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Old 18th October 2006, 12:53 PM   #12
S.Al-Anizi's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Arabia
Posts: 279

Originally Posted by ariel
[QUOTE=S.Al-Anizi]Ariel- My view of japanese blades, is that they're esily bent, all they're good for, is keeping an edge...QUOTE]

That was the genius of Japanese swordmakers! Their blades could withstand the blow but could also keep the edge. The construction of Japanese blades was not a mere accident, but a consistently applied and very clever way to combine the seemingly incompatible qualities: resilience of the body and keenness of the edge. Wootz blades were beautiful, especially the ladder/rose patterns, but were mechanically "singleminded" and I wonder whether these embellishments requiring chiselling the blade perpendicular to the axis actually weakened the blade even further. BTW, Caucasian swordmakers used "Japanese" differential tempering on their best blades and got beautiful hamons as a result ( of course, boys, you will learn about it first hand when Astvatsaturyan's book is finally translated I am getting a bit repetitious about it, but .... what a book!)

Well, enough of royalty bashing... Swords are mechanical implements first and foremost; they have to stand to brutal conditions of the battlefield. Those that cannot do it are just pretty toys.

Some say that the japanese werent bright enough to know how to harden, then temper their blades, thus differential heat treatment was their way to go. Anyway, I wouldnt want a sword thats easily bent in battle. I remember once Rick showed us a persian wootz blade, with japanese style heat treatment, quite a find!

As to Abby, that reminds me of a legend I read in Arab arms and armour, where this old warrior Abu Zaid, placed 2 camels ontop of each other, and cut them into four halves!

Gt- Could wootz blades be hardened then tempered like other conventional steels? or would high temperatures burn out the blade?
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