I was recently given a DOHEMA sword sheath as a gift. The item was not given to me for reviewing, but I would like to take this opportunity to share my thoughts about it.
The DOHEMA sheaths by Black Armoury are made from a modern synthetic material, they come in a functional matte black colour, and they work very well. A sheath is not a very complicated piece of equipment, and these do exactly what they are supposed to do!
This review: motivation and transparency
I was given this sheath as a gift in May 2015, with no request for reviewing, just as a present from one friend. Because I found it very functional, and have a friendship with the distributors, I wrote this review to share my thoughts about a useful piece of equipment.
(Edit: this “motivation” section was added on the 9th of March 2019, as part of an effort to improve the transparency of the various reviews on this website.)
There is padding inside the material, to help protect the sword from accidental bumps, and the seams are reinforced quite heavily to reduce the chance of rips and tears. My impression is that this item has been designed to last and to give many years of service, which is exactly what I want for something like this.
The sheath has been designed in a one-size-fits-all fashion, which seems to work very well for a variety of swords: it can hold an Albion Meyer, or a Viktor Berbekucz feder, or an Albion Talhoffer. None of my swords were too long for the sheath, so it was able to fit everything in that dimension. The sheath that I received was a little too narrow at the entrance to accept a Regenyei feder with a wider schilt, but Black Armoury were already aware of this problem, and have already improved their design to be able to accept swords with a wider base and schilt.
(Edit: to give precise measurements, the length of my sheath seems to be about 97-98 cm, and at the entrance it is about 7.5 cm across. These were the measurements for the 2015 model, they might be different now.)
One of the best parts of this sheath is at the entrance, where there is an elastic strap that can go over the crossguard, fastening with Velcro. This will secure the sword in place to prevent it from falling out in transit, and that may also satisfy any local laws requiring “weapons” to be secured in such a fashion that they require more than a single action to “draw” and bring into use. Again, the stitching is sturdy and seems intended to last, so it should not fall apart quickly, as many straps unfortunately seem to do.
There is no belt loop, so it does not seem intended to be slung from a belt for easy access. However, this was not the intended purpose, and indeed the strap across the crossguard is intended to prevent “easy access”; it was designed to keep swords safe in transit or in storage, and in these tasks it excels.
There really isn’t much more to write about it. This is a simple and sensible piece of equipment that will provide some protection for your swords in transit, and I will certainly be recommending these for people who have sharp swords or who have to transport feders to training sessions. They are well worth the investment to keep your swords safe and in good condition.
Keith Farrell teaches HEMA professionally, often at international events (why not hire me to teach at your event?), and has an interest in coaching instructors to become better teachers. I teach regularly at Liverpool HEMA, and help behind the scenes with running HEMA in Glasgow at the Vanguard Centre.