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Thread: Victorian Sword: Type of Wood Used for Liners / Type of Leather Used for Washers

  1. #1

    Victorian Sword: Type of Wood Used for Liners / Type of Leather Used for Washers

    Hi guys,

    I disassembled a brass scabbard that belongs to a mid-Victorian Wilkinson sword.
    Inside was a single wooden liner.
    It is a rather narrow and thin piece of wood about 9 mm (excuse the french measurement) wide and of varying thickness (3 mm at the thickest point). It is about 80 cm long.

    Although have no idea what a period correct liner would look like, this one is a bit below my expectations.
    I'd like at add (at least) a second one, so that the blade does not contact the brass on one side of the scabbard.

    So my questions are:
    - Should I use that piece of wood as a model for the second liner?
    - What kind of wood should I use?

    As a layman I suspect a wood that's low on the Janka scale with a low silica content would be preferable, any suggestions?
    Could I use balsa (no idea about the silica content)?

    Furthermore, the sword has lost its leather washer. What kind of (vegetable-tanned?) leather should I get to replace it?
    Is there a danger of residual tannins attacking the blade?

    Thanks!
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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    West Yorkshire, England.
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    362
    That looks like one of those "temporary fixes" done to stop rattling when the original liner was done for. There is a long and informative thread on here about Wilkinson swords, I would start there.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Kingston area, Ontario Canada
    Posts
    3,566
    I have read that beech wood was used. Leather washers I use a microcrystalline wax to coat the leather. Approx. 1/16 inch thick leather works for officers swords, some are white buff and this works well for brass scabbards. https://www.identityleathercraft.com...-bookmark.html

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    West Yorkshire, England.
    Posts
    362
    You can also find leather scabbard liners. Matt Easton found such in one of his swords....

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Kingston area, Ontario Canada
    Posts
    3,566
    Leather liners are found on higher end swords and have a sewn seam. They must retain their shape by being stiff, something you can't easily replicate and requires a mandrel.

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