Caught Knapping

Bee On Knapwort
Bee On Knapwort

Today’s picture is of a bee on a Knapwort flower. So I thought you might be interested in knapping. Flintknapping that is. Google, who had assumed, without asking, that he was going to get the weekend off, grumbled a bit (well, a lot) but eventually slouched off to find some articles on flintknapping for me. Naturally, my intention was to dazzle you with my arcane knowledge. To my amazement, he came back with a long list of available flintknapping kits – at very reasonable prices – mostly from a certain well known, friendly and convenient, internet retailer.
It is possible, with very little effort, to acquire a kit of tools – manufactured from either ancient or modern materials – all neatly presented in a genuine hide wallet or if you prefer a genuine imitation hide wallet.
This would seem to suggest that everybody’s doing it and flintknapping knowledge can no longer be considered arcane. Still, it did take considerable further research to find relevant instructions for me to pass on to you.
It seems that (as any good vehicle mechanic will confirm) a nice selection of hammers, in various sizes and shapes, is essential. The other piece of information that seemed worthy of wider dissemination is to make sure that your fingers are out of the way when you indulge in the hammering of the one stone with the other.
The bee asked me to mention that it’s best to do your knapping out in the open air – the large-scale production of flints for flintlock guns sent many of its artisans to an early grave from silicosis of the lungs.

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