i am a longtime lurker and now it's finally time to post something.
I am a relative new collector (started last year in november) so my experience is very limited.
I purchased the TFW Minasbad (my first sword ) last year in november. I never used the sword for cutting and everything was fine until a few days ago.
My sword developed a thin crack in the handle probably caused through wood shrinking. I know that tropical wood has difficulties adjusting to a different climate (i live in europe btw.) so i applied protective oil (Ballistol) to the handle to protect it from dryness and cracking.
Well i don't know if i should have oiled it more often but i need some advice how to fix it.
I plan to use that sword for cutting test in the near future but i don't want to use it in it's current state.
Should i use black wood filler to fill the gaps and sanding it down with steel wool or sandpaper?
Post by leviathansteak on Apr 5, 2018 11:23:17 GMT
If the tang is peened or fixed securely to the pommel in some way, the cracked grip should not cause the sword to fall apart in use. If it does want to fall apart, wood filler will not prevent it. If you are good with handling wood, you can replace the entire grip from scratch. It is not difficult and can be done with hand tools alone
That’s a nice looking piece with beautiful wood that has an unfortunate problem. Living in Europe no doubt you have to heat your house, that dries the air and not the best thing for wood from the tropics. If you can store your sword in a room with a humidifier that would help. A frequent oiling of the wood would not be a bad idea. I am fortunate in that respect to be now living in the tropics. At one time I lived up in the cold country and my rifle stocks had a cracking problem during the winter due to the heat dried air, that’s how I know about the advantage of a humidifier.
Getting back to your immediate problem. Wood filler is not the answer. Storing the sword in a humid condition may bring the two edges back together, but it will still be broken. Whether the crack will cause a long term problem I don’t know, probably not. However to repair, use epoxy, preferably one that can be sanded. It might be necessary to add a little colouring to match the colour of the wood. Work it into the crack and when thoroughly dry sand. It might be necessary for a good match to sand and re-oil the entire grip. Keep it oiled to decreased the chance of more cracking. Also CA glue may work and be quicker and simpler.
One thing that I touched on and perhaps should elaborate on as I found it true on my cracked rifle stocks. Once those stocks were subjected to conditioning in a closed room after I introduced a humidifier usually closed back up to the point the cracks were no longer visible. Those that did not completely close improved. After closing I repaired with wood glue, dressed down, and had no more problems with the humidifier being present. It will take more time but if you can get a room size humidifier and place the sword in that room it's possible the crack will close on its own. In that case apply CA glue. This is thin and will seep into the wood bonding both sides. Then sand and re-oil the grip. That would be the least noticeable but the most time consuming and expensive way. It will also insure no future cracking.
As an alternative to the humidifier therapy, you can try soaking the hilt overnight in teak oil, boiled linseed oil or similar. Sand gently with fine paper, then soak again; repeat until the wood simply cannot absorb any more oil due to being saturated. This will stop the wood from absorbing harmful moisture as well as prevent it drying out, and should deepen its color and luster to some degree, too.
(If the grip is lacquered, you should sand that off first, very gently, with very fine paper.)
"For sometimes persons do not know, they do not wish to know, and they have no intention of knowing. For such persons there is no excuse, but they are altogether to be condemned."
-- Heinrich Kramer & James Sprenger, Malleus Maleficarum
christain: Don't feel alone, Scott. I gotta work Sunday while the rest of the family has Easter dinner. That's okay though...I'll just eat double when I get home.
Apr 21, 2019 0:11:34 GMT
ouroboros: Sorry Scott. Hope time off comes soon
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Scott: I'm working all weekend
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ouroboros: Easter Greetings to you too!
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Apr 20, 2019 3:09:55 GMT
redscorpion: Ah, I see now. I stand (or rather sit) corrected. Nice seax. Been thinking about picking one up for myself.
Apr 19, 2019 1:16:10 GMT
christain: Congrats, Nord! Nice looking seax you have there. You've waited patiently, and now...the reward! When you decide you want a Viking longship replica built, I know a couple'a guys.....
Apr 18, 2019 23:59:48 GMT
nerdthenord: Lol, I posted pictures Scorp. In my own thread and the new acquisitions thread.
Apr 18, 2019 22:48:45 GMT
redscorpion: Good for you, Nord! But.... no pictures = never happened.
Apr 18, 2019 22:25:43 GMT
nerdthenord: Well, I pick up my seax Tuesday, which is just perfect lol.
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Apr 18, 2019 3:42:07 GMT
nerdthenord: Christain, sent you a PM about that sheath. Oh I am so exited for my seax! It is supposed to be epic! I updated my thread about it btw.
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