Sword : Lance : Shield : Armour


Sword: Looked at The Battle of Barnet. Tested the relative cutting and thrusting capabilities of a Viking sword, Norman sword, 15th century arming sword, falchion and 15th century Longsword. Tested the endurance capabilities of a man fighting in full plate armour.

Bow: bowLooked at the Battle of Crécy. Tracked the trajectory of an arrow with Doppler radar to measure the deceleration caused by drag on the arrow. Used this data to calibrate an air canon in the laboratory to simulate shooting the arrow at various ranges and then tested different types of arrowheads against armours of varying hardness. Timed a gallop for 300 yards on the battle site of Crécy, approaching the position where the Black Prince stood.  Timed arrows per minute from crossbow and longbow.

Lance: Looked at the Battles of Lewes and Bannockburn. Rode against a quintain target faced with foam aluminium, using various types of lance in conjunction with grapers and lance stops. The impact data was used to calibrate a drop tower in the laboratory, which then tested various types of armour against equivalent impacts.

Shield: Looked at the Battle of Eddington. Had various types of shield constructed  – flat, composite and convex composite, using wood and rawhide. Destruction tested them in the laboratory using sword, francisca, arrows and axe. Tested charging through ranks of shields on horseback – first a single rank of men and then massed five deep.

Armour: Looked at the Battle of Verneuil. Tested various samples of armour against sword, lance and bow in the laboratory. Armours consisted of leather curie, coat of plates, mail, munition quality plate armour and hardened steel plate armour. Tested falling from galloping horse in full plate armour and then getting to feet straight away.