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Long Sarute On Kai Gunto


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#1 PNSSHOGUN

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Posted 19 December 2018 - 11:22 AM

Is anyone aware of why some silk Sarute on Kai Gunto were so long? I've noticed a few examples with these extended Sarute but can't rightly understand why they are so long, it places the tassel in a fairly awkward position. Could it be related to the long, thin silk retention cord sometimes found on Kai Gunto? As you can see in the picture it's nearly 3x the length of a normal silk Sarute.

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#2 Dave R

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Posted 19 December 2018 - 11:58 AM

 I think they are replacements for the original. The join is usually hidden within the kabuto-gane. Could be done within the service life of the sword, or later.


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#3 IJASWORDS

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Posted 19 December 2018 - 01:26 PM

Hi John, I agree with Dave, definitely a replacement in my humble opinion. 


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#4 Bruce Pennington

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Posted 19 December 2018 - 04:41 PM

The join is usually hidden within the kabuto-gane.


Dave, I've seen this with IJA gunto, but have never owned a Kai with the fabric sarute. Are they anchored inside the same way? If so, I agree with all the above comments. This long one is knotted. I doubt the factory assembly would have knotted a sarute like that.
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#5 PNSSHOGUN

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Posted 21 December 2018 - 04:05 AM

Makes sense, there is discoloring and signs of age consistent with the rest of the sword but considering the excellent condition it's all in that doesn't mean much. If Thomas or KAI-GUNTO is still active he might have an idea if it's a replacement or original.


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#6 PNSSHOGUN

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Posted 21 December 2018 - 09:16 AM

Two examples of similar cord Sarute tied in the same fashion:

13021koshirae.jpg 14925koshirae-2.jpg


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#7 PNSSHOGUN

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Posted 01 January 2019 - 12:33 AM

Another example, not the way it is tied.

w-kaigun-gunto170622-2.jpg

 


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#8 IJASWORDS

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Posted 01 January 2019 - 02:14 AM

Hi John, I still believe tied sarutes are replacements, even probably replaced/tied during war time as a repair. But not as originally issued. 

Of the dozens of original examples I have, Kai Gunto and Shin Gunto, the colour of the sarute cord is a close or even perfect match in colour to the handle wrap.  

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#9 Bruce Pennington

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Posted 01 January 2019 - 04:08 AM

Interesting. I didn’t even know there were more than one color!

#10 IJASWORDS

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Posted 01 January 2019 - 04:19 AM

Hey Bruce, four more of differing colors, but all matching handle wrap.

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#11 PNSSHOGUN

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Posted 11 January 2019 - 03:32 AM

Another example from Bills site & ebay listing:

IMG_2338.JPG IMG_2347.JPG s-l1600.jpg


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#12 Bruce Pennington

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Posted 11 January 2019 - 02:25 PM

Interesting that the one from Bill’s site has no same’ at all, but is black painted wood under the ito!

#13 ChrisW

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Posted 11 January 2019 - 11:09 PM

Is that black painted wood or some kind of hide/leather?


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#14 Bruce Pennington

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Posted 12 January 2019 - 12:33 AM

Is that black painted wood or some kind of hide/leather?


Chris, good eye! You're right, it's seems to be leather! How unique.

#15 Mister Gunto

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Posted 16 January 2019 - 10:01 PM

Here's a leather sarute that's obviously a field replacement on one of mine. Definately seems to be original though. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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#16 PNSSHOGUN

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Posted 18 January 2019 - 03:10 AM

Another from ebay:

s-l1600.jpg

 


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#17 PNSSHOGUN

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Posted 07 February 2019 - 11:05 AM

An example from uniquejapan: http://new.uniquejap...ngs/?com=Swords

 

ujwa023_double_koshirae3.jpg


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#18 Bruce Pennington

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Posted 07 February 2019 - 10:23 PM

John,

As you find more of these, it's beginning to have more of a feel that these are wartime original. Not a certainty, of course, but it's creating the possibility.

#19 Mister Gunto

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Posted 13 February 2019 - 04:28 AM

Using a soft fabric sarute makes sense from the point of view of the Officers who had to carry a sword around with them a lot during their daily duties. To me, the typical metal sarute would be prone to cause wear and tear on the tassel. (Ever notice how many original examples show a lot of little rips around the area where they'd have been knotted to the sarute? ) Since the tassel was an indicator of one's rank, having to walk around the unit with it all ragged looking wouldn't be considered very proper. And getting a replacement in the field probably wasn't cheap or easy.

 

Another advantage would be the user could adjust the knot to lengthen or shorten the tassel's hang to suit himself. Having it on the long side would also allow for it to be cut back and retied easily if it got frayed or worn. 


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#20 IJASWORDS

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Posted 13 February 2019 - 04:44 AM

Mister Gunto, all ranks and swords in the Navy had the same tassel, chocolate brown. My only concession that the long sarute was war time,  is that it was a replacement for a broken original during service. 


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#21 Mister Gunto

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Posted 13 February 2019 - 05:33 AM

No arguments there, Neil. I'm just speculating if having a long fabric sarute instead of a metal one could have been an option when the Officer originally purchased the sword? Its interesting that we see so many of the fabric sarutes in the same color as the handle wrap, on both Army and Navy swords. That makes me think they may have been put on when the sword was first assembled. If they were all replacments for metal sarutes broken while in use, I'd expect to see a lot more variance in the fabric colors. 


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#22 IJASWORDS

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Posted 13 February 2019 - 06:36 AM

OK, to average Joe collector, this thread looks like we are just chasing butterflies, so this is my last word on the subject (is that applause I hear?). And I agree totally with the color matching observation. Here are two, one of which is a Minatogawa. Both color match the Ito wrap. I make two final observations, firstly some of the examples sited here do not color match, and secondly, the Navy loves uniformity, so why is it that you see these so called long sarutes knotted every which way? Granny knots, reef knots, some sewn together and some just plain tied together. The Navy loves and prides itself on its knots, first thing a cadet learns.     

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#23 PNSSHOGUN

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Posted 13 February 2019 - 01:06 PM

Until hard evidence like WWII photos of officers with these tied Sarute or an original presentation Kai Gunto in a box unissued, replacement is the answer. It appears to be a unique Kai Gunto affair, has anyone seen this tied Sarute on Shin Gunto? To be honest it's a miracle cord Sarute on field used swords exist, even barely used swords have frayed and broken cord Sarute.


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#24 IJASWORDS

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Posted 13 February 2019 - 01:21 PM

A few exist in original condition.

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#25 Mister Gunto

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Posted 15 February 2019 - 12:32 AM

The seller of that Kai-Gunto in John's earlier post accepted my offer, and it arrived today. Takayama Forge made blade by Hattori Masahiro.(I think the seller made a post here last year to get the translation.)

 

All the koshirae, including the handle and scabbard, are numbered and matching (#19).  So it seems completly original. I took a couple photos of the cord sarute. It's a single piece, not joined inside the handle. The color matches the handle wrapping. 

 

One little detail I didn't notice until I had it in hand is that each of the cord ends are each tied off with a very small thread, probably to prevent fraying. It seems like rather delicate work. Again, it makes me wonder if at least some of these Naval cord sarutes were an option when originally purchasing the sword? 

 

Anyway, some pics...

 

 

 

 

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#26 Bruce Pennington

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Posted 17 February 2019 - 06:02 PM

Geez! I had one of these and didn't realize it until today as I was doing some work on this one! It's on a '43 Sukekuni, Seki stamped Kaigunto. The knot is very well tied with the ends secured inside the knot.

After seeing the differing methods of knot tieing, it makes me wonder if they are done in the field by the owners, or was there simply no set standard at the factories for tieing the knots?image3.jpeg
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#27 Mister Gunto

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Posted 17 February 2019 - 07:10 PM

The fact that the colors of the sarute and the handle wrapping so often match is what makes me think at least some of these were done by the people making the koshirae. I'm sure others were simply expiedent field replacements too. 

 

The more I look at Shin and Kai-Guntos, the more certain it seems to me that they were working around a general pattern, and not an absolute standard. (Unlike, for example, the Type 32 or Type 95 swords.) Blades vary greatly in length, sori, and hamon. Koshirae show a lot of minor differences and personalization. Some were sold through the offical Army/Navy Officers Clubs. Others through private companies. I'm guessing a lot of that had to do with the fact these were Officer's swords, and many of them were Ancestral or Family blades. Allowances in the offical patterns had to be made to accomodate these, and things just evolved from there. 


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#28 PNSSHOGUN

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Posted 08 March 2019 - 08:47 AM

Same long Sarute on another Kai Gunto by the same smith and most importantly with a surrender tag attached to this long sarute:

s-l500k.jpg s-l500k2.jpg


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#29 Dave R

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Posted 08 March 2019 - 12:40 PM

The fact that the colors of the sarute and the handle wrapping so often match is what makes me think at least some of these were done by the people making the koshirae. I'm sure others were simply expiedent field replacements too. 

 

The more I look at Shin and Kai-Guntos, the more certain it seems to me that they were working around a general pattern, and not an absolute standard. (Unlike, for example, the Type 32 or Type 95 swords.) Blades vary greatly in length, sori, and hamon. Koshirae show a lot of minor differences and personalization. Some were sold through the offical Army/Navy Officers Clubs. Others through private companies. I'm guessing a lot of that had to do with the fact these were Officer's swords, and many of them were Ancestral or Family blades. Allowances in the offical patterns had to be made to accomodate these, and things just evolved from there. 

 

 They were also dealing with a massive expansion of the Military, more men, more officers, more equipment in general. Throw in the extension of sword wearing to Gunzoku, and damn near anyone with any authority at all,and they just couldn't keep up with  demand!


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