Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Wooden swords with shield wall mounts

One day I was without much money to start a new project, so I decided to rummage through my scraps.  I found a fairly large 2x4 and thought it would be cool to try making a sword out of it.

Using my T-square I drew a basic shape for a sword onto the 2x4.

I decided to use my jig saw to cut out the pieces.  I think my table saw would have been easier, but I decided to take the longer route.

Once the shape was cut I used my hand planer to begin thinning out the blade.

When I had reached the thickness I wanted I then began sanding the blade with my belt sander.

After about 30 minutes of heavy sanding the final shape was starting to show itself.

I then switched to my orbital sander to really start smoothing the blade.

After about an hour of sanding, and using almost all my sanders and sandpaper, I had the shape I wanted.

Next I used a round-over bit on my router to smooth the edges of the handle.

I then used 3 other small pieces of 2x4 and drew out parts of the hand guard and the pommel.

I cut these pieces using the miter saw.

I used my dremel router table to make those 3 pieces look a little nicer.

While I had my dremel out, I cut the heads off of 3 bolts.  These will connect the hand guard/pommel to the body of the sword.

In addition to the bolts, I also used glue to hold the pieces together.

I clamped it and let it dry.

I'm liking my sword so far, and I want to make a cool looking shield to mount the sword to.  For this I found a leftover shelf from a recent project.

I drew a shape for the shield that would compliment the sword when latched on.

I cut one half of the shield and used the scrap pieces as a template for the other side.

When all the pieces were cut I put the sword in place to see how it looked - and I like it!

Next I used my router to decorate the edges of the shield.

I used 2 leftover cuts as mounts for the sword.

I drilled holes with countersinks in the back of the shield.

And attached the mounts with screws and glue.

I also decorated the hilt of the sword with some leftover trim.

Then I applied some wood filler to parts of the sword and shield that needed touch up.

Looks awesome!

Next I gave everything a good sanding followed by some stain.

When the stain dried I sanded everything with sandpaper.

Cleaned, then applied some finishing wax.

Lastly I added a wall mount to the back.  Usually this is attached with some small nails, but I used my drill press to widen the hole and used screws instead of nails.

Then I attached it to the wall.

The shield looks great and is very sturdy.

The sword also looks great and has a nice weight to it.

All in all this took only a few hours to make.  The shaping process and waiting for the stain to dry were the longest part of this process.  Not bad.  Beginning to end I think this project took about 6-7 hours.

I had so much fun making this that the next day I decided to make another.  Once again I started with a piece of 2x4.

Instead of using my jig saw, I decided to thin the wood out using my hand planer.

The planer works great, and I'm happy to get more practice with it.

After I made my initial planes I sanded the blade with the belt sander.

I forgot to take pictures of the whole process of cutting, planing and sanding, but at the end of the night I was left with this blade.

I also cut out a shape for the handle.

The next day I drew lines on the handle where I was going to start shaping the wood.

I used my dremel for this, utilizing various sanding, grinding and engraving bits.

I have not had much experience shaping wood, so after working with the dremel, the handle looked a bit rough.

After sanding the handle looked a lot better.  A lot of the handle will later be fixed with wood filler.

Next I started on the hand guard, which again was made from a piece of 2x4.

I cut angles in the wood, then used my router to decorate the edges.

Carefully drilling and screwing, I attached the blade to the hand guard.

Then I attached the handle using a bolt.

I swung the sword around, checking it's strength.

Everything held together well... I disassembled it, and added glue to the joints.

Next I wanted the pummel to look a bit better, so I used my drill press to drill a hole through it.

Then I widened the hole with my router.

I went back to the dremel and started forming a decorative swirl.

Then I applied wood filler to the sword.  The blade received only a little filler, where as the handle received a lot - mostly to clean up my sloppy carvings.

I placed the sword on a piece of board and drew a shape for a shield mount.  I then cut it out with my jig saw.

Then I used the router to give it some nice edges.

Like the first shield, I used pieces of the scrap wood I cut from it to use as mounts for the sword.

I carefully drilled, screwed and glued these in place.

Then I sanded the sword and added some filler to the shield.

When the filler dried I sanded the shield.

Then I cleaned up both, and applied stain.

When the stain dried I sanded.

I hung up the shield to see how it looked.

It looks great, and gets better when the sword is in place.

Next I added some finishing wax.

And I'm done!

2 swords done in 3 days.  Not too bad!

A few weeks later I was in my garage/workshop just itching to work on something new, but not having money for new material.  So I dove back into my scrap bucket.

Since it will be hard for me to use the curved pieces of scrap in future projects, I decided to make something with those.

I came up with a curved blade.

After a little cutting, I glued and clamped the pieces together.

When the glue dried I had the start of a cool looking blade.

I also had a long piece of trim that had one end routed.

I cut the piece in half, glued it together to make a handle.

I glued more curved pieces of wood together to make an interesting handle & hand guard.

Next I began sanding the blade and hand guard.

I used my jig saw to cut a hole in the guard to fit the blade.

The guard actually broke while fitting the blade inside, so I used another piece of wood with some glue and clamps to hold it all together.

When the glue dried I did some sanding to the guard.

I attached the handle with pocket screws.

I didn't much care for the handle so I removed it.  Not quite sure how to proceed with the curved blade, I placed it back and played with one last piece of 2x4.

This time I started shaping this blade using my table saw.

I used my miter saw to give the blade a point.

And I used my hand planer to thin out the blade.

After some sanding, the shape was looking good, but I needed the blade needed to be thinner.

While using the planer the tip of the blade went shooting off.

I continued planing...

...and reshaped the tip of the blade.

Once again the tip broke off, so I then put it aside and started working on a new handle using more scrap curved wood.

I glued pieces together and cut out a shape I liked with the jig saw.

Going back to the broken blade, I sanded and trimmed so much that it no longer resembled the blade it started out being.  The tip of the blade also broke off so many times that this new blade is considerably shorter than intended.  Now it's a dagger.

I made the hand guard for this dagger using another piece of wood which I shaped with the jig saw and sand paper.

I routed the edges and notched out a hole for the blade using my drill press and some chisels.

The dagger blade fit in nicely and was glued in place.

I routed the handle...

and glued it onto the blade, also using pocket screws.

Then it received a good sanding.

....followed by some wood filler.

When the filler dried, more sanding.

...then stain.

When the stain dried, I sanded some more.

And finally added finishing wax.

At first I didn't feel like making a shield wall mount for this one.  It's a lot smaller then the swords and I thought it would look nicer on a table top.  But eventually I did make one and hung it up in my workshop.

But I did not forget about the curved blade.  I decided to make a smaller curved blade that went underneath the larger one.  So I dug up more scraps and drew the shape I wanted.

I glued and clamped these pieces together.

Since the hand guard was a little too thick and not much to my liking, I broke it off and cleaned up the larger blade.

I then fashioned a new handle which will connect the larger and smaller blades together.

I then cut out the handle.

Since glue alone can not hold all these pieces together, I drilled some pocket screws.

When the glue dried I cut out the smaller blade.

Then I screwed all the pieces together and glued them.

Then sanding began.

While shaping a piece broke off which I easily fixed with wood glue and a clamp.

When that piece fully dried I resumed sanding and shaping.

When I had the shape I wanted I cleaned the sword....

 ...then applied wood filler to fill in some small holes.

When the filler dried I sanded.

Then I cleaned it up and added some stain.

When the stain was wiped and dried I decided not to do my normal sanding/weathering.

Instead I grabbed my gold paint marker and began drawing some designs onto it.

When one side was done and dried, I flipped it over and started over again.

When both sides were done I began to spray on some polyurethane.

And I'm done!

I also didn't make a shield mount for this one since I couldn't quite figure out how I would keep it attached.

Here are all my wooden swords.  The fifth sword on the right is Link's Magic Wooden sword, and you can see the blog entry for that build here.

Thanks for reading!

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