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Surfson last won the day on February 13

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    Bob S

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  1. Yes, still have mine, a wakizashi that I bought in the mid '80s. I think I described in an earlier thread how I accidentally smuggled it out of Japan in my suitcase without realizing it has to be surrendered to the police and de-licensed.
  2. Hi Volker, I didn't realize that you follow NMB. It is already in Japan and is getting good reviews. Polish, shirasaya and habaki are being arranged now. I will keep you posted.
  3. The swords were owned by a big time gun collector that went for very flashy things. One blade is mumei and the other likely gimei. I am debating whether to go have a look in hand, since they are about 3 hours away.
  4. Just saw this thread after a long respite. Tom, the sword has lots of utsuri throughout.
  5. I agree with Matt and Ray that the second kanji of the mei looks like Iye, but the references that are easily found don't list such a person. On the other hand, if it is Mune, as Steve has suggested, there are several men it could be. As the you can see, Seth, this is a sport with lots of intellectual challenges and a good bit of fun. I agree with Grey and others that it is unlikely that this sword is worth a polish, but it is most likely worth $150 and you can get your money back, plus extra, on ebay when it comes time to upgrade your nascent collection. As to the maker, whether it is Iye or Mune, it is written in an iconic way, meaning that if you were to search for Sukemune in the books that have Bizen oshigata, his mei would stand out among the others. Enjoy!
  6. It is interesting that the tsuka seem to be wrapped in baleen, or 鯨髭巻 kujirahige maki. There is a NMB thread about a decade or so ago where Reinhard posted that it became fairly common in late Edo and was very popular during Meiji, as many swords for export were wrapped with baleen.
  7. Sorry to hear about the loss of Fred. RIP
  8. I agree that NMB is a very large reference now. I have found that I can find threads in NMB easier using Google than the internal search though, especially if I can remember something about the thread.
  9. Steve, you could be correct, as I seem to recall that this seal was used when he was performing kantei and sayagaki outside of Japan (e.g. in the US). Thanks Curran. Yes, NBTHK has been non committal and disappointing when it comes to kantei of tsuba. I would think that they will have less submissions if their pronouncements reside only in the obvious.
  10. Do either of you know the connection between Tosa Myochin and the famous Myochin that made helmets and armor? I'm just being lazy here, as I'm sure that there are writings on the subject. Also, what is the connection to Tosa swords, like Yoshimichi and other famous early makers? Is it just sharing the same province or is there more?
  11. Very helpful Mauro. I too find that Akasaka has a lot of jagged edges, while Higo and Myochin have fewer and more flowing sukashi shapes. I didn't know about the thickness and contrast of the kebori, but that is something that I will keep my eye out for. Had I not known that it was Myochin, Kamiyoshi might have been another guess.
  12. So sorry to hear that Darcy. I held that sword in my hand two years ago at the Chicago show. It is a real beauty, and I had interest in it, having a wakizashi by the same maker on its way back from Japan soon. I am hoping that your client just put it all in a "safe place" and forgot about it.
  13. It's really not that bad John. If you get a good agent, you let them handle it. The shipping and documentation costs a bit, but that is why most people don't bother unless the sword is of sufficient quality to justify the expense, bother and wait. Your swords sound like they are worth it.
  14. What were the main clues that led you to this conclusion?
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