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Advice Sought on Nihonto


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#1 walrusprincess

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Posted 08 October 2019 - 08:47 PM

Dear All,

 

I'm new to this community and an absolute novice where collecting nihonto is concerned (I'm a general collector Japanese antiques, but have never ventured into this area before).  In any case, I'm eyeing an antique katana on sale in the United Kingdom, and I'd be immensely grateful if the experts of the forum could let me know what they think, based on the visual evidence.  I only know that it's 25 and 1/4 inches long, and is supposedly over a century old.  Thank you in advance for all your help!

 

Best wishes,

P

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#2 Brian

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Posted 08 October 2019 - 09:01 PM

At first glance there is nothing there worth more than about 200-300 GBP. Age is irrelevant when it comes to Nihonto in that don't let old equal desirable.
That package is pretty average and in need of restoration that would cost far more than the end result.
 


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#3 SAS

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Posted 08 October 2019 - 09:01 PM

You don't say the price, but it is not in polish, and does not look to be any kind of treasure.....You would perhaps be better off buying from a trusted member here; check the sales section.


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#4 walrusprincess

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Posted 08 October 2019 - 09:11 PM

Thank you for your advice, friends!  I didn't expect it to be of much value, and I was (I confess) mainly attracted by the relatively low cost,  around 170 GBP.  If I can bargain it down even lower, this might still be an interesting investment, however, don't you think?



#5 Geraint

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Posted 08 October 2019 - 09:15 PM

Dear Pat.

 

 

The advice is good, do not buy this at any price, owning it will  upset you as you grow to know more about these wondrous things.  There are many links on the tool bar at the top of the page that will allow you to see what is possible and why we are giving you this advice but for a start try here, https://www.aoijapan.com/   I would also recommend that you join the Token Society of Great Britain, one of the meetings will teach you a great deal and hopefully really get you interested.

 

You are a fair way from Cornwall but if you ever get down this far get in touch, you'd be welcome to look at some stuff if you are interested.

 

All the best.


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Geraint

#6 SAS

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Posted 09 October 2019 - 12:51 AM

I do not think nihonto are an investment other than in time and money which rarely yields a good financial return, as many sell at less than their cost! :doh: Even so, we love them, but there are better ones to be had than the one you show, even at modest cost.


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#7 Stephen

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Posted 09 October 2019 - 01:10 AM

Save your money...before you know it you'll be able to buy much better.
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#8 Ed

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Posted 09 October 2019 - 02:26 AM

The sword in question is not an investment at any price, unless you want to invest in junk.  Buy ten of these at 170 GBP over the next few years and the end result will still be a collection of junk.  Save your money and buy something decent.


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#9 Ken-Hawaii

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Posted 09 October 2019 - 03:39 AM

Ed doesn't mention it, but he sells some real treasures, & I heartily recommend that you take a look at his web-site.

 

BTW, do we address you as "princess" or "P"? That's why Brian has a rule to list at least your first name on all posts.

 

Welcome to  the forum.


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#10 ChrisW

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Posted 09 October 2019 - 04:04 AM

I, for one, find it hilarious that'd we'd refer to anyone as "princess."


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#11 16k

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Posted 09 October 2019 - 07:15 AM

Princess P? :)

I second my fellow collectors. Too much work to do on that one, unless your only purpose is to say “I have a Japanese sword”.

I also recommend Ed! Great items, reasonably priced and easy to deal with!
Jean-Pierre, but everybody calls me JP

#12 paulb

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Posted 09 October 2019 - 10:07 AM

P

Following up on Geraints mail can I recommend before you jump in and buy something you at least look at the Token Society of Great Britains website www.to-ken.uk

or even better join one of their meetings either the regular London meetings or one of the regional ones. There are many there who would be happy to help you.

Feel free to contact me via pm and I would be happy to point you towards some people who might help.

regards

Paul


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#13 walrusprincess

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Posted 09 October 2019 - 11:49 AM

I cannot thank all of you enough for this incredibly helpful (and given my ignorance, generously patient!) advice.  I certainly won't purchase that sword, in any case.  As I mentioned before, I'm a collector of Japanese antiques (mostly ceramics, fine arts, lacquerware, and fabrics) and more or less the same "rules" of connoisseurship apply in those areas, with the essential difference that good finds might still be made for exceptionally low prices, while it seems that one cannot purchase a decent nihonto for less than a (relatively) steep fee...   As recommended, I'll also join the Token Society of Great Britain.    

 

And by the way, my name is Pat - sorry for not specifying!  No need for any titles :) 



#14 walrusprincess

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Posted 09 October 2019 - 12:05 PM

I've just been admiring Ed's website - what a fantastic selection.  My taste has been improved simply by looking at what you sell!



#15 walrusprincess

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Posted 09 October 2019 - 12:06 PM

Would you recommend any sellers of a similar calibre based in the United Kingdom?



#16 Shugyosha

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Posted 09 October 2019 - 12:32 PM

Ian Chapman normally has some nice stuff and is excellent to deal with:

 

www.nihonto.uk

www.nihonto.org.uk


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Best regards, John 

Please excuse my spelling mistakes, brevity and ignorance.


#17 Ian

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Posted 09 October 2019 - 12:38 PM

I will no longer put swords on my website as I strongly believe that a hands on is the way forward. IMHO 


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#18 Ed

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Posted 09 October 2019 - 11:26 PM

Pat, Thank you for the kind words.  Looking at various websites can help you develop an eye for quality, and there are sites which offer swords of much higher quality than my own.

 

Nothing beats hands-on and I agree with Ian's approach in theory.  However, the practicality of that approach IMHO is dismal at best. Unless you live in close proximity to any given dealer or collector, the hands-on only approach will eliminate 99.9% of potential buyers. 

 

I know Ian has some nice swords, so if you are able, I would recommend you contact him and discuss setting up a meeting. 


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Ed M.
http://yakiba.com/   For questions, please DO NOT contact me via PM.   If you have a question, or interest in an item, please contact me via the website: Yakiba.com@gmail.com

 

My comments are based on my own personal opinions and experiences and are not intended to influence others nor evoke argument or reprisal. 和





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