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Peter Bleed

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Peter Bleed last won the day on May 11 2020

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About Peter Bleed

  • Rank
    Sai Jo Saku
  • Birthday 11/03/1943

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    Male
  • Location:
    Little Rock, AR
  • Interests
    Sendai Kunikane, Ainu blades and artifacts, Namban fittings, rapiers

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    Peter Bleed

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  1. The thread we have been having on osoraku-blades got me thinking about ways that Japanese (and I suppose other) craftspeople have made use of damaged, incomplete or otherwise compromised weapons, armor, and other related gear. Actually, I thought about this situation right after I hit the “send” button on a note to that thread and went over to see what was being provided on Ebay. There I saw a ‘kayakuire’ (call it a powder flask) that looked suspiciously like it was made of a pair of old lacquer sake cups with the bases removed and the rims glued together. That got me thinking about other re-purposed and re-used samurai gear and I thought of some other items that fit that description. Think of all those nice old kozuka that became fork handles. My personal feeling is that lots of the brass embellished tsuba of the early Edo period were Muromachi-age plane-janes that got “tarted up” after peace broke out. If that happened in early Edo times, just look at what happened in the Meiji era. The line between menuki and tobacco pouch ornaments seems suspicious. I recall seeing inro made of armor pieces. And the heavily repouse’d iron fittings on Sendai tansu cabinets really look like old armor elements. I have seen a couple of mekugi-nuki that were made of old sword nakago, in fact I carry one myself. I am also really interested in all those nice old matchlocks that got “modernized” with percussion cap locks or even bolt actions. What should we think about such items? Are they “fakes” and misrepresentations? Should be hate them or at least avoid them? Is ubu aways better? Or are these sorts of things normal residues of sword use and artistry? Peter
  2. BINGO!. I think these are overwhelmingly re-purposed sections of daito blades that have lost their potential to survive as legal, intact, "swords." They may have been damaged or "demilitarized". This kind of work can make use of blade that would otherwise be valueless scrap iron. It also can provide work for skilled smiths who can register only 12 swords a year. I think skilled kaji could slightly increase the sori a bit, even way back on a blade. But there is no way for them to add a kaeri to the - ahhh - boshi. Blades like this are probably easier to export than daito, and they have a rather sexy look that might appeal to naive international markets. They may not even have to go through the whole registration process. For all those reason I think that sword historians working in the 22nd Century will see these are one of the features of the time we are in now. Peter
  3. Gee, I should have looked before I leapt, I asked this question a couple of years ago here on the NMB - but I was also recently shown another. It seems fair to suggest care and suspicion with these. Peter
  4. I've asked my question in the title of this thread. Yes, yes, I know that the term is an old one, but it sure seems to me that there are more of these blades nowadays than there used to be. And they often looked, ahhh, "adjusted". Peter
  5. Paul, This quip had me buffaloed for a moment, but as a Plainsman, I figured it out. P
  6. Once again NMB has worked. First level sources make bisen removal sound easy and routine, but the reality seems to be more complex. Thank you all. I'll be in contact! Peter
  7. How hard is it to "unload" a Japanese matchlock? I have a couple of tanegashima that I have never "unloaded." Are there tricks and hints that I should know about before trying to remove the "bisen" bolts? Peter
  8. Hey, Hamfish, show us the rest of the - ahhh - article. I want to read the whole thing and see how it ends. P
  9. I would like to provide you with "a good picture", but this is what I can share.
  10. I'm not feeling very well cared for the NMB. This is MY (!) kabuto. I started this discussion. I asked for the help and advice of this community. I mentioned no names but I asked - with full respect - the wisdom of this community. My assessment is that the NMB is a good place to go to if you are at a pawn shop and need help weeding out modern Chinese fakes. Peter
  11. Thanks Uwe! You offer very useful insights! I am very concerned that the lacquer on the shikoro looks very fragile. Is there any hope??? Peter
  12. Since I've got you helping me with one helmet, please let me me show another. I am NOT an armor collector, but we tend to end up with stuff. I paid a fair amount a couple years back to have some work done on this kabuto. Truth to tell, I'm not sure I feel like it was a satisfying investment. Peter
  13. At some point "sword" collecting will become familiar and easy, but basically it still is one learning curve after another. No one ever taught me how to photograph the inside of a mempo
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