Skip to main content

Kit review: Danelli Armouries Basic Longsword

"The new 2016 entry level longsword. The crossguard is new, 2mm thicker to be more durable and a new improved design. Also the grip has a new waisted design. The blade is hollow ground and flexes enough to fence safely and the tip is large and round (about 15x6mm) and now the edges are thick (2.5mm c.) to withstand the sparring duties." Website here

This is the "basic" sword produced by Danelli Armouries. I've been keen to try these guys after reading a few positive reviews from friends. Prior to this I had no experience of Danelli Armouries.

I can say firstly that Giulia has been an absolute pleasure to deal with, a rapid and thorough responder to emails! I've over 40 emails in my trail which is exceptional and a testament to their patience, with me, and their communication skills.

Their postage and packaging was excellent, the shipping time was extraordinary (4 days to New Zealand). There was a little problem with one of the swords I ordered that Guila worked out immediately and without incident. So, very impressed with their customer service skills. 

Secondly, while the delivery date slipped slightly (I'm always very happy to be accommodating) it did not shift significantly beyond the agreed time frame. So, another big plus. 

Pros

It's a very professionally turned out sword, with wonderful presence. It both is and feels extremely light and "correct" to my mind as a simulator of a sharp weapon. The best testament to this was at the weekend where none other than Guy Windsor picked up the sword to demonstrate with and exclaimed "what an amazing sword" or the like and then proceeded to monopolize my sword for a while. What better endorsement?

It has fantastic flex. I feel no compunctions whatsoever in the thrust with this guy. It also appears to be nicely hard and doesn't appear to easily pick up burrs. A few hard sparring seasons have not required any attention from a file so it seems to be a remarkable mix of flex and hardness. 

The point is nicely packed out and feels safe. The guard is a good width and feels solidly reassuring in the bind. 

The whole weapon is quite plain but that suits my aesthetic. While the components are very simple and slight they seem good quality and well built.  

Cons

It's perhaps a touch longer than I'm used to for a longsword. I'm 6ft and it reaches to my solar plexus, so edging into the Great Sword end of the spectrum by my experience but I'm adjusting. 

The very flexible nature of the blade means that it is a little more wobbly than I'm used to, however the extra safety in the thrust easily compensates for this. 

The "basic" nature of this weapon is only evident really in the simple leather grip, a simple piece of leather wrapped and glued, I imagine, that I will want to upgrade shortly.

Finally it's possible to disassemble the weapon, as it has a threaded tang. I'm not really sure if this is a downside or not yet, I've never owned a longsword that wasn't peened. I imagine it will get quite tiresome tightening it all the time, something that it does require despite a lock nut. On the plus however, and it's quite a large plus, it does leave the possibility that I could replace components of the hilt if I wish, i.e. getting a guard with side rings or different pommels etc. Which would be very cool.

Conclusion

A deal, a steal, sale of the century. It's hard to believe they're selling this for 200 Euros. Get in quick before they put the prices up!

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Kit mod: heavy sparring glove 2

This is a follow on to heavy sparring gloves and SPES arm protectors.

Finally: a pretty good HEMA glove.

Essentially I've created this final stage by removing the cuff from the gauntlet and attaching Velcro so the SPES arm & elbow protection attaches to the gauntlet. The Velcro attaches under the lip of the arm protection providing a solid join between the pieces.

My photography is lame but I hope you get the idea:



Good protection.

I would say that this setup has good protection from injury from sparring blows from fingers to elbow. Against full force blows it takes it down from injury to some mild discomfort and possibly light bruising, against moderate blows you feel some pressure with no discomfort. The fingers are where I've invested the heaviest protection but there is still some room for improvement.


Light weight

Because the weight is distributed along the length of the arm rather than at the wrist/hands end and because they can fit quite tightly to your body they seem…

Halberd Waster

Several times through my historical martial arts career I've got it into my head that I'd like to do halberd. However, the issues with a suitable waster have tended to put me off, specifically creating anything that can be used at something approaching full intention. The issue is that if you make the head from the usual materials (steel, aluminium, wood, leather etc) you have to exercise extreme caution at very slow speed because all you've made is a giant heavy mace on the end of a 6ft lever.

Recently I was working on making foam swords for another side project and while doing this it occurred to me that foam was the obvious solution to the halberd head issue. Pretty quickly I developed this simple waster.

The head is cut from EVA foam matting. This material is importantly both ultra light and pretty robust. To get a good strength I cut two head shapes out and stuck them together. The bracket to attach the head to the pole is just PVC piping with a slot cut into it for th…

Absolutely no absolutes

The more I study and learn of historical fighting, and the more I teach, the more I become careful in throwing around "absolutes" in terms of technique. I find that to say that something is "wrong" is a sub-optimal way of thinking about fencing that hinders development. Rather I like to highlight that everything is situational, i.e. with a proper understanding of the principles of fencing that there is often a time and a place where a particular technique is optimal and that you should not completely discount anything.

For example:

(and I'd like to make it clear that I'm not being negative on these examples, I liked and remembered both these videos I'm just using them to illustrate a pedagogical mindset.)

In this interesting video, the view is put forward that you should cut and step at the same pace to ensure that your hand and body land together. This is so that you cut with maximum strength and for reasons of balance.  The idea of not stepping and cu…