So now we come to metals, and of course I'd like to try some different things. Sadly, I appearantly didn't pay enough attention in chemistry, and lack practical knowledge so here goes.
1. Brass- I know it is made from a small percentage of zinc mixed with copper. Is it harder than bronze (copper and tin)? Is it harder to cast/forge/work than bronze?
2. Iron - How hard is Iron compared to brass? How hard is iron compared to steel?
3. Other combinations - Are there other alloys that we today have discovered that the ancient people missed, but COULD have been discovered if they had though to combine the correct metals? I've read that Nickel and Phosphorus could make Brass or bronze stronger, but could this be done in a dark ages forge? What would this new allow be called and how would it's strength compare to steel?