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Everything posted by Lingonberry

  1. I think your two best options are to enjoy it "as-is" or have it shortened. If I had the cash and it was up to me I would go for shortening and a nice polish. Your best bet, though, would be to show it to a trained polisher in person and see what they think (window, shorten, or leave alone).
  2. Looks like sunagashi and/or kinsuji to me. https://tsuba.info/glossary/sunagashi/
  3. I've heard rumors of folks in Japan trying teensy welds to try and contain the hagire but it doesn't truly "fix" it - you'll still see it and the sword is still effectively "dead" in the sense that it could still break if anyone tries to use it (which nobody should be doing anyway, of course). I think it's still possible to get it polished though as others have said, you're going to need to explain to the polisher why you're still willing to spend that much on a dead blade. It's also possible they may refuse, so be ready for that. Absolute worst case scenario is, if the sword is long enough above the hagire and you're willing to spend the dosh, it could possibly be made into an o-suriage wakizashi.
  4. Masame hada, from what I've seen, tends to be more wavy than straight and in my opinion looks a bit like wood grain sometimes. The hada also wouldn't be too hard to see, either, and unless the sword is supremely well made you would also be seeing a fair amount of "kitae ware" with masame hada. The Hosho (保昌) were famous for doing masame hada with no kitae ware and their swords are pretty tough to find... and expensive! I suspect your sword has "muji hada" (no hada) which is pretty common for WW2 era swords, and I think the straight lines you're seeing are scratches or abrasion. Please keep in mind that I'm still a novice and by no means an expert.
  5. Definitely cast, then. Not terribly surprised, honestly.
  6. Hi All! I recently picked up this tsuba because, to my newbie eye, it looked authentic, had a nice patina, and had an interesting shape. It has a signature which I think reads "Sandai Mei Myochin Saku" although I have a strong feeling it is gimei because I can't find any other examples with this signature. Is anyone willing to share photos of their myochin that others might use as reference?
  7. Yamato Hosho daito Ubu koto naginata (probably Dotanuki since they seem the most common, but I've seen a Muromachi Soshu as well) Chidori Jumonji Yari Nice Yoroi Doshi, even though 99% are shinshinto Collection of the various yari shapes Nambokucho or older hirazukiri wakizashi ubu nagamaki
  8. It was mixed. Of the people in the panel, only one could see anything and only on one side. One person, not on the panel, said he saw on both sides. A polisher who was there said it could probably polish out, assuming it wasn't hagire. To clarify, the 2x maybe-hagire Bob found weren't in the kissaki but rather in some areas in the middle of the blade that had been scuffed up. The general consensus from the more experienced people I've spoken to is that one can't really know for certain without getting a window polish in those areas but I'm hesitant to spend any more money on this blade. Once the papers come in I may sell this sword since my tastes have changed - I'm really keen on Kamakura/Nambokucho Yamato blades, especially Hosho, but those suckers aren't cheap and I'll need every penny I can to get a decent one...
  9. I tried making a post on a large social media site frequented by people my age. I tried to dispel common myths I thought kept most interested people away from the hobby but I forgot one highly pervasive and damaging myth: "Japanese swords were crap. Made from bad steel, that's why they had to fold them so many times." We all know that's only a half truth (iron sands were poor but tamahagane was pretty good) but that doesn't matter to those folks who happily spread the myth that Japanese arms were of poor quality and highly fragile. Trying to politely disagree with those folks is like arguing with a brick wall. They just don't care.
  10. Started a FaceBook group to help organize meetups. https://www.facebook.com/groups/359096208026976/
  11. Cost is definitely the biggest barrier to young newbies. Millenials are poorer than gen X or boombers and most of us will have to work until 70 to retire due to higher debt, fewer assets, lower wages, and social security maybe not being able to pay out. https://bigthink.com/culture-religion/millennials-poorer-generations-fed Many people in my generation have tens of thousands of dollars in student loans and that includes people who got degrees in business, law, engineering, etc., not just the liberal arts majors. (On that note, please don't move the SF show near the silicon valley kids... then NOBODY will be able to afford nihonto!) One thing I've noticed is there doesn't seem to be much effort put forth to advertise nihonto to, well... anyone, not just millenials. You basically have to chance across the NMB, a dealer's page, happen to meet a collector, or stumble across a facebook group to be introduced to the hobby. Another thing is that it seems there are many collectors out there who are in the same region but may not be aware of one another. It was only recently that I became aware of some folks in the general area and set up a (tiny) facebook group as a forum to try and organize the occasional meetup. My humble suggestion: If you're involved in a local club, try reaching out to other groups related to Japan or Japanese culture in your area. Organizations like the Japan America Society, Museums that have nihonto related exhibits, kendo clubs, iaido clubs, etc. Hell, maybe even try to reach out to anime conventions and ask to be able to do a panel. Any time I speak to people my age about nihonto the first things we talk about are A) It is, in fact, legal to export them from Japan (you just need paperwork), and B) You don't need to be a millionaire in a mansion to collect.
  12. Final update: I showed it to someone at the show who pointed out it looks like there are two possible hagire in the middle of the blade which were hidden with some scuff marks. They're also so super tiny that you have to take out a loupe to see them and know where they are but they're there. I took the sword back to the shinsa team and told them about it and asked them to have a look. Their response was that they could only see them on one side and that they were extremely small, even suggesting they might polish out. I take that to mean they don'tagree that they're hagire after all. They're sticking with the decision to issue papers for this sword and upon my request have added a note on the worksheet explaining why they don't think it's hagire.
  13. Well... maybe not. Will update tomorrow when I know more.
  14. It passed! Shin-shinto, 1789 - 1801. 70 points
  15. Wow! Nice kabuto David!! I had no idea anything that nice would be less than $5k USD.
  16. I highly recommend the "Tosogu Classroom" series. Been reading volume 1 at night before bed and have already learned quite a lot! As for buying tsuba (or swords), some advice: stop buying things for now. After you've done some reading and learned more you might change your mind about the pieces you're shopping for right now and wish you had saved the money so you could afford a nice $500+ tsuba. Not that what you have right now is bad, per se, but it's not great, either. Also worth noting that if you buy nicer stuff it'll be easier to sell later on if your tastes change. Of course, the big $2,000+ tsuba will take a while to sell...
  17. That tsuba is really nice but it doesn't seem $4,000 USD nice. I can't really base that on any facts, just a gut feeling.
  18. It's meant as a sort of collection plan so at some point it will be physical, but it might also be fun to cobble something together from pictures.
  19. Well, worth asking haha! Was thinking about putting together a collection of koshirae for a hypothetical Sohei - something with a continuing Buddhist theme. Ken menuki Tiger in bamboo tsuba ??? Fuchi/kashira
  20. Where can one learn about these "codes" for what themes go together and which don't?
  21. Ray, are those the sort of things one finds in the "suitable for iai" sections on Aoi or other sites?
  22. Even at a glance one can see that wakizashi is more than kazuuchi mono. I had the (mis)fortune of handling one for a gunstore once. Wasn't a pretty sight... not like your wakizashi. Poor thing had a massive fukure...https://imgur.com/KKfcxlG
  23. Exactly, which is why I'm a little confused. It also seems that they always put "kyushu" at the front of the mei, which this one doesn't have.
  24. Thank you Vermithrax. I'm having a tough time finding good examples of the signature because my google-fu is weak and 11/10 of my search results are companies selling machine made iaito named "dotanuki." I vaguely recall reading somewhere that when someone asked a smith to make them a sword the smith would make 3 blades, then ask the customer to choose their favorite. The one the customer picked would get the formal/official mei added to the nakago, whereas the other two blades would get a less formal mei and were either sold as-is or dedicated to a shrine. Then again, I also read somewhere that only the very best of a smith's work would be dedicated to a shrine so I'm not really sure about all that. I'm debating signing up for a shinsa slot in Tampa...
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