Jump to content
Bruce Pennington

Attention Mantetsu Owners: A Survey

Recommended Posts

BTW- The tsuba is 3/8 inches thick. Also, read something about origami... would or could this sword qualify?  I'm kind of thinking No...

IMG_7437.JPG

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Nikki,

I've attached an origami for you:

origami.thumb.jpg.22ba0055ec9b954c81871bfc28523da5.jpg

 

Sorry! Couldn't resist that one! Ha!  If you mean that it could receive papers from Shinsa, we do know that Mantetsu blades are starting to get papered.  It's at the "historical value" rating.

 

As to fixing up your gunto, you aren't being specific.  Do you mean a blade polish?  I had mine polished by David Hofhine.  It costs over $2,000, so you'll need a good hobby-fund account, but it's worth it.  Oh, and the wait-list is about 2 years.

KissakiLt.thumb.jpg.698606e81b30fdc8aa9063cc1ef11ae6.jpgPolished1.thumb.jpg.0e791198c3bd92be9c1d8a76baa2559e.jpg

For the tsuka (handle) re-wrap, there are a number of guys, and someone might have a good recommendation.  I've never dealt with it.  I believe Fred Lohman does it, but there are others too.  If you try Lohman, use the phone number.  I never get an answer to email from them.

Edited by Bruce Pennington
  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

LOL! I love it !  It definitely needs polish, but blade has a couple rough spots on cutting edge and of course the tsuka.  Two year wait ?! :shock:  

Historical value means more to me than dollar value.  I don't have to sell it but stupid for me to keep it, if I can find the best home for it whether it be a private collector or museum.... Especially for Historical reasons.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I requested a photo of the nakago mune.  Buyee says they'll forward the request and get back with me.

 

I won't be surprised to find a blade that was a special order.  We have seen presentation Mantetsu, and tachi Mantetsu.  But we haven't seen a convincing blade with such a hamon yet.  Hopefully we'll get a reply on the serial number request.

 

I'd still like to hear what the added comment is under the date.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Date is   Showa Mizuno-e Uma Haru     Spring (March-April) year of Horse (1942)

 

Below date:   Taka Nobu Yaku Kore     (Takanobu Yaki-iye Kore)   "Takanobu did the yaki-ire"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We have another Mantetsu with the same inscription by Takanobu.  It's a Spring '42, where this new one is Winter '42.

The mei cutting is different on each, but that could be due to different mei cutters (word for that?).  Both have the wavy hamon:

Collage 2020-12-28 23_41_56.jpg

MantetsuTakanobu1.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What I think is weird about those wavy Hamon is that the Hamon look just like the type of Hamon you’d have on a Seki made blade. It doesn’t necessarily mean they are fake Mantetsu, but I wonder if they were actually made in Manchuria or at the Seki factory.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, 16k said:

I wonder if they were actually made in Manchuria or at the Seki factory.

All we know about Takanobu is that he was the engineer managing the Mantetsu blade production for SMR.  Of course this doesn't preclude him from traveling, and working with a smith in Seki to try his hand at some of the craft, but it's simply not known.

3 hours ago, mecox said:

the winter blade looks pretty rough......more like a copy?

Yes, oddly, the winter blade mei is the worst I've ever seen on a Mantetsu, while this Spring 1942 mei looks good.  The serial number on the W42 is ヤ 246, which is the correct katakana for the year, but the "winter" stands out because all the other "YA" numbers are "Autumn."

 

1942.thumb.jpg.6aadf75ef7b2502cc389dea660d6df06.jpg

 

I got an email back from Buyee, and they simply said "Oh sorry, we see you're not eligible to buy this item.  See ya!" and didn't answer my question!  Grrrr.  I'll try again with more explanation.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

SO!  Thanks to Kelly (Japan auctions), we got word from the seller of the latest, Spring '42, Takanobu blade, that there IS NO serial number!  Argggggh.  The first one we found, Winter '42, has a serial number that is appropriate for the 1942 year, but the mei is ugly for a Mantetsu (which could be explained by the idea that Takanobu, himself, cut the mei).  This latest one has perfect, beautiful Mantetsu styled mei, but no serial number!  And both have wavy hamon, not the standard suguha, but you would expect that in a custom blade made by a big-shot in the company that doesn't normally smith blades.  Hrumph! 

 

The first one, linked above by Thomas, was posted in 2009, quite a few years before we started seeing suspect Mantetsu blades coming out of Japan.  So, to me, the evidence tilts toward legit.  This second one comes out in the gimei Mantetsu age, with great mei, but no serial number. So, it could be a fake, and the forger missed the detail about the serial number. 

 

I just don't picture a gimei forger knowing the Mantetsu operation well enough to say "Gee, let me pick an obscure, almost unknown engineer in SMR to the collecting world, to create a faked custom blade".

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

These high end fakes are not made by amateurs, they have complex attributions and signatures along with well made blades. Considering how valuable any registered Mantetsu blade is in Japan (6-7Kusd for a regular one) there is big money in making these unique and special examples. 

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just a question, does anyone own a MANTETSU with a MON? I can't remember seeing any, I am sure they must exist, but so far they have eluded me.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Have never seen one before, it is the same with Zohei-To. Perhaps as these were mounted by the factory there was no option available for adding Mon.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Unfortunately, most of my files photos are only nakago pics.  Of the several where I started keeping fittings, too, I haven't seen a mon (though I haven't gotten through them all yet).  Technically a mon, though not a kamon (family name), the tachi presentation swords have the SMR mon on them.

20161125_154549_2.jpg

post-1868-0-99559300-1556080352.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am of the opinion that the swords linked below could be the final variation made by Mantetsu during the war.  This is based upon the one known serial number and the style of fittings used.  The only known serial number follows after the previous recorded Mantetsu serial numbers.  The fittings on the final variation are identical to the fittings used by Mantetsu on the swords made for the army in 1944.  Any comments, corrections, or constructive criticism welcomed.

 

Mumei with unknown nakago mune markings.

Late War Army Officer Sword

 

Mumei with い 一一七〇 nakago mune markings.

Attention Mantetsu Owners: A Survey (Post #470)

 

Mumei with Japanese numbers on the nakago mune.

Attention Mantetsu Owners: A Survey (Post # 488)

 

 

 

1945-made-mantetsu-swords-cropped-copy.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
19 hours ago, Kiipu said:

the final variation

I'm with you on this.  The mumei blades are in the 1945 serial number range and are only found in the unique late war fittings only found with Mantetsu blades.  Whether the fittings were actually made by SMR or simply by a contractor working exclusively for SMR is unknown, but they fit the end-of-the-war discussion about how Japan was transferring sword production out of the mainland and had loosened the mil specs on everything in an effort to keep the supply coming.  This late war variation appears to be the last of the Mantetsu line.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Photos of my Koa Isshin Nakago,  Thomas had been able to identify it from the Mune numbers as Spring/Autmun 1942 but I have since cleaned the Nakago of some of the active rust and the date can be read. This is great as it means the numbers check out for dating swords with obscured Nakago!

Quote

Is this the same sword as reported below?  If so, it is serial number ヤ 七二. (YA 72).

Attention Mantetsu Owners: A Survey (Post #14)

 

This is a 1942 Army contract blade before they changed the markings in 1943 to 満鐵鍛造之. The fact that it is army can still be determined by the 東 inspection mark on the kabutogane.  I carefully looked at the nakago pictures and I can read all of the characters except for one.

Reverse: 興亜一心 満鐵作.

Obverse: 昭和 午秋 (I can not see the middle character which would be 壬).

20210131_174009.thumb.jpg.5b7b43caa721aead5a5a6ca8c9be8596.jpg20210131_174026.thumb.jpg.a8bf012ecc908d908298b1b397a1087f.jpg

20210131_174035.thumb.jpg.b01c275aeb78c7ebd00d0ef2f8455eb8.jpg20210131_174040.thumb.jpg.e0f171ae3bc1ef4362efda3e1f125218.jpg

20210131_173953.jpg

20210131_174000.jpg

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Man, I’ll never cease to love those blades!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, I have two already. Now, if you want to fund me... :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, PNSSHOGUN said:

Spring/Autmun 1942

Thanks for the pics, John!  Yours is the lowest number of the "YA" line, now.  We have a YA 79, so yours was 7 blades before it in production.  Love the backdrop, too, for the photos.

 

I can see it is for sure "Autumn".

Screenshot 2021-02-03 062303.jpg

Screenshot 2021-02-03 062419.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Another wavy hamon Mantetsu.  Kinda odd these are popping up all of a sudden in a clump.  Could be its just coming to my attention in a clump and not in general.

 

Also this one has no stamps/number  on the back of the nakago.

SmartSelect_20210203-135502_eBay.jpg

SmartSelect_20210203-135508_eBay.jpg

SmartSelect_20210203-135513_eBay.jpg

SmartSelect_20210203-135525_eBay.jpg

SmartSelect_20210203-135531_eBay.jpg

SmartSelect_20210203-135546_eBay.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Might be me, but the signature looks off and more recent than the rest of the nakago. And the Hamon looks like a Seki blade.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

×
×
  • Create New...