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 Post subject: Best possible materials for a blue longsword?
PostPosted: Thu Oct 27, 2011 4:45 am 
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I know what you're thinking, use the search engine. I used it, several times with several key words and I still haven't found what I need. I keep finding lists of materials at my disposal, but nothing that states the absolute best foam, adheasive, and core.

I have inexhaustable funds and I'm looking to make twin longswords for florentine fighting.

To start, I'm completely clueless when it comes to foams. I just know the basics of- open cell for the stab, closed cell for the blade. What's the best open and closed cell foams for flat blade long swords?

For cores, I know fiberglass is king, however I wanted to know if there was a recommended supplier/diameter/thickness and also, could i just use a bandshoppe pole for blue weapons? ( I know they're used for red weapons, I'm making the suggestion because i already have an 8' bandshoppe pole which is enough to core two blues)
Last, what type of fabric would i want to help better protect my foam?

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 Post subject: Re: Best possible materials for a blue longsword?
PostPosted: Thu Oct 27, 2011 7:47 am 
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Glue=Dap
foam=4# box from Barley then 2 layers of 2# eva foam.
core=1/2" fiberglass 36" long
cover=trigger like edhellen uses.
Handle=glue a peice of 1/4" round bar(steel) 6" long to either side of the core, making your handle oblong in line with the edge of your sword. Wrap with 1/8" nylon rope.
FB

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 Post subject: Re: Best possible materials for a blue longsword?
PostPosted: Thu Oct 27, 2011 7:47 am 
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Double trouble!

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Last edited by Forkbeard on Thu Oct 27, 2011 8:51 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Best possible materials for a blue longsword?
PostPosted: Thu Oct 27, 2011 8:48 am 
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One of the people i was hoping to hear from! Thanks a lot, FB.

"Reading all of Forkbeard's posts" should be in the "read before posting" topic.

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 Post subject: Re: Best possible materials for a blue longsword?
PostPosted: Thu Oct 27, 2011 9:01 am 
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Now, now we don't need to be giving FB anymore of a swollen head now. That's the same advice that you would be getting from anyone else. He just got here first.

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 Post subject: Re: Best possible materials for a blue longsword?
PostPosted: Thu Oct 27, 2011 9:03 am 
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sword and board
lol but his head is perfectly proportioned... i SEEN IT :eyes:

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 Post subject: Re: Best possible materials for a blue longsword?
PostPosted: Thu Oct 27, 2011 1:37 pm 
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another option.

.524 kitespar from goodwinds. a 4lbs eva core layer( barley) , 1" of cross liunk poly( kegg foam), .625" of ensolite for stabbing.

hot glue a 3 inch bolt into the core in the handle end for counterweighting. use gorilla tape to oblong the handle then wrap with rope and a tennis handle wrap.

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 Post subject: Re: Best possible materials for a blue longsword?
PostPosted: Thu Oct 27, 2011 2:56 pm 
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I would strongly reccomend NOT using bandpole for anything less than 6, mabye 5.5 feet or so. Farm supply stores, such as Fleet Farm, Farm & Fleet, etc. are all great for 1/2 inch fiberglass rods (look in the fencing section).

A great source for stabbing foam is therm-o-seat type things, like this guy:
Image

Follow the Constructing_a_Stabbing_Tip tutorial. Do not use the old method you find on the page; it won't last nearly as long.

Hope that helps!

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 Post subject: Re: Best possible materials for a blue longsword?
PostPosted: Thu Oct 27, 2011 6:18 pm 
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If you try bo1's plan, make sure you have a scale to make sure your creation makes minimum weight. You can get fancier than either bo's or forkbeard's methods (plastidip on the flat of the blade, fancier handle, etc), but not significantly better.

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 Post subject: Re: Best possible materials for a blue longsword?
PostPosted: Fri Oct 28, 2011 3:36 pm 
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Yep.


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 Post subject: Re: Best possible materials for a blue longsword?
PostPosted: Wed Nov 09, 2011 9:05 pm 
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I prefer the use of double sided carpet tape in most of my creations but that's my preference. Many people don't like carpet tape b/c it supposedly does'nt grip the foam as well as DAP long term but I haven't had that trouble with my weapons. And I store them pretty crappily honestly. Some of them have been around 2 years and still pass at events as backups.

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 Post subject: Re: Best possible materials for a blue longsword?
PostPosted: Wed Nov 09, 2011 9:12 pm 
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Sage wrote:
I prefer the use of double sided carpet tape in most of my creations but that's my preference. Many people don't like carpet tape b/c it supposedly does'nt grip the foam as well as DAP long term but I haven't had that trouble with my weapons. And I store them pretty crappily honestly. Some of them have been around 2 years and still pass at events as backups.


It's also heavier and more temperature-sensitive.


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 Post subject: Re: Best possible materials for a blue longsword?
PostPosted: Sun Nov 13, 2011 12:42 am 
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I would give the same advise as Forkbeard, *except* use 3/8" square fiberglass instead of 1/2" round if you can find it, and use 1/4" rope rather than 1/8". Also, I suggest a 96% cotton / 4% spandex blend for the cover fabric, and a small piece of leather near the tip on each flat to help reinforce. Also, I suggest having the 1/4" steel bars in the handle go all the way into the pommel for additional counter-weighting.

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 Post subject: Re: Best possible materials for a blue longsword?
PostPosted: Sun Nov 13, 2011 8:04 pm 
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Kasada wrote:
I would give the same advise as Forkbeard, *except* use 3/8" square fiberglass instead of 1/2" round if you can find it, and use 1/4" rope rather than 1/8". Also, I suggest a 96% cotton / 4% spandex blend for the cover fabric, and a small piece of leather near the tip on each flat to help reinforce. Also, I suggest having the 1/4" steel bars in the handle go all the way into the pommel for additional counter-weighting.


Ignore the quoted post.

Solid steel bars from handle top to pommel = stress concentrations that lead to weird flex characteristics and broken cores.

Spandex is unnecessary in a good fitted cover.

Leather on the flats would make your sword fail in a lot of places. What would the purpose of such an arcane ritual possibly be in a world where we have 4# foam and strapping tape?

3/8" square fiberglass vs. 1/2" round fiberglass: 3/8" is smaller, making it harder to keep a stable stabbing tip and reducing blade and tip lifespan. It's ever so slightly easier to box than 1/2" round (if you don't have a router or access to routed foams). Toss up, I guess; for me, the choice is clear: .524 kitespar.

I don't care what size rope you like. 2mm macrame cord is good enough for me.


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 Post subject: Re: Best possible materials for a blue longsword?
PostPosted: Sun Nov 13, 2011 10:39 pm 
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lols. nice arrakis, way to bash the kid into the ground.

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 Post subject: Re: Best possible materials for a blue longsword?
PostPosted: Mon Nov 14, 2011 7:28 am 
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he is right, however. 3/8" square is trash and will flex out in about a month of hard twice a week fighting.
FB

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 Post subject: Re: Best possible materials for a blue longsword?
PostPosted: Mon Nov 14, 2011 8:16 am 
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bo1 wrote:
lols. nice arrakis, way to bash the kid into the ground.


Sorry, bo, Kasada. I was tired.

But yeah. I still agree with myself.

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 Post subject: Re: Best possible materials for a blue longsword?
PostPosted: Mon Nov 14, 2011 7:42 pm 
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The spandex addition to the cover material is nice if you like to shape the blade slightly - on 1/2", one is very likely to end up with a blade that is more than sufficiently wide to trim off about 1/8" from each corner. Aside from that, the material I suggest is lighter than poplin. Both are perfectly valid choices, neither is strictly necessary. Swords are, after all, pieces of art in addition to being tools to hit people with.

If you really, really want to avoid breakage but still have the steel counterweighting and oblong hilt, it seems that using a method similar to the way railroad tracks are placed might be effective. That is, use several shorter segments with a very small amount of space between them on the hilt rather than full length solid bars. I'm sure Arrakis could verify things on that on the stress distribution side of things.

I would appreciate an explanation of the allegation that leather tip reinforcement would cause failure in any case. It barely adds weight, makes an accidental flat hit in fact softer rather than harder, and isn't so wide as to block blade compression.

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 Post subject: Re: Best possible materials for a blue longsword?
PostPosted: Mon Nov 14, 2011 8:08 pm 
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Kasada wrote:
The spandex addition to the cover material is nice if you like to shape the blade slightly - on 1/2", one is very likely to end up with a blade that is more than sufficiently wide to trim off about 1/8" from each corner. Aside from that, the material I suggest is lighter than poplin. Both are perfectly valid choices, neither is strictly necessary. Swords are, after all, pieces of art in addition to being tools to hit people with.


Not 100% sure I've understood you correctly here. I don't shape my swords; stickjock swords do not need shaping excepting for the purposes of improving performance, which is typically axially symmetric shaping and doesn't affect cover fit. I like a tight, sturdy, non-stretch cover to help support the foam of the blade and provide a "skin" to prevent the foam from being gouged by the edges of armor or shields on hard strikes. I have never found stretchiness to be needful if you don't mind measuring, pinning, sewing, fitting, and resewing to get your covers right. It may be a useful trait for arrow or javelin covers, though, due to the open cell...

Kasada wrote:
If you really, really want to avoid breakage but still have the steel counterweighting and oblong hilt, it seems that using a method similar to the way railroad tracks are placed might be effective. That is, use several shorter segments with a very small amount of space between them on the hilt rather than full length solid bars. I'm sure Arrakis could verify things on that on the stress distribution side of things.


That's how I say to do it in my tutorial on the topic: A_Method_for_Counterweighting_a_Flatblade. It's a little more cutting, but it's worth it. Plus, then you can tune your counterweight by replacing some of the segments with equal-size dowel rod (I use 1/4" for blueswords).

Kasada wrote:
I would appreciate an explanation of the allegation that leather tip reinforcement would cause failure in any case. It barely adds weight, makes an accidental flat hit in fact softer rather than harder, and isn't so wide as to block blade compression.


I assume whenever the word "leather" is used in this forum that, as is usually the case, armor-grade veg-tan is being referred to. In that case, your flat would be harder, protruding, ugly, and less well-secured. In the case of using soft garment-weight leather, instead, what is the benefit? Why not just use ripstop nylon or strapping tape? Why not just use a 4# box or box-fry and a layer of strapping tape to prevent blowouts?


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 Post subject: Re: Best possible materials for a blue longsword?
PostPosted: Sun Nov 27, 2011 6:01 am 
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I know what you're thinking, use the search engine. I used it, several times with several key words and I still haven't found what I need. I keep finding lists of materials at my disposal, but nothing that states the absolute best foam, adheasive, and core.

I have inexhaustable funds and I'm looking to make twin longswords for florentine fighting.

To start, I'm completely clueless when it comes to foams. I just know the basics of- open cell for the stab, closed cell for the blade. What's the best open and closed cell foams for flat blade long swords?

For cores, I know fiberglass is king, however I wanted to know if there was a recommended supplier/diameter/thickness and also, could i just use a bandshoppe pole for blue weapons? ( I know they're used for red weapons, I'm making the suggestion because i already have an 8' bandshoppe pole which is enough to core two blues)
Last, what type of fabric would i want to help better protect my foam?


PM barley and say "take this wad of cash and make me the best **** weapons in the game please".

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 Post subject: Re: Best possible materials for a blue longsword?
PostPosted: Wed Dec 07, 2011 12:41 pm 
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I may have a local foam supplier where i can get the good stuff and get away from using blue. I have some reds i wish to rebuild and i want them to be good quality. I have learned some of our terms make employees scratch thier heads such as "Techply" which is actually birch plywood or something like that. Here is my question...

If i go to a person to order foam will they understand when i say " i need a sheet of 1/2" thick closed cell 4 pound eva foam and a sheet of 1/4" thick closed cell 2 pound eva foam (this is what replaces blue, right?) ?

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 Post subject: Re: Best possible materials for a blue longsword?
PostPosted: Wed Dec 07, 2011 12:51 pm 
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LoganSteele wrote:
I may have a local foam supplier where i can get the good stuff and get away from using blue. I have some reds i wish to rebuild and i want them to be good quality. I have learned some of our terms make employees scratch thier heads such as "Techply" which is actually birch plywood or something like that. Here is my question...

If i go to a person to order foam will they understand when i say " i need a sheet of 1/2" thick closed cell 4 pound eva foam and a sheet of 1/4" thick closed cell 2 pound eva foam (this is what replaces blue, right?) ?


You probably want 1/2" thicknesses of 2# microcell.


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 Post subject: Re: Best possible materials for a blue longsword?
PostPosted: Wed Dec 07, 2011 3:55 pm 
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Hrm thank you Arakis. Im still not satisfied enough here to just spend money and order a product like this hoping its right and then get a bunch of worthless foam. Ill message Barley and see what how much it will cost me and how long it will take for me to get my core foam. At the length i need it will probubly be a nasty shipping charge. Ill save samples of the foams and find see if i can meet that local supplier and get the the official technical names for blue foam upgrade foam and puzzle mat core foam.

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 Post subject: Re: Best possible materials for a blue longsword?
PostPosted: Wed Dec 07, 2011 10:42 pm 
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I do not want come off as a jerk, but here is what i found doing the exact same thing you want to do (and i had help from family in the foam business).

Foam samples may not be enough to get material that matches the same traits of the foam.

You can find 4# EVA's out there, but they are not all the same. Some are much softer and more flexible than others.

Good blade foam is a * to find. 2# EVA is a bad choice. It tears wayyyyy to easily. If you do find good blade foam, check to make sure the supply is not a one time event. It used to be readily available, but not anymore.

The sport as a whole should expect this: foam manfacturing companies no longer want to deal with small potato customers; they want volume. A foam converter might listen, but they are constrained by volume requirements from the mfg companies too.

The core foam I use is available at a max of 72". The material is grown in a "bun" and the size of a bun is 108". I think they trim the edges because these buns are grown from the center out, so the edges tend to be more pliable than the center. This means the foam core is weaker & more flexible as you get closer to edge. When you build a weapon, it get softer as you get close to the handle of the weapon. For reds this can be a problem.

I use 72" core boxes and fold them over for a 36" blade. To do longer blades you need to seam it or not fold it over at the top. I prefer to fold over the top because i have never had a tip blow out by using the fold over method. I make bats which cannot use that method and had a few where the tip worked loose.

To that end, the biggest issue with the sword tip blow out is that most glues (DAP, Gorilla, hot melt) can not grip onto strap tape or Extreme Tape on the biscuit unless you sand it. Alternately you can use Hurricane tape which we have found that DAP can adhere to it.

Since my goal is to provide the best materials availble at a reasonable cost and to take the proceeds of the sales to fund Bel scholarships with the money, I am not willing to share where i purchase materials.

Feel free to contact me with any questions,
Barley

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 Post subject: Re: Best possible materials for a blue longsword?
PostPosted: Thu Dec 08, 2011 1:13 pm 
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"I do not want come off as a jerk, but here is what i found doing the exact same thing you want to do (and i had help from family in the foam business)."

No sir, you come off as awesome. Thank you for the reply that will save me time and money. Ill be sending you an order request very soon.

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 Post subject: Re: Best possible materials for a blue longsword?
PostPosted: Mon Feb 20, 2012 1:40 am 
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Got promoted at my job so I reluctantly haven't gotten back around to this up until now. On the bright side me and a few friends are getting our own group together and we're having our first practice next weekend, so if you're in southwest louisiana and you want to drop amtgard and put your big boy pants on hit me up.

2 more questions; fiberglass tubes? Or fiberglass rods? And is the blue sword tutorial on the wiki up to date?

I know the stab tip and counter weight tuts are because Arrakis made them and I know he's solid because I obsessively shadow his posts lol.

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 Post subject: Re: Best possible materials for a blue longsword?
PostPosted: Mon Feb 20, 2012 9:06 am 
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That's actually Derian's stabbing tip tutorial. I just had a handy picture laying around and added it.

The bluesword tut on the wiki is the old Eriador method Bhakdar wrote up forever ago. It's good, but the modern method is to replace the initial box of bluefoam with either a box of 4# foam or a routed fry of 4# (see: barley), then replace the final two layers of bluefoam with higher quality blade foam, such as 2# MC or PE.

Otherwise, yeah. 'Grats on the promotion.


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 Post subject: Re: Best possible materials for a blue longsword?
PostPosted: Mon Feb 20, 2012 11:11 am 
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Arrakis wrote:
then replace the final two layers of bluefoam with higher quality blade foam, such as 2# MC or PE.


I'm looking to make a sword with some foam better than the blue foam I'm usual use. I'm guessing by PE you mean polyethylene, but what is MC and is one better than the other?


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 Post subject: Re: Best possible materials for a blue longsword?
PostPosted: Mon Feb 20, 2012 2:12 pm 
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Minicel /Microcellular ethyl-vinyl-acetate blends of some kind. I've used http://www.foamforyou.com/minicell_foam.htm 2# stuff to good effect.

It's nice because the cells in the foam are very very small which means that popping a cell is both more difficult and has less impact on the performance of the foam, which means that the breakdown is slower than that of bluefoam.


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 Post subject: Re: Best possible materials for a blue longsword?
PostPosted: Mon Feb 20, 2012 7:07 pm 
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Bleh! Never knew something so simple could be so frustrating; I mainly seem to be lost in translation as this community seems to use a lot of made up terms that I don't find on any foam website, such as "2#" etc. you wont find anything like that on any website online, so while I've found several sources of eva foam at very decent prices (for my range anyway); I'm hesitant to make any purchases on the off chance that I'll end up with 30$ worth of the wrong stuff.

I'll just stick with the blue camp pad foam which is a shame. Not trying to whine or say you guys haven't been helpful. If anything I'm helping you guys out by making you lean towards a better way of explaining thing to those who are new to the sport.

It just seems as if people have been talking riddles when it comes to foam lol. Directing people to websites and using lingo you can't find on the website you referred them to. All I have to go off of is "#2 and #4 1/2 inch Eva foam" and I you plug that into any search engine you won't find what you're looking for.

And I mean no offense when I say I'm not going to pay some random user of a forum I just joined to construct something I could construct myself if I were given the proper sources and names of the materials needed for a project :s

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 Post subject: Re: Best possible materials for a blue longsword?
PostPosted: Mon Feb 20, 2012 7:23 pm 
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Kauramnast wrote:
Bleh! Never knew something so simple could be so frustrating; I mainly seem to be lost in translation as this community seems to use a lot of made up terms that I don't find on any foam website, such as "2#" etc. you wont find anything like that on any website online, so while I've found several sources of eva foam at very decent prices (for my range anyway); I'm hesitant to make any purchases on the off chance that I'll end up with 30$ worth of the wrong stuff.

I'll just stick with the blue camp pad foam which is a shame. Not trying to whine or say you guys haven't been helpful. If anything I'm helping you guys out by making you lean towards a better way of explaining thing to those who are new to the sport.

It just seems as if people have been talking riddles when it comes to foam lol. Directing people to websites and using lingo you can't find on the website you referred them to. All I have to go off of is "#2 and #4 1/2 inch Eva foam" and I you plug that into any search engine you won't find what you're looking for.

And I mean no offense when I say I'm not going to pay some random user of a forum I just joined to construct something I could construct myself if I were given the proper sources and names of the materials needed for a project :s


2# is short for 2 pound, as in the foams density per cubic foot. That is listed on the very website that Arrackis linked, at least for a group of the items.It is standard technical jargon the the industry and not the game made up. Maybe we need glossary of terms somewhere?

If you don't know what you may be buying, fire off an email to the company and ask what the density of the foam you are looking at is. They should know the specs of their own stuff.

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 Post subject: Re: Best possible materials for a blue longsword?
PostPosted: Mon Feb 20, 2012 7:35 pm 
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Thanks for clearing that up, a glossary would be helpful; and yes, they listed poundage; along with numbers for various other specifications next to their products, ergo, the aforementioned "2#" could have meant ANYTHING to anyone not familiar with the term. I never said anyone was wrong, simply- potentially misleading to newcomers.

IMO there should be a pinned thread dedicated entirely to help in navigating one's foam endeavors. Glossary included. I see a lot of people getting **** on for their foam smithing techniques which would be fine and completely jusified of their were even a Proper source with the latest tech in foam smithing, which there isn't.

Just my 0.02.

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 Post subject: Re: Best possible materials for a blue longsword?
PostPosted: Mon Feb 20, 2012 8:02 pm 
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Whatever is laying around.
Feel free to update the wiki. That's how they work.

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 Post subject: Re: Best possible materials for a blue longsword?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 21, 2012 12:48 pm 
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I'm trying to find what foam to get from McMaster Carr to replace camp pad, but there are so many listed here and I don't want to get the wrong thing. I see EVA, Polyethylene, and closed-cell. Is The polyethylene what I want? And if so, do I get it with or without the skin? List of foam is on the left: http://www.mcmaster.com/#foam/=gcj45g


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 Post subject: Re: Best possible materials for a blue longsword?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 21, 2012 2:38 pm 
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Dude: the symbol "#" is called the what sign? Oh yeah. The pound sign. It means pounds. That's its definition.

Don't order from Mcmaster. It's overpriced.


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 Post subject: Re: Best possible materials for a blue longsword?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 21, 2012 4:23 pm 
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I only order from mcmaster because I can just pick it up rather than have it all shipped to me. I also don't know where else to get 1/2" fiberglass.


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 Post subject: Re: Best possible materials for a blue longsword?
PostPosted: Tue Feb 21, 2012 8:04 pm 
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D&B Supply or a Cal Ranch store will have your regular Fiberglass. If you want Kitespar then I recommend www.goodwinds.com. You'll want .524 or .505" diameters. http://www.goodwinds.com/merch/list.sht ... fiberglass

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 Post subject: Re: Best possible materials for a blue longsword?
PostPosted: Fri Feb 24, 2012 11:35 am 
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I'm sticking with fiberglass rods for now, will go for kitespar after I've got a bit more experience. I live in Ohio so the only place nearby to get fiberglass is either tractor supply where I can get 3/8" or mcmaster carr where I can get any size I want. Thank you all for the help though.


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