Instead of only smithing weapons to exquisite, how I can smith better weapons? I have tried to use the weapon smithing skills constantly but I just can't figure it out.

  • sorry for any misspelled or any misused grammar.
    – Dovahkiin
    Mar 23, 2015 at 19:11
  • I also use xbox360.
    – Dovahkiin
    Mar 23, 2015 at 19:12
  • 1
    How high is your smithing skill?
    – troylatroy
    Mar 23, 2015 at 19:16
  • 1
    See the chart on this answer: gaming.stackexchange.com/a/35725/9192 Note: the chart lists minimum improvement amounts - higher skill always gives more improvement (even above the listed values).
    – Amy B
    Mar 24, 2015 at 10:12

2 Answers 2


Improving Weapons/Armor in Skyrim is a function of 2 major factors:

  • Your total skill level in smithing. (Base skill as modified by Fortify Smithing Enchantments and Potions.) Stash away the best Smithing Enchant you find for each relevant armor slot. You can go beyond Exquisite to Flawless with a skill total of 100.
  • Having the Smithing perk that corresponds to the equipment you're trying to improve. With the correct perk, you can go beyond Exquisite to Flawless with a skill total of only 57.

Smithing perks will almost halve the skill required for each level of improvement you make on your items, so this can be a rather big deal. In general with the Steel Smithing perk and a level appropriate Smithing skill, you will often be able to improve Skyforged Steel weapons to be better than any weapon for which you don't have the related perk and with only a steel ingot. With 3 perks & a Smithing total of 100 you can reach the Armor Cap with Steel Plate. With 1 perk & a total of 116 you can Cap your armor with just Steel. Doing the same with light armors is also possible with Dragonscale (5 perks, 100 Smithing), or even Elven (2 perks & 144 Smithing).

With the expansion, the best weapons in the game are Dragonbone.

You'll notice from the last two paragraphs that the left side of the Smithing tree is very attractive no matter what armor type you prefer. Though there is a Return-the-Lexicon quest that starts in Riften that not only speeds your Smithing XP gains but also makes Dwarven armor (and it's related perk) remarkably attractive. In fact, with Ancient Knowledge Dwarven armor will beat out Ebony armor and be trivially behind Dragonplate Armor. Given how easy it is to reach the armor cap, you should probably be choosing your Smithing perks based on your intended weapon choice.

FWIW: I like to raise my base skill by making jewelery using Gems and Transmuted Iron Ore. The skill gain per iron ore is much better than iron daggers, boosts your Alteration skill, and this jewelery can then later be used to grind Enchanting. (for example "Fortify Smithing" is an obvious choice, though for both sell price and XP gain, Waterbreathing (or Muffle for shoes) is a high value petty enchant and Fortify Sneak maximizes your return on grand souls. I generally consider all intermediate souls to be weapon fuel..)


In order to make weapons and armor top quality (which is legendary) you have to get your smithing level to 100 at the skill tree and unlock every perk that could be unlocked (Steel, Elven, Dwarven, Plated and Scaled, Ebony, Glass, Daedric, Dragonplate, and the enchantment one in the middle). I recommend you to get a lot of iron and leather to make iron daggers until your smithing skill is level 100. Then you can make your weapons and armor legendary.

  • First of all welcome to Arqade! When you make a question or answer please do not use capitalization on every letter. It is unnecessary and makes it harder to read. Don't do it next time. Mar 24, 2015 at 9:46
  • Spending perks in the entire smithing tree is a tragic waste of perks unless you're playing without either of the Dawnguard or Dragonborn expansions and want to use light armor throughout the game and want Daedric weapons. Armor Cap is achievable very low in the tree for both armor types. Best weapons in the game are either Daedric (without Dawnguard) or Dragonbone (with Dawnguard), which forces those without Dawnguard to go up the right side.
    – tjd
    Mar 24, 2015 at 20:42
  • Going the right side is by no means "forced". Vanilla Skyrim can make max defense armor with anything. It's just a matter of perks and how you want to do it. Using blacksmith potions, even store bought potions, will increase your armor by a significant amount.
    – Nelson
    Mar 29, 2015 at 8:02
  • @Nelson That last sentence was about Weapons.
    – tjd
    Jun 19, 2015 at 18:42

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