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Question about polish on mune/kissaki

wakizashi katana polishing

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#1 Jason N

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Posted 04 May 2019 - 01:45 PM



Pictured are two Nihonto.  As you can see, the polish on the mune at the kissaki has a "dull" or frosted finish that runs about 5 1/2 cm on the mune from the tip of the kissaki towards the mune-machi. What, if any, purpose does this have?  The only thing I've heard is that this type of polish is for Tameshigiri to give a visual reference to be at the proper distance to the target.


Any other ideas?

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#2 Geraint


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Posted 04 May 2019 - 02:23 PM

Dear Jason.


The area you show is supposed to be the finish to the kaeri of the boshi.  The end of the frosted surface coincides with the point where the kaeri runs into the mune.  


All the best.


#3 shibeni


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Posted 04 May 2019 - 02:42 PM

This is common, some Togishi make streight lines in that frosted parts too.
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#4 Grey Doffin

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Posted 04 May 2019 - 03:38 PM

To clarify a bit.  The rest of the mune is burnished with a hard steel needle during polish, giving it a gloss finish.  The area you refer to is left unburnished so the kaeri (return) of the boshi can be seen; it would be invisible under the burnish otherwise.


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#5 Jason N

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Posted 04 May 2019 - 04:18 PM

Thanks for the replies. I’m glad to know this is normal, and not an anomaly.


#6 Jason N

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Posted 04 May 2019 - 05:14 PM

Another interesting theory I have heard is that this is done to assist in resheathing of the sword to provide a tactile feedback when you are about to reach the tip of the kissaki against the back of your hand. Personally, the back of my hand is not sensitive enough to feel the difference between the change in finish, but I don’t have samurai senses.


#7 Katsujinken


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Posted 04 May 2019 - 05:41 PM

Grey is correct. The “theories” are McDojo hogwash. :-)
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