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making an aspis
John Dann -- Your design and craftmanship is simply amazing! And thanks for your notes on how you did it. This is pretty much what my dream shield blank would look like.

As I have been interested in trying this very type of construction for a while I have a question that I want your opinion on (which I believe I have already gotten some initial response to in Camerons Chigi shield thread): What would be your view on simply bending slats to create the rim? Basically, lay slats on top of eachother, staggered like brickwork, and then bend them around the bowl and fasten them together. They could get some basic shape before fastening them together or ground afterwards In actuality this would probably be done in stages but I hope I have communicated the essence of the idea. If not, I can draw you a picture!

In theory it should make it easier to fit the rim to the bowl since one wouldn't have to individually cut each piece as they would be shaped through bending.

The point of concern is the outward pressure of the rim. It would be beneficial by providing additional protections against attacks to the side of the shield. But its possible that the outward pressure could compromise the shape of the bowl. I am however thinking that as long as the rim stays round, without interruption, it should help the bowl to keep its integrity.

It would be great to get some more opinions on this!
Daniel- Your idea has merit and is worth a try. Just to be clear the rim would look like a set of concentric circles, if I am wrong a picture might be needed. I have started my 3rd slat style Aspis and I am using 3.5mm slats - they require less than 1/2 hr of soak and only where an extreme bend is needed. With your idea in mind and since I have quite a bundle of slats of more than 2 meters, I tryed a quick wrap around a compleated Aspis bowl and it worked and this is without any soak. Also a quick calculation indicates about 12 layers of 3.5mm would be needed. Thicker slats would require soaking or maybe even steaming.

Keep in mind that the bowl slops to its edge; therefore, the inner surface of the rim would need to be beveled and this should take some care to assure a good fit between the bowl and the rim.

Your approach could well be stronger than my method of layers of flat sections and may as well be quicker to execute. Also you want pressure from the rim onto the bowl - the bowl made from this method (once it has cured) is very hard to distort.

My only concern is is there any wisper of support for this approach from archaeology?This is a small concern since of the many thousands of hoplite shields made surely a number of build approaches were used. Trying to fathom Greek arms and armor as to its construct rather than just appearance is experimental archaeology and as long as we use materials that would have been available to the ancients and methodology that would have been within their means - some of the time we may not be too far off the mark.

Good luck.

John Dann
Yes, that's what I mean -- thanks for your very helpful response! Now I need to give this a try. I have however envisaged starting with the rim so I can have that as a support when making the bowl. But I need to consider the plan a bit more. Let me know if you make any more experiments with this method.

In terms of being historically accurate I don't know, but it sure is plausible. I do think that I got some aspect of the idea from a discussion of some remaining fragments. I'll get back to you on that if I find that support.
Still my Aspis is not ready but I start working over some elements which I’m able to make.
I’ve been wondering how we to attach them to the corps?
Nail them or cast the pins on the ornaments and after we fix them bend the pins!

Attached Files Thumbnail(s)
Lucius Campanius Verecundus Signifer Legio quarta Scythica
A.K.A. Yordan Kolchev

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