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My New Nihonto With Pics

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#31 doomsdaymachine

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Posted 25 October 2015 - 12:17 PM

there are a couple of good polishers in southern california. i'm sure one of them would look at it for you.


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#32 SAS

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Posted 25 October 2015 - 05:42 PM

Some people really have a case of spring butt, all ready to judge something not in hand, and maybe not even qualified to judge. You all do know that Japanese polishers use nitric or other acid when called for, right? I do not know if that is what is visible here, it is not in hand. Ferric chloride acts differently and tends to darken steel, not whiten. I have used it a lot on cable damascus blades. The o kissaki looks a bit strange on the sugata of that blade, but perhaps it is a kantei point for the unknown smith. It has the look of a newer blade trying to look older, maybe shinshinto or later, to me. The polish (taking into consideration of lighting issues in the photo) doesn't look bad to me, other than the scuffs near the habaki. I don't necessarily recommend a polish, but the suggestion to have a good polisher look at it is a good one.


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#33 dig1982

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Posted 25 October 2015 - 05:52 PM

I don't know that polisher using acid...
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#34 Brian

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Posted 25 October 2015 - 06:33 PM

They use very tiny amounts of it, and neutralize it followed by various grades of stones.

Nothing like when amateurs use it.....not even close.


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#35 Freakdaddy70

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Posted 25 October 2015 - 07:05 PM

Good morning everyone, I will take some photos today with natural light, to dispel the acid question. I should get those posted this afternoon, if it doesn't rain.

 

Adam 


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#36 Freakdaddy70

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Posted 25 October 2015 - 07:09 PM

there are a couple of good polishers in southern california. i'm sure one of them would look at it for you.

I was planning on going to a few nihonto clubs, this next month, and talk with a few people. I've been extremely hesitant to go to just any polisher, and would like to get recommendations before trusting someone. 

 

Adam


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#37 Stephen

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Posted 25 October 2015 - 07:23 PM

Woody Hall works for Bob Benson

Ted Tenold at Legacy swords. think hes booked for some time

Jimmy in SF link in  restoration links above banner


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#38 dig1982

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Posted 25 October 2015 - 07:31 PM

I never never heard about professional polisher using acid...neither tiny amounts...
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#39 SAS

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Posted 25 October 2015 - 07:56 PM

page 136, The Art of Japanese Sword Polishing, Setsuo Takaiwa, Yoshindo Yoshihara, leon and Hiroko Kapp.

Also, regarding the appearance of the jigane, it will be affected by the grade of jizuya stone used.


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#40 dig1982

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Posted 25 October 2015 - 08:13 PM

I don't have this book, but i know and have some friend professional polisher and they don't use any type of acid...
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#41 paulb

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Posted 25 October 2015 - 08:25 PM

I have read or heard of Smiths using many different forms of "chemical" treatment to enhance or modify the final look of the sword. Some of those working in the 60s and 70s were quite open about it offering to create the finsih the owner wanted. As with all crafts there are doubtless many techniques which most of us are unfamiliar with. I am also sure that whetever a fully trained Japanese polisher did chemically is a world away from the horror stories which appeared in the UK in the 80s and 90s some of which undoubtedly did considerable damage.

The key is whatever technique was used it was done by someone who knew what they were doing, did nothing that resulted in long term damage and enhanced the beauty of the blade. If these criteria were met then I am not sure we should get too precious about it.


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#42 dig1982

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Posted 25 October 2015 - 09:05 PM

Using acid is not a form of conservative polish...and a polish with acid add nothing to the blade than a polish with only stones, it is only more simple...
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#43 SAS

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Posted 25 October 2015 - 09:28 PM

edit: never mind.


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#44 paulb

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Posted 25 October 2015 - 10:01 PM

Deigo

I did not use the term acid delibrately. Although nitric acid has been used for centuries to bring out weld patterns in watered blades it was also responsible for the damage I mentioned in the 80s. However using other materials than stones to subtly modify the colour of the finished blade is also described on a number of articles/books on the subject.

Do not misunderstand me, I am as about as conservative and cautious as it gets when it comes to any form of restoration, conservation etc. All I am saying is we shouldnt view th world through simplistic "rose tinted" spectacles believing that atisans never use such treatments when  they feel it will enhance what they are doing.



#45 Freakdaddy70

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Posted 26 October 2015 - 03:08 AM

Well here are the new pics I took today, outside. These are as close to natural light as you can get. The blade is like water, and takes on the color of it's surroundings. I've been taking all photos with my phone, and maybe this adds to the confusions. I don't know, The first photos I took, looked to me to be close to what the pros take, minus the professional touches. In that they show off the same types of hada, and hamon reflections that mine did. I am confused as to the questions of acid, and fake, and sandpapering the hamon, when the same polishers that some of you recommended have the same effects on there blades? I know there is a lot of subtleness on these things, but I was really just looking for education on reading a sword. Oh well....

Thanks for the recommendations on the polishers in my area, I will look them up, and see if it makes sense for me to have this blade polished.

Adam 

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#46 SAS

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Posted 26 October 2015 - 04:06 AM

Doesn't look like it needs a polish to me, it looks to be a nice sword.


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#47 Caleb the Bipolub

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Posted 26 October 2015 - 01:12 PM

(I am a noob) But I call shinto and not shin-shinto. IMHO quite obvious mixing of different steels.  I know they do that in shinshinto too (?) but my hunch...shinto.  It seems that often jihada follows this pattern: white streaks, surrounded by dark streaks, then medium background...NOT white streaks, medium background then dark streaks.  During the folds the billet absorbs extra carbon from the ash, simultaneously preventing oxidation and also making steel in general more "runny" e.g. cast iron thus easier to weld.  But the weld is seldom ever complete i.e. you can glue two boards together with only 50% of their surface areas glued and they will still stick together despite bending/stresses/compression etc.  The incomplete welds show up as streaks and, because it has "less stuff", the polishing process turns them into valleys of matte white.  Once ji-to/jizuya makes everything ELSE dark, the white streaks are more visible.  Because the white streaks are surrounded by higher carbon, nie (may) form...

 

One shinto i had, had a "layer pattern" that looks EXACTLY like this...but, in alternating bands of light and dark, there was actually dark nie between them...and some white streaks.  This sword, however, i'm betting it won't even with polish.  In fact I remember my friend said this is called hada-mono i.e. "damascus pattern" and is not a good thing, but that was produced during other times not Shinto.

 

Regardless, the kissaki seems to be reshaped from chu to exaggerated (non-historical except Kiyomaro?) O-kissaki to simultaneously look cool and rare AND mask the minimal yakiba that is left at the kissaki-point terminus (sorry i know it's called something else...sorry.  Had the kissaki been chu/ko, the minimalness of it would be more obvious.  But by reshaping it into exaggerated O, the profile would appear ~streamlined~ "with" the boshi/hamon, and the gradation from minimal-nothingness to the rest of the blade that actually has more yakiba left...this gradation would be more gradual as there would be more nagasa to spread it.  Minimal yakiba left at the point terminus, i would imagine, is something many of us see very often and is not really that shameful at all...kissaki's break.  A LOT.

 

I think it's possible that, instead of FeCl, STRAIGHT Hcl may have been used to whiten ONLY the hamon.  Synthetics make a burnishing "scraping cut"; naturals make a matte "crushing" cut.  The jihada was NOT properly brought out with the crushing cut to work harden the jie nie so that eventually they will resist becoming matte even with the softest stones.  If etching is done at this point it would look, i'd imagine, quite ugly even despite the hada-mono construction.  That, IMHO, is this polish's saving grace: if the jihada was indeed etched and i am wrong, at least it doesn't make it look even MORE like China-to (as many here noted) because you'd have etching (which makes jihada look like damascus) ON TOP of hada-mono.

 

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#48 Brian

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Posted 26 October 2015 - 03:38 PM

To me, pic 1 shows an etched blade, that is then brought back a bit with abrasives. Just like most amateurs and hybrid polishers do. Seen it many times here.

But that isn't to say the blade it ruined. It is not ideal, but think the blade is still ok and can be appreciated, just needs a better state of polish. Hard to date it, since the hada looks nothing like it should normally. It's going to be shinto or shinshinto. Best to get it to someone in hand, maybe a polisher can open a better window?

It's not fake, it's not ruined, and to the best of our knowledge, has no fatal flaws. So study it, and hope you get some enjoyment out of it. :)


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#49 Stephen

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Posted 26 October 2015 - 03:43 PM

With Steve on this, doesn't  need a polish imho, kissaki looks fine, type of blade construction that id have to look up. Good blade


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#50 gauze3539

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Posted 26 October 2015 - 07:56 PM

This is definately not a Chinese. By just looking at the nakago, it has been used for much of its own purpose at battles or duals and the time has just passed away along with it. That alone indicates it's genuine Japanese sword. Modern Chinese made should be impossible to produce such effect on nakago by intention. The sugata seems to me is a shinto but frankly the nakago color looks like late shinshinto

Jason C

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#51 gauze3539

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Posted 26 October 2015 - 08:29 PM

I really just want to learn, and am curious to know if I'm on the right track.


Adam. I am Jason and I am also a begniner being about 3 years now. For you, it's absolutely the time to invest books. I beleive you have been building for your own interest and knowledges thru internet but that is very limted and the idea would be clustered. With books and swords on your hands, you are now finally be ready to be a Japanese sword student. As of now, I see myself it's going to be a really the long way to go to be good level of understanding the whole of it. However, without books, it is basically impossible to go further. I am sure you can get good books list around here and there are links on this forum.

Jason


#52 Kronos

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Posted 27 October 2015 - 02:50 AM

I must of missed this thread the first time around. Japanese, Edo or perhaps even later, terrible amateur polish plus recent abuse. I really don't understand the calls for chinese. this is clearly infinitely better than anything that has ever come out of china and even at the very worst would be a modern western made blade by a proper swordsmith (it is not). I am quite disappointed in the forum for the bad calls.

 

It's either keicho shinto or Bakumatsu/early meiji imho with the possibility of Gendaito in this style. Measurements etc and good photo's would be needed to say anything more.


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#53 Kronos

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Posted 27 October 2015 - 02:55 AM

I'd like a decent picture of the nakago if possible to be sure, it looks like it's been cleaned or at least there's something iffy with it.


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#54 cuttingedge59

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Posted 27 October 2015 - 06:06 AM

To me, pic 1 shows an etched blade, that is then brought back a bit with abrasives. Just like most amateurs and hybrid polishers do. Seen it many times here.

But that isn't to say the blade it ruined. It is not ideal, but think the blade is still ok and can be appreciated, just needs a better state of polish. Hard to date it, since the hada looks nothing like it should normally. It's going to be shinto or shinshinto. Best to get it to someone in hand, maybe a polisher can open a better window?

It's not fake, it's not ruined, and to the best of our knowledge, has no fatal flaws. So study it, and hope you get some enjoyment out of it. :)

 

Hi ,

Just a thought ,  as you live in southern California I do wonder if this is one of the items that Eric Roush has had a go at.

Seems very similar to other examples of his workmanship .  He resides in Santa cruz and is one polisher you do need to avoid locally.

Cheers

Chris NZ



#55 Freakdaddy70

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Posted 27 October 2015 - 06:19 AM

So here is some more pics with ruler in inches to show more detail of the nakago. Could this be an older blade that was cut down? To me the nakago isn't as old looking, but the blade has a pretty deep sori. Just another thought as to the concern of the weird looking nakago that folks see. I also am adding some pics of my wak for comparison. I believe the mei says the name of the smith as Fujiwara Yoshikuni Shimo, with a date of Meireki (1655-1657). Did I translate this correctly? There is more written below the date, but I can't make it out.

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#56 Freakdaddy70

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Posted 27 October 2015 - 06:23 AM

Hi ,

Just a thought ,  as you live in southern California I do wonder if this is one of the items that Eric Roush has had a go at.

Seems very similar to other examples of his workmanship .  He resides in Santa cruz and is one polisher you do need to avoid locally.

Cheers

Chris NZ

No Chris, the name doesn't ring any bells, and Santa Cruz is pretty far north of here.

 

Adam


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#57 gauze3539

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Posted 27 October 2015 - 09:17 PM

Adam.

The nakago shape is off as if a long tachi has been cut down to that and he tried to make up the nakago and jiri. It seem kawagane is still one nakago so makes nakago look fatty. Just my 2 cents. :)

Jason


#58 Schmoopy

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Posted 30 October 2015 - 10:44 PM

It looks like a genuine sword to me, but there's been some pretty heavy modification to the kissaki.

There seems to be no hamon on the tip, leading me to believe the original tip must have been completely reshaped.

The kissaki also doesn't seem to have that crisp geometry expected in a Japanese sword.

 

I see a lot of recommendations for restoring it, but I think the cost outweighs the benefit.

I'd probably just appreciate it for what it is. The condition and polishing aren't perfect, but it's okay.


Best Wishes,

Jason W.


#59 nagamaki - Franco

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Posted 31 October 2015 - 12:09 AM

 first impression .... seems to have an Uda-ish flavor to it.


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#60 Freakdaddy70

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Posted 31 October 2015 - 01:04 AM

 first impression .... seems to have an Uda-ish flavor to it.

Not knowing enough on uda-ish flavors, but it does share some of the characters of that style.


Adam






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