The shield, part 1

I want a proper shield for the Battle of Wisby.

I have never tried to make a shield before, let alone used one, only tried a small buckler at fencing training. And I’m not much of a woodworker at all. Even if I’ve had some training at it, I get frustrated handling materials that are less forgiving than fabric.

But I do work in other materials from time to time. I think it is a good thing to challenge yourself with projects out of your comfort zone sometimes, otherwise you’ll never develop and learn new things.

181478_4776770897591_956916043_n

So, when you stand there, all out of your comfort zone, but committed to a new project – what to do? I looked at period pictures and asked around among my fighting friends, what kind of shields do they use?

What kind of shields are common during late 14th century? Are there any types of shields that seem to be only for the more privileged in society? How big should my shield be, and how heavy of a shield can I carry and still be effective and protective in a fight? And how should it be made?

skldinsidacopyrz1

Johan had the answers on many of my questions. He has written an excellent text on the topic of shield-making and I hope I’ll be able to share his tutorial here in a future post.  So, no further details on how to make shields today. I’ll save that for Johans tutorial since I’m such a newbie on shieldmaking. Until then, here are some teasers on of how far I’ve gotten in my first attempt to make a few shields.

DSC_0061

Building a jig to shape the shields around. Glueing plywood sheets together and fastening them onto the jig, leaving them to dry. (Pleas note that the paper pattern on the left is NOT a medieval shield shape, it is a “Norman kiteshield”, as seen on Bayeux tapestry from the late 11th century)

DSC_0066

The plywood didn’t bend as much as I’d wanted, but I have to make do with what I’ve got. The next time I’ll make a more sturdy jig to shape my shield around. The two shields to the right is for BoW.

My shield is only very slightly arched, but I know now how to do it better.

My shield is only very slightly arched, but I know now how to do it better.

I cut out the shapes after arching the plywood.

I cut out the shapes after arching the plywood.

DSC_0071

I dressed the back of the shields with a nice wool fabric and started to work on the interior, straps and padding.

The padding on the small shield is done. Now I'm testing the layout for my straps that are to be the handle. I'll have to figure out a way to fasten them really good since the will be under a lot of stress when I use the shield.

The padding on the small shield is done. Now I’m testing the layout for my straps that are to be the handle. I’ll have to figure out a way to fasten them really good since they will be under a lot of stress when I use the shield.

316106_4776771097596_440340797_n

Here we can see one example of how the interior might look like.

Advertisements
This entry was posted in Battlefield, Beginners guide, Fighting, wood working and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s