Armour Making Tutorial
15th century German Knees
Here I use several different fluting stakes and hammers. The picture above shows the bottom of my ball stake. I ground this stake to serve a number of different purposes. The edge to the left works well as a rebated chisel for fluting.
The original I based these poleyns on had three fluted ridges along the centre of the knee. I marked out where these should be with a felt pen. The stake shown there is a automotive pry tool that I ground to have a ridge along it's top. the ridge is slightly rebated as to not cut into the metal while forming over it. I alternated between the two stakes as appropriate depending on my hammering angle and how much resistance was needed.
Please excuse the poor picture quality. Here I want the fluted area to be higher than the surrounding area. In the photo above, I was sitting to the right and struck just past the edge of the stake (bottom of the ball stake as shown in the first photo) in order to upset the metal and move the sides downward. This is all done with moderately light hits and become lighter as the process goes on.
Now, with that area to be fluted raised out, I cleaned off my guide lines with a paint stripping pad. (Below) I go back over the area several more times to smoothen out the transition area.
The Image below shows the fluting taking shape. At this point the stake was turned a half turn so that the edge of the stake is now to the right. I am now using the more acute face of the hammer to make a recessed area between the flutes. The slow shutter speed of the camera exaggerates the force that was used. Notice that I have choked up on the hammer. Here, accuracy is far more important than striking hard.
(Below) The heavier blunted stake has been replaced with the modified pry bar.
(Above) Very light hits with the rebated masonry hammer are used to refine the fluting into distinguished V shaped grooves.
This shows the fluting before planishing. The process of planishing the fluted areas on this piece is tedious. It doesn't need to be perfect but should be smoothed more so that the piece can be cleaned up with light sanding. Notice that the areas just to the left and right of the fluted area no longer flow with the curve of the rest of the knee. Those areas will need to be shrunk down a bit to better flow with the sides of the knee.
The knee is placed now on the ball side of the stake and the bulged out areas mentioned above are hammered down. The area is then replanished.
The above image shows that the left side is blended but the right side is needing more work. This is done using the larger face of the raising hammer and moderately light hits. I then go back over the area with the light planishing hammer.
Forming the wing