The single edged Viking sword was more common than many would think; about one in five Norwegian Viking sword finds have a single-edged blade reminiscent of a langseax which is mounted into a sword hilt with many examples dating to the 9th century. Whether these swords existed alongside their dual-edged brethren as a matter of economic choice or warrior preference is unknown, but these single-edged blades gain a thick and stiff blade spine when one forgoes a second edge and this not only imparts additional durability to the sword, but it gives it some additional mass to power it through brutal cleaving blows and decisive cuts to create a sword with a ferocious bite!
The blade has a long and shallow fuller groove to remove unneeded weight and the thick spine stiffens the blade considerably to make it a surprisingly capable thrusting weapon as well. The blade is forged from high carbon steel and well-tempered to a 56 – 58 HRc hardness. The guard and pommel are steel and the grip is wood with a tight wrap of binding leather. The hilt is constructed like original Viking swords by having a two-part pommel; the blade tang is durably peened over the base of the pommel and then finished with a conical cap which is sturdily dual-riveted into place with copper rivets. An inlaid wire of braided copper completes the pommel.
The shape of the pommel is a Peterson Type “H”; a Viking hilt style that was fairly common and practical. This historically prevalent hilt design can “dig” into your wrist if you throw it out with a wide wrist motion when swinging and it is clear that the design of the sword hilt was intended to discourage this use. There are numerous debates about how best to use a Viking sword with either a “Hammer” or “Handshake” grip and this sword will work well for both. The type H can lock the hand and wrist together in alignment for controlled hammer swings, but it really comes into its own with a “Handshake” grip that places the broad pommel alongside the palm and this position allows the back of the hand and palm to aid in powering and “steering” the sword by giving extra contact and control between the hand and hilt. There is no definitive right or wrong grip choice between the two and it is likely that a skillful warrior may have used both styles to adapt to his current situation.
The sword is paired with a wood-core scabbard which is overlaid in tight leather and completed with a protective steel chape.