RK Euro Model 1 - Germanic Great Sword
Two Handed Germanic Great Sword with double fuller and Fish Tail Pommel Medieval Sword - 1075 TH carbon steel blade.
Taking a decades worth of experience with the best sword forges in Longquan (whose own sword making history dates back THOUSANDS of years) and combining it with the best practices of modern, fully functional European sword replicas - the end result is Ronin Katana's line of high quality, hand forged battle ready medieval swords - now available for immediate shipping at a price that practically any enthusiast can afford.
Each sword in this range is hand forged from top quality 1075 carbon steel, properly heat treated for strength and flexibility and sharpened so you can use them for cutting straight out of the box (or if you prefer, used to cut up the box, though be sure to take out the form fitting Styrofoam, added to protect against damage in transit). But no reason to stop there, these swords can easily cut water filled bottles of all shaped and sizes, super thick bamboo, tatami mats, you name it - they can handle it!
The swords vary in design and while not based on any particular medieval sword are historically plausible and designed to exhibit great handling and cutting dynamics rarely found at this price point.
Every model comes with a REAL black leather wrapped wooden core handle, all steel fittings for maximum durability and PEENED pommel for extra durability. Every sword also comes with a wooden core, leather wrapped scabbard as a free bonus.
Simply amazing value for money and a return to affordable medieval swords where every other maker has doubled or tripled their prices means that they will sell out fast, so grab one while you can!
This particular model is a two handed medieval war sword with a distinctly Germanic flavor, with twin fullers (blood grooves) to lighten the blade and add visual interest without sacrificing durability. The cross guard is delicate but sturdy, and features a fish tailed pommel. Ready to cut straight out of the box.
How to Use
Materials and Construction
Featured positive reviews:
This sword does not adhere to any specific Oakeshott type, nor does it appear to be based off any historical find. It's most similar to either a Type XXa.
Type XX: "Here it is characterized by a central fuller running over half-way down the blade, flanked by two shorter ones, generally of the same width as the central one, in the upper quarter of the blade's length." (Records of the Medieval Sword pg 207)
Type XXa: "the fullering in this sub-type is the same, but the edges run very sharply to an acute point." (Records of the Medieval Sword pg 207)
The RK Euro #1 has two even fullers running down 2/3 of the blade, very different than the type XX's and XXa's long central fuller and two short, flanking fullers. I've found one reference to Type XX/XXa swords potentially only having two fullers, but I can't remember where I saw it at this point. Suffice to say, the fullering on this sword is not based on a historical find or Oakeshott typology. I'm calling it a very loose XX-family based on the fact that it has multiple fullers, which no other type does, and a (again, very loose) XXa because the profile of the bad narrows to an acute point, rather than the rounder tip of a XX.
Blade length: 36 7/8" (93.6 cm)
Blade width at guard: 2 1/4" (5.7 cm)
Blade width near tip: 1/2" (1.3 cm)
Fuller length: 23 1/4" (59 cm)
Fuller width: 7/16" (1.1 cm)
Fuller depth: 0.0575" (1.46 mm)
Distal taper: 0.285" (7.2 mm) at guard, 0.203" (5.2 mm) at end of fullers, 0.165" (4.2 mm) near tip
PoB: 6" (15.2 cm)
Guard width: 9 3/8" (23.8 cm)
Grip length: 8" (20.3 cm)
Pommel length: 2 9/16" (6.5 cm)
Overall length: 48" (121.9 cm)
Weight (blade only): 3.7 lbs (1.68 kg)
Weight (with scabbard): 4.7 lbs (2.13 kg)
Very loose Type XXa
1075 High carbon steel, monotempered, factory sharpened.
The dual fullers on this blade are what immediately catch the eye. They're well-ground and the lines don't wander. They're not perfectly symmetrical on both sides – on one side the fullers are about 1/4" longer than the other side. This is not even remotely a concern, however, as you really have to look for it to notice. The fullers end nice and evenly on both sides.
The blade has a rather rare hexagonal cross-section after the fullers. There is something resembling a ricasso on the blade, but I hesitate to actually call it that, as it's a little sharper than I would prefer for an actual ricasso.
One of the reasons I consider this loosely based on a Type XXa is the taper to an acute point, which makes this sword a cut and thrust focused blade.
Type V fishtail
The Type V pommel is relatively uncommon in historical swords, but you see it quite a bit in modern swords. I consider it one of the most attractive pommel types, which is one of the things that drew me to this sword in the first place.
Kult of Athena, the SBG sword, and Ronin Katana's website all list the pommel as peened. If it is actually peened, they've ground it down to the point where you can't see the peen at all.
Wood core wrapped with thick cord and finished with leather.
The grip feels a little spongy, and while it is an oval in shape, I feel like it could be a touch flatter – it's not all that far from a circular shape, which makes edge alignment tricky. That said, it still feels good in the hand. I would much prefer a finer cord wrap. The stitching is completely unobtrusive.
The fit is just a little off – there's a small gap between the grip and the crossguard.
Embellished Type 7.
This isn't an exact Type 7, even taking out the decorative shaping at the ends, but it's pretty close. It's an attractive crossguard with a solid fit to the blade.
The scabbard has a wood core and a leather wrap. There's a stainless steel chape and an integrated leather belt. Sadly, there's no steel collar. The belt leather feels very stiff.
The sword rests perfectly in the scabbard. It takes little force to draw, but is held in place perfectly – I can hold the scabbard upside down and shake vigorously and the blade doesn't move.
The RK #1 is a heavy blade at 3.7 lbs, and with the point of balance being 6" from the guard, it handles a little point heavy in my opinion. That said, it's not ungainly. It can be used one-handed in a pinch, but this is definitely a two-handed sword and it does not feel good to swing it in one hand.
I am a novice at cutting.
I cut some water bottles, and the sword made short work of them. I was able to get one extremely nice cut using a backswing. I also tested on a Powerade bottle, and I was simply unable to cut it. This is probably because of my poor edge alignment skills, but the thick plastic of the bottle refused to be cut.
When testing on paper, the sword performs okay. It cuts the paper with the meat of the blade, but as it gets towards the tip, it starts tearing rather than cutting.
Overall, the blade is at a fair sharpness for a sword. It doesn't need to be razor sharp to get the job done.
I consider the price of this sword ($350) to be the upper end of budget swords. It's a well-made blade that has a few fit and finish issues, but still a very solid sword for the price.
- Attractive design – crossguard embellishments and the dual fullers create a striking appearance.
- Extremely well-fitted scabbard
- The fit between grip and crossguard is not as tight as it should be.
- Edge sharpness is somewhat uneven.
The Bottom Line
If you're looking for a budget longsword, you can do much worse than the RK #1. You can also do better, for cheaper, while still sticking to Ronin Katana. Their two-handed saber is $250, cuts and handles better. It doesn't come with an actual scabbard, however. I also think the Hanwei Albrecht II Hand-and-a-Half Sword is a much better deal, and I would recommend it over this one.
That's not to say this is a bad sword, just that I think there's better swords available that perform better and are cheaper than this one. If you really like the overall design of the blade (as I do), don't hesitate to buy it. I don't think you'll be disappointed.