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Thread: Naval Boarding Axes

  1. #1

    Naval Boarding Axes

    My article on The British Naval Boarding Axe is finished and has now been published in the Arms and Armour journal of the Royal Armouries Museum.

    I'd like to thank all those collectors who contributed with their knowledge and details of axes in their collections.

    It is not a widely circulated magazine but I do have a limited number of free links to give away which also allows a download of the article.
    Anyone interested in a free link please PM me and I'll send you one.

    My next project is to improve the information on American boarding axes so if you have one in your collection - please PM me.

    The article can be found at
    https://u9648322.ct.sendgrid.net/wf/...BybMh96Ec6g-3D

    Regards,
    David

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    ENGLAND
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    506
    Hi David,

    Congratulations on your publication.

    I don't want to take up one of your links as its outside my area of interest. How long have you been working on that out of interest?

    Regards

  3. #3
    Thanks James,

    I have been collecting information for my website -boardingaxe.com- for several years now. You'll remember you sent me the pictures from the Hamburg Marine Museum some time ago and I have used your picture of the Prussian axe. It's under Other Nations. I have not enough info for a full German page yet.

    As for the article - well it has taken the best part of a year. To get access to the Royal Armouries stores with the largest collection, access to the archive of other museums and to gather information from other collectors put it all together and then get peer reviewed, edited by the magazine and then edited by the publisher all takes up time. Not a great deal of reward - well except the satisfaction of course and some free links to give away!

    Regards,
    David.

    sent pm.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    ENGLAND
    Posts
    506
    Thanks for the link; well worth a read. It's a well written and interesting article even for a non-axe enthusiast! I thoroughly enjoyed it.

  5. #5
    David,

    Congratulations!

  6. #6
    Hi Edvardas,

    Thanks for that and I've sent you a link.

    I still have a few free links left if anyone else wants one.
    Regards,
    David.

  7. #7
    Congratulations, David, on completion of the article.

    If you have a link left, I would appreciate one.

    I collect axes, but the closest things to a boarding axe that I have are some WW2 ARP axes, some WW2 glider/AC escape axes, and pre/post WW2 British fire axes (1 of each).

  8. #8
    Thanks, Wayne, I have pm'd you a link.
    Regards,
    David

  9. #9
    Hi David,

    This subject is of definite interest to me & I would greatly appreciate a link please if you have another.

    Kind regards
    Adrian Roads

  10. #10
    No problem Adrian, on the way.
    Regards, David.

  11. #11
    Greatly appreciated, many thanks!

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    ENGLAND
    Posts
    506
    Hi David,

    After reading your article I meant to raise a point with you. I noted it down then forgot about it, so here its is slightly delayed.

    You refer to the blade of the 1859 pattern.

    "Although the blade is flared, the curve is cut short by a small straight section at the top and bottom which gives the axe its distinctive shape (Figure 6). It is hard to see any purpose for this shape even though it would have had a cost implication in production."

    I wondered whether the flat section was in preference to a point which could, on the backstroke embed itself into other stuff unexpectedly.

    Might have been a problem if using the axe below decks, in close quarters, for cutting rigging from a jumble of masts, or even injuring someone behind in a melee.

  13. #13
    Thanks James, it is an interesting theory and not one I had thought of and is entirely possible. The previous British wedge shaped axes would not have had that problem and with crescent blades the curve usually sweeps round so that the pointed tips are rearward facing, although of course the spike itself would have created similar problems regardless of the shape of the head. The French and most Scandinavian boarding axes stuck to the flared shape with points throughout. It does however seem unlikely that it was a big enough problem that it filtered through to the navy and whoever designed the axe shape - hard to know for sure.
    Thanks for the input- it's always good to hear a new perspective.
    Regards,
    David.

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