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blackfeather

Settler
Jun 13, 2010
889
0
west yorkshire
Hi all
has any of you metal /bladesmiths ever seen a viking compass.
well if you ant could one of you make one for me please!!
ideally made from iron I think it needs to be about 2 mm thick metal. about 4 or five inches long. and in the shape of a fish.ideally magnetised with the head being north
and made so it can be very accurately balanced suspended from a thread ideally from the dorsal fin. dolphin shape is ideal!!
who's going to make one??????????????
 

Wayland

Hárbarðr
Ah you mean a "Hollywood" compass as seen in the film called "The Vikings"

By the time magnetic compasses are being used in Europe the Vikings were a distant memory.

They used the stars, and they may have used bearing dials or sun compasses but everything else was down to skill and experience.
 

John Fenna

Lifetime Member & Maker
Oct 7, 2006
22,427
1,974
64
Pembrokeshire
Ah you mean a "Hollywood" compass as seen in the film called "The Vikings"

By the time magnetic compasses are being used in Europe the Vikings were a distant memory.

They used the stars, and they may have used bearing dials or sun compasses but everything else was down to skill and experience.

And listening to what the dragons head had to tell them? :)
 

John Fenna

Lifetime Member & Maker
Oct 7, 2006
22,427
1,974
64
Pembrokeshire
Interesting stuff!

But it aint helping the OP find someone to make him a magnetic fish thingy ...which sounds cool if not exactly Viking! :D

My comment about the Dragon telling them was based on stuff I had read about them using the Dragons head as a gnomen and marking bearings by cutting them into the boats woodwork ...a basic sun compas ...but is this accurate historically or another "Hollywoodism"?
 

Wayland

Hárbarðr
Given that a ship has to tack and wear a fixed gnomen on the ship would be as useful as a chocolate teapot John.

There is even some argument about the sun compass these days because although it could have been used and the artefact found could be part of one, the location that it was found does not make sense.

But they say if you put three archaeologists in a room together, they'll come out with five theories.
 

blackfeather

Settler
Jun 13, 2010
889
0
west yorkshire
Ah you mean a "Hollywood" compass as seen in the film called "The Vikings"

By the time magnetic compasses are being used in Europe the Vikings were a distant memory.

They used the stars, and they may have used bearing dials or sun compasses but everything else was down to skill and experience
Ah thats the one!!!! I saw the film yesterday and I thought it was so cool!!
dont care if its hollywood or not it was just brill!!!
incidentally I do believe that the pheonicians mariners did use a type of compass very similar to the hollywood concept. i think it was just a cut piece of natural lodestone!! but that was just from a book on compasses I found in a library.
 

blackfeather

Settler
Jun 13, 2010
889
0
west yorkshire
far be it for me to say how it could be done but I think it would have to be megnetised first then balance centre found before its cut out so that we know which end to make as the head and the tail. but like I said I ant a clue with metal working. cant even do filework without scratching the item to death.
if I was to try and make one of these myself i would make a right mess and end up frustrated to hell!! that is why I asked the craftsmen on here.
purely for the fact Ive seen some of there bladework and its mind blowing. basically if it looks like a fish is balanced more or less and the head points north i would be a happy man. but I couldnt even achieve that. I di tyr to make one from the side of an old paint tin. and when i.d done it looked like something a four year old had made at school the wind blew it all over and it dint even magnetise properly baring that in mind i do think the paint tin was alloy of some kind.
c'mon guys!!!
 

ESpy

Settler
Aug 28, 2003
860
4
51
Hampshire
www.britishblades.com
The resulting shape is the one that needs to be balanced, not the sheet. Look at it this way - if you take a rectangle, the balance point will be at the centre. If you then cut a shape out of one end, that end will be lighter and shift the COG towards the other end.
 

blackfeather

Settler
Jun 13, 2010
889
0
west yorkshire
The resulting shape is the one that needs to be balanced, not the sheet. Look at it this way - if you take a rectangle, the balance point will be at the centre. If you then cut a shape out of one end, that end will be lighter and shift the COG towards the other end.
Told you I hadnt got a clue!!!!
 

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