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MacTheWhopper

The "What am I" Gunto

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This gunto seems to be an interesting what am i piece. It might have identity issues for sure. It has the naval anchor markings (Toyokowa) but has army fittings and saya. The tsuba is open work, The fittings are all nice and tight on it. What kind of sword is this? I talked to Bruce P on here and he thought it might be one of the four options:

 

1. This is original, but who knows why?
2. This was a post-war put-together (a Bubba may have had a naked blade and found a set of koshirae to fit, not knowing enough about navy/army looks.)
3. This was a G.I. piece-together. There was plenty of that going on as guys returning home, had a blade with missing saya, or completely damaged fittings, and reached into a pile of gunto to find something to fit.

An very thin idea: The Toyokawa arsenal was allowed to remain open after the war, making gunto for souvenirs, sold by the Army PX. They didn't have army fittings, though, they were navy in look, but with gilded army metal pieces. By the looks of the new ito and the pure white same', this rig almost looks like something built as a souvenir, but from real parts. What doesn't fit the idea is the actual worn-looking combat saya.

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I also wondered about the very white, imitation same'. The ones I've seen on gunto are more yellowish, and not so white - so mabye a brand-new, rebuilt tsuka?

 

And a minor edit - stamp is Toyokawa.

 

Kenny,

Did you get a translation on the smith name?

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So, would that be a stainless steel blade? Nakago looks so pristine! Tsuka looks very recent.

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 According to Ohmura some rust resistant blades did go to the Army.. and the Ito does look very new and shiny, but that could be the photo's.

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According to Ohmura some rust resistant blades did go to the Army.. and the Ito does look very new and shiny, but that could be the photo's.

I forgot about that Dave, but you are right about that!

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The plot thickens. So this may have came this way though the tsuka may have been at the very least, re-wrapped. The info on the army swords maybe makes the sword atleast mostly add up, atleast potentially.

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What is the time period of the Toyokawa rust proof blades with the square end nakago? I have a Toyokawa blade without the square nakago, more of a "traditional" profile. My blade only has the Toyokawa stamp, no signiture.

 

Chuck.

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They seem to be very uncommon but stainless/anti rust blades in gunto mounts with learther saya, do pop up occaisonally, and I believe (for whatever that's worth) they were purchased and carried in the field rather than post war mix and matches. No pics but some years back I had a couple in shin gunto mounts, one had better qualitiy furniture with two hangers, the other a single hanger. Both with leather coverings too. At least one was the anti rust type made by Kanenaga and appeared to have a real hamon, very thin light Nioguchi, different than an oil creaeed hamon but not quite the same as water hardened. Everything fit well and seemed to have proper wear in the leather to suggest they saw use.

Regards,

Lance

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