Forums > Other Toys > making your own fire sword

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Spacecow00x
Spacecow00x

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Location: Ft. Myers, Florida
Member Since: 11th Sep 2004
Total posts: 170
Posted:would it be possible for me to put kevlar rope onto a cheap samuri sword and pull off a cool fire sword effect? if so how do i go about attaching the rope to the sword?

im thinking this might not work for long term but i kinda want to make use of a single burn to see how awesome it looks lol

advise me against it if you must hug


You've got the wings of a fallen angel
You offer peace if they praise your name
You live your life taking everything you can get
Look down, time to fly!

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Frederick the Reckless
Frederick the Reckless

Troupe Leader and founder, Fire and Steel
Location: Oregon
Member Since: 5th Aug 2004
Total posts: 241
Posted:I stand corrected, the grade of aluminum used is 6061, not 6062, I got the numbers a bit transposed. At the shop I work at we use 5052 and 6061 aluminum. Ooopsie!

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Frederick the Reckless
Frederick the Reckless

Troupe Leader and founder, Fire and Steel
Location: Oregon
Member Since: 5th Aug 2004
Total posts: 241
Posted:Newest photo of the Ba Jaam Dao, after the handle is complete, with basswood scales wrapped in red leather:


Non-Https Image Link




And while I was taking that picture I decided to get some pictures of another recent firesword endeavour:




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This Hand-and-a-Half Sword is all 1/4 inch thick 6061 aluminum, with a pommel made from two pieces of 1/4 inch thick stainless steel. The handle is also basswood, wrapped in burgundy leather. Also shown is a meter-yardstick measure for reference.

Here is the same sword next to the real thing, to put it in better perspective:




Non-Https Image Link




Feedback is appreciated!


Frederick the Reckless,
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Fire and Steel

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FireTom
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Member Since: 20th Sep 2003
Total posts: 6650
Posted:Looking VERY nice, handyman... but IMO too "swordy" - why would you need such points at the end? Plus they are not very wide... what kind of wick (+ how much of it) would you attach?

1/4 inch... How much is that in mm's? Take into account: if you want to have the "tang", you need that sword to be thick and sturdy, because chances are you get kinks in it and then you may face potential scarring... Aluminum might not be the perfect pick for that.

The short versions: how much wick are you intending to attach? Let us know how it works with the heat-factor...


the best smiles are the ones you lead to wink

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Frederick the Reckless
Frederick the Reckless

Troupe Leader and founder, Fire and Steel
Location: Oregon
Member Since: 5th Aug 2004
Total posts: 241
Posted:The points are not sharp at all. It's an illusion created by the drastic taper to the "point" that makes them look sharp. 1/4 inch is roughly 7mm. The width of the long blade is 2" or roughly 50mm. Trust me, you're not just talking to a "handyman." I am a metalworker by trade, as well as a collector and historian of medieval and martial arts weapons. I built them tougher than the real thing, so they will hold up better than the real thing. Also bear in mind, the picture with the two long blades has one REAL sword in it, for comparison. It would be the one at the top of the picture.

As far as the aluminum not being the best choice, the alloy I employed for both of these has a melting point of over one thousand degrees farenheit, and maleability is reached at around one thousand. White gas runs at about 850 to 900 degrees farenheit. I should also point out that steel gets MUCH hotter than aluminum and loses strength at lower temperatures, as well as staying hot longer.

For attaching the wick, I simply fold over your standard firetape and wire it into place through holes drilled in the blade. The wick goes across the spine of the blade in the short ones, and across one edge of the larger one. The large one has a notch cut into the wood of the handle so you can tell which edge is which, even if you go flash-blind, by feel. I have been using fireswords with this design for four years now, and have never had a problem. Of course, the fact that I have the calluses of a metalworker come into play for heat tolerance, but even on loan, my fireswords have never needed more than a pair of light workman's gloves for protection.


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FireTom
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Member Since: 20th Sep 2003
Total posts: 6650
Posted:ubblol says it all... *upgrades FtR from handyman to swordsmith* wink hug

the best smiles are the ones you lead to wink

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Frederick the Reckless
Frederick the Reckless

Troupe Leader and founder, Fire and Steel
Location: Oregon
Member Since: 5th Aug 2004
Total posts: 241
Posted:Ah, crap... Rereading that last post from yours truly, I realized just now that I may have come off as rude in certain parts of it. Please be assured that I did not intend this. I was merely trying to cover all the points in your post, sorry if I gave you any impression to the contrary! redface

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havocangel
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Member Since: 19th Jun 2005
Total posts: 53
Posted:Their are a couple of ways to make a fire sword.



First method is to make a fire sword sheath. taking two pieces of kevlar tape and sewing them together to make a sheath to fasten to the sword by wraping kevlar thread around the base and tying it off to hold it in place.



The second method is to spiral it around the blade and fasten with bolts rivits or glues.



For my fire sword I use a the sheathing method sense I wanted my blade to still be able to flex druing my routine.



The sword I chose to use is Paul Chen 1062 flexable tai chi sword due to it's extreme light weight, high durability, and reletivly cheap price. This sword is extremly flexable which gives it a very dramatic look as the fire bends with proper wrist snaps.

EDITED_BY: havocangel (1182107519)


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FireTom
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Member Since: 20th Sep 2003
Total posts: 6650
Posted:Oh Fred, trust me - I'm okay smile

havocangel - I hear you, but there is this third way where you attach the wick in a way that you still have some blade at one or either side. This way you can perform a "real" (stage) fight and have some *TANG*ing...

Each time I do my sword, I have to (painfully) notice that next time I should not have the wick come so far down. It's just no fun not to shake hands when everybody wants to. wink


the best smiles are the ones you lead to wink

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Frederick the Reckless
Frederick the Reckless

Troupe Leader and founder, Fire and Steel
Location: Oregon
Member Since: 5th Aug 2004
Total posts: 241
Posted: Written by: FireTom


there is this third way where you attach the wick in a way that you still have some blade at one or either side. This way you can perform a "real" (stage) fight and have some *TANG*ing...





I do that myself. I drill holes down the spine of the blade (OR along one edge for "double edged" swords) and fold the wick over the back of the blade. I don't go down the center and attach the wick in the middle to leave both edges free, as I prefer to have as much metal between the edge and the holes as possible to help prevent breaking the blade in a fight scene. Since the swords I make are designed for use as fireswords, there's no "Ow, I hate to see a beautiful blade ruined like that..." Kind of feeling. The wicking is then held on by bailing wire, with the twisted end tucked under the wicking. I don't use screws, since they can strip out. This leaves one edge exposed, so you can do fight choreography and not only get the "TING!" of metal on metal, but you DON"T knock holes in your Kevlar. In case you become flashblinded and your choreography has a lot of flashy flips and tosses of the sword, or you have a "disarming/retrieval" move in your set, there's a notch in the handle just behind the crossguard (hilt, quillons, etc) to indicate where your index finger should go to present the bare edge for your partner's sword.

I'm currently working on a pair of mid-length single handed swords, a matched set. Photos will be forthcoming once they're done!


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havocangel
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Member Since: 19th Jun 2005
Total posts: 53
Posted:Well you could use a wide spiral, so that their is exposed metal to make contact with. The flames are clearly visible and engulf the entire sword. Or you could just attach kevlar to one side of the blade and use the other for contact.

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FireTom
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Member Since: 20th Sep 2003
Total posts: 6650
Posted:Fred, yes please I would like to see the development - I can't fully get the picture from your description. As sonn as I have fixed and upgraded my Flickr account I will try to upload some pics of my swords.

Wide spiralling might not be good enough to protect the wick from getting hurt in a show fight. Keeping the edges exposed (and please no sharp edges anyway) could be the only way to get reasonable *tang* (whereas it's not the same sound as with the blade alone).

smile


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Frederick the Reckless
Frederick the Reckless

Troupe Leader and founder, Fire and Steel
Location: Oregon
Member Since: 5th Aug 2004
Total posts: 241
Posted: Written by: FireTom


Fred, yes please I would like to see the development - I can't fully get the picture from your description. As sonn as I have fixed and upgraded my Flickr account I will try to upload some pics of my swords.

Wide spiralling might not be good enough to protect the wick from getting hurt in a show fight. Keeping the edges exposed (and please no sharp edges anyway) could be the only way to get reasonable *tang* (whereas it's not the same sound as with the blade alone).

smile



Here's a photo of one of the twin sword sets, one with wicking and one without. The Ba Jaam Dao, very near completion.


Non-Https Image Link


You can get a REAL good vied of how I attached the wicking in this photo. The wire's free ends are twisted together and shoved under the Kevlar to keep their sharp-burred clipped ends from cutting the user if he/she slips up.


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FireTom
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Member Since: 20th Sep 2003
Total posts: 6650
Posted:mhmm... well done! *clears throat and whispers* maybe not enough flame for my taste...

This guys doubles seem to be somewhat lightweight... or he's got supernatural powers wink




And this is my first firesword attempt




I am still looking for a reasonable way NOT to burn my hand every time *ouch* I know: "don't point it downwards" but hey, my sword is so censored heavy... and the flames get higher... wink


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Frederick the Reckless
Frederick the Reckless

Troupe Leader and founder, Fire and Steel
Location: Oregon
Member Since: 5th Aug 2004
Total posts: 241
Posted:Actually, the sword wicking style I use provides greater flame than most "Made-for-fire" swords, as the wick on the other designs tends to be caught in the drag path of whatever metal they place the wick between. (most made-for-fire swords tend to be more like a kevlar sandwich, with metal bread. Sure there's a metal edge for contact noise, but there's a huge difference between the amount of flame you get from my wicking method and theirs.) The Ba jaam dao, even though they're about 17 inches total blade length, provide very nearly as much flame and light as the sword you use in your video. The larger ones, well, it's insane.



The person in the first video is Celsius Maximus, and yes, he sort of DOES have supernatural powers. He has about half his life into the martial arts (he's about 30) and is a fitness instructor in his daily lfe. Not only that, but I believe his swords are light because they're made from the real thing. The swords he's using MIGHT (not a great view of the handle) be Tai Chi straight swords (Darn Gim), which are extremely light.



Ever held a real, battle-ready sword? They weigh FAR less than you'd expect, and with good reason, actually. The people who used them weren't your comic-book barbarian type build. They were built like you and I, which means that if they weighed as much as some of the "Wall Hangers" I've seen, they'd be too heavy to swing with any real potential of gaining enough speed to do any real damage (IF it even HIT) you.



Oh, for your hand protection, since you mentioned that also, may I recommend Isotoner gloves, or Nomex aviator gloves? You can find the former at most department stores, and teh latter at most military surplus stores. Both are close fitting but still leave you an enormous amount of movement. Isotoners are made in a variety of styles, to include lambskin leather. Nomex are just that, with a leather palm, finger grip and thumb, as well as the webbing between the thumb and forefinger. Both are nice protection from fire that won't get in your way too much.


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Frederick the Reckless
Frederick the Reckless

Troupe Leader and founder, Fire and Steel
Location: Oregon
Member Since: 5th Aug 2004
Total posts: 241
Posted:Example of the amount of flame I get on the swords I make

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FireTom
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Member Since: 20th Sep 2003
Total posts: 6650
Posted:mmmmmmmmmmmmmh - I ubblove it!

Thanks for the advice on the gloves... so far I thought it would diminish my grip on the sword.

It's PRETTY heavy. Why so? I assumed that real battle swords are somehow (compared) lightweight. They needed to be easy handling in battle, because there was a lot of censored going on, lots of people engaged in close combat.

But they tried to avoid sword on sword *tang* as much as possible, because it could have resulted in shattering. A nick in the blade would greatly weaken it's integrity. Guess they used a shield in order to par the enemies strokes.

Therefore I used about 3mm stainless steel (no edging) and a whide blade... as promised I will post a picture, soon.

Thanks for the youtube, I will follow up on you whenever I can... smile


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