Here at Arms and Armor we are always looking for ways to make our products even more awesome. As was suggested in a previous post on differential hardening, we are happy to introduce our Norseman Spear with a hardened point and edge. We previously made this spear out of a relatively mild alloy to reflect the common weapons of the Viking period, when axes and spears were frequently made of iron instead of expensive steel. Some high prestige spears, however, featured a hardened edge and point, which we are now reproducing.
Three Norseman Spearheads after hardening
As with any material, shifting to a hardened spear has both benefits and limitations. Whereas the very tip of previous model could bend if thrust into something hard and subjected to torsion, for example if thrust into a board, this new hardened spear is much more resistant to deformation. That being said, harder steel is more brittle and if you thrust it into a log, or throw it at at a tree, it is possible that the point could break instead of bending. This is a normal tradeoff, and one that warriors in period would have frequently confronted. Harder materials hold a better edge, but or more prone to breaking, while softer materials bend instead of breaking and dull more quickly.
All in all we think that the new hardened spearheads are a significant step up in performance and we hope that folks will enjoy this updated model and it's new capabilities. Check out this previous blog for more information about our other hardened spear, the Arms and Armor Celtic Spear.
Nathan Clough, Ph.D. is Vice President of Arms and Armor and a member of the governing board of The Oakeshott Institute. He is a historical martial artist and a former university professor of cultural geography. He has given presentations on historical arms at events including Longpoint and Combatcon, and presented scholarly papers at, among others, The International Congress on Medieval Studies.
Craig Johnson is the Production Manager of Arms and Armor and Secretary of The Oakeshott Institute. He has taught and published on the history of arms, armor and western martial arts for over 30 years. He has lectured at several schools and Universities, WMAW, HEMAC, 4W, and ICMS at Kalamazoo. His experiences include iron smelting, jousting, theatrical combat instruction and choreography, historical research, European martial arts and crafting weapons and armor since 1985.