When last we visited our hero, he was impatiently waiting for his latest eBay purchase to arrive. He had believed it was going to be nothing more than another SLO, good for nothing more than hanging on a wall. Let’s join our story, already in progress.
Yes, so if you recall from my USPS post “The saga of the wayward package,” this final sword took two weeks to arrive from the time I actually won the bid and paid for it. In eBay time, two weeks seems like an eternity, at least from my experience (and it doesn’t help to have ADHD). Most purchases I’ve won arrive within a week.
And this one was particularly frustrating because it seemed the Post Office was conspiring against me.
Finally, it did arrive and I tore open the package with reserved zeal. I was excited, but guarded. I knew not to get my hopes up that I had won an actual real antique US Cavalry sword.
So when I pulled the sabre out I was pleasantly surprised. It had heft. It was solid. It was long. The blade alone was longer than all my other wall hangers (excluding the foils). It wasn’t sharpened and I can’t tell the difference between stainless and carbon steel, but this blade had some rust spots and corrosion.
The hilt was nice and tight. The knuckle-bow (hand guard) and the backstrap (a metal piece running the length of the grip) were solid brass and the grip itself is made of leather (or a really nice imitation of it) wrapped in brass wire.
The entire sword seems of good quality to my amateurish, know-nothing eye. But seems is a dangerous thing if you’re swinging a large sharp metal blade around (ok, this isn’t sharp but it does have a point).
The sword had a small brass nut in the pommel, holding it all together. So I unscrewed it and took the sword apart. Again, to my untrained eye, the tang seems solid. It isn’t a welded on rat tail.
So maybe I lucked out and actually bought a real sword for cheap? If so, then this will become my project sword. I’ll clean up the blade, attempt to sharpen it, and maybe by the time nice weather arrives, I can go out and do some test cutting. (First, I’ll have to build a cutting stand.)
Yes, I’m not going to just assume anything. I’ve got more research to do. Take more pictures and see if someone with more knowledge can tell me something about it. I have looked online and there are some carbon steel sabers for sale for around $50. That seems awfully cheap for a “battle ready” sword considering most other sword styles of that quality go for $100 to $300. Are sabers an exception? Maybe they aren’t as popular among collectors as Europeon medieval swords or Japanese katanas and that reflects in the price.
I don’t know. And I’ll check it out before I do anything silly.
But in the meantime, I’m now excited to own what is the closest thing I have to a real sword.
I can’t wait for my tax refund to arrive because I have my eye on a few battle ready swords from real quality manufacturers.
But that’s a other post for another day.