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  1. #21
    Chili Pepper's Avatar
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    Siling Labuyo Arnis
    Welcome to Bullshido.

    Quote Originally Posted by SilentSword7 View Post
    Our main weapon is the takouba braodsword and koti sabre both of which are used throughout the Western Sahel.
    I could find google images of the takouba broadsword, but not the koti sabre - what's it look like?

  2. #22

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    I'm a few years late on this one, I know. I'm a bladesmith, and I was rather taken by that lovely, pattern-welded mambele. I was curious if anyone had anymore images of it.

    Also, to clear up some metallurgical misconceptions, that blade was almost certainly not curved by the quench. Some katanas are indeed curved by a water quench, but it isn't a common practice, and the direction the blade curves is determined by the bevels. If this blade were curved by a water quench, it would have curved in the opposite direction.

    In addition, pattern-welded/Damascus steel is not often literally folded. Certain makers of traditional Japanese swords, who are working with tamahagane that was smelted from iron sands do indeed hot cut and then fold and forge-weld their steel multiple times, which results in a visible, but subtle grain pattern at the end of the process. This was not done to achieve the grain pattern, but instead to remove and redistribute carbon from what started out as overly carbon-rich material, which we might call pig iron. Too little carbon leaves steel soft. Too much leaves it crumbly and weak. But, this isn't Damascus, either in traditional or modern senses. The original term refers to steels sold in Damascus, from various sources, one being Wootz steel, which had an interesting grain pattern. But, Wootz was a crucible steel, and wasn't folded or pattern welded. Modern Damascus refers to various forms of pattern welding, which might at times involve folding, but often doesn't.

    Generally it involves a high carbon steel (1075/1084/1095, etc) and thinner layers of a contrast steel, such as 15n20. These are forge welded together using a flux such as borax in billets, and drawn out. Then, you can either use it as is, or do other things to change the pattern. Sometimes layers are drawn out and twisted, or rolled up. Sometimes people do fold the steel to get finer layers. Other times, people do simpler things, like forge welding lower carbon steel layers to a core of high carbon, for San Mai blades. Sometimes more layers are forged on either side. At times the steel is hammered into wavey shapes, and is then ground flat again, exposing areas of underlying layers. For large swords, twist and straight pattern welded layers are forge-welded together for complex and beautiful patterns.

    After all of this, the blade is sanded very smooth, and then etched to show the layers, with an etchant such as ferric chloride. This is vital, if you want to see the results of your labors.

    This has turned into a bit of a novel. Hopefully it was useful to someone.

  3. #23
    BackFistMonkey's Avatar
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    Welcome Hrothgar,

    Usually this would be a post about not necromancing old dead threads but my limited knowledge of metallurgy and smithing leads me to believe you have added much and cleared up some misconceptions.

    Thank you for posting and hope to see you around more,


    ---Monkey
    I don't mean to sound bitter, cold, or cruel, but I am, so that's how it comes out.
    BILL HICKS,
    1961-1994

    Quote Originally Posted by Jean Paula-Satire
    Never believe that the GOP and fellow bigots are completely unaware of the absurdity of their replies. They know that their remarks are frivolous, open to challenge. But they are amusing themselves, for it is their adversary who is obliged to use words responsibly, since he believes in words. The bigots and Republicans have the right to play. They even like to play with discourse for, by giving ridiculous reasons, they discredit the seriousness of their interlocutors. They delight in acting in bad faith, since they seek not to persuade by sound argument but to intimidate and disconcert. If you press them too closely, they will abruptly fall silent, loftily indicating by some phrase that the time for argument is past and that besides, they have already won

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