Deviation From the Norm

Thread starter #1

Anvil Head

Senior Member
Been mixing in a little "other" stuff from my normal bladesmithing work. These are from scrap blade steel that didn't get far enough away from the forge in time. Based, sort of, on the point in the middle - Kenya Potok Tribe arrow head forged with very primitive tools. The smith is obviously very good and handling this point was truly a gift. I have always admired how well something can be done with "tools at hand" out of everyday necessity. I got this from a good friend that did missionary work over in Kenya a while back.
I did deviate a little by making the tangs into loops so they can be used for adornment. Lot of fun to make and mixes in well during a forging session. The smaller ones are damascus but not to obvious in pic. Potok Points .JPG PW Points.JPG
Cool stuff!
Thread starter #6

Anvil Head

Senior Member
Tell you what is most amazing about the Potok point in the middle (one with thread on tang). According to my buddy who gave it to me, the smith worked sitting on the ground in a mud hut. His anvil appeared to be a 20+# sledge hammer head half buried in the floor. His forge was what many of us old Scouts would have called a Dakota Hole - all below ground with what appeared to be a goat bladder balloon bellows (his little apprentice worked). He used and old ball peen hammer with a crooked limb for a handle, that was barely discernible as such. Never described the make-shift tongs, but I can imagine. Very primitive setup, but effective. Wish my buddy could have gotten pics, but the ol' boy was superstitious and wouldn't allow it.

It's hard to see the true craftsmanship of the point if you are not a smith and can hold it in your hands. The balance and symmetry are amazing (at least to me). I'm sure I could sit and watch this guy for hours just studying his technique.

Through my life, line of work and friends, I've been privaliged to inspect and handle hundreds of hand forged tools and blades from many different cultures. Some are hard to believe were done totally by hand, but God gives us all gifts to use and most of the fellas I've had the pleasure to meet are/were tight with the Big Man. My great uncle Kanute was one - German/Norwegian Master Smith that taught my Pop, who passed on a few things to me. I've been blessed.