Introduction: Restoring an Old Flail (Medieval Weapon)

My uncle bought an old house and told me to get whatever I wanted from there. While searching in a desk full of chemical products there it was, between the wall and the desk, an hanging ball with spikes that I instantly recognized.

When I saw the rust and the rotten wood handle I knew i had to restore it.

Materials used:

  • Olive wood;
  • Beewax + Olive oil finish;
  • Water proof sand paper (GR: 100 - 220 - 360 - 500).

Tools used:

  • Wood lathe;
  • Turning chisels;
  • Caliper;
  • Rotary tool;
    • Bits: Grinding stone, steel brush, drum sander.
  • Drill

Step 1: Turning a New Handle

I had this piece of olive wood that I ripped from firewood, waiting for a project, so this was it. I started by finding its centre and putting it on the lathe to turn.

I used my homemade carbide tools (12mm round; 14mm square and a standard detail cutter) to turn the handle and the insert for the metal fitting.

Before putting the metal insert in the handle I sanded it under water by hand to remove the rust and avoid making lots of dust. (Forgot to take pictures of this part).

After placing the metal insert on the handle I sanded up to Grit 500, including the insert.

Step 2: Removing Rust

The ball had some sharp metal imperfections, probably due to the cast being misaligned when the metal was poured. To remove those imperfections i used the grinding stone bit from my rotary tool. To remove the rust I used the steel brush bit and the sanding drum.

The chain, due to its shape, was cleaned scrubbing it between my hands with fine sand (Don't forget to use gloves, or be smarter and use vinegar).

Step 3: Assembly

Drilled a small hole in the center of the handle, at the metal insert end, and screwed the screw eyes that was already in the chain.

Step 4: Apply Finish

Since it is olive wood I figured it would be nice to apply some bee wax and olive oil finish.

Before and After Contest 2017

Participated in the
Before and After Contest 2017