Author Topic: Choosing a sword...  (Read 5984 times)

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Offline madmanpsu

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Re: Choosing a sword...
« Reply #15 on: October 22, 2009, 08:19:39 PM »
Another blade you may wish to consider is the side sword.  That is a very common civilian and military weapon dating from sometime in the late 1400s to early 1500s (the various sources I have seen disagree about the exact appearance date) and was used well into the late 1500s to early 1600s.  It is a cross between the war sword (longsword) and rapier.  It retains the heavier blade, but is capable of both cut and thrust.  It lacks the basket or swept hilt of period rapiers, but has better had protection than the period war sword.  It is also lighter and therefore faster than the war sword but heavier than the rapier, thus making it suitable for use against armored opponents.  In the late 1500s this sword began to be replaced in popularity by the backsword, a basket hilted weapon similiar to the scottish basket hilt claymore.  This is my sword of choice for a military style personae for the 1500s.

Mail'n M'Crack

Offline RSLeask

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Re: Choosing a sword...
« Reply #16 on: October 22, 2009, 09:07:13 PM »
It's really interesting to me the number of us, who come to have a roguish faire personality... I know that is what I go for when I done my gear.

Dunno about the rest of anyone here, but personally, there's always that affection for the days of sitting around the table with friends, setting out on an adventure against local bandit rings, masses of orcs, and the occasional dragon or lich.  Of course, there's nothing really to actually fight (unless you're LARPing), but the attraction of being that adventurer still draws me in when I'm looking at my own character.  Of course, I also kind of wish I was about a foot and a half shorter and able to grow a long, thick beard, rather than being an earpoint away from an entirely different race...

As a word of caution, don't discount a sword simply because we toss terms like "militaristic" around.  Think about where your character came from.  Did he learn effective swordplay and combat tactics simply on his own, or maybe was he part of a guard or army until he found he could make coin better working for himself?  Or perhaps he took the sword from someone, as well.  These kind of little nuances come into play as well.  You also said "non-military matters" like local bandits... which actually, if you think on it, IS a job of the militia, albeit the local one.  Usually, they're ineffective against bandits, though, since you can hear them coming a mile away.  However, a single hired sword, while able to catch them unawares, would need to be pretty well armed himself to take them down.  Unless you go by the old Klingon proverb, "A running man with a dagger can silence a thousand voices in the night."

Of course, as was said, the best choice of a sword, is one that feels right in your hand.  Go to the local armory at your faire, and try the weight of several different blades.  Find the one that fits you best.
What's a Grecian Urn?  Are we talking union, or non-union?

Offline SirRichardBear

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Re: Choosing a sword...
« Reply #17 on: October 22, 2009, 11:53:30 PM »
Scottish Knight a basket is heavy enough and its a versatile blade good for both cutting and thrusting and the basket makes a wicked weapon itself in close combat.  My own persona is a Welsh/Scottish mercenary soldier.  this line form the movie Captain Blood fits him well   I've been most everywhere that fighting was in evidence: I fought for the French against the Spanish and the Spanish against the French... and I learned me seamanship in the Dutch navy.

in real life I've fenced with Japanese, Chinese, Korean and European swords and there is just something about a basket that feels right when I use it. 

My persona came from my love of books like the White Company, Robert Howard's Conan, Solomon Kane, and Cormac, Foresters' Hornblower etc.

I agree with others fine a blade that feels right to you and then put a story around it to give your persona a little character and a talking point to the t-shirts and blue jeans who might ask why you carry such a sword.
Beware of him that is slow to anger: He is angry for something, and will not be pleased for nothing.
Benjamin Franklin

Offline Hatter

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Re: Choosing a sword...
« Reply #18 on: October 23, 2009, 05:19:50 PM »
You could go with the German Branch sword.  This was contemporary to the mid 15th century.  Arms & Armor make a great recreation.  I love mine!!

Offline The Scottish Knight

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Re: Choosing a sword...
« Reply #19 on: October 23, 2009, 09:57:42 PM »
You could go with the German Branch sword.  This was contemporary to the mid 15th century.  Arms & Armor make a great recreation.  I love mine!!

If only... It's a beautiful sword, but a bit out of my price range.

Although, I should look into more riding swords.


Offline The Scottish Knight

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Re: Choosing a sword...
« Reply #20 on: December 17, 2009, 11:04:22 AM »
Greetings all!

I have purchased a Scottish Basket Hilted Broadsword (Hanwei, antiqued.) It's a beautiful sword, I'll probably be using it for my pirate and 18th century Highlander costumes more than for Renne. But this is (hopefully) the beginning a a larger sword collections, so I'll probably aquire a more suitable blade sometime in the future.

Thanks to everyone for the help!

Offline Count Adolfo

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Re: Choosing a sword...
« Reply #21 on: December 19, 2009, 09:04:14 PM »
we want pictures!

Offline L Dale Walter

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Re: Choosing a sword...
« Reply #22 on: December 22, 2009, 07:04:06 PM »
Look at "period weapons" this way:  What does a pistol look like?  Could you go out today and buy a flintlock?  Why yes you could.  Or a polymer Glock?  Yes to that too.  It's not like when a new gun comes out everyone throws away their old ones.  Swords were expensive, and tended to hang around.  I have 2 blades from approximately the same time period that illustrate this and Same period, very different blades.  The blade on the Dresden was probably originally on a broadsword, and then reworked into a rapier style.

Plus, you have to take into account different styles and abilities.  I will take a straight hand and a half with about a 33" blade over anything.  For my size, height, strength level, and preferred strategy, this works best for me, and again I say FOR ME.  Rapiers I prefer shorter than longer, 33-34" blades, with big quillons for binds.  Everyone has their favorites, but to assume that because in a book somewhere it says "Typical sword of 1600" that all others had been thrown away is a bit foolish.  Someone was carrying a Claymore, because it was what they had...

L. Dale Walter

Offline Carl Heinz

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Re: Choosing a sword...
« Reply #23 on: December 22, 2009, 09:29:45 PM »
Might want to give Jim Hrisoulas at a holler.

His in stock varies, but his Salamander Armory booth at RPFS is very popular especially when he has some rapiers available.

If you're interested in pattern welded pointies, he's the guy who wrote the books--literally.
Carl Heinz
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Offline TheMightyMcClaw

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Re: Choosing a sword...
« Reply #24 on: January 18, 2010, 07:16:40 PM »
If you happen to have a plasma cutter and an angle grinder lying around, I highly endorse making your own sword. It's an immensely satisfying experience. ^_^


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