When I was a kid, I had a Frisbee-like toy called the Aerobie. Years later, I watched the "Xena: Warrior Princess" TV series and was enamored of her weaponized boomerang-like chakram, a blade that traces it origins to India. YouTube show "Man at Arms: Reforged" has tackled the challenge of making a real-life chakram.
Xena's chakram is a mighty weapon. It can slice through arrows in midair, cut sword blades in half and bounce off stone walls. The warrior princess had two versions, one that is a complete circle and a fancier one that splits in two with a curved handle in the middle.
In a video posted Monday, "Reforged" took on both versions, making one using a plasma cutter and the other through a more traditional forging process.
The tools on display during the build are worthy of awe all on their own. There's a Mig welder, a massive saw, a blazing forge, a kiln and an impressive sander. Who doesn't enjoy seeing a power hammer in action? Xena herself would appreciate the sheer strength of the machine.
A blacksmith carves the original one-piece chakram out of a sheet of metal using a plasma cutter. It takes some fancy sanding work to finish the edges. No detail is left out. Other craftspeople lay out and install the embedded jewels and design on the chakram.
The two-piece chakram is more complicated, but "Reforged" comes up with a solution that allows it to come apart and then connect back together. The build process is fascinating and the result would be the crown jewel of any Xena cosplayer's collection.
One of the best parts of any "Man at Arms: Reforged" episode is the test footage of the builds at the end. A woman in a Xena costume takes out a melon with the blades. Soda bottles, cans and a gallon of milk all meet their makers at the hands of the chakrams. This should make Xena fans even more excited for the upcoming reboot of the TV series that first aired in 1995 and ran for six seasons.