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Blacksmithing & Toolmaking

Forging Late Iron Age Scandinavian Composite Blades

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Course Overview

Students in this class will use forge welding techniques to create a typical northern European Late Iron Age knife blade from separate bars of wrought iron and 1085 steel. Each student will then complete their blades by learning appropriate grinding techniques and fitting traditional Scandinavian hardwood handles. This class will give students the opportunity to gain insight into everyday life during the Viking age while forging a fully functional knife from this interesting period of history. Students will use solid fuel forges and hand forging methods to explore the skills of Viking smiths from 1200 years ago! Materials fee includes the use of coal for forgework and the cost of steel, etc. This course is open to students ages 14-17 if accompanied by an adult.

Required tools

  • Safety glasses (provided, but you may wish to bring your own)
  • Ear protection (provided, but you may wish to bring your own)
  • Leather gloves (not gardening gloves)
  • Cotton or other natural fiber clothing (no nylon clothing)
  • Leather, close-toed shoes
  • Shop apron
  • Clothing comfortable to be outdoors
  • Notebook and pencil
  • Hair tie for long hair or beard

Optional Tools

  • Favorite hammer 
  • Knife tongs


Thu, Sep 15th, 2022  –  Sun, Sep 18th, 2022

Course Details

Hours: 9am-5pm each day
Tuition: $400.00
Materials fee: $80.00

Meet the Instructor

North House Folk School photo of instructor, Doug Swenson
Doug Swenson
Hawley, MN

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Forging Late Iron Age Scandinavian Composite Blades