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The people in my story's universe all have various magical powers, and if they want the effects of these powers to extend to their clothes or equipment, said equipment needs to be designed to a few specifications in order to comply with my world's method of "syncing" objects to their owners' aura, an invisible field that extends 3 inches out from every part of their body:

  1. The object must at least be small enough that it can be encased completely inside its owner's aura for five minutes, to "sync" it. You can't sync anything too big to fit inside the aura when pressed against the human body. But once initially synced, this never has to be done again unless the object is significantly damaged or warped (or if the object is synced to a new person).

  2. When you want to use it with your magic, the owner's aura must be touching at least part of the object to affect it.

  3. For the purposes of the above two requirements, an "object" is defined as a solid collection of bonded atoms. A screw, for example, would be treated as one object, but if you're syncing a mousetrap, then the wooden board would be one object, the spring would be another, the metal loops attaching the spring to the board would be the third and fourth, etc.

The major takeaway from this is that if you want to be able to use certain types of magic properly, your weapon needs to be designed with as few pieces as possible, or, bare minimum, have all of the pieces be constantly within 3 inches of some part of your body while in use.

Now, this is pretty easy when it comes to swords, and not even out of line with how swords are already made. The blade, pommel, grip and guard all have at least some part of them that is within 3 inches of the user's hand at all times when in use. But when it comes to things like lances or halberds, there are going to need to be some major changes to their designs.

Real-life polearms were typically made with wooden hafts that then had the metal blade/point attached to the tip of them. This obviously means that the blade component of a normal polearm is too far away from the user's hand (or any other part of their body) for their aura to reach it. Ideally (at least for the purposes of use with magic and nothing else) a polearm, both the haft and the blade, would be made out of one uninterrupted piece of shaped metal.

But 1, this would limit the length of the polearm to roughly the user's height (see rule 1), and 2, my understanding is that polearms were designed the way they were because wood is both lighter and cheaper than metal, making a wooden-hafted polearm significantly more cost and energy efficient than one that was a single, long, solid piece of forged metal. But we're talking about being able to carry it with you when you do things like teleporting and walking through walls, so obviously some sacrifices to the ideal design would be worthwhile to take advantage of this. The only question is what those sacrifices would look like.

What is the best way to design a polearm for magic compatibility while making the fewest compromises to the advantages of the ideal real-life design?

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    $\begingroup$ "bonded solid atoms"" means nothing. Atoms are a collection of wave functions, they are not solid, liquid or gaseous. It's a collective of atoms which can be assigned one of those qualities. $\endgroup$ – L.Dutch Jun 17 at 14:06
  • $\begingroup$ @L.Dutch I was having some difficulty working out how to phrase that. How would you phrase it? $\endgroup$ – Jason Clyde Jun 17 at 14:07
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    $\begingroup$ The image of teleporting and leaving the blood, and dirt on the weapon behind is a quite an image. note this will mean the weapons need ot be oiled frequently since thye keep leaving it behind. $\endgroup$ – John Jun 17 at 14:43
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    $\begingroup$ @JBH, the edit has been done after my comment. Now it is clear $\endgroup$ – L.Dutch Jun 17 at 14:48
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    $\begingroup$ @BKlassen that isn't entirely out of the question as a concept, but the issue there is that then, like I said, the polearm would have to be very short compared to real ones. Plus it would be nice to know how far from the original design I'd need to stray to make this work before I start thinking of magical excuses for a problem I'm not even sure is that bad yet. $\endgroup$ – Jason Clyde Jun 17 at 19:35
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Langets

Real polearms often had langets, or strips of metal attached to the head that extended a significant length of the pole. This made it hard to simply snap the pole off and made the whole thing much sturdier. The small amount of added weight was well worth the better strength. If your mages are going to invest in a polearm they will have langets, not just a socketed shaft. If they need a metal connection to work smiths will make such pole arms with tapered langets that extend the length to the weapon. They can be thinner and lighter than normal langets especially past a certain point since they are less to add strength and more to supply a connection. The lower part of the langet could even just be wire. You can even go further and weld the rivets on one side, so there are only two pieces to the entire thing: one metal and one wood. This will weigh the same as a normal usable polearm. Fitting will be a little bit of a pain but well within a decent weaponsmith's capabilities. As a bonus this works for any hafted weapon, so they can do it to axes and hammers too.

Pike with a riveted langet

War hammer with langets (source)

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  • $\begingroup$ This sounds like a good idea. The issue I'm seeing is that those appear to be nails or screws securing the langet to the haft. If somebody tried to teleport with this, the screws would be left behind. Would it be possible to solder the screws after assembly so they fused into the langet metal, without damaging the wood with the heat? $\endgroup$ – Jason Clyde Jun 17 at 14:31
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    $\begingroup$ @JasonClyde one one side yes they could be forge welded to the langet, they will be fitted normally on the other side but that makes the rivest and the langets and the head all one piece. the rivets could even be brazed on the other side on the principle of the more connections the better. $\endgroup$ – John Jun 17 at 14:33
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    $\begingroup$ This is a wonderful answer. Extend the langets to the hand-hold positions and Jason's problem is solved. Kings with too much money on their hand could even inset the langets such that the handle was smooth all the way around. $\endgroup$ – JBH Jun 17 at 14:45
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    $\begingroup$ @JasonClyde you could always reverse the weapon before teleportation, so the dumb sticky-out bit is partially outside your aura, but the complex multipart bit is closest to your body... $\endgroup$ – Starfish Prime Jun 17 at 15:47
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    $\begingroup$ @Echox Most polearms are not that long it is rare for a polearm to be longer than 6-7ft and a 5.5 ft person will be able to synch a 6ft polearm thanks to having arms. Any kind of mechanical spring or joint is just begging for failure.the problem is not sything it is building a polearm out of a few materials as possible. $\endgroup$ – John Jun 18 at 19:31
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  • Break down the polearm in shorter cylinders. Think of bamboo cane sections.
  • To assemble the polearm, attach each cylinder to its neighbor with a suitable joint.
  • Run a wire from one end to the other, and tension it to ensure proper stability to the assembly.

With the above design you can have a polearm which is longer than the bearer height, and yet to charge it, just wrap the unmounted cylinders, joints and wire around the body.

During charging they will count as multiple, individual objects. During usage there will by physical continuity among the components. Moreover, for added security, one end of the wire can be make touching the handle, again in contact with the aura.

When it is mounted, part of it will be in touch with the bearer hand, thus within the aura.

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  • $\begingroup$ Damn, exactly what I was going to post. +1 $\endgroup$ – IT Alex Jun 17 at 14:20
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    $\begingroup$ So are you saying the wire is fused/soldered to the cylinders so that it all technically counts as one singular object? $\endgroup$ – Jason Clyde Jun 17 at 14:23
  • $\begingroup$ @JasonClyde,addressed in the edit to make it clear $\endgroup$ – L.Dutch Jun 17 at 14:26
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    $\begingroup$ this will however heavier and weaker than a normal polearm. $\endgroup$ – John Jun 17 at 14:34
  • $\begingroup$ Something akin to a Sansetsukon perhaps? en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Three-section_staff You could add sliding/thread collars to lock the staff out solid. In fact the wiki article points out that sansetsukon have been made that can lock the sections together by screw/twist lock.Not beyond the realms of possibility at that point to add the spearpoint. $\endgroup$ – Wenlocke Jun 18 at 11:00
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Multipart lances are a thing.

Collapsible lance

Collapsible lance

I think the images should be self-descriptive. Imprint on the parts, then assemble the whole. You can switch the tip for some blade of your liking.

Or make your aura bigger and enchant a single part pole weapon. Some mystical traditions on real Earth have aura enlargement training.

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This might be a little out of the box, so let me know if it breaks any other concepts.

What about syncing materials and then crafting with them?

I think that could actually be pretty cool if you're talking about syncing being a more personal experience. Although some items are small enough to sync post-creation, there may be others that must have their materials synced due to being too large.

You said that an aura extends 3 inches out, but I'm also going to assume that the whole item needs to be enveloped in order to sync properly. Or else, it would be just a matter of holding the item for long enough in the first place.

If you can sync materials before crafting them, you can make larger synced assemblies. Of course, that might take a lot more work, but adds a bit to the charm of the personalized aura sync, I think.

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    $\begingroup$ If this is acceptable, it can be extended in... interesting ways. Sync with a sapling as a youth, chop it down and build a magical siege weapon as an adult. Depends on how struct the definition of "warp" or "damage" are, I guess. $\endgroup$ – Starfish Prime Jun 17 at 15:07
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    $\begingroup$ Or feeding plants and animals with synced material to embue them with that magic. $\endgroup$ – user39504 Jun 17 at 16:00
  • $\begingroup$ The question may have changed since you wrote this answer, but this answer is now wrong as significant deformations will break the syncing. Creative, though! $\endgroup$ – Nic Hartley Jun 18 at 21:32
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It depends on the purpose of the polearm. Longer polearms are actually harder to use in one-on-one combat. Pretty much outside of 1.5 your body length and you might have difficulties with it outside of horseback or a unit formation.

For the purpose of magic, I think the condition would void most of the polearms, axes, hammers, bow and some of the wooden weapons like wooden staff with metal tips.

There are no realistic way to do it because even a full length polearm made with a thin tube of metal with wood underneath would require some form of riveting or screws to keep the heavy duty tip on the stick.

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