray skin) is crisp white, with black cotton Ito Tsukamaki.



Saturday, March 18, 2017

Winter Sun Katana by Dragon King


The macaque (Japanese snow monkeys) known survival requires communal support. The Winter Sun Katana at Sword N Armory mirrors the cold reality of the darkest days of the year on the tsuba (guard) and menuki. The blackened tsuba, fuchi, tsuka-ito and fuchi-kashira contrast the real white same handle and the black textured lacquered saya.

The through-disposition and sharpened blade of the Winter Sun is forged from 5160 high carbon steel. The thick-spined blade accompanied by an extended, wedge-shaped cutting plane, is intended to, in an unwavering manner, cut soft and semi-hard targets in substantial cutting sessions without suffering chipping or edge deformation.

The blackened tsuba has two snowflakes on a single side; its inverse has a pair of Japanese Macaque Snow Monkeys. The fuchi and kashira fittings are of blackened metal, and the habaki and seppa have a silvered finish. The wooden tsuka grip is overlaid with rayskin and wrapped with a black tsuka ito cord. The silvered wintry snowflake menuki are fitted beneath the raykin.

This sword comes with a protective cloth sword bag.


With its heavily-build blade geometry of through-hardened 5160 high carbon steel, this sword is contrived to not simply be a themed display katana, but a reliable, and forgiving cutting one that resists both edge-chipping and taking a bend when used in extended cutting practice against true targets.

Saturday, March 11, 2017

Ito Cord Wraps Serve Many Purposes for Swords


The Many Functions of Ito Cord Wraps for Swords

The traditional Ito cord wraps that are so often paired with collectible Japanese swords are a cultural image with a long history, which have become increasingly popular over the years. Though they are certainly distinctive and aesthetically pleasing, with their intricate wrapping patterns and infinite color combinations, these iconic cords serve more purposes than simple decoration.

Reinforcement of the Tsuka

The tsuka, or hilt, of swords such as katanas are often sleek and narrow. The silk or leather Ito cord wraps can give additional strength to the handle by reinforcing it throughout and giving it more substance. The patterns used to wrap the handle are designed to distribute stress on the tsuka evenly, preventing too much shock being taken to any one part of the hilt.

Superior Grip

Adding Ito wrappings to the handle of your sword can also greatly increase traction and grip. Where a simple metal, or even wooden, handle might easily slip out of the hand, adding cording to it ensures a firm hold.

For this reason, particularly, leather Ito wraps have a reputation. Besides giving it a more hardened, adventurer-gear appearance, leather wraps serve the very practical function of giving anyone using the sword a firm grip at all times.

Aesthetic Appeal

Finally, Ito cord wraps do serve an important aesthetic function. Japanese swords have a long tradition of intricate wrappings on their hilts, to protect from damage, add functionality, and reinforce. But they are also iconic, with representations in popular culture and history alike.

Since there are infinite colors to choose from when adding a wrapping, and variations in pattern as well, Ito cord wraps are an excellent way to pay homage to your sword's history while making it truly unique among its contemporaries. These wrappings will bring authenticity and an original look simultaneously to your blade.

Monday, March 6, 2017

3 Reasons Why You Should Own A Knife Stand From Sword N Armory


3 Reasons a Knife Stand is Crucial

There’s little more satisfying to the avid weapon enthusiast than a full collection of tactical knives. But when a collection is growing, it's time to consider the most effective display for them, both in terms of protection and looks. Having a knife stand for your blades will help keep an organized and appealing feel to your selection of weaponry.

Protection from Damage

Keeping knives on a display stand will protect them from inadvertent damage that can come from being kept in drawers, on hard surfaces, or in the path of destructive children and pets.

When a fine collection is left piled around on furniture or in boxes, they can knock around on each other or other objects. In the worst case, this could cause scratches to the detailing, even with high quality weapons. Keeping them safely in their display when not in use will ensure they are not misused or exposed to rust and breakage.

Protection from Injury

In addition to the safety of the knives themselves, keeping the in a display will greatly diminish any risk of bodily harm to children, pets, or even straying guests. Having an artful stand to display them in ensures that they are all accounted for, and sends a signal that they are not to be played with at random.

Maximization of Aesthetic Appeal

Of course, the most obvious reason to add a stand to your presentation is appearance. A fantastic collection of blades deserves an equally fantastic display stand to truly show them off.

If you've put work into a selection of knives that makes you proud, it is time to let everyone know. Whether photographing and sharing your collection online, or knowing that when a guest walks in, they will be impressed by the sight of your hoard, as having a knife stand really is crucial in bringing the most enjoyment to your collection.