How to sharpen a sword

A sword is a type of edged weapon with a long, sharp blade and usually one or more sharp edges. These are usually straight, with a curved blade on both sides of the handle, although some swords have more than one edge on each side. The oldest types were made of materials such as bronze, iron, bone, and wooden sticks.

In the "Dungeons and Dragons" role-playing game, the term sword usually refers to a one-handed weapon with a long blade half as long again as a fighter's height. Though swords can be double-bladed or even triple-bladed, this is considered an advanced technique. 

In fair combat (where both parties are using ordinary weapons), the higher attack bonus is used for determining who strikes first. A character armed with a sword can use either one or both hands to wield it. In a fight, a sword's speed competes with the speed of a longbow or crossbow. In most cases, the sword's smaller size makes it faster than such weapons. 

The fighter weapon (a sword and shield) has the same AC bonus as other combinations of weapon and armor. The longsword is an edged cutting weapon that can be used as both an off-hand weapon and as a primary hand hilt when needed to keep the point up or down. There are also various finesse-only cosplay swords in "Dungeons & Dragons" like scimitars, falchions, and cutlasses; these are meant for expert players who want to focus on skill challenges.

Single VS Double-Edged Swords

The sword, in many human civilizations, was a weapon of war. From the Bronze Age to modern times, it has been the ideal close-combat melee weapon. Some types were made from organic materials from prehistoric times such as wood and animal bones; but more often they have been forged from bronze or iron. 

Most sword-like weapons are two-handed, with the hand gripping the opposite side of the blade, often in some form of "D"-shaped or "O" hand grip. The most common types used by Westerners are double-edged and single-edged blades. The main types of are:

The double-edged sword is a common design dating back to Bronze Age Eurasia. Double-edged swords resemble sickles with a long blade typically between about two and four feet long. Some often have an out-curving tip called a point. They typically weigh between 2–3 pounds and have a triangular cross-section with straight or slightly curved sides.

The single-edged highlander sword is a continuation of the Bronze Age sword. Some of the earliest types were made from meteorites. Single-edged types became more common than double-edged ones during the Iron Age, due to their greater effectiveness against armor and lower production cost. 

The length of one-handed types varied considerably from as short as twenty inches up to much longer weapons such as the two-handed "claymore" and "bastard sword". Although this may not have been intentional, it was often useful, as shorter swords are quicker and easier to handle.

Also Read: Types of Short Swords

Methods of Sharpening a Sword

Sabers have been used for combat, sports, and ceremony since at least 2500 BC. They are a symbol of honor, power, courage, and chivalry. Samurai warriors in Japan not only used the sword to protect their masters but also as part of Japanese tea ceremonies. One would never dream to take part in one of these ceremonies without having a well-maintained sword on their side! So here’s how you can sharpen your sword!

  • Sharpen with a Whetstone 

If you want to get high-quality results - this is the method for you. All it takes is some oil or water, some coarse-grit sandpaper, and some time. Begin by applying mineral oil to the blade. Then, begin stroking the blade with the sandpaper - this should take around 5 strokes.  The goal is not to change the shape of the blade, but rather to remove scratches and improve the polish of your blade.

Get a better quality whetstone: If you can afford one, get a high-quality whetstone. Don’t simply rely on those at the hardware store. There are many different types of whetstones to choose from. You might want to consult with a professional like this guy before you buy a stone.

  • Use Oil or Water 

This is by far the most common method of sharpening and works great for most blades. Oil will help you during the initial stages of sharpening and water will help with the latter stages when it comes time to make sure your blade is ready for use.

  • Sandpaper 

Sandpaper is another method of sharpening and you can find varying degrees of coarseness. Choose a coarse sandpaper if your blade is quite dull and a fine grain if it’s already quite sharp. 

First, lay the blade flat on a hard surface (wood, glass, or concrete). Apply pressure to the edge of the blade so that it meets the grain of the sandpaper. Then, move the blade back and forth about 8-15 times in a row. It may help to change sides every once in a while to make sure you’ve removed all scratches.

  • Use Water Stones 

These are round rocks that have been used for thousands of years for sharpening swords by hand. Unlike sandpaper, water stones are not flat and you can’t use them with a sharpening steel. So they require some serious skill to use properly.

  • Sharpen with Oil & Stone 

This is the ultimate method of sharpening your blade if you have the money. It’s time-consuming and a bit tedious but the result will be among the best you’ll ever get from a blade. 

First, take your blade and rub it back and forth on the whetstone (or water stone). The goal is to make sure that no stone touches or scratches any metal on the sword. Then, take the sword and hold it with both hands. It should be at a 35-degree angle. 

Now, make circular motions back and forth on the stone - this should also be done in both directions. Always let the weight of the sword do the work. Also, don’t push down too hard or go too fast – that could damage your blade! Finally, repeat this process 3-5 times with oil and then another few times with water for a total of about 10 passes.

  • Use the Right Steel 

If you want to make sure that your blade is always in good form, use quality steel. These are typically made from cro-vanadium (or a blend of metals), which is what gives swords their hardness and durability.

  • Use Proper Oil 

You’ve got to use oil if you want to get really good results. Some can work better than others, but all are necessary for the blade to cut smoothly through anything! Cheap oils won’t do much for your sword so if possible buy a higher-quality brand.

Note: Don’t keep sharpening your blade if you notice that any metal has been removed from its side. If any metal has been removed, you will need to start the whole sharpening process.

The Sword is a Symbol of Glory!

The glory of these weapons is a subject of debate. There's no consensus on what makes a sword worthy to be called "glory". Some people might say the enchantment and striking power. Others might assert that it's history and worldly use. What one thinks can have various reasons, and one could imagine more than one reason that swayed their opinion on this matter. 

One thing is for certain: These have been used throughout history as tools, weapons, and status items. For all the time sabers have been around, they've earned quite a lot of fascination from those who hold them or wield them while others are just looking at them without any thought process behind it other than admiration or fear of blades.

These weapons were in some cases used to make an impression. In the world of man, where peace is hard to obtain, there are many results of sabers used for intimidation or purpose. These weapons are obviously not weapons, but a method to put fear into others and make them submit to the wielder's authority by intimidation. 

Many famous sabers in human history have been specifically crafted to be intimidating. The most famous would have to be Excalibur, which was designed by Merlin with a blade that could never be broken nor dulled. In addition, it was said that Excalibur could only be wielded by the rightful king over England and would glow when he would grasp it in his hands proving his worthiness of carrying it around.