Wooden Buckler

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ryn S
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Joined: Tue Oct 04, 2022 6:36 am

Wooden Buckler

Post by ryn S »

I am building my own buckler from plywood and using a steel boss, basically building it like a viking round shield in minature. I have a couple of questions:

I plan to cover it in linen, is it worth it to cover both sides and do multiple layers?

What is the best way to make a grip that works for sword and buckler techniques?
Sean M
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Re: Wooden Buckler

Post by Sean M »

ryn S wrote: Fri Sep 29, 2023 9:22 am I am building my own buckler from plywood and using a steel boss, basically building it like a viking round shield in minature. I have a couple of questions:

I plan to cover it in linen, is it worth it to cover both sides and do multiple layers?
What weapons and level of force will it come up against? Today bucklers take most of the beating on the edges, so its pretty common to reinforce the edges with rawhide.

Covering both sides with linen should not be much more time or any more money than covering one side. If you want to paint both sides, linen gives a nice base for the gesso to grip.
ryn S wrote: Fri Sep 29, 2023 9:22 amWhat is the best way to make a grip that works for sword and buckler techniques?
You carve the grip from roughly 1" / 2-2.5 cm thick wood, but everyone has their own preferences for shape. Some people like the weight of the buckler as close to their hand as possible, others like it to be a bit ahead of their hand. Bucklers for games where people have to wear bulky gloves on their buckler hand often need more room for the hand than historical bucklers.

If you don't have access to Herbert Schmidt's book, which is expensive, try searching museum databases for photos of the backs of surviving bucklers, and Roland Warzecha's Patreon account for medieval art and modern replicas.
DIS MANIBUS GUILLELMI GENTIS MCLEANUM FAMILIARITER GALLERON DICTI
VIR OMNIBUS ARTIBUS PERITUS
Check out Age of Datini: European Material Culture 1360-1410
ryn S
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Posts: 8
Joined: Tue Oct 04, 2022 6:36 am

Re: Wooden Buckler

Post by ryn S »

Thanks, I will put rawhide on mine. Does adding more to one layer make a difference? I have read people suggest putting 3-4 on the front, but others just have a single layer. Do you make your own gesso, or do you buy it?
Sean M
Archive Member
Posts: 2352
Joined: Mon Oct 05, 2009 11:24 pm
Location: in exile in Canada

Re: Wooden Buckler

Post by Sean M »

ryn S wrote: Sat Sep 30, 2023 9:45 am Thanks, I will put rawhide on mine. Does adding more to one layer make a difference? I have read people suggest putting 3-4 on the front, but others just have a single layer. Do you make your own gesso, or do you buy it?
My feeling is that especially since its a plywood buckler, the main benefit of adding extra layers of linen on the front would be against someone stabbing at the buckler with a sharp weapon. Plywood is strong and does not have joints between planks. Maybe if it was used in HMB or IMCF extra reinforcement would help.

The kind of gesso where you mix calcium sulphate (slaked Plaster of Paris) or calcium carbonate (true chalk) and hot hide glue is cheap and easy. Some art supply stores will sell you a pre-made mix but if you have the hide glue anyways for gluing on the linen a box of Plaster of Paris from Home Despot is cheap. Last time I made it was http://forums.armourarchive.org/phpBB2/ ... 6&start=35

Edit: modern glues and gessos can work too, but grade 10 woodworking class was a long time ago so I can't give advice on those.
DIS MANIBUS GUILLELMI GENTIS MCLEANUM FAMILIARITER GALLERON DICTI
VIR OMNIBUS ARTIBUS PERITUS
Check out Age of Datini: European Material Culture 1360-1410
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