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Rai Kinmichi Daisho & Satsuma Masayoshi


seanyx11
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So, I went to my first big sword show in Tampa a couple weeks ago, which was an absolutely amazing experience.  It was one of the best "vacations" I've had in a very long time (actually the ONLY vacation I've had in a very long time as well lol).  I learned so much from so many people, some of whom I thanked in a previous thread I posted last Monday (I think) in the general nihonto related discussion section. 

 

I don't want to get too much off topic here, but I have to, once again, thank all you guys for welcoming me into the community proper at the show.  Especially Bill M, Grey D, Mark J, Andy Q and most importantly Arnold F.  Arnold was kind enough to share a table with me and has been extremely generous in sharing his wealth of knowledge about Nihonto.

 

Ok, now that that is out of the way, let's get to the meat & potatoes here.  I wasn't planning on buying anything at the show at all really, but as fate would have it, I ended up with 2 gorgeous blades.  The 1st blade is a 3rd gen Izuma no kami Rai Kinmichi katana that I just happened to stumble upon at Andy Q's table.  Some of you may remember that my first proper, papered nihonto was a 3rd gen Rai Kinmichi wakizashi that I bought last summer, which I've been trying to find a katana to match for a daisho.  So, needless to say, I was pretty excited to find this after just a few hours of being at the show on that first morning.  It doesn't have any papers, but I'm 99% sure it will paper at the Chicago shinsa that I'll be submitting it to in April.  Anyway, here's a few pics:

 

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The 2nd is a Satsuma blade that I picked up from Bill M, though this one was not something I was looking for, nor did I really have any interest in, until Bill showed it to Arnold and I (we had the table right next to his, so it quite literally fell in my lap).  I had not previously really showed much interest in shinshinto blades since I wanted to concentrate more on Shinto mostly and Koto if I could afford it.  However, once I saw this beauty, I changed that tune pretty quickly.  Anyway, its a Satsuma Kanko Taira Masayoshi wakizashi and here are some pics:

 

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Sean,

I like the blade. The polish seems to have a good balance with a not so 'heavy' KESHO, as far as I can see from the photos. But what about the chrysanthemum? Is it the angle of the photograph or is it really non-symmetrical?   

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Sean,

 

Apart from the lopsided kikumon already mentioned, I once owned a sandai Izumi no Kami Rai Kinmichi wakizashi that was almost copybook of the Fujishiro example and I think the signature on your katana is right on the money.  Congratulations and do keep us in the loop re Shinsa on this blade.

 

Bestests,

BaZZa.

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Sean,

 

I like the blade. The polish seems to have a good balance with a not so 'heavy' KESHO, as far as I can see from the photos. But what about the chrysanthemum? Is it the angle of the photograph or is it really non-symmetrical?   

 

No, this is just how the sandai Rai Kinmichi made his chrysanthemums.  Non-symmetrical with longer top petals, shorter bottom ones, and a star in the middle.  It's spot on to my Tokubetsu Hozon papered wakizashi  by him.  I knew immediately that it was genuine just from studying my wakizashi so much ;)

 

Sounds like you got your money's worth out of that trip, Sean. Talking with other collectors is a great way to jump months of studying on your own, especially when they can just point at what you're talking about.

 

I did indeed Ken :) I had such a good time talking with everyone and picking their brains.  In fact, I had such a good time I decided to bite the bullet and go to Chicago as well, which I had previously pretty much ruled out to try and save money.  I decided the knowledge and experience was worth it in the end...you can't put a price on good information and experiences like that.

 

Sean,

 

Apart from the lopsided kikumon already mentioned, I once owned a sandai Izumi no Kami Rai Kinmichi wakizashi that was almost copybook of the Fujishiro example and I think the signature on your katana is right on the money.  Congratulations and do keep us in the loop re Shinsa on this blade.

 

Bestests,

BaZZa.

 

I think most people are comparing it to the Iga no kami Kinmichi chrysanthemums, which by comparison, is quite symmetrical and round.  As I said above, this is just how he makes them, his little nuanced way of doing it I guess.  Yes, I would agree for sure on the signature, its a spot on match to my wakizashi by him, fujishiro, and other examples I've seen as well so I'm pretty confident it will pass shinsa with flying colors.

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Hello Sean,

 

again a signature for comparison. Think they both match.

 

Uwe G.

 

Thanks Uwe :) Yes, they definitely both match and this signature is spot on to all other examples I've seen, including yours, fujishiro, and my wakizashi by the sandai.  Here's a pic of my wak nakago for comparison, plus a closer look at the chrysanthemum:

 

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Very nice purchase.  :thumbsup:. Any chance to have them mounted as a daisho ?

 

Thanks Carlo :)  Probably not.  As much as I'd absolutely love to have them mounted in matching koshirae, I don't want to send them to Japan.  I'm sure I can get them done here in the states, but I've yet to see any work that I would feel worthy of these blades other than a professional in Japan.  Plus, it would be another $5k at the very least to have them both properly mounted, not including tsuba, fuchi & kashira.  I'd want to find a matching set of tsuba, fuchi, & kashira, even though I know that was not necessarily the way it was done back in the 1600s.  If you or anyone knows of someone in the states that does high quality koshirae work, let me know...if I can find a nice matching set of hardware, I may do it.

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Got say Sean if we were ever to set up a text book on how to get into Nihonto your experiences would be it!

 

Smart to share a table, shows others sellers your just not a looky loo, and wth AF? well that is a cheery on top, excellent mentor!

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Brian Tschernega (he does full koshirae, not just habaki)

 

John Tirado

 

Thanks for the suggestions Ray :)  I actually know of both these guys, as Arnold actually recommends both of them frequently.  I knew they both did habaki and shirasaya, I just didn't realize they both did full koshirae as well.  Good to know, thank you sir.

 

Got say Sean if we were ever to set up a text book on how to get into Nihonto your experiences would be it!

 

Smart to share a table, shows others sellers your just not a looky loo, and wth AF? well that is a cheery on top, excellent mentor!

 

Wow thanks :) I'm definitely grateful for being able to have these great experiences so early on in my collecting career.  Yes, sharing a table with Arnold was definitely worth it for sure, I'm so glad he accepted my offer to do so.  I'm quite sure having a table with Arnold upped my credibility and standing within the community at the show immediately, such a great experience.

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