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Michael 'Tinker' Pearce has designed a series of swords made by Hanwei in 5160 steel, which emphasise authenticity, functionality and performance. To satisfy the sparring and cutting needs of Western Martial Artists, each of the 7 styles are made in live (sharp) and sparring (blunt) versions and each sword has outstanding handling characteristics. The carefully controlled heat-treating of 5160 steel (Tinker's blade steel of choice) by the marquenching process produces an excellent combination of toughness and flexibility at a hardness of HRC 50-52, allowing for superior edge retention on the sharps, anti burr and tip-flexing safety features on the blunts.
The daggers are approximately made as follows. The basic shape of the blade is made by a laser CNC machine. It is burned from spring steel. The semi-finished blade follows then in the groove cutter, where the cutting edge and the groove are milled. The blade is then oil-quenched and tempered to the desired hardness. Then the guard and pommel is attached to the blade tang. The tang is usually peened at the end (behind the pommel) and the cross-guard hard soldered with brass. Hardwood plates are placed under the handle wrapping from genuine cowhide so that the handle is sufficiently robust for a safe grasp. The steels surfaces obtain the desired finish in the end - with a wire brush or with a felt disc with polishing paste.