Now we all know how lethal a black widow spiders bite can be. But how much more lethal would a black widow be if it had a stinger as well? Weeeell… I don’t know. It’s a hypothetical scenario for which I lack the prerequisite genetic engineering expertise to replicate. BUT that doesn’t mean we can’t test out the theory… In steel!! >:}

And since some enterprising sword maker has already taken the initiative and put one together for us to… drool over… Eeerrrr, I mean observe, please, step into my specimen room… 😉

Black Widow Death Sting

Black Widow Death Sting

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Yes, yes, yes my friends, the pic above is of a rare and excellent specimen of the exotic sword species “Niger Viduata Nex Punctum” – The Black Widow Death Sting.

Clearly, a very beautiful specimen indeed, a sword featuring a single piece blade/full tang construction, sporting triple pinned dark wood scales, and a matching dark wood sheath with a spider emblem carved into the side.

Black Widow Death Sting - Sheath

Black Widow Death Sting - Sheath

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The ever so mildly curved blade is tipped with a sweeping and ever so wicked point, and widens out into a lithe but lethal swathe of shiny steel that curves down into the hilt. This blade has a rather unusual feature, in that instead of a single continuous fuller, or blood groove, it has two smaller fullers, ground one after another into the blade.

The hilt is also a work of simplistic art, continuing the subtle undulation started by the blade with a slightly more prominent curve of it’s own – in reverse, and ending the pommel with a mild flare. But as awe inspiring as this swords blade is, one aspect I found to be of particular interest, is the guard. Which I shall henceforth be referring to as “The Stinger”:

Black Widow Death Sting - Stinger

Black Widow Death Sting - Stinger

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Yeeeessss… This sword has a stinger… As if the sword was not sinister or menacing enough as it was, the designer thought it would be nice to add a stinger. A very wicked stinger it is too. This stinger is actually a continuation of the sharpened edge of the blade, that flares out just before the hilt, to form a guard of sorts. An evil, sooner-stab-you-in-the-eye-than-look-at-you, guard.

Of course, as with all things in life, it isn’t perfect. Or more accurately, I’m an OC freak who will find any possible reason to fault a sword, no matter how perfect. (Pick whichever suits your fancy 😛 ) Though I think in this case my nit picking is justified.

For instance, the split fuller. In a normal sword, the fuller reduces weight and increases the stiffness of the blade. The stiffness comes from the way that flexion forces are distributed due to the resulting “I-beam” like cross sectional blade geometry that the fuller introduces.

If my understanding of the physics involved is accurate, the result of introducing a heavier, more correction: less flexible section into a fullered blade should be that the surrounding blade areas become weak points. So the blade would be more likely to bend in these areas of the blade, when subjected to shear forces, and will probably also fail there first. So splitting the fuller, in addition to leaving unnecessary weight in the blade, is kind of like building in weak spots into the blade. Yes, it works great for cars. Not so much for swords though.

And then there’s the Stinger of Doom. Great idea in theory. In practice… I have doubts. The first, and perhaps biggest issue I see is this: how would an intrepid sword fighter, with the meanest sword around, avoid getting shanked in the hip when sheathing it? Or while walking around with it? See:

Black Window Death Sting - Sheath Stinger

Black Window Death Sting - Sheath Stinger

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The stinger is great, but In addition to taking up valuable grip space that would have been better utilized for a double handed grip, why leave it out there *all* the time? Methinks not such a wise idea. And honestly, it really didn’t need to be sharpened. That section of a sword is, in general, seldom used for cutting, so that was an unnecessary detail. (But it still gets cool points for sheer menace…) 🙂

And, of course, If the blade had been in black, well… let’s just say I would be getting ready to propose… Black Widow or not. At least I’d die happy.

However in spite of it’s flaws, I am still in awe of this sword. Assuming it is made with the right steel, this kind of blade more or less captures a lot of the things I love to see in a blade, and then some. Very strong full tang construction, curves that go on forever, brutal and heartless points that crave no quarter, (and give none, even to it’s wielder), and dark wood furniture that just brings it all together.

Crikey!! It’s a thing of beauty. An absolutely exquisite creature! Ya just gotta be careful it doesn’t shank ya…

RIP, Steve Irwin… Ya nutter… I know exactly how you felt…

Black Widow Death Sting – [Swords Swords]