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Showing content with the highest reputation since 08/17/2021 in Posts

  1. Hey Fellas- I finally finished my sword display and study space. Thought you might enjoy taking a peek into my little world. The swords displayed on the table usually live in the the bedroom/Livingroom, but I rotate them out in the display case from time to time. In total, I have acquired 18 pieces in 3 years of active collecting, 6 of them are "mystery nihonto" the rest are papered. I think that my next step should be to get a professional appraisal of the whole lot for insurance purposes. any suggestions for how to go about this? Thanks for helping me get this far! -- JT
    20 points
  2. Good morning all, and yes it is a good morning. A couple weeks ago I posted my concerns about a recent Tanto purchase being stolen while in the care of the USPS. Well it arrived yesterday safe and sound. I want to thank all of you here that responded with their support. I also would like to thank the seller Volker from Germany for the great transaction, the extraordinary packing and the follow up with me and DHL. Let me say to others that may end up in the same situation, Don’t Give Up, Stay On The Shipper, Don’t Except that they Can’t Find Your package and close your case. I filed 5 claims on this package with the USPS. I had the claims expedited two times. During all of this the USPS sent me Two emails stating that they were sorry but my package was untraceable and lost. I then reopened my claims and made two calls to Consumers Affairs and filed claims with them. During this time Volker was also in touch with DHL. I believe that if we didn’t stay on the USPS and had accepted that they Couldn’t Find It I would have never received it. I still believe in being Pro Active in cases like this, when something doesn’t look right or feel right, get on it right away. If you feel it may be missing post pictures here so that all the good people can be on the look out for it if it should surface and most of all DO NOT EXCEPT THE SHORT ANSWERS THAT IT IS JUST LOST. Stay on it and push it. Again thank you all for your support, thank you Volker for the sale and all your help. I am Now the Proud New Caretaker of a beautiful blade that has finally found its way to its new home. MikeR
    16 points
  3. Hi, The carving on the Tsuba is a famous maxim/Proverbs of TAKEDA Shingen. pic #1: 人は城、人は石垣、人は堀、 (Hito wa shiro,hito wa ishigaki,hito wa hori, ) People are castles, people are stone walls, people are moats, Mei is 秀斎(Shusai/Hidesai,gago) and 直忠(Naotada). pic #2: 情けは味方、仇は敵なり。 (nasake wa mikata,ada wa kataki nari.) Sympathy is needed to the peoples,and Don't be passionate.
    15 points
  4. Time has come to update the software again. We are a few versions behind and need to keep up as many of the updates are security related. We get a lot of brute force attacks. New software will come with some improvements. But also a little bit of change. I don't think anything major. Anyways, I'll be using some of the backup funds to pay an expert to to the update. I am too scared to break stuff. It is planned around Thursday sometime. Maybe US evening time. So if you find the forum offline, note that it won't be for long. We'll be up and running asap. Thanks all.
    13 points
  5. Hi, This sayagaki was written by Japanese martial artist Nakayama Hakudo. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nakayama_Hakudō #1 pic: XXXX藤吉君 祝再渡米 贈 (present to Mr,????Tokichi,celebrate visit to America again.) #2 pic: 昭和六年XX吉祥日 A lukey day the 6th year of Showa period(1931). #3 pic: 有信博道識ス (Yushin Hakudo shirusu) wrote by Yushin Hakudo.(Nakayama Hakudo)
    12 points
  6. The Car is the "Magnolia Special". I built her from scratch, and she now lives on the second floor of building that I also built from scratch. Check it out, thanks for asking! Brian - Apologies for getting off topic.-- JT
    11 points
  7. Just in Star stamp Hirokuni. In Rin Tin Tin mounts 😜 竹下宏國作之 - Takeshita Hirokuni saku kore (kore [w]o saku). Also reported to sign Takeshita Yasukuni. Enjoying new sword, no good photos of mei yet. Catching major flack on Chris Bowen's page saying over cleaned. Soon to come
    11 points
  8. Yours to do as you want. But this forum consists of collectors and guys who don't even speak over a Japanese sword in case they get droplets on it, and who won't put a sword on a hard surface. Not hard to work out that watching someone cut household things with it would not go down well. Really, don't hold it against guys who hold these things in such high regard. Posting stuff like that publicly was never going to end well. It's nothing personal. Topic closed.
    11 points
  9. I am btreed3 on eBay. I started this at $1 and thought it was koto but I’m more of a gendai collector so I could easily be wrong. I’ve been purging my collecting the past 12 months and focusing on stuff I want to restore. I have 5 blades in Japan at the moment and this was in the queue but had plenty more in front of it as well. I have a no questions asked return policy if you decide you don’t want to take the risk of polishing or whatever other reason you may decide.
    11 points
  10. Hello, Here are few photos of fuchikashira and menuki set before and after cleaning. This was done with mechanical cleaning, without damaging original patina. I highly value opinions off all board members so please let me know what are your thoughts and If possible what could still be improved. This is not my work, however craftsman who did this do not speak English so I post those pictures instead. Regards, Krystian
    10 points
  11. I think Kamakura is often used as marketing gimmick, and I believe for several of these items the transition from late Kamakura to Nanbokuchō is plausible. Giving very specific dates on shortened mumei items of old age is quite tricky. And I do think dealers often use all the tricks in the book to make them more marketable. There are some Early to Mid Kamakura period blades being sold too but they are quite rare to encounter compared to late Kamakura stuff. In your examples the first one that is attributed to Wake, kinda points towards the end of Kamakura period. I have three date signatures for Shigesuke 1326, 1328 & 1328. And Shigenori was active around the same time but I have no dated signatures by him. The second one Yoshimitsu (義光) I would actually think as a Nanbokuchō smith. In Seskos Index it reads that he has dated work from 1322 to 1375, most likely spread through 2 generations first ending around 1356-1361. I have personally found dated signatures from 1337 to 1358. I think as Aoi is mentioning this work reminding Kagemitsu, which would possibly indicate an earlier work by Yoshimitsu. I think Ko-Naminohira has very long time frame, there are even few late Heian / early Kamakura pieces, going until end of Nanbokuchō. I believe attribution wise the ko-prefix is dropped when we enter Ōei (this is just my personal opinion). In my opinion dealers love to list Ko-Mihara items as late Kamakura, however I believe many of them are from Nanbokuchō period. I know that Masaie the founder of Mihara school was working at the end of Kamakura period into Nanbokuchō. However so far I have not yet found a Kamakura dated blade from Mihara school. Date ranges I have for Ko-Mihara items so far is 1353 to 1394. I know there are few signed tachi of Mihara school that are thought to be late Kamakura work. But I do believe that the majority of Ko-Mihara is Nanbokuchō period stuff. And just by looking at the shape of this particular item I might personally lean more towards that on this item too. I personally like Hōju stuff a lot. Unfortunately they also span through long time period. Earliest work being from early Kamakura and continuing onto Muromachi. I cannot identify if this particular item is thought to be late Kamakura or Nanbokuchō item. As it is mumei and Tokubetsu Hozon it cannot really be later than that. And lastly I think Tegai is also spanning through quite lot of time. I think the earliest work by Kanenaga is thought to be made around Middle of Kamakura but Tegai attribution can run all the way into early Muromachi (at least in my personal opinion). Late Muromachi Tegai work is identified with Sue-prefix. Also to be noted that shirasaya has attribution towards Tegai Kanekiyo (包清), I know there is one tanto dated 1329 by 1st gen Kanekiyo but when looking signed of attributed work other than that one item, it is pretty much towards late Nanbokuchō to early Muromachi for Tegai Kanekiyo. Of course NBTHK attributed this as den Tegai instead of Kanekiyo though. Beats me if it is Kamakura or Nanbokuchō work. All of the above is just a personal opinion, I think this is interesting topic that will be fun to discuss.
    10 points
  12. Geoff, you made a very important point, once you start on the Gunto journey, your goals certainly evolve with time. After starting out with a couple of Gunto, I decided to learn more, and purchased the fantastic publication by DAWSON. My goal was then to collect every WW2 variation in Dawson's book, NCO, 94, 98, Late war RS , and KAI Gunto. As well as the tassels and sword belts and hangers. I achieved this, and along the way, found examples Dawson hadn't documented. To get to that goal, it took the space of a whole room, and it goes without saying, a bucket load of $$$$! A turning point was meeting a local collector that specialized in Gendai-to. It then became "all about the blade". This was further emphasized when I accompanied him to the DTI held in Japan. Whilst there I found a SADAKATSU with AYASUGI Hada made in 1933, polished with Tokubetsu Hozon papers. I was converted to collecting good Gendai smiths. So many collectors around the world have benefitted from my selling off a large part of what I had accumulated. So the journey was not wasted by any means. I learned a lot, have made and kept many friends, and importantly sold off swords at basically what I paid for them. So I hope the swords I disposed of, help a new generation of enthusiasts, that in itself is worthwhile. So at some time there comes a "life changing moment", like my SADAKATSU, that speaks to you and says, "this is the new direction I want to go".
    10 points
  13. An interesting piece I handled recently (NFS). Smaller naginatanaoshi wakizashi in kaigunto koshirae.
    9 points
  14. Have I posted this one before? No idea, but with Australia's lockdown laws, I am looking for something to do. I picked this up ages ago from a collector that didn't like the polish, his loss is my gain I guess, I LOVE it! A Hokke Saburo NOBUFUSA, no date, in my view a very good smith. It also helps being in mint mounts as well. I acknowledge the page from Slough's wonderful book.
    9 points
  15. So, what is there not to like about a Kai Gunto? And what is there not to like if it has a MINATAGOWA JINJA blade? Here is a January, 1943, MASANAO. A colleague recently commented that war time blades normally have a badly cut nakago, this one proves that some are cut pretty nicely.
    8 points
  16. Dear Bob, your tsuba Item No. 111 depicts the Dragon King’s (Ryujin - king of the sea) messenger presenting the two Tide Jewels (one can make the tide ebb and the other makes the tide flow) to Takenouchi no Sukune. He was an advisor to Empress Jingo and helped her in defeating Korea using these Tide Jewels.
    8 points
  17. An Iida lock, and a "South Manchurian Railway" sword
    8 points
  18. Ahhhh goals....what do I like? WW2 mounted blades, historical authenticity, provenance (hard to find) and a wild hamon and for me, the exquisite top shelf of hamons is Mt Fuji with, a sun! Thats my holy grail and thanks to Brian for the attached picture from his 2016 post 👍. But it didn't start that way. 2016 I went to the military museum in Darwin NT and was taken by a real gunto (98) in a display cabinet...awesome. One year later came across another one at the markets .... Koshirae in poor condition ...it had a blade of some description with scratchy writing but they wanted too much US $450 and I was with my wife 🤔 ( it could have been anything...including great!). But the collector hook had been set. So with interest at a high, I read and researched the internet and decided, on good advice, that I shouldn't waste money on a few cheap guntos but instead, just buy something of value first up. So with logic rather than heart I bought a beautiful Koto Uchigatana (influence Soshu/Chikuzen school) in nice 98 mounts, mumei from the UK (John Carlin/Bill Tagg). I wont sell it! Ok been there done that....it was then that I developed a real (maybe my original?) liking for 95's and some leather tassels. Having been one, like my dad, the NCO's will always have a special place with me. Gathered a modest collection of each variety and I'm very happy with that ✔). Then discovered 98's and bought my first (blind) on Aus. Ebay for a very modest price and it turned out to be a Teruhide with surrender tag and provenance (tsuka not off since 1945 ....I know, I know....but really, that is true). This is a good start to collecting....yes? Started buying real books, listening to people and adding some beautiful swords to my small collection. A greater interest in gendaito is developing but unfortunately and honestly, I have found that the more I think I know, the greater risk I expose myself to (no one from NMB 😊). For me, a little knowledge can be dangerous so self control and thought are things I need to keep handy in my pocket. 95's were so much easier. Collecting goals? - Like others, my collecting goals have definately evolved. If I stopped now, I would be very happy. I haven't sold any of my swords and, at this time, have no intention or desire to buy anything else but I guarantee something will come up. In the mean time I have started documenting each sword and that is an interesting and very educational task in itself. Happy collecting. Rob
    8 points
  19. Dear George. To take this back to the original thread if I may, your seller, whom I don't know and as far as I remember have never dealt with, has very magnanimously stated that he will take the sword back so that remains your option but there are some things to think about going forward. It is not my intention to criticise anybody or to stir up anything but here are some thoughts. Major UK auction houses refuse to allow their normal conditions of sale to apply to Japanese swords; they recognise that they don't have the expertise to guarantee what they say. In other words if you buy a sword they have described as Koto and Japanese shinsa ascribes it to Shinto you have no come back. If you turned up and said that a few people on an internet forum had said that it was Shinto I suspect you would be met with polite disbelief. You asked for some opinions and you got them. When I posted earlier I did not come off the fence but offered some thought for study, however I think we are all far too quick to run to, 'it tapers and it's straight it must be Kanbun Shinto'. For what it's worth, which is as little as every other opinion presented here, I think your sword is Koto. You bought the sword from Ebay if I understand the thread correctly. There is a whole heap of advice on this board about not doing that but going for polished and papered blades from known sellers and that has much to recommend it but the lure of discovery is too great and tales of treasures out of the woodwork keep us all going. However this means that you had time to look at the sword, out of polish though it is and in photographs whose quality I don't know. You took a flier and as I suggested I can see why you might. But that's the point, you took a risk. Good for you! A lot of the fun to be had is taking that risk when you think you see something worth pursuing and getting the result you want when it does turn out to be an early Kamakura blade and goes Juyo. Your money, (not a great deal of it but believe me I appreciate how hard that can be to come by sometimes), your risk. The only way you will ever know if this paid off is by sending it for polish and shinsa. Worst case scenario, I am completely off my trolley and you have a papered, suriage Kanbun Shinto sword. If that happens then you will probably not break even if you sell it straight away, or maybe not even if you keep it for thirty years. But that's not how a gamble works is it? What if it does turn out to be Kamakura but with a fatal flaw? Then you've lost everything. Expecting every gamble to pay off is also a completely unreasonable way to enjoy a hobby, a vast number of people seem to enjoy rambling all over a bit of country whacking a very small ball with a metal stick, they pay thousands of dollars/pounds/currency of choice to do so. Very few of them make any money out of it. They spend a ton of money on something they enjoy, they don't anticipate a monetary return. (If my wife is reading this then, don't worry Darling, of course my collection is different and when I die you will be able to sell it for much more than I ever paid for them!) If you go the polish and shinsa route and it turns out poorly then at the very least you have rescued an historical artefact. Is that not something you would enjoy? Whatever happens to my small collection I have had such a great time collecting and learning, sharing with others, and it's been cheaper than golf! Sorry! Ramble over. Of course it's your sword, your deal and your choice. All the best.
    8 points
  20. Dear members, i was wondering what you guys think of this Kake i made. i know it is very simple but it serves the purpose and the focus is on the sword itself. if someone is interested let me know i could make more of them in different wood colors and sizes. Best, Ciro
    7 points
  21. Gentlemen, Some of the " old timers " on this forum will remember me. My Name is Ron Watson. I am 74 now and since my son & grandson have no real interest nor money, I wish my modest collection of Japanese Art Works to go to those who have a serious interest in preserving and studying the ARTS of the SAMURAI. I will start off slowly with three items and we'll see how things progress. I will try and add a items a week . At that rate I should finish in about a year. My entire collection is available and I do NOT plan on hanging on to but an item or two which I have promised as a keepsake to my son & grandson. I did many articles for the NMB and I believe that most of these are Archived, ... so if you scan thru the articles and see an item I have not yet listed, an email to : 766watson@gmail.com will get a reply. All sales will be FINAL and payment by International Money Order or Wire Transfer to my bank. I must warn you however that given the WORLD"S confusion and being totally frustrated with SHIPPING RULES, ... I will only ship within the rules of CANADA to International Buyers. I will not use CANADA POST as our Post Office is no longer reliable for anything which will cut and / or possibly fire a projectile ( even if ANTIQUE ). For all other items I can use CANADA POST but will have to quote individual shipping costs for both Canadian and International BUYERS. I believe Air Canada Cargo will handle or possibly Fedex but I am not sure of Fedex. Anyway Buyer is responsible for shipping and shipping costs. The First Item : Katana Sword in newly custom made Saya with period Fittings ( Fuchi, Kashira and Menuki ) and Waterwheel Tsuba of nice iron. The Fuchi Kashira with gold and silver on a Shakado base ( unsigned ) Tsuka is new and wrapped with good quality same and silk. Katana is signed : Yamashiro ( no ) Kuni Heianjo Ju ( Nobuyoshi ) Nagasa : 71.9 cm Sword Shape : Hon Zukuri Jihada : Ko Mokume Hamon : Choji Midaire Era : Late Muromachi ( 1490 - 1510 AD ) Period : Sue Koto Boshi : Kaeri-Fukashi, with Mune-Yaki extending back over the mune for about 14cm. Sunagashi is prevelent, as is occassional line of Kinsuji The Shinogi-ji has patches of hitasura spaced evenly along its entire length. APPRAISED and papered by Kotoken Kajihara in 1984 Photographs may be seen by referring to an Article I did for the NMB by typing in the search box " A Favorite Sword Ron Watson " This article is archived by NMB and was done in 2010. For additional photographs please email me. PRICE $ 10,000.00 US FIRM
    7 points
  22. Dear Brian. You are asking a question that is impossible to answer. You say that it is by a certain maker and ask if it would be worth upgrading the status; it already has papers. So far so good. If the flaws in the shinogi ji, which by the way would be described as kitae ware, or forging flaws, are what you are asking about then welcome to the world of Koto, these are not serious. However you don't even tell us if this is a katana or wakizashi. I assume that it is a katana. So, you have a katana with papers by a known maker which is suriage but still retains it's mei, it seems to be in good polish and we can assume shirasaya but what about koshirae? It is being offered by a friend who you, 'really trust and respect', so what is the question? You trust the seller, you can afford it, (I hope!) and presumably you like it. So buy it. A lot of people will tell you that you can get a better deal but at the end of the day regard this a s a hobby which is going to cost you. The rewards in terms of satisfaction and delight are tremendous, they are worth the money. You will study this and learn a lot about swords from owning it, it will start to create your mental map of the history of the sword and Japan. What's not to like? Will you be able to sell it and make your money back? Who knows? Do you really care about that? In effect you are paying to rent a piece of history and high craft, if not art. It will bring you a measure of joy if it can be owned without too much financial pressure. Let us know what you decide. All the best.
    7 points
  23. Hi, R: 明治戊辰之役率兵戦于城州我公嘉其功 L: 賜此刀取會朝清明之義名曰曙丸  路郷誌 Nickname of this sword is "AKEBONO-MARU" 曙丸 . (AKEBONO means dawn/daybreak .) Wrote by Michisato(?) 路郷誌 .
    7 points
  24. Niji mei Norimitsu 64 cm. Polished by Woddy Hall. Saya by John T. In stone finish. Tsuka with crain f/k wich have hozon paper. Tadpole menuki, frog in the reeds tsuba, lined up the fuchi crain is about to feast on frog. Remarkably good shape for being close to 600yer old. No chips or kizu, boshi in tact. May be a pit are two but nothing distracting. Was slated for shinsa that did not happen. Price reflection do to lack of papers. This restoration was the labor of love through some trials and tribulations with the tsuka in Japan being wrapped. Time in money wont be recoped. Sorry im going to be very selective on who I approve to purchase. If I haven't known you for years on the board you must have a reference from someone in the Nihonto community, trust me they must carry some weight. $4200 shipped to my mates across the pond i cant offer a refund policy. I hope you understand. State side im offering a three day grace. Must have back in hand same as i sent to be refunded minus shipping cost. Many pic to come please give me some time before posting.
    7 points
  25. I agree with Stephen; for things of value within the US it has to be registered mail from the post office. Beyond what Stephen said, if the package spends a night in a post office it has to be in a safe. And it isn't expensive. I'm about to ship a large tube with 5 swords and some boxed fittings to the east coast. 10 pounds and $20,000 on value will be about $108 with full insurance. Registered can't get lost; as my guy at the PO says, "If you lose registered you lose your job." Grey
    7 points
  26. Thought some may find this interesting, found from an ended listing: https://buyee.jp/item/yahoo/auction/j1002004371
    7 points
  27. Here is a (Kojima) KANEMICHI,1941, and Seki stamp. This is a high-grade Showato blade, which the original owner thought enough about to put it in an aluminum saya, with the rare extended drag. Thanks to Slough for the page from his book.
    7 points
  28. Its truly wonderful to see a piece of this quality come out of the woodwork, and substantially undamaged, the chip aside. The koshirae is top, top work and dare I opine will be found to be solid silver. Ken, you are close enough to Ford Hallam to take the sword to him personally. You will only get one chance in a lifetime to do this right and Ford is DA MAN. FYI and in case you (and others) missed it here are two links to Ford working on two of my projects: Restoration of a handachi koshirae. Only the tsuka went to Ford and the blade and koshirae stayed here with me (in Oz). I’ll let the 56 minute video speak for it: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g6FCHbVi0DY The next thing was a wakizashi koshirae (medium sword mounting) that was near complete (only a seppa – a ‘spacer’ - missing), but needed tender mercies from a metalwork genius. The scabbard is going to Japan (from the UK) to have some damage fixed and the lacquer restored. Here is a link to Ford’s ~40 minute video of the koshirae assessment: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X0yk24gfjWg In the beginning he diverts to a short discussion of the tsuka in the next above video. The following bit of work is to have the tsuka re-bound. Congratulations on your find and the courage it took to chase it down, with a little help from your friends!! Vive NMB. BaZZa. aka Barry Thomas Melbourne, Australia
    7 points
  29. The sword is by Fujino Masatsugu from Chichibu city in Saitama Prefecture. It was made at the request of Sakurai Saburō, on the ocassion of the 13th anniversary of the passing of his relative Sakurai Tomiharu, who was at one time a Lieutenant in the Japanese Imperial Army. Tomiharu was born in Sendai city on January 23rd, Meiji 19 (1886), and died at the age of 89 (1975) in Kawagoe city. This means the sword was made around 1988.
    7 points
  30. At the moment locked down in Sydney, raining, so a good day to check out the sword cupboard, and to re-acquaint yourself with old (sword) friends . I pulled out a Spring 1939, KOA ISSHIN MANTETSU SAKU KORE. If you check out the HAMON, it is not your usual straight SUGUHA, but exhibits a "wavy" nature. You don't see that very often. Bruce has the MUNE stamp numbers. Being 1939, it is in early mounts, pierced tsuba, center latch etc, but is in an uncommon green painted saya, with fittings that are painted red that shows off nicely the gold highlights. Obviously this outfit shows the patina of war use, but that adds to its original intent as a weapon to be carried. So not bad for an 82 year old sword.
    7 points
  31. Some interesting questions raised by these wax carved and cast menuki shaped objects... There, I've nailed my colours to the post Can we call a CGI designed and printed/cast object that has the outer form of a tsuba a real tsuba? I dont think so. A tsuba, like sushi, pizza, menuki and all sorts of culturally and creatively defined things are recognised as such by their conformity to accepted criteria. Toated dough, melted cheese and a tomato sauce doesn't automatically make the tasty treat a pizza....it may merely be a toasted cheese sandwich, even if you sneak in an anchovy. On a purely functional point menuki were made by means of skilfully manipulating sheet metal for a number of reasons, each significant in terms of what we understand a menuki to be. Sheet work means they're lighter and consume less material, so that choice reflects an awareness of the limits of material resources as well as the need to keep the overall weight of the sword to a minimum for its effective functioning. These are two important and defining aspects of what make menuki menuki. The skill needed to work sheet metal in this way, in such delicate and fine detail was one of the reasons menuki were in fact the most highly regarded of the tosogu when they originally came into use. We do actually value menuki in part because we recognise the remarkable effort their creation entails, finding a more efficient way of producing a similar looking outward appearance is missing a lot of where the value of menuki lies, I think. I don't want to criticise the objects Mario's wife made for him, they're perfectly nicely made objects, in their own right. But, as menuki I find the forms overly 'heavy/chunky'. So while I recognise they are intended to act as menuki, and of course that's Mario's prerogative, and that his wife made them makes them more meaningful to him no doubt, to my thinking they are 'menuki shaped objects, and not objects made to be menuki in the way menuki are and always have been made. I'm not trying to offend anyone's sensibilities by making this post, I'm merely attempting to clarify what I believe would be the reaction of most traditional artisans.
    6 points
  32. Oh man. I'm not trying to jump on the beat up on you bandwagon but you are definitely on the wrong forum to say that these antique works of art are meant to be used. Theory goes we are caretakers keeping them safe to pass one to the next generation. Machetes u buy at Walmart are meant to be used...
    6 points
  33. Never seen one that has basket weave and the sukashi style. Any thoughts on provenance on this one
    6 points
  34. This is a set of fittings that I have owned for many years. The maker is Asai Yoshihiro, and one of the really interesting features is that the tsuba is made of soft metal on one side and iron on the other (shown is only the soft metal side). There is an inscription that looks like an appraisal underneath the set (see next page). I can make out most of it: Yoshihiro mon jin Edo yotsuya ju is the middle line and Asai Yoshihiro gyotaku mei jin nari is the right side. My understanding is that he lived in Yotsuya in the Edo period and was famous for making fish images. The left line appears to have the name of the appraiser, and I can't figure that one out (see next page).
    6 points
  35. I have a feeling I saw it somewhere, but can't find anything in my library... Help is appreciated.
    6 points
  36. I'm glad the atmosphere here is active again. To celebrate. Continue to share my collection with you. Ranka (legend) One plot element of the legend features two immortals playing a board game, interpreted in later times as Go, so that Lanke (or Ranka in Japanese) has become a literary name for Go. The legend is recorded in Ren Fang [zh]'s Shuyiji [zh; ja] or Tales of the Strange, and features a woodcutter, Wang Zhi or Wang Chih (王質, Wáng Zhì), and his encounter with the two immortals in the mountains. The story runs as follows: Wang Zhi was a hardy young fellow who used to venture deep into the mountains to find suitable wood for his axe. One day he went farther than usual and became lost. He wandered about for a while and eventually came upon two strange old men who were playing Go, their board resting on a rock between them. Wang Zhi was fascinated. He put down his axe and began to watch. One of the players gave him something like a date to chew on, so that he felt neither hunger nor thirst. As he continued to watch he fell into a trance for what seemed like an hour or two. When he awoke, however, the two old men were no longer there. He found that his axe handle had rotted to dust and he had grown a long beard. When he returned to his native village he discovered that his family had disappeared and that no one even remembered his name.
    6 points
  37. I was going to post this in Edo Period Corner Part II, but a message popped up saying the topic is old, so would I consider starting a new thread, unless it was particularly relevant. My fault I guess for not refreshing it. Yesterday the news arrived that all further regional live appearances in 2021 have been cancelled for our matchlock troop. "Even the annual purification event at Kibitsu Hiko Jinja?" I asked. (See last autumn's posts and videos.) "Yes, that too, everything!" came the answer. "Anything that draws crowds is out, under the extended state of emergency." "Ah" I replied sadly, thinking of the heap of armour where I last took it off back in April, still needing an excuse for sorting out and hanging up. Today, however, the message came through that Kibitsu Hiko Jinja now require our presence in their Autumn 神事 'Shinji' Shrine Dedication Ceremony, which will be going ahead, together I guess with the Tameshigiri and Yabusame peformances. If it is the same as last year, it will be a private shrine service for small numbers with no crowds. About half the day is taken up with blessings and prayers at various portable altars set up here and there. Anyway, this will be an excuse to air the armour in preparation, and to clean and prime the guns. I know those invited will be thinking of which helmet, which maedate, which cuirass, which sword or tanto etc., to wear for the occasion. Compilation from last year taken from the shrine's home page. https://www.kibitsuhiko.or.jp/event.html
    6 points
  38. It’s signed ‘Kashu Fujiwara Ietsugu saku’ (加州藤原家次作).
    6 points
  39. Item No. 108 - Iron Tsuba with gold 76.9 cm x 7.12 cm x 0.56 cm Subject of peony and shi-shi in sunken relief cave or caverns. Signed Yoshihiro- age unknown. Could this Yoshihiro be from the Myochin lineage ? If so it would be of considerable age but somehow it feels younger in the hand. High grade workmanship all round with painstaking details on the rock carving and a highly animated shi-shi almost leaping free from the plate. The peony, eye and bud appear to have been carved from solid gold . The plate itself showing pleasing grain structure , not untypical of Myochin , hence the question above regarding artist school. As usual , any comments , help or corrections gratefully received.
    6 points
  40. Hi Peter congrats! thanks for sharing, very interesting! like John, I would guess the Koshirae maybe is the original ? look at this Tanto its balde hold's the soul of a dead officer, used as a mobile shrine, in Memoial
    6 points
  41. I guessed the last kanji. 於濃州金花山麓長良川邊藤原新古清長 At Noshu, the foot of Mt. Kinka, a riverside of Nagara River, Fujiwara Shinko Kiyonaga
    6 points
  42. To keep this thread alive. A 1943 (Kajiwara) HIROMITSU, a FUKUOKA smith. A GENDAITO in civilian mounts, with leather combat SAYA. The en-suite SHOWA period tsuba and F/K set are an attractive feature.
    6 points
  43. 黄瀬戸 夏茶碗 Kiseto natsu chawan, I think. Can't read the left side.
    6 points
  44. I think most aspects have been already well covered but I'd like to add.. A properly carried out restoration generally wouldn't be an issue when it came to shinsa, especially if the repair is invisible, which in my view it ought to be. A shonky job will, of course, be a red flag and may result in the work being rejected though. Gold foil on iron is typically nunome-zogan and when lost or worn away its repair is complicated by the inevitable rust present and blending in with remaining gold foil when it comes to recutting the damaged area. It's possible but a very tricky job to do well. It is possible to effect a cosmetic touch up by means of electroplating but matching the gold colour is sometimes impossible. As has been already mentioned kin-keshi, or murcury amalgam / fire gilding was one traditional method on non-ferrous metals and alloys but quite a lot of gold foil on non-ferrous, especially larger areas of polished gold (like on kozuka backs for example) appear to be a form of fusion application. Damage to these grounds is often in the form of a tear or where a little dent has wrinkled an area of incomplete fusion. This technique is not like the modern Korean technique of Keum Boo nor does it appear to use any murcuric nitrate (sui-gin) as a flux but is more akin to direct fusion, with a rosin flux from what I've been able to deduce from texts and microscopic examination. This technique, hitherto not documented yet in evidence everywhere on tosugu, is certainly not practiced today. Repair to this sort of surface may be very tricky. On the odd occasion I've done it I actually matched the gold colour and then inlaid a patch to extend slightly beyond the damaged area and then carefully polished the slightly raised patch down until it melded with the original foil. It's a bit like eye surgery.
    5 points
  45. Lots of practice looking at different mei. I’m nowhere near as good as many folks here, but I am a fan of @Grey Doffin’s flash cards to get a good foundation.
    5 points
  46. Neil I also had one 1944 Mantetsu with Wavy hamon. Ohmura said:例外的に乱刃が存在する。恐らく特注品であろう。It sould be special order.
    5 points
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