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Modern Nihonto Or Fake?


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#31 BenVK

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Posted 25 June 2017 - 05:37 PM

The thread below is very relevant to this discussion and opened my eyes as to what really goes on in Japan..

 

http://www.militaria...ining-gendaito/


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#32 NihontoNewbie

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Posted 28 June 2017 - 04:57 PM

Boy you guys good... I guess it's a Kaneie made piece. Nosyudo does supply the fittings and ito. It is made from tamahagane which is water quenched. I guess the katana went for over $3200 new so I didn't do to bad I guess. It's Kaneie's higher end piece. Thanks for all the help guys. I have a couple true nihonto on the way. I am still overall very pleased with my purchase and I won't feel bad actually using the sword. You have to be a practioner to appreciate the Kaneie's feel. I still wish it was a true Japanese made piece, but I can live with my purchase because it was a great learning experience.
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#33 SAS

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Posted 28 June 2017 - 10:39 PM

It is worth noting that early smiths in Japan were Chinese and Korean.....


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#34 Adversary

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Posted 06 July 2017 - 11:21 AM

I'm curious. Reading this, and the linked thread (and others like it), whats to stop a Japanese Smith, say one of these who was having trouble making ends meet, or really... any Japanese smith for any reason, from moving off the island and producing his own blades elsewhere? Perhaps not worth it to specifically up and move to do this, but do none of these smiths ever emigrate? If someone did that, they could skirt the whole certain amount of blades per year rule, and do what they want, otherwise within tradition and with a legit signature. Would this still be considered true nihonto?

 

If a Chinese smith, otherwise instructed by a Japanese one, and doing things entirely within tradition, cannot technically create 'nihonto', then could an ex-patriot Japanese smith still call his nihonto? Has this ever been encountered?


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#35 Jean

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Posted 06 July 2017 - 11:45 AM

Remains the Tamahagane problem ...:)
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#36 vajo

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Posted 06 July 2017 - 12:18 PM

There are some guys around the world they forge traditonell katana. There are some guys around the world they make Tosogu.
If you want a Japanese sword it must be forged in Japan from a Japanese swordsmith. In other ways it is not Japanese.

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#37 NihontoNewbie

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Posted 06 July 2017 - 02:53 PM

Nosyudo actually sent smiths to China to start producing swords. Nosyudo actually emailed me about what happened after I inquired about my tamahagane Chinese made katana. They ran into issues with their partners in he US and had a legal fight. They were making shinkens there and actually sold a few in the states through the swordstore.

The Chinese have "tamahagane"... their black sands are similar if not identical to Japan's. I know I know, some don't consider it tamahagane unless it comes out of Japan. If it has the same composition as Japanese made steel and the smelting is done right isn't it the same type of steel? I don't know... I guess there are purest out there which I understand.

You can also buy true raw Japanese made tamahagane from multiple sources online. There are probably a few Chinese or Korean smiths that source Japanese tamahagane.

https://www.dictum.c...gane-750-1000-g


Chinese and Korean smiths both use "tamahagane". I really think some people are under the impression impression that Chinese smiths make inferior products, nothing could be further from the truth.
Erick L. AF&AM

Every night and every morn into misery some are born. Every morn and every night some are born to sweet delight... Some are born to sweet delight and some are born to endless night.

#38 Jussi Ekholm

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Posted 06 July 2017 - 03:16 PM

Usagiya offers an easy way to get tamahagane from NBTHK tatara: http://www.ksky.ne.j...99/others1.html

 

As for traditionally trained Japanese smiths in foreign countries, the latest issue of JSSUS just happened to have an outstanding article by W.B. Tanner about Japanese smiths in Brazil. :clap:

 

Back in the day it was easier as Japanese people made Japanese swords, Chinese people made Chinese swords, Europeans made European swords etc. Now that swords are not needed any longer, smiths have information about various cultures, information is exchanged all over the world so things are changing.


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#39 Adversary

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Posted 06 July 2017 - 03:19 PM

I really think some people are under the impression impression that Chinese smiths make inferior products, nothing could be further from the truth.

 

 

I hear this all the time from other industries, and it gets annoying, especially in the blindly flag-waving US automotive industry, where many of the aftermarket companies have farmed everything out to China to save money. The thing is... the Chinese will make whatever they are paid to make. There are staggeringly talented/skilled craftsmen in China. But some guy from California paying him $300 to build a sword is not going to get that level. People (not saying people here) dont seem to understand that the poor quality argument concerning Chinese goods has nothing to do with skill, but everything to do with people here wanting to make an easy buck. The Chinese make crap because we want a $3000 sword/set of rims/cylinder heads, but we only pay them $200 to built it...

 

I saw a Chinese smith making katana that were pushing the $8K mark, maybe more. Forget the name. In a pure blind comparison... leaving all sentimentality and bias out of it, I wonder how that guy's swords would stack up against a modern nihonto maker who's stuff sells around the same range.


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#40 seanyx11

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Posted 08 July 2017 - 07:00 PM

This is such a good question about the Japanese smiths emigrating and making traditionally made swords somewhere other than Japan.  And conversely, Chinese smith trained by Japanese smith but making them in Japan.  I know that for most Nihonto collectors if its not made in Japan under their strict codes and traditions, its not a true nihonto.  If a Japanese smith in say, Hawaii, has access to real Japanese black sand and makes his own tamahagane in a tatara, or just is able to obtain already made true Japanese tamahagane, and has been trained in the traditional ways, forges blades in the traditional ways.  Would this not be every bit equal to one forged of the exact same materials in the exact same ways, but in Japan?  Obviously, it wouldn't be recognized by any organizations, like NBTHK or NTHK as true nihonto, so it wouldn't be papered, but all things being equal, it is still a Japanese made sword no?

 

I'm sure this topic has been beaten to death over the years, but its interesting to think about these types of things.  I for one, like to collect good looking swords regardless of where it was made, but I also obviously appreciate and admire the traditional authentically made nihonto as well.  Very interesting topic here, good stuff.


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#41 seattle1

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Posted 08 July 2017 - 11:33 PM

Hello:

 It would not be a "Japanese sword" in the sense that it could not be legally entered into Japan.

 Arnold F.



#42 Ed Harbulak

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Posted 09 July 2017 - 12:53 AM

In the book published by the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston entitled "Japanese Master Swordsmiths: The Gassan Tradition" is a photograph taken in I presume about 1989. The photograph shows Gassan Sadaichi and three apprentices forging a sword at the museum in celebration of the opening of the New Asiatic Wing. Gassan Sadaichi was designated a living national treasure so definitely a Japanese sword smith, yet he was forging a sword in Boston. I'd certainly think he forged a true nihonto even though he did it in Boston rather than Japan. Did he take the blade back to Japan when he returned home, or might he have left it with the Museum? I wonder if the blade they forged was sent back to Japan to be polished. I rather doubt that the authorities in Japan would prevent a blade signed Gassan Sadaichi from entering the country. But, it's an interesting question to which I don't have the answer. Does anyone know where that blade is today?


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#43 SwordGuyJoe

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Posted 09 July 2017 - 08:35 PM

There were at least a couple blades forged by Yoshihara Yoshindo in Texas. I would think it would be legal to import those to Japan, but I'm honestly not sure. It would take some research on the part of the registration group, to see if these swords would have exceeded Yoshindo's quota for that year and that month, thus being illegal and should be refused entry. If I were a betting man - and I'm not - I'd suspect they would clear import, if only for the name on the blade being a big name in the sword world. But who knows?

#44 Stephen

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Posted 09 July 2017 - 08:58 PM

Didnt one of the Gassan kids also forge one in boston? i dont have the book anymore


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#45 SAS

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Posted 09 July 2017 - 10:37 PM

I think we discussed this before, regarding Japanese smiths forging blades in the US and other countries....I seem to recall one of the names mentioned having a regular forge in the northwest US for a time.


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