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Stephen

Oil your nakago?

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I have always been a proponent of oiling the nakago.  To me it is simple common sense, the nakago is steel, steel oxidizes and rusts without the magic preventative, oil.

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Some time ago i had read that shinsakuto nakago should be oiled but im not sure what effect this oiling of the black rust will have in centuries.

Also when u wipe the first 8cm downwards some of the oil will always get on the nakago. I do this because i wont carry dirt from the habaki or loose rust over the whole blade.

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I have a shinsakuto i train with. Would the oil have an effect on the structural integrity of the tsuka over time?

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We are talking about a minute amount. Just a spread with the fingertips and then likely wiped off gently anyways.
No ways can that little do anything to a tsuka. I would say if you see drops anywhere, you are using too much.

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When I have a sword with a nakago with active rust, I will take some ivory or horn to it in order to remove the active rust, in the same way that one might do with a tsuba.  After removing the rust to my best ability,  I will usually put a thin coat of choji oil on it.   The oil penetrates the remaining active rust and, I believe, will impede the further advancement of the rust.   I have seen a dealer in Japan rub nakago with a lightly oiled cloth as well.

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I never speak of "oiling my nakago" but i have been doing it :laughing: for years

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