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francois2605

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Everything posted by francois2605

  1. Adding 2 more cents to the thread This is a very nice tachi by the gendai smith Hizen Tadaaki, dated 1940 (koki ni sen roppyaku nen), apparently this is a custom order (as per the nakago) mixing 2 different steels hence the high contrast in the layers. The sword has a very pronounced koshi-sori, at least one kirikomi on the mune and is stored in a top notch shirasaya with koppamaki and gold-wash habaki.
  2. He's the one David Hofhine referred me to after explaining he was no longer accepting commissions from abroad.
  3. My 2 cents to this wonderful thread. This is a mumei seki gendaito katana in shin-gunto koshirae, the hada is a very regular masame and the hamon sanbonsugi. One of my favorites.
  4. Interesting, and a good reminder that we depend on invisible people correctly doing their job. I always assume that shipping a package isn't rocket science but it's surprising the number of mistakes I've seen which made me wonder what had happened. Once I had a package from Japan (containing a tsuba) sent to a remote town in France (Seyssinet Pariset) where I've never been (and will probably never go). The correct address was in Paris. I will never know how Paris magically became Seyssinet Pariset during the shipping. It took me 10 frantic calls to the carrier hotline and several emails to the Japanese seller to get this sorted out. Another time, I got a katana sent from Japan automatically sent back to the seller with the rationale "Delivery refused" (supposedly by me). At that time, I was at home, waiting for the delivery, noone rang at the door... That feeling when you refresh the tracking page and read "Package sent back to sender" The package was then sucked into a black hole for 6 weeks with no way to know if it was still in France, in transit to Japan or lost... Eventually the package showed up in Japan and was delivered to me in 3-4 days.
  5. Things must have changed because according to this french government official page, the receiver has now to pay: 1) the french VAT (20% or 5.5% for antiques) on the total value 2) customs fees if the value is above 150 euros I've also read multiple reports since last week about customers having bad surprises when buying items from UK despite "all things being like before".
  6. We can't really answer this question for you since everyone has its own personal tastes. I can only talk about my (limited) personal experience which should still help answer your questions. I haven't been exposed to a lot of swords because opportunities to see them in France are quite limited (a couple behind a glass pane in a museum, some antique sellers in Paris, a token once in a while (when it doesn't get cancelled because of **** COVID), etc). I thought I knew what I liked (that is old swords) until I got to buy an amazing gendaito via NMB and this truly opened my eyes: gendaito which are (kind of) frowned upon by nihonto collectors can be truly amazing ! Then I started collecting wartime blades, something which would have never crossed my mind before this experience. Likewise I thought that what I liked was the sword itself so I didn't mind having them in a shirasaya until I bought a couple of shin-gunto and realized "Oh man, those shin-gunto on my sword rack are so beautiful" So now, if I had the choice I would rather buy the sword with a koshirae than in a shirasaya alone. I think you have those questions because you still haven't been exposed to enough swords to know what you really like so my advice would be to meet collectors (if possible) and determine what your tastes are: you will see things that you didn't know existed and you will think "THIS is what I want in my collection"
  7. I just bought a wakizashi from Luis and he's a very nice person to deal with, always responsive to requests and messages. As often, the sword was better in hands than in pictures.
  8. I counted 144 tsuba (which is 12 x 12), I think you reached perfection. One more would break the symmetry. Joke aside, that's a nice collection you have here, thanks for sharing. About your question, I would say it depends on multiple factors: - Your financial means - Whether you're still having fun adding new pieces - Whether you have the room to store them - Your wife's tolerance
  9. Did you buy it from Hitendo ? They seem to have nice swords but I never took a chance because I think they're not good enough at shooting swords: The details of the hada and hamon are usually not visible in their pictures.
  10. Could you please provide pictures of the nakago (both sides), a full picture of the bare blade and measurements (nagasa, sori, motohaba, etc). Those pieces of information will help selling your sword.
  11. @1kinko: Open Robert's profile page here and click the button "Message" to send him a Personal Message (PM):
  12. I don't know the history of those 2 prints and I could be completely wrong but my impression was that the second print was issued because it was not possible to source the book because of the limited number of books available on the market (owners would not sell their copy).
  13. That's an interesting topic with interesting answers. 1. The hada. I used to look the hamon first because that's the most visible feature of a sword and one day I purchased a gendaito (via NMB) with a vivid masame and this made me realize the swords I had bought until then were missing this critical feature. The hamon has to be there but I put more emphasis on the hada now. 2. Utsuri like others. I read about it, didn't understand what that meant. Then I attended my first (and only) token in France in October 2019 where a sword with utsuri was displayed. I had the sword in hand and was unable to see the utsuri until someone mentioned it. That's my only experience with utsuri: one of those where you realise that you can't understand until you see it by yourself. 3. Can you explain the secrets of quenching a sword ? How do you predict the final curvature ?
  14. Since noone said it... About the stamp on the "other side", you can find more information in Bruce's great reference doc here ( More specifically: It would be great if you could show close-up pictures of the hamon, kissaki and hada. Edit: You can read more about that famous company on Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/South_Manchuria_Railway
  15. In case you don't have the book George mentioned.
  16. Oh Neil, this is gorgeous 😍 Can you share the translation of the kinpun-mei (if you have it) ?
  17. There is a Yoshikuni in "An Oshigata Book of Modern Japanese Swordsmiths 1868-1945", just adding the info about him here.
  18. I second JP's advice about Akamatsu Taro. You can often find them online on Japanese sites. There's one currently for sale in Europe here: https://www.japanszwaard.nl/z21.html (JP pointed me to this page earlier) The blade is absolutely massive, you will be shocked just by the size of the shirasaya.
  19. Aoi Arts just added a Mantetsu to their inventory: here. Attaching the picture here for posterity.
  20. Thanks all for your answers, this is very informative. Neil, I'm stunned by the koshirae on your 2nd picture: what a beauty 😍
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