Jorge Barceló, College of Arizona
(June 29, 2022)—As we speak [6/10/22] was my first day of experimental archaeology with Allen Denoyer, together with Aleesha and Tots. After a brief, steep hike right down to the San Francisco River, we sat on the financial institution and Allen started to indicate us the fundamentals of flintknapping.
First, we chosen our hammerstone and obsidian nodule from the Mule Creek supply and regarded for a great platform to strike the primary flake. The perfect materials for knapping a blade or level would include a excessive degree of silica, which is what makes up glass and creates sharp edges. Obsidian is volcanic glass.
Ideally, Allen defined, you wish to strike on some extent that’s lower than 90 levels to start out eradicating the cortex (outer layer of the cobble) to disclose the pristine black obsidian. Making ready a platform—the hanging level for the hammerstone—is important to getting good flakes throughout the core of the nodule. That is accomplished by rubbing down the sides to uninteresting it so it doesn’t crush when struck. The secret’s to attempt to management the power that’s transferred out of your arm into the nodule/flake, making a bulb of percussion that’s seen as waves throughout the stone.
With a great platform to strike, you may flake off a pleasant skinny piece that shall be prepared to start out strain flaking with an antler tine. Not each flake will come off completely, and plenty of could have humps and ridges that may be taken down with a billet constituted of the bottom of an antler. As soon as the flake is thinned down sufficient, the billet is used to kind the essential form of the purpose by beveling the sting to prepared it for strain flaking. A tine constituted of the distal finish of an antler is the best software for eradicating small strain flakes that create the ultimate form of the purpose. You possibly can then use the tine to make a pointy and/or serrated edge.
After the purpose is completed, a notching software—additionally constituted of antler—is used to create varied types of notching, akin to nook or facet, or a mix of each. The notcher can be used on the sting to flake out even tinier flakes to attain good serrated edges.
As soon as the purpose is to form, sharpened, and notched, it is able to be hafted onto a shaft or deal with utilizing pine pitch or lack from creosote.