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Mark S.

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Everything posted by Mark S.

  1. Mark S.

    Tsuba opinions

    My knowledge of tsuba is very limited. Saw this one recently but have no clue what I’m looking at. Any opinions of this one? Mei translation? Is a gold-ish signature normal? Is this tsuba just a decorative item? Thank you.
  2. It also looks like nakago (tang) has been cleaned which will affect value.
  3. Small typo… but Ray caught it in his reference… Kanemori
  4. I tried to do a quick search but was unsuccessful… has there ever been a thread discussing how a polisher treats/polishes horimono? Special techniques, stones and tools? I think it would be extremely interesting! Sorry if it has already been addressed and I just didn’t try hard enough.
  5. Agreed… have learned this first hand on a couple of occasions in the past. One was an ‘infamous’ thread that did not end well. I also have a blade that just came back from polish and another I am waiting for. Both will be going to Shinsa next year (hopefully). The first was thought to be from a school that few seem to like. Not sure I want to share it now or after it comes back from Shinsa… or ever. Will see on the second only because it had a (possibly) more interesting history. As I like to say, I collect in the more ‘conservative’ segment of the community. Sometimes best to just enjoy on my own.
  6. Last 3 kanji are: Hisa kuni saku (“Hisakuni made this”) Still working in first 2 (province).
  7. Two blades sold at a recent auction. I have two questions about nakago I saw on two blades. I’m not asking for opinion on whether you think they are shoshin… it has more to do with condition of one and mei placement on another to help me address a lack of experience on my end. First blade was listed as a Hosho Sadamune. The condition of the nakago threw me, and I have seen this on a couple other blades in the past. They only way I can describe it is the bottom half of the nakago looks ‘muddy’??? Is this natural aging/patina or is there something else going on? The second blade was listed as a 14th Cent Rai Kuniyoshi tachi. While it is signed tachi-mei, is the mei placement above the mekugi-ana correct/common or a red flag? Not asking if mei is good… just not sure if placement is correct?
  8. There were some high end names but none with papers or ‘in-polish’, and few even in acceptable old polish. There may be a few hidden gems, but most were going to require work to find out. There were some nice looking koshirae in the mix.
  9. Both sides of a recent auction blade…
  10. Only going off my initial impression. And that is only worth what it is worth from ‘me’. First few inches of blade from kissaki looked nice but rest of blade looked ???. It was the exact opposite of most of the blades I looked at where the issues where in the first several inches of the kissaki. Look… I’m no expert and I really wish I would have had one of our more experienced members in tow. An ‘experience’ would be to sit next to… say… Bob Benson (example) while looking at these blades and having that expert saying “worth a polish” or “a dog”. I’m sorry that can’t be me…
  11. I’ll be honest, I never got past my discomfort with the nakago and the condition of the blade did not allow for a decent assessment of jigane, or knowing more than the blade having a well defined edge of the suguha hamon. I would say it was fairly tired. I also looked at several blades and my interest was elsewhere so I could have missed finer points because I moved on fairly quickly. Many of the blades were in a pretty poor state of polish and condition. You really had to know what you were looking at, or looking for, to get much info from them. They will need some work to be study blades. Add the time crunch (snuck away from work for a little while ) and number of blades and detailed assessments were difficult and I am not comfortable with my knowledge/experience level to make snap decisions on ‘diamonds in the rough’.
  12. Another frame of reference… look at end bids for the bid items and add the 25% premium. Then consider papers/polish/etc. Add it all up. Now go look at the 2 blades Ray just posted in the For Sale section here to see what $$$ can buy for papered/polished blades. I know this all is IMHO… but I think there were a lot of treasure hunters at the auction. I do hope their speculation was correct… for their sake. And none of this is a slam at any of the buyers at the auction… or an advertisement for Ray. I just am promoting the wonderful opportunity we all have to be a part of the NMB community. Not everyone is so lucky.
  13. 650 Kinmichi $3500 blade $875 premium $2500 polish $500 shirasaya $400 habaki $300 state-side shinsa Does this end up being a $8000 package someday?
  14. I had the chance to go preview several of the blades as I live near Chicago. I was interested and bid on 4 of the items, but won nothing as there were people MUCH more interested than I. I recently made another purchase so funds were limited and I wasn’t serious about chasing anything. My overall impression of the ending bids vs what I saw in hand leads me want to stick with the Chicago Sword Show and dealers here at the NMB. There is a lot of money flying around out there and some items I just did not understand how they ended where they did… but each to their own. I looked at the Norishige and I am nowhere even close to qualified to even make a wild-ass guess about such a blade/gakumei. From the machi to about half way up the blade, it almost had a Mino-like hamon feel to it, and then the rest of the way to the kissaki was more Norishige-like based on what I found on line. The koshirae was nice and solid and someone spent a good sum on that habaki. A blade like that and you would want someone like Darcy to chime in. Either someone got the deal of a lifetime or is gonna be awful disappointed. And to think a Norishige is ‘floating around under the radar’ seems rather implausible. I also looked at the Sadamune and the Rai Kuniyoshi. Once again, two names out of my league. The Sadamune’s nakago looked off… almost ‘muddy’??? Is that normal to age like that? I’ve seen it a couple other times and it always makes me think something is wrong? It may be just my novice inexperience. The Rai Kuniyoshi had some condition issues, the mei I have no idea if good, and the mei placed ABOVE the mekugi-ana threw me. But once again, what do I know. Blades I was interested in resided a little more in the ‘conservative’ section of collecting: 650 - Kikumon Iga no Kami Kinmichi katana: I thought it a solid blade but the mount was ‘meh’. The Kaneiye tsuba was in questionable condition. 662 - Bushu Terushige Wakizashi: was in good condition, but I was least serious about this blade. Would only have bit if it was a steal. 666 - Yamato Masanori Wakizashi: was in pretty good condition and the koshirae was solid. It looked like a pretty nice set, and I almost kept bidding… but then I kept adding in the buyers premium and I just couldn’t do it. Once again, limited funds. 676 - Kaneyoshi tanto: Wasn’t sure about mei, but there was some nice activity and koshirae was very solid.
  15. So did anyone else watch the Hindman Auction that just ended? Did you get anything? Your impressions / opinions… before I give mine…
  16. We’re all gonna look awful silly when it shows up at Darcy’s (yuhindo) website!
  17. New owner is gonna be awful sad when they learn about NMB and come here to ask questions AFTERWARD…
  18. I agree… basically a bare, out of polish, mumei blade of ??? provenance. I’ll make up some numbers (please excuse my ignorance at actual prices): $3200 blade $2000 polish $500 shirasaya $400 habaki (don’t know if existing one could be used/saved? $300 state-side shinsa Any chance this ends up being worth $6400??? OTOH… I would be interested in learning more about it though. Not sure if this style was popular with any specific school / time period? I’m guessing Edo? A unique shape.
  19. OMG!!! I was just going to post this!!! I just don’t get it but am willing to be educated. Can someone even GUESS at what they THOUGHT they saw????? I was kinda interested in the cormorant neck blade, but at $2400 + $720 (30% buyer premium) + $50 shipping (WAG)… is it really an almost $3200 blade? (considering mounts are ).
  20. Next is the display shelves full of fine sipping bourbons, scotch, tequila, cognac, etc. What a wonderful space to spend a few hours.
  21. Oh dear No disrespect, and I’m not a trained togishi… but my initial reaction is this one is pretty far gone and probably beyond saving. I’m sorry.
  22. I initially thought 307 might be interesting simply due to the more unique style of blade but rest of that individual package is nothing to speak of. Taking a chance would only be at a very low bid and appears to now be at $500. Also noticed that the tip of kissaki is broken off(?) and the shape/sugata seems ‘off’??? So hard to tell from those pics and probably not worth the gamble. The lack of more detailed photos leads me in a certain direction. If they were interested in selling, they would provide more and better info/pics… unless they REALLY want these gone and don’t want ‘details’ muddying up the sale
  23. In my opinion (for the 1 penny it’s worth) the seller’s prices are at the top end of the range of what the blades are worth in many cases. Not saying it’s a bad thing, it is what it is. They are experienced and know what they have and what the blades are worth… so not a lot of room to recoup any polishing or Shinsa expenses should you someday sell and probably not an opportunity for treasure hunting. But I also understand that this isn’t always important if you really like it and will be happy no matter what. There was a tanto that sold a while back I wish I would have bought but waited too long because I wasn’t sure. There was a yari that just sold I thought was interesting but did not know enough about and thought was priced on the high side for that type of yari. There is a wakizashi there now that I find the unique shape interesting, but once again do not know enough about and think is priced on the high side for the package as presented.
  24. Thank you… as I don’t want to muddy up Jon’s thread with NBTHK questions, I’ll leave it that your response has educated me that I need to reframe my understanding of the hozon and tok hozon grading criteria.
  25. I am in no position to cast aspersions (and I mean absolutely no disrespect to the organization) and I am thinking like a novice looking for the easy way out to learn, but I do find it interesting that NBTHK can think highly enough of a blade to grade it Tokubetsu Hozon, but not be comfortable enough to give a date/period attribution?
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