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About UniqueJapan

  • Birthday March 4

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    Tokyo and London
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  1. John, Thanks very much for the input. Warm regards, Pablo
  2. Thanks Chris, had a feeling this may be the case. I will have my client protest this charge. Any suggestions on what to put inside the letter. I can assist with copies of NBTHK papers, etc. Pablo
  3. Hi Grey, These were swords that were shipped to the US from Japan. I believe they were charged by the USPS when via a customs charge. We send using EMS from Japan. Seems odd that only a couple clients have had to pay when the vast majority do not. I thought it was a Hawaii thing because the shipment went via Hawaii towards its final destination. Mistake on behalf of customs, no? Pablo
  4. All clear, so it is a VAT issue. Thanks. If other members know the VAT tax rates in other countries in Europe and around the world that would be most appreciated. Most of the time our clients don't pay any tax or fees when we ship their swords from Japan to the US, however we have had the odd instance that they were charged. Is that because certain states charge an import tax? Possibly Hawaii? Or was that just a mistake by customs. If it was a mistake, does anyone know if funds can be claimed back? Thank you, Pablo
  5. Mark, To be honest, I did not know that customs regulations state that antiques were exempt from duty in the US. That is good news. Is there any reference to this online somewhere? Doesn't appear to be the case in the UK. Good advice on the professional looking paperwork/letterhead, will follow that. Cheers, Pablo
  6. OK, cool. So the overall feeling is that they probably won't make a meal of this. We'll have the paperwork prepared as I know Narita will demand this plus the NBTHK papers too. Then just see what happens in JFK, but likely not a lot to worry about, correct? Thanks guys, Pablo
  7. Hello everyone, Normally we post mail swords from Japan to the US through EMS, and it works fine. Next month though a client is planning to fly from Narita to JFK business class with a 15th century Japanese sword within his checked luggage. He is Japanese. We will apply for all exportation paperwork, so that's not an issue. I am just concerned if JFK will hold the sword or demand extra paperwork, etc. I am hoping to hear from someone who has flown from Japan to the US and can give me some advice prior to flying. Also, any experience in regards to the process of paying duty, etc. You may respond here or contact me privately at service@uniquejapan.com Thank you, Pablo
  8. Melissa and Henrik, A warm welcome to you both. Pablo
  9. Jean, Yes, the photos are a challenge, but we're improving all the time. Our clients really enjoy them and often print them out when they display their sword. I'll look out for a fine Yamashiro blade for you. Eric, thanks for your contribution. Really appreciate it. Goodnight, Pablo
  10. Jean, Yes, photos of the Tegai wwer taken in Japan, and the blade is currently there. Thanks for all. With regards, Pablo
  11. Jean, thank you for your posts to this discussion. I also appreciate the rather lively posts amongst members for the Tegai wakizashi that is currently listed on Unique Japan. The passion for Japanese swords is clearly palatable, and I think that is just terrific. Although we try our best to take quality photos of the swords listed on Unique Japan, as we all know, the subtle beauty of a sword, unless it is reviewed in person, can never quite be captured. I believe this is especially true for this particular Tegai piece. It’s clearly a very old beauty when you feel it in hand. As correctly pointed out, (Ko) Tegai ran until the Nanbokucho period, and it is essentially impossible to deduce when exactly it was made as it is most definitely an o-suriage nakago. Elements that can be most definitely admired are kinsuji, nijuba and the kaen boshi, a feature seen on Tegai swords, is truly brilliant. The blade sparkles under the light. It never looks the same way twice, always finding something new to explore. This also applies for the fittings, which I must say, carry an understated elegance. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, which makes the appreciation of art open to all. The vast majority of our swords are chosen in person in Japan, and our website generally acts more like a gallery for the majority of clients. I naturally stand very much behind this sword, as any other piece listed online or that we introduce to clients in private and at our shows. If a client cannot review a sword in person before he or she makes the decision, then I am happy to refund the purchase in full if it doesn’t meet (or exceed) their expectations upon arrival. Perhaps the greatest takeaway is for us all to continue our insatiable appetite for knowledge in the subject of Japanese swords. At the end of day, the more we know, the less we know, and I think that’s quite humbling. Pablo
  12. Clive, Good morning sir. We are in a town called Thorpe Bay in Southend-on-Sea. My wife's family lives close by, which are helpful hands for our young kids at this stage. I only have a couple swords at the moment here in the UK, I keep all stock in Japan primarily. One 17th century Echizen o-wakizashi and a 19th century Katsukuni katana. I look forward to meeting you soon, I can easily make it to London most any time if I am in country. Paul Martin encouraged me to contact you, but you beat me to it. Warm regards, Pablo
  13. Great, much appreciated Thomas. Bye for now. Pablo
  14. Thank you John, merci Jean. Nice to be here. Pablo
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