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One of the most successful and prevalent weapons throughout history and culture is the pole arm. Halberds, pole axes and spears do a fantastic job of damaging an opponent while keeping the wielder out of harm’s reach.
Here will give you a simple run down of how to attach your haft, using the spear as the guideline. Note that with some pole arm heads there are langets to attach as well, which run down the haft adding additional strength. This is something we will save for a later time.
If you don’t have a spear to mount remember that at Museum Replicas there are many options when it comes to spearheads! Fortunately you’ll find that all Windlass spears have similar manufacture and will comply with this method covered here.
Selecting a spearhead should be your first move but then it is time to select a wood type for the haft. Teak, poplar, wax wood, ash, oak and hickory are all good choices for a functional spear with varying degrees of flex, weight and overall durability.
However if your purpose is more for than display rather than use, a dowel rod from your local hardware store will do just fine. In the accompanying video you’ll notice we found a replacement shovel haft that was conveniently tapered on one end saving even more time on the project. If you’re thinking of applying a stain to the wood we recommend doing it before mounting your spear head, while leather wrappings should be added after.
With most Windlass spear heads, there are holes pre-set to hold the pin. To mount the spear, place the spear head on the haft and wrap the opposite end flatly on the ground to settle the head. Using a pencil or pen, mark where the hole lies on both sides of the haft.
Using these marks as a guide, drill straight through the haft. This should make aligning the pin easy.
After the hole has been drilled through the haft, push in your pin and peen over on both sides. If you’re having trouble finding a pin to use, you can easily substitute an appropriately sized nail for the job. Just push the nail through, cut the excess off the end and peen as normal.
Really that's all there is to it! It's worth noting that you could use epoxy instead of or in conjunction with a pin, but it will be a real chore to remove should your haft break and need to be replaced.