Alpkit
Results 1 to 12 of 12

Thread: How to make a copper 'bopper' for flint knapping.

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Oxfordshire
    Posts
    1,774

    Default How to make a copper 'bopper' for flint knapping.

    I can't claim any credit for the design, but here are some pictures of how I made a copper bopper (soft hammer) for flint knapping. Antler would have been used traditionally for this purpose, but if you can't get hold of antler, this is a quick and easy way to get something that you can start working with.

    To start with, go to the annual Bushmoot, find one of the native Spamels and ask him nicely to let you have a bit of old lead pipe. He may well throw in a couple of copper end caps. Allow the lead and copper to mature for nearly three months then get off your behind and start doing something.

    You will need a small ball-peen hammer, and another hammer.



    Beat the copper end cap over the round end of the ball-peen hammer until you have moulded int into a roughly hemispherical shape.



    Cut up some lead into small pieces...



    ...and put them into the rounded end cap. You could use a pan to melt the lead, but the end cap forms a nice crucible and you don't then need to pour the lead.



    Melt the lead using a blowtorch (remembering to avoid breathing any fumes), and leave it to cool down. The remnants of a bow-drill hearth board form a good cup to support the cap while it cools down.



    Whittle a piece of wood into a suitable handle so that the end cap is a nice tight fit over the end of it...



    ...and glue the cap onto the end of the wood using epoxy or other strong glue and voila you have a copper soft hammer.



    I'm still waiting for the glue to set, so I haven't tried it out yet, and the handle will need a little bit of sanding. I used a 22mm end cap, but for finer work a 15mm cap would probably be more suitable.

    Thanks for looking.


    Geoff
    "An old forager is a good forager, that is why he is an old forager."

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Derby, UK
    Posts
    1,663

    Default

    Excellent Geoff brill idea

    Bernie

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Silkstone, Blighty!
    Posts
    6,833

    Default

    That's really good Geoff! Nice and simple, even a strategically shaved orang utang like myself could follow that. I have a bit more lead by now too!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Location
    Oxford/Gloucs border
    Posts
    570

    Default

    Very good Geoff
    "I have nothing to say, I just wanna eat my cake" - Lou Ferrigno

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Oxfordshire
    Posts
    1,774

    Default

    Thanks Bernie, Spam and Aaron for the comments.

    One thing I forgot to say was that I've just finished reading Flintknapping by Whittaker. A very good book indeed. It includes both technique and a lot of historical and archaeological detail. I still think you probably need to see someone knapping but as a companion book for when you are by yourself, I'd thoroughly recommend it.


    Geoff
    "An old forager is a good forager, that is why he is an old forager."

  6. #6

    Default

    Nice work

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Oxfordshire
    Posts
    1,774

    Default

    And now that the glue has set, I had to see if it works, so here's a nice flake I took off with the new bopper.




    Geoff
    "An old forager is a good forager, that is why he is an old forager."

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Port Talbot
    Posts
    582

    Default

    Great idea , would also make a good priest i think.

  9. #9

    Default

    Brilliant...I'd been wondering how I could add one of these to my deer antler hammers. Thanks for the photos, I'll give it a try, just need to find a little lead, maybe I could use some old fishing weights I have lying around?

    Thanks for sharing.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    Michigan, USA
    Posts
    5,144

    Default

    Excellent post! Thanks!
    Hoodoo

    . . . deliverance will not come from the rushing, noisy centres of civilization. It will come from the lonely places. - Fridtjof Nansen

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Derbyshire
    Posts
    2,475

    Default

    Great thread, thanks for posting. Going to make a couple of these I think for knapping glass arrow heads, then move up to flint.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Silkstone, Blighty!
    Posts
    6,833

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by addo View Post
    Great thread, thanks for posting. Going to make a couple of these I think for knapping glass arrow heads, then move up to flint.
    Give me a shout if you need any lead and copper end caps, I'll put some aside for the next time we meet!

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •