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Weenderveld palstave

Original
 
Found: Weenderveld, Netherlands
Age: middle bronzeage

This is one of the largest axes found in the Netherlands, with a length of 17.4 cm and it's also one of the most beautiful palstaves. 

The model
 
The model used to make the moulds is made from clay and sand.

The mould
 
The mould is made from clay and sand, and fired after it was dried. Here the mould can be seen before firing. Firing such a large mould is very difficult, and two out of three moulds didn't survive the firing. The mould that survived was heavily cracked, but usuable.

Casting result
 
A perfect axe! The ridge over the axe is a filling of one of the cracks in the mould, which can be ground away. 

Finishing
 
The axe is partially finished. The casting feed and flash have been removed. The cutting edge is thinned down by hammering. This required two annealings to soften the metal and allow further deformation.

Finished axehead
The axehead is now finished, after many hours of grinding and polishing, and ready to be hafted (though I'm currently not planning on hafting this one). For the grinding I used sandstone in different degrees of courseness. For the polishing I used dried clay with sand, just clay and finally wet clay on leather to get into all the corners.