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Marius last won the day on July 27

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    Marius T. K.

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  1. Gentlemen, Apart from stating the obvious, which is that the Hirakuni is a fine sword, and that wakizashi will have different prices depending on their quality and importance of school/master, allow me to say a few words about Alex. I have had quite a few dealings with Alex over the last few years and I can only thank him for his great service, his integrity and excellent communication. Thanks to Alex I have acquired a few excellent items and I can wholeheartedly recommend him as a seller. Whoever buys from Alex, will be very satisfied.
  2. Quite interesting how everyone sees something different
  3. The main motif looks like a bag (full with goods), the small sukashi could be either a Cintamani (wish fulfilling jewel), or a kukurizaru. You can find a bag (fukuro) on several crests and the Cimantani (hōju) in countless scrolls. I have found one painting where Hotei (bag on his shoulders) is looking at a hōju jewel: https://blogos-haha.blogspot.com/2019/08/wish-fulfilling-vases-of-void-continued.html And here is a painting with a Cimantani (hōju): https://www.schneiblefinearts.com/shop/Japanese-asian-fine-art/Japan-old-hoju-wish-granting-jewel-scroll-hand-painted-calligraphy-signed-2/ (disclosure: I am in no way associated with the seller of this painting) Kukurizaru (photo from this blog: https://www.2aussietravellers.com/walking-kyoto-ryozen-kannon/) Fukuro kamon (picture stolen from Pinterest):
  4. I have recently made a purchase from the NMB. Axel (username Fuuten) has sold me a nice yamagane tsuba. It was a pleasure to deal with him and I am very happy with the purchase. The tsuba has arrived quickly. Plus, Axel is a really nice guy
  5. Judging by the workmanship (which is poor) it is Meiji at best. It could even be Chinese. The sword looks interesting, though. Yura, if you want to see a high quality koshirae (in fact, highest quality) have a look at this one: https://yuhindo.com/goto-mitsunobu-yokoya-nobusada-daisho/
  6. JT, sorry to say, but your tanto seems to be very very low quality (at least in your photographs, but it might also be the polish). It if were a Hosho utsushi by a reputable sword smith it would have looked way superior. Masame as such is not an indication of quality, it is just a way of arranging layers during the forging of iron (steel). I suggest you don't focus on the least important factor in the quality of the sword... No matter what hada, a sword can be bad or excellent. `Please dive into this excellent resource by Kojima Hiroshi, a Japanese sword smith: http://www.ksky.ne.jp/~sumie99/information.html
  7. Not really, just a few, (they focus on steel and I have no pics of the sugata of my own): My katana by Kojima: My ken by Kojima:
  8. Kojima Hiroshi (4th Naohiro of the Taikei Naotane lineage, signs his swords Kei'un). Kojima makes functional swords and only seldom tries to copy old works. He has his onw style, while keeping "the spirit" of old sword. His hada is usually tight, his blades have utsuri. Hamon ranges from flamboyant gunome to suguha. I have seen a sword by him quenched without clay - it looked like an Ichimonji. The site of his shop contains a wealth of information: http://www.ksky.ne.jp/~sumie99/ I own 5 swords by Naohiro and they are the only modern swords I have.
  9. The motif is that of a Chinese story from the Daoist Zhuang Zhou (Master Zhuang), which describes a mantis trying to stop the wheel of a passing cart. The story is in this book: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zhuangzi_(book) it has been posted on this site: https://tinyurl.com/yd4eft9c One day, when Lord Zhuang / Juang of the state of Qi / Chyi was heading into the mountains to go hunting, he noticed a small green insect angrily raising its arms as if to do battle with the cart wheel. This piqued the lord’s curiosity, so he asked his driver “What manner of insect is this?” The driver looked at him and replied: “This is a praying mantis. This insect doesn’t advance and doesn’t retreat. It is not aware of its lack of strength and that its enemy is more powerful.” Full of admiration, the lord sighed: “If only this were a human. He would become an invincible warrior!” He then ordered his driver to veer to the side and let the praying mantis be.
  10. Jeff, welcome to the Board. You will find a great community and loads of valuable advice here
  11. I could not agree more. Kojima san is very honest in his descriptions. I have bought quite a few swords from his shop, and I was always extremely satisfied. As long as you take into account that shinsa's opinion might differ from his attribution, you will be OK. You don't risk buying swords with hidden flaws, you always know what you are buying. Kojima san has a peculiar style of writing. He appreciates functional quality and it seems that he dislikes swords made only to be visually attractive. Kojima san (I should rather say Kojima sensei) used to be NBTHK inspector for the Saitama province. He is an excellent sword smith (Taikei Naotane lineage) whose swords are functional and never contrived. He has extensive knowledge of nihonto and intimate knowledge of steel and its quality. He is also director at the Musashino Sword Club, where regular kantei sessions with some great swords are being held. When I was there, I have seen (among others) two Hosho tanto a ko-Bizen and a Soden Bizen, all of them masterworks. Attached are photographs that show steel of a ken that and a tachi by Kojima (Naohiro 4th) that I own. Forgive me this ad, but I consider Kojima my mentor, and he is a teacher whom I greatly respect for both his knowledge, his passion to teach and his honesty. To avoid any suspicion, neither of the swords on the pictures below is for sale. Ken: Tachi:
  12. Krystian, it is perfectly OK to make comments a sales thread if the OP invites people to submit them. Of course you can choose to get comments via PM.
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