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Recently I found myself in need of a proper 'door of Óðinn' (Old Norse kenning for shield). Thus I had to gather some wood and hide, heat up the forge and make one.
I made this #Viking #shield primarily based on those found in the #Gokstad ship burial, but also remnants from other archaeological finds and information in the writings of Theophilus 'On Diverse Arts' Chapter 17 (c.1100).

Many years ago I got as far as making a shield board. I decided to continue from there. The board from pine measured 89 cm diameter & was 8,5 mm thick at the center. This was thinned down to 5,5 mm approximately 1,5 cm from the edge, then to 1-2 mm at the very edge.
To strengthen the shield a layer of hide (0,5 mm calf) was glued onto both front and back and also as an edge band. Even thicker hide could have been used (cow or horse). After being cut to shape the hide was soaked for half an hour and left to dry of a bit before gluing.
Cheese glue was used, made from casein (4 parts) & slaked lime (1 part). Water added to a slightly runny consistency. Quick work was needed as cheese glue thickens within the hour.

Making cheese glue:
Slaked lime from shells: per-storemyr.net/2018/11/10/bur…
Glue was applied to both the wood and hide surface. Air pockets had to be worked out during gluing by lifting and smoothing from the center line outwards. The glued hide and board had to be kept under pressure for a few days to prevent warping during drying.
For the gluing of the edge band a less diluted glue-mix was found to be preferable to help keep the hide in place during drying.
The iron boss was forged by a technique called raising. I started out with a too thin plate of 1,25 mm. Through loss of iron surface by oxidation (hammer scales) this was thinned to 1 mm and a weight of 140 gram. Original viking age bosses weighed closer to 200-300 gram.
I also needed to forge some nails. These eight nails where clinched at the back of the shield to hold the shield boss and wooden handle. The handle is from some light hardwood, possibly alder. How to clinch nails:
Some of the Gokstad shields had a stitched edge so I decided to do this also.
The shield ended ut weighing just above 3 kg. To finish up the shield the whole surface will need a layer of linseed oil to make it water repellent, preventing it from warping after exposure to rain. Some decorative paint would also be nice.
If you wish to learn a few tricks using the #viking round #shield you can watch this video by Roland Warzecha (Dimicator):
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