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Old January 10th, 2006, 04:38   #31
DuffMan
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Soulja
Quote:
Originally Posted by Magix7
I once heard that people started creating curved blades because it was easier and faster to draw from a sheath than a straight edged blade
Did you even read the rest of the thread?

I heard curved *****es were faster to draw from an ass than straight *****es.
Yeah, thats a myth. I found that out the unpleasant way.
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Old January 10th, 2006, 06:53   #32
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don't remember where or who .. but i think it was from a martial arts instructor. anyways I have no idea if there is any truth to this for sure so consider it food for thought.

The curve in the sword is so that more force is applied to a smaller area making it easyer to cut an object, be it a tree, an arm, or someoen head. One draw, one swing, one kill.

in my eyes this makes sence in addition to the physics of the forging process that a smaller edge with X ammount of force behind it would apply more force on an object being struck then a larger edge (ie flat blade) with the same X ammount of force behind it. ie it is easyer to stab somone with a nail then it is with a blunt 2x4 given that you stab with the same ammount of force. There is just more poundes per square inch applied to the object being struck with a curved blade.

well that is my contribution, maybe someone "in the know" can fill in and give the tumbs up or down on this info *shrugs*.
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Old January 10th, 2006, 09:26   #33
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JohnnyDo:

I am not sure this is correct. When you strike someone with a sword you only strike with a small area in any event, so unless you are using the sword like a saw that is not really an issue. The sharpness of the blade is the key "smallness" not the length.

If I remember correctly (and I hope so 'cause Brian will be testing me on this soon) a well make blade has two nodes or points where the blade does not vibrate when struck so that if the target is struck at this point on the blade, the maximum amount of force is transmitted to the target. In a well made blade I understand that the second node is in the pommel so that the hand does not have to deal with any more vibration that is absolutely nec.

I would guess it would be easier to lop off an arm with a two handed sword than a small blade like a scimitar, but I have not had an opportunity to figure this out yet.

For those who are interested in these things AEMMA (which Brian runs at the same location as TAC) will be having an open house this Sat from 12-2. There will be tack stuff, sharp edged cutting with swords, armoured combat and a number of martial arts activities going on.

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Old January 10th, 2006, 10:12   #34
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thanks for the info
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Old January 10th, 2006, 12:41   #35
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I think Lawdog is correct in saying that the sharpness of the blade contributes more to it's cutting ability than it's curve.

As was mentioned before, the advantage in having a curved blade while cutting is in drawing the cut across the body, and increasing the edge that is used. For a simple 'try at home' experiment, we all know that using the 'sawing' action helps us cut things in the kitchen. A curved blade adds a little of this 'saw' to a cut with a sword.

One thing Lawdog neglected to mention, though, was the balance of a sword. That is one of the things that greatly differentiates swords. A good european longsword balances about 3-4 inches out from the cross guard, which makes it suitable for both offence and defense. With the circumstances of battle that the longsword was being used for, this was critical. This balance point lets the blade move fast enough to defend yourself, and with enough power to injure your opponent.

A scimitar, on the other hand, is balanced about 1-2 feet out from the cross guard. This balance point gives the sword tremendous power in its cut, but once it gets moving, it is very hard to change the direction of its swing, making it ill suited to defense. The scimitar is very akin to the modern machete. Good at cutting, but not good in a sword-only fight.

The katana is an entity a cultural world apart from the longswords and scimitars that saw each other often during the crusades. The katana was made as a vessel for a single, sharp edge that could be used on whatever it needed to be used for. With its balance point and curve, it cuts well, but it is straight enough and balanced close enough to be defended with. It might not be the best at each of these things, but it strikes a healthy compromise, and with the relatively low amount of steel in japan, one that makes a great deal of sense.

If you want to take a closer look at what cutting with a european longsword will actually do, AEMMA conducted a test (with discussion) a few years ago, and posted their videos online.

http://www.aemma.org/onlineResources/sharpTest.htm

As a comparison, I have seen videos of the same tests being done with a katana, and the results are remarkably similar.

So, in conclusion, it is the sharpness of the edge, and to a lesser extent, the balance of the sword and curve, that affect the cut. The skill of striking with the node only maximizes the cut.

If you'd like to see for yourself, I second going to the FACT open house. Lots of fun, lots of cool toys. You can learn more about the open house here:
http://www.airsoftcanada.com/showthread.php?t=22485

Talk soon,
Squire
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Old January 16th, 2006, 20:04   #36
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Combine
I thought it was to make it easier to cut limbs off, usually the arabs had curved blades ( simitars ) and cut off peoples heads and such

Scimitars and other curved cast blades of that nature are made in a curved shape as a point of style.

A Katana's curve is a result from the cooling of the blade. Traditional Katana's (and most Japaniese Fighting Swords) are formed from Folded steel, When this steel cools in its shaped form it actually contracts. This causes the blade to curve. The degree of curve on a sword can be an indication of its level of craftmenship.

This is also the reason why longer blades (like a No-Dachi and a Katana) have more of a curve then shorter blades (like a tanto or Washaki)
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Old January 17th, 2006, 22:51   #37
Brian McIlmoyle
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rugger_can
Quote:
Originally Posted by Combine
I thought it was to make it easier to cut limbs off, usually the arabs had curved blades ( simitars ) and cut off peoples heads and such

Scimitars and other curved cast blades of that nature are made in a curved shape as a point of style.

A Katana's curve is a result from the cooling of the blade. Traditional Katana's (and most Japaniese Fighting Swords) are formed from Folded steel, When this steel cools in its shaped form it actually contracts. This causes the blade to curve. The degree of curve on a sword can be an indication of its level of craftmenship.

This is also the reason why longer blades (like a No-Dachi and a Katana) have more of a curve then shorter blades (like a tanto or Washaki)

A common misconception, Katanas are curved from the forging process not the tempering process. the curve is already there before they are differentialy tempered.
Although the curve is certainly "set" by the cooling process.

Traditionally forged Katanas are composed of layered, forge welded compositions of iron and steel.. before the tempering the crystaline structure throughout the blade is homologous. the differential tempering process is what creates the composite character of the blade, The edge is tempered to a greater hardness than the back of the blade creating a weapon that has both a hard edge but a durable spine.
A very fine grade of clay is used to insulate the spine of the blade while the blade is heated to tempering temperature... if the blade changed shape significantly at this point , the heating or the quenching, this clay would crack off spoiling the temper.

Longer blades are curved more because the edge is longer, eventually of you had a long enough blade or forged the edge out thin enough it would form a circle.

You can test this out with a piece of plasticine.. and a hammer.. form a bar of plasticine.. and hammer ( lightly) down one edge from one end to the other.. the bar will curve, this is why one edged knives that are forged (not ground from barstock) typically have curved or "bellied" blades.

( I have some very good friends of nearly 20 years that are professional blacksmiths/ bladesmiths I'm not pullin this info out of my butt)
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