Modern macuahuitl interpretation

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Modern macuahuitl interpretation

Post by bumblingbear » Wed Feb 02, 2011 10:33 pm

Sooooo....

On another board, people were talking about the Aztec macuahuitl and I thought it might be cool to make a quick and dirty, improvised weapon kind of macuahuitl.

For those not familiar with the weapon:

Image

I started brainstorming how I would start the project.

I thought about using a wood plank and then just cutting out the shape I would want, but I decided that it would probably not have the heft I wanted unless I dropped more money than I wanted to on oak or something.

I decided to use a wooden baseball bat and razor blades.

After a trip to walmart and home depot for supplies and tools respectively, I was ready to start on my project.

I started with a wooden T-ball bat.

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I then started to shape it with my dremel tool (don't laugh).

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The work on this was pretty crude since I was just using a dremel cutting wheel and a screwdriver.

Then I sanded it

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I made sure that it was shaped how I wanted it to be and then stained it.

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Now the next part was tricky. I was using gorilla glue because it would make such a strong bond and... it was what I had.

The problem was that the razor blades would not stay in their slots and it was just a friggin nightmare. I also didn't want the glue to leak down the handle since it was already stained and the thought of re-staining or sanding a club with razor blades sticking out of it gave me waking nightmares.

My solution ended up being to "overlap" the razor blades.

I situated them spaced out like the traditional macuahuitl but then put other razor blades between them. I staggered them on either side for structural integrity.

What I ended up with was this.

Image

Image

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Apologies for the crappy camera phone pics, but I am sure you can get a feel for what I did.

It actually made a really, really nasty weapon. At first I was not impressed, but then I actually thought about the physics of hitting something with this. The blades would easily cut something hit, and then into the cut the full weight and kinetic energy of the club would hit, forcing the blades deeper into the wound and opening the original wound up.

A sword (especially a sharp sword) makes fairly surgical cuts. Sure, the tension of skin and muscle surrounding a wound that is deep enough opens it up, but using a macuahuitl, you'd pretty much be driving a wedge into that wound, both making it deeper, wider, and causing it to tear at the edges.

Nasty stuff.

Anyway, I hope that someone finds this little experiment interesting. I know I did. It was kind of a fun night of tinkering around and it will be the first of my line of improvised weapons I will be doing youtube videos on.

Later
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Re: Modern macuahuitl interpretation

Post by Rednex » Wed Feb 02, 2011 10:38 pm

Nice job.

Maybe go yard sale shopping and get 2 old hand saws cut the blades of then to shape instead of razor blades?
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Re: Modern macuahuitl interpretation

Post by Frank » Thu Feb 03, 2011 3:23 am

aren't those breakaway razorblades? so..if you hit something with it..wouldnt they break away?...anyways good job..that thing looks vicious.
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Re: Modern macuahuitl interpretation

Post by Kommander » Thu Feb 03, 2011 3:35 am

I don't think that thing would last to long but it will be nasty while it does.
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Re: Modern macuahuitl interpretation

Post by kcor_77 » Thu Feb 03, 2011 3:53 am

All I have to say is ouch :shock: Nice work by the way. Do you have any pics on how you made the blades overlap?
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Re: Modern macuahuitl interpretation

Post by bumblingbear » Thu Feb 03, 2011 4:30 am

Rednex wrote:Nice job.

Maybe go yard sale shopping and get 2 old hand saws cut the blades of then to shape instead of razor blades?
That might work. They'd have to be really thick, though... and you'd have to sharpen them wickedly sharp.

The obsidian on the originals was... well, obsidian. Knapped obsidian is ridiculously sharp.
Poseidon wrote:aren't those breakaway razorblades? so..if you hit something with it..wouldnt they break away?...anyways good job..that thing looks vicious.
No they are not breakaway blades.
kcor_77 wrote:All I have to say is ouch :shock: Nice work by the way. Do you have any pics on how you made the blades overlap?
I don't right now, no. However, I will be making an instructional how-to video soon.

I'm going to make several for different types of urban/ancient weapons.

The weapon I am currently working on is a throwing arrow with duct tape fletchings, paracord used to extend the range of the throwing arm, and a large spearhead made of stone from floor tiles.

I'm going to call the series, "Improvised ancient weaponry"
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Re: Modern macuahuitl interpretation

Post by kcor_77 » Thu Feb 03, 2011 4:42 am

I like the name of the series I will be watching for it :D
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Re: Modern macuahuitl interpretation

Post by bumblingbear » Sat Feb 05, 2011 4:04 am

kcor_77 wrote:I like the name of the series I will be watching for it :D
Cool! It will probably be a few weeks before I really get it going.

I have to test some armor plates first.
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Re: Modern macuahuitl interpretation

Post by Turtlewolf » Sat Feb 05, 2011 1:13 pm

One of the reason's the original Aztec weapon was so nasty is that the blades would break off in the wound, was a good slashing/club style weapon that served amazingly well. I say don't worry about the blades coming off, your version looks like a decent modern version and the razor blades a good replacement for the obsidian (?) blades that were used in the past.
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Re: Modern macuahuitl interpretation

Post by A.C.E. » Sun Feb 13, 2011 6:13 pm

Nice build.

Very creative use of modern materials. I will be looking forwards to your videos.
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Re: Modern macuahuitl interpretation

Post by Braver » Sun Feb 13, 2011 10:11 pm

The original version was sometimes made from shark teeth also, the intention is to have the teeth/cutting material to break off and cause infection if the blow wasnt enough to kill. So i say your version is spot on, those razors would cut deep as hell and create a tough wound to clean or stitch.

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Re: Modern macuahuitl interpretation

Post by NapTime » Sun Feb 20, 2011 2:44 pm

Quote from conquistador Bernal Diaz del Castillo:

"Pedro de Moron was a very good horseman, and as he charged with three other horsemen into the ranks of the enemy the Indians seized hold of his lance and he was not able to drag it away, and others gave him cuts with their broadswords, and wounded him badly, and then they slashed at the mare, and cut her head off at the neck so that it hung by the skin, and she fell dead."

...just because I love the terrifying imagery of someone beheading a horse. A fearsome weapon indeed!

Good job man! Keep us informed for when you get a good melon destruction video on the youtubes.

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Re: Modern macuahuitl interpretation

Post by Jeriah » Sun Feb 20, 2011 2:47 pm

Someone I knew in the SCA who was a welder made a really nice mace-and-chain by welding some kind of a gear to the end of a chain, and then hafting the opposite end. It was like a flanged mace on a chain. It was really sweet looking. Maybe something like that could be a future part of this project.

Fishing weight bolas?

Crazy African throwing knives made of scrap metal?

Maori war club made from a canoe paddle?

Atlatl darts made of pool cues? (I've already done this one, it works great!)
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Re: Modern macuahuitl interpretation

Post by TheLastRifleMan » Sun Feb 20, 2011 3:35 pm

Interesting.

Here is the one I made about 15 years ago:

Image

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Main body is ash, blades are obsidian driven from a 25 lb. core.

One thing about these is the fact that is the obsidian blade brakes, it still is sharp since a new edge is formed.
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Re: Modern macuahuitl interpretation

Post by bumblingbear » Sun Jul 31, 2011 12:24 pm

Jeriah wrote:Someone I knew in the SCA who was a welder made a really nice mace-and-chain by welding some kind of a gear to the end of a chain, and then hafting the opposite end. It was like a flanged mace on a chain. It was really sweet looking. Maybe something like that could be a future part of this project.

Fishing weight bolas?

Crazy African throwing knives made of scrap metal?

Maori war club made from a canoe paddle?

Atlatl darts made of pool cues? (I've already done this one, it works great!)

These are all excellent ideas.

Now that my life has settled down a bit after a move and my finances are not giving me restless nights anymore I am planning on actually doing all these videos I was planning on a year ago.

So far I have added a field expedient throwing dart to the armory as well. A post about that should be up soon. I think I got the idea from Dave Canterbury.
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Re: Modern macuahuitl interpretation

Post by MonsterZero » Sun Jul 31, 2011 4:30 pm

Up until medical lasers were developed (heavily used in the last 20 years or so), obsidian was used to make cuts too fine to rely on steel scalpels, like in eye surgery. Yours looks just as nasty with razor blades. Nice work.
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Re: Modern macuahuitl interpretation

Post by Whiskey » Sun Jul 31, 2011 8:44 pm

Now you just need to do a Deadliest Warrior style pig chop.
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Re: Modern macuahuitl interpretation

Post by Hachiman » Mon Aug 01, 2011 12:40 am

Would the chain off of a chainsaw work for that or would the teeth be too short? It would be fairly durable and it would wrap easily enough in the track I think...
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Re: Modern macuahuitl interpretation

Post by bumblingbear » Mon Aug 01, 2011 9:19 am

Hachiman wrote:Would the chain off of a chainsaw work for that or would the teeth be too short? It would be fairly durable and it would wrap easily enough in the track I think...

The chain would be a bit short and not sharp enough.

The chain saw chain idea would make a great club, but the point of the Aztec weapon is to make something wickedly sharp where blades can break off of come off to be stuck in the wounds you make as well.

Individual blades are part of the weapon design.
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Re: Modern macuahuitl interpretation

Post by Paladin1 » Mon Aug 01, 2011 9:48 am

Well, I'm not an expert in ancient weapons, but I think perhaps a circular saw blade would work. I'm thinking a bat with a slit cut in it and then the slide the blade into the slot and bolt through the bat and center hole of the blade.

Not only would it have slashing ability, but you could get through heavy clothing and thin metal. Also would be more durable I think when working your way through a horde of zombies.
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Re: Modern macuahuitl interpretation

Post by Turtlewolf » Mon Aug 01, 2011 10:10 am

The saw blade would hang up after slashing very well, the teeth would have to be slightly modifyed to work properly in that application Paladin1. If you were to trim a large circular blade and attach a good handle you would basicaly have a toothy battle axe.
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Re: Modern macuahuitl interpretation

Post by bumblingbear » Mon Aug 01, 2011 12:25 pm

Turtlewolf wrote:The saw blade would hang up after slashing very well, the teeth would have to be slightly modifyed to work properly in that application Paladin1. If you were to trim a large circular blade and attach a good handle you would basicaly have a toothy battle axe.
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Yes indeed... and it's actually not a bad idea (with a little bit of modification) to make a field expedient weapon.

I will have to think about it, but I think that some circular weedwacker blades would probably be better than the circular saw blade idea.
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Re: Modern macuahuitl interpretation

Post by Turtlewolf » Mon Aug 01, 2011 12:50 pm

Are they the ones with four large blades or are they actualy like circular saw blades? Either way if it were me I'ld cut them in half and mount them on one of those big flat sticks that the English call bats.
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Re: Modern macuahuitl interpretation

Post by Jeriah » Mon Aug 01, 2011 1:09 pm

Paladin1 wrote:Well, I'm not an expert in ancient weapons, but I think perhaps a circular saw blade would work. I'm thinking a bat with a slit cut in it and then the slide the blade into the slot and bolt through the bat and center hole of the blade.

Not only would it have slashing ability, but you could get through heavy clothing and thin metal. Also would be more durable I think when working your way through a horde of zombies.
Gosh, I feel like I've seen that in a movie but I can't for the life of me remember which one. Or maybe it wasn't a movie. Damn...anyway, IIRC it looked awesome.

Google found me a few things:

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http://www.champions-online-wiki.com/wi ... ll_Bat_Saw" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Zombie Wars on Facebook?

http://www.zombiesurvivalwiki.com/threa ... 09/Axe-Bat" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Also mentioned in this thread here: http://zombiehunters.org/forum/viewtopi ... 0&start=24" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Anyway, I can't find a good image of the one I'm thinking of, but it looked cool and sounds fun.
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