Here is my first Viking Drinking Horn. I've always wanted one of these and finally had the time to make one. I hope to make many more! The materials were fairly inexpensive. The toughest part is finding a horn.
1. Butane torch
2. Chasing hammer
3. Rawhide hammer.
4. Soldering block
5. Metal snips
6. Ring mandrel
7. 3 inch iron pipe (optional)
8. Jeweler's saw
9. Bench block
10. Vise (optional)
11. Rock Tumbler with steel shot.
12. Riveting hammer
14. Safety glasses
15. Tin can- for melting bees wax
16. Sauce pan
17. Small pliers
18. Small files or Emory board
19. Small bowl of water for quenching hot pieces after Soldering.
20. Drill and drill bits.
1. 20 gauge brass plate
2. 5 Copper rivets
3. 8 or 10 gauge brass rod
4. Cow horn
5. Bees wax
6. Small brass ball or lamp finial
7. Med. Silver solder
8. Pickling solution
9. Hydrogen Peroxide 3%
10. Distilled white vinegar
11. Liver of Sulfur
*These are just the materials and tools I used but there are other ways to do the same thing.
*Remember safety! Wear safety glasses, keep chemicals out of the reach of children or pets and wear gloves when handling chemicals.
Step 1: Step 1: Preparing the Horn
I found a horn at a local shop that was already cleaned and polished on the outside. This first part I could have done later but I did it first. This step was to remove some of the horn smell and make sure no debris was left over. First fill the horn with boiling water and let it sit for an hour. Repeat this. Second, fill the horn with distilled white vinegar and let sit for another hour. Later, after I finished with the metal work. I went back and used bees wax to line the inside of the horn. I will describe this at the end.
Step 2: Step 2: the Lip Band
The band was made out of one strip of brass. First I measured the circumference of the lip of the horn. I added about 3 mm to this measurement to account for the compression of the metal when you form it into a ring. I cut a strip of brass out of the 20 gauge plate to the the length I measured and about 2 cm wide. I textured the strip while flat with the chasing hammer. I annealed it again to make it soft, then bent the strip into an oval.
I soldered the seam with the med solder. I slipped the band onto the horn and softly tapped with the rawhide mallet to better fit the horn. Then it was into the pickle. I filed down the seam with a small file, then tumbled the band to shine it up and harden it. Once it came out of the tumbler (about an hour) I put it into a solution of liver of sulfur to put a nice patina on it.
Note: All brass pieces that have been pickled need to be "rebarassified" in a solution of 50% old pickle and 50% hydrogen peroxide. This will make the copper back into brass. Then you can polish in the tumbler.
Step 3: Step 3: Fabricating the Ring and Bracket.
I made the bracket first. I cut out of the same sheet of brass a small thin strip about 3/4 cm wide and slightly longer than the width of the lip ring. I textured this also while flat. I used the torch to anneal the strip so it was nice and soft to work with. I folded the strip in half around the brass rod. Then, I bent the other sides back up to form the flange of the bracket with small pliers.. Pickle, tumble and patina to match. The ring was really easy. Anneal the brass rod, then bend a section around the ring mandrel to the size desired. Cut the rod with the jewelers saw to the correct length and voila- a ring. I flattened one side of the ring so it was able to twist up and down easier under the bracket.
Step 4: Step 4: Mounting the Lip Ring and Bracket to the Horn
This step was definitely the most nerve racking. First I cut the heads off the copper rivets because they were huge! Anneal to soften the metal. Then I slightly mushroomed one end of the rivet. This end will face the inside of the horn. (There are a lot of tutorials online for riveting so I won't describe everything here) I drilled a hole through the brass and the horn with my drill using a bit that matched the diameter of the rivet. I wanted the rivet snug as I pushed it through the horn. I marked the rivet on the brass side with a sharpie so that it was only a millimeter above the brass. I cut the rivet where I marked it, then hammered it in place on the brass side. The pipe was used to support the inside of the horn and give a metal surface to rivet against. The same procedure was done for all five rivets.
Step 5: Step 5: the Finial
This was the hardest step. I've seen people use candle snuffers for the ends of the horns but I really wanted to fabricate my own. First I made a flat pattern for the cone. There were a few online calculators that I tried at first to make the pattern but they didn't prove very useful. So I just eye-balled it and cut out in paper first. Then I formed the paper around the horn and marked the final fit. Once I had my template, I traced this onto the brass plate and cut it out. I once again put the texture onto the metal while it was flat.
I didn't have a cone shaped mandrel so I had to improvise. I started on the ring mandrel with the rawhide mallet. I just continued to work the metal until the seams met, off the mandrel. I then soldered the seam.
The brass ball was hard to solder onto the cone because it was so thick (hard to get it hot enough before the flux burned off). In the picture you can see that the zinc came to the surface of the ball. I had to sand this off to get back to the brass underneath. I filed the seam to blend the metal in. Pickle, tumble, patina!
The Finial was glued into place with Gorilla glue. I know the Vikings didn't do it this way, but I was tired of riveting!
Note: All brass pieces that have been pickled need to be "rebarassified" in a solution of 50% old pickle and 50% hydrogen peroxide. This will make the copper look back into brass. Then you can polish them back up.
Step 6: Step 6: Bees Wax
Lining the inside of the horn with bees wax makes the horn safe for cold drinks. The process is pretty simple. Melt your bees wax in a tin can, in a pan of water on the stove. Once the wax is melted, use a hot pad and pour the wax down the inside of the horn and immediately back out. Turn your horn slightly and do this again, working your way around the horn until completely sealed. There are some good videos on this, so do a little research and check them out. I didn't take any pictures of this process
*Safety First! Hot wax is flammable so keep away from any flame. In fact, take your wax away from the stove when doing this. Also make sure no skin is exposed in the event of a spill. Safety glasses are also recommended.
I hope you enjoyed this Instructable and my finished piece. If you have any questions about this project please ask.