I was contacted by a fellow from another forum and asked tomake a sheath for a sword he bought. I had never made a sheath for a swordbefore so I decided to take on the job. He asked me to make a leather sheathfor his Cold Steel “Gladious” sword. (see link)
At nearly 2 pounds its an impressive piece but sadly itcomes in a canvas and plastic sheath.
He wanted something a little more in keeping with the era(more “period”). Right away I could see all sorts of potential for Celticstamping and ornate carving but he would hear nothing of the sort. He wanted itplain, an everyday foot soldier sort of look to it with nothing fancy. I wasbummed out but it’s his sword and I have to respect that.
The sheath that came with the sword and the typical wrap andsnap like so many knife sheaths have but modern snaps would also not have beenin keeping with the time period so I needed to find another way to keep thesword in the sheath with the leather I had on hand. I am using 8 Oz toolingleather (about an 1/8 of an inch thick.)
Step one was to create a design and then cut out all thepieces of leather with a razor knife.
All the pieces are positioned and tacked in place withcontact cement so they don’t shift while hand stitching.
The welt is sandwiched between the front and rear portionsof the sheath and is equal to the thickness of the sword blade otherwise ablade this long would get pinched/trapped in the leather and the blade edgewould cut all the stitching during insertion.
The features of the front face are stamped and stitchedsince it would be impossible to do so after the front and rear of the sheathare joined.
Then all the stitching holes are stamped through all thelayers.
Then lots and lots of time stitching by hand. (and with apliers because this sheath is over a half inch thick to prevent that needle tipof the sword from coming though the leather)
After stitching the final trim is done with a razor knife.
Then the outer edges are beveled and wetted and slickedround with a deer antler.
The sword will be kept in the sheath with the two integralleather straps but feeding the straps though the openings will be tough so Itapered some wood blocks and wetted the leather to mold and lock in a shape.The wood blocks are tapered to a zero thickness that allows the straps to befed in but still afford the friction at the lead outside to hold the strapssecurely.
So far so good. Time for a trial fit.
I wanted the sheath to have a distressed/antique sort offeel to it. I did a little mixology with denatured alcohol and a few colors.
After drying I gave the sheath a few applications of warmedmink oil to waterproof.
Then I turned to the grip and wrapping it with leather.
Project Gladious is finished and ready to return to itsowner.