I just watched ta most interesting show on Russian TV. i caught it part way through, but it seems to be about vanishing trades. A young man, Timor, was trying his hand at various things.
When I tuned in, he was in a smithy, and learning how to hand craft a knife. It was fascinating to see how they tempered the steel, pounding it with hammer and press. With the blacksmith’s help, he made an interesting handle by twisting the tang (the piece of steel that usually extends into a wooden or bone handle) and then bent it back to the base of the blade in a loop. They ground on an edge, and he cut through a thick piece of old rope to prove its edge.
They then made a piece of Damascus steel, which is made by layering different types or colours of steel. They clamped together he pieces, which were much thicker than I would have imagined, heated it to red hot, and beat it flat , then ground it at an angle to show the amazing colour variations.
Here is an example of what it looks like.
In the final portion of the show took place in the stable. There, I watched a horse patiently endure being shod by a rank amateur. It was quite fascinating, and the horse was so good. Timor had a difficult time getting the old shoe off. Then he had to file the hoof down and nail on the new shoe. I didn’t realize that horse shoe nails were so long.
I didn’t understand a lot of the words, but because I am somewhat familiar with the processes, I think I still got a lot out of it.
And they had lovely close-ups of the horse….. what a beauty.