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Lee Bray

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Posts posted by Lee Bray


  1. The seam is central on the ura because of the emperor node placement being central on the omote. As that node is central on the skin, I assume it's easier to measure and a more economical way of using the skin. It also means there is a solid piece of same over the seam in the wooden core which would make for a more solid handle.

    I've also read(where, I can't recall) that the seam is put on the side so the user/owner can tell it is a full wrap of same, though obviously a panel can be cut in two and the seam faked.

    I've got an old tsuka(wakizashi) that has 3 pieces of same, omote is one piece with nice emperor nodes and ura is two pieces, joined in the centre but also joined mune and ha, negating the added strength of the full wrap but simulating it.
    But I suppose it's purely speculative to assume a full wrap makes a tsuka stronger; likely it does but is it over engineered? I don't know.


  2. Technique is called Uchidashi. As Geraint says, the piece is originally punched from the back to give height to the elements on the front, then the front is worked to give detail. No moulds are used.

    Here's a video of the technique by the man himself, Ford Hallam.

    • Like 6

  3. Seems Hans Koga has used this apparent book as a scam.

     

    Paul Martin's page -

    https://www.facebook.com/The.Japanese.Sword/?__tn__=kC-R&eid=ARAIWFEVRNzY8BPXcdiCVf8ogJr__M6oo8Blr_Ktd1LcYiZLuZiUiOrPyEWHtotdzaZmwow8tIp9lTVt&hc_ref=ARSGqcU46uACoBszNulDiNr2da2uIQNz2dIYcGCzJm_7_lhxPc1_EQHe8JWss09nrlc&fref=nf

     

    A translated post from Izumi Koushiro -

    From now on, we would like to particularly warn international sword enthusiasts to please be careful of the Swedish person who goes by the name of Hansuke (Hans) Koga (Real Name Hans Igelstrom) who currently works as a Tsukamaki (handle wrapper) in Kumamoto Prefecture, Japan. He appears to have studied a little, but is not a fully fledged craftsman. However, because he can speak English, he seems to get some requests for work (from overseas).

    When he appeared on (Japanese) TV last year, he claimed that he was the only person who could do Higo Koshirae (mountings). As you would expect, the local craftsmen complained to the TV station, and the program was stopped from being rebroadcast.

    First of all, Mr. Koga was looking after about ten swords of an acquaintance of mine, but he sold two of the best ones out of them without permission and has not returned the money. That is a crime. Since last year, the victims (my acquaintance) appointed me as an agent to pursue Mr. Koga. I consulted with a lawyer, but even if we filed a lawsuit in a civil trial and Mr. Koga did not have the ability to pay the money, it just costs more money such as lawyer fees. As there has been no attempts by Mr. Koga to pay money back, my acquaintance is trying to make his case.

    Furthermore, Koga Hansuke recently wrote and published a book. He has received payments from customers but has not sent the books. This is a complete scam.

    Mr. Koga was renting a workplace in a private village run by Tamana City in Kumamoto, but he stopped renting there at the end of March (2020). It turns out that he was only renting the space at the Folk Village, the problem was that they allowed it without properly vetting Mr. Koga. I realize that the person in charge understands that non-Japanese who live in places like the private folk villages will also become a kind of advertisement/attraction. However, I would like to ask those who lend without checking carefully to reflect a little on their actions .

    In any case, we will pursue Koga Hansuke to stop using Japanese traditional crafts as a cover. This is a notice for Japanese and International swords enthusiasts to be careful.

    Koushiro Izumi
    Trustee: Nihonto Bunka Shinko Kyokai (NBSK)

    • Like 5

  4. First one suggests Hirata Hikozo in style but work suggests school work or later utsushi.

    Second, I agree with Peter that it looks like Umetada Myoju but again, while this work appears well done, it's not as bold or well executed as Myoju, so would have to plumb for school work or later ustsushi.

    Both very nice though and I'm also a fan of copper or brass tsuba.


  5. I prefer the overall look of the radish/daikon tsuka. I like the earthy tones, the more elegantly shaped tsuka and the tsukamaki is well done and blends/flows in to the fuchi and kashira much better than the horse tsuka.

    The horse fittings look good and the nanako is reasonably well done but the tsuka looks stumpy, there are no curves to it, the ito looks so so and does not flow while the kashira knot looks enormous.

    • Like 1

  6. Yes, hira-zukuri katana. I owned one once, a rather slim example, and it did not feel very substantial. Rather like it would bend if you swung it too hard.

    I understand(I'm not a sword swinger) that they make very good soft target cutters but can very easily take a bend if not handled well. There's a modern made katana in hira-zukuri, I forget the maker, that does very well in tamashigiri competitions. Apparently it's made rather thick and wide to try and prevent bends, but it still does.


  7. Modern made menuki in shakudo with gold/gilt highlights.

    I won these in an auction many years ago. I was bidding against Keith Larman, Rip my good man, and he told me that they were made by a jeweler friend of Ted Tenold. The auction was not by Ted, so I can't verify that story, but there's a letter 'A' on the underside which was apparently requested by Ted in order to distinguish these from top quality antiques.

    Length is 42mm. Box included.

    Price is US$400 and I will include regular shipping and paypal fees in that.

    post-298-0-63669900-1582550958_thumb.jpg

    post-298-0-63507600-1582550997_thumb.jpg

    post-298-0-86460700-1582551070_thumb.jpg

    • Like 1

  8. Hi Chris.
    You say an aikuchi tanto..."aikuchi" relates to the koshirae and means 'without tsuba'(not sure on the exact translation) and your koshirae has a tsuba. Because it's a small tsuba, it is refered to as a "hamadashi" koshirae. So, technically, you have a tanto in hamadashi koshirae.

    • Like 1

  9. Probably a modern made addition done so the tsuba could be mounted without installing 'proper' sekigane or hammering the steel around the ana to fit a nakago.

    Adding sekigane can potentially damage the patina on the tsuba as you have to hammer it in to position which is a lot easier to write/say than do.

    I sold the tsuba below a long time ago and the new owner wanted to mount it so I made the 'odd' sekigane to facilitate that. I made the ana undersized so the new owner just had to file the sekigane a little for a perfect fit.

    post-298-0-90137600-1578719612_thumb.jpg

    • Like 3

  10. 'Nihonto Swords of Japan; A Visual Glossary' - by Kajihara Kotoken, 1989.

    Two volumes, one of 250 pages and the other 600. Approximate size 10 inches by 14 inches.

    Weight is around 12lbs.

    This book illustrates and explains practically every and any part of a sword and its fittings.

    Both books are in slipcovers: both books are in excellent condition with no damage and the slipcovers are in very good condition with minor marks.

     

    Price is US$475 and that includes paypal or TT fees and international shipping.

    PM me if you want to discuss or negotiate the sale.

     

    post-298-0-63606000-1567235302_thumb.jpg

     

    • Like 1
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