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New member, need advice on a blade/koshirae

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Hello all,

My name is Laurent, and I always had interest in Nihonto. For decades. I try to educate myself the best I can on the subject with books and internet, but nothing replaces expertise from other people, and this place seems to the best for that!

I always dreamt to buy a genuine antique blade with a "soul". Until I could afford an antique, I bought a modern katana, just to train how to respect it, and to learn how preserve a blade from rust and other aggressions over time.


I found this katana on Ebay, and even if the auction ended, I'm still in contact with the seller that kept it aside for me a few days:




It comes with a NTHK origami, that, from what I read, judges more the quality of the blade that its historical value. Please could you help me and have a look at the auction and tell me if, according to your experience and expertise, seller claims are right and it is worth purchasing it.


This would be my first buy and my first step in the world of blades collecting, and I don't want to make a mistake funded by lack of experience. ANy expertise on the blade/fittings would be much appreciated!


Thansk a lot!



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It comes with a NTHK origami, that, from what I read, judges more the quality of the blade that its historical value.

NTHK kanteisho is just an appraisal about the school and area, and it grant you that it is a genuine Japanese blade traditionnaly made.

This kind of paper, it is not for the quality such as NBTHK Juyo for example.



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Checking the sellers completed listing you will note that most items have been listed several times with few sales. Use the information if you want. I agree that seeing a blade in hand is the best way to go. If you can attend a sword show you would have a lot of choice at all levels of purchase.

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Hi Laurent,

Delamination may be somewhat common for blades of this age but it is a defect and can seriously decrease value. The seller seems to know sword terminology but chooses to fib about the nagasa (he measures from tip to back of habaki, not to mune machi). The grain seems to be very coarse; the sword might be very tired. I can't be sure but the kissaki seems a bit misshapen in his pictures; it may have been broken and reshaped. The mounts appear to be mediocre.

My opinion, which doesn't amount to much, is that for the money you can do better. Spend more time in study. Throw yourself at the subject and learn as much as you possibly can. On the other side of your study you'll be able to make an informed decision.


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Dear Laurent,


apparently the seller did not read his paper at all. The era stated there is Ten-sho (1573) So it is rather Kun 657 who is a 15pts. smith. Off course 55pts and Nanbokucho period make the blade sell better.

Still the sword is not a bad buy if you deduct a new polish from the asking price.


Regards, Martin

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My opinion is the following:


You are a beginner in the field, so forget e-bay and have a look at the comercial sites listed in Dr Stein website. AT more than 90% you will find on e-bay swords which cannot easily find a buyer elsewhere.

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Is it sword-buyers-guide.com ?


Laurent, SBG is for low-priced, non-traditionally made, modern replica swords of various types, it is a good forum and has its place in the 'sword world', I am a member there also, however this forum is exclusively for the discussion of real Nihonto and related arts. The two are really quite different ;)



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I found this katana on Ebay




as other members have already advised: stay away from eBay. My only remark is: a shorter sword, like wakizashi, is also nihonto. Just that it often comes with a better price/value ratio. There is an excellent article by Paul Bowman in the "Articles"-section, titled: "Size doesn't matter!" Get it and read it.

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