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Accessories for the Tanegashima

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In Eric's time, most of the images we posted here ended up on Pinterest, which caused a reluctance inside me to continue to post here. Sad, because it sometimes caused exactly the opposite of what he truly wanted, a free database for all.


Anyway, starting anew, I thought perhaps here on NMB we could post some of the original tools necessary to the maintenance and use of a Tanegashima-style Hinawa-Ju matchlock.


Such tools could include:


せせりseseri Vent pricker.

ホクチHokuchi Flint, steels, Netsuke ashtray for lighting matchcord.

蒲の穂入 Gama(no)Ho-ire Tinder container

Old 火縄 hinawa matchcords.

A. Large coarse blackpowder flasks. Kayaku-ire 火薬入

B. Smaller fine-powder priming powder flasks.口薬入

早合 Hayago quick-loading tubes

漏斗 Jo-go funnel

薬研 Yagen grinding mortar

(早合)胴乱 Dohran waist pouch (for Hayago)

玉 Tama musket ball

鉛 Namari lead aggregate

玉鋳型 Tama-igata ball mold

玉入 Tama-ire bag for musket ball

烏口 Karasu-guchi Crow-beak ball dispenser

目釘抜・打 Mekugi-nuki/uchi Mekugi pin hammer

尾栓抜 Bisen remover

カルカ Karuka ramrods

的 Target

弾薬箱 Danyaku-bako Battlefield ammo box for ball, powder, cord, etc.

射撃箱 Shageki-bako Firing range accessories box

鉄砲袋 Teppo-bukuro gun bag

鉄砲箱 Teppo-bako gun box

鉄砲の登録書 Registration paperwork for teppo 


There may be mistakes above, or other bits that I have forgotten!  ;-)

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These two items need identification

1. Bullet holder as a Sagemono , this came from a Japanese collection of matchlock goods. Sold as described but I'm not sure.

2. Woven basket to hold bullets. Came off an armor I have as described by seller but not sure




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Just erased my whole comments post!  :bang:   So, start again, and step by step one gets to Rome.  :thumbsup:


Gary, thank you. Post One shows two sweet examples of 口薬入 Koyaku-ire, both in excellent condition with extant caps strings and pins. 口薬 can also be read Kuchi-gusuri, giving us an indication of its meaning, i.e. oral powder or medicine, (for topping up the priming or firing pan). 

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Step 2. Bullet molds and Karasu-guchi crow-beak ball dispenser. Again, very nice examples. 


Word of warning to collectors. A vertical hole through top and bottom plate of mold, easily overlooked, usually indicates insertion of wire for fishing weights, sometimes a later conversion, or more often a later construction, not a ball mold at all. Naturally both ball and fishing weights were made of lead and weighed in Monme, so they did walk a common path.

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Post #3, left pic, Netsuke compass. I really like this, partly because I once collected different types of old Japanese compasses. The container though is I fear a portable water bottle, great in its own right. They are often sold today as powder flasks, but the non-central positioning of the 'straw' is a give-away, often accompanied with a small hole elsewhere on top to draw in air as you drink.


The function of the two flasks in the right photo like that is not clear to me. Can you post opened shots of them? One looks like a Koyaku-ire made from a small coconut...? (I have an old larger Kayaku-ire made from a coconut half, which I will post here in due course.) What is the larger 'eggplant' made of, and how does it open and shut?

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Last post above, where you are not sure regarding the seller's description. I tend to agree with you. The tonkotsu inro is not normally associated with lead ball, but it has to be possible that someone once used it that way...? (I like the Netsuke of the lotus seed pod with frog, by the way.)


The woven object in the middle has strong overtones of archery to me, but no association with guns as far as I can see.


The above are just my personal opinions! Thank you for posting!  :)

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Coconuts. This Kayaku-iré made from a coconut half looks to be from some south Pacific island, but you can just make out what looks like the Chosokabé Mon on the black neck of the top cap.





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  • 2 weeks later...

Recently I have been lucky with finds, small to be sure, but interesting.

One is a Tama-ire double ballbag, one side/slot bag marked 小, and the other 大, (Daisho) so we can guess that the owner possessed and carried two guns of different ball sizes, i.e his small-bore gun and his BIG gun.

The other discovery was inside a bag attached to a blackpowder flask. There was one ordinary lead ball for a smooth-barrel small-bore, and then some strange chips of lead, which I suddenly realized were scatter-gun or shotgun pellets. Since I already had some which came from the jammed barrel of a Shikoku gun I purchased last year, I am now able to show two examples of Edo or earlier shot, as opposed to smooth round musket ball.

See photo:

The single ball and the larger bits on the left came from the ball bag. The smaller shot on the right was down the barrel of a jammed Iyo gun.


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