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ChrisW

O-kissaki Katana

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Hey everyone,

 

I have another blade here to share. It appears to have an o-kissaki.  I believe the patina on the nakago points to it being koto in age. Here are the measurements:

 

Nagasa: 27 inches or 692mm (the measuring tape was not really cooperating and stretching in the heat!)

Sori: .8525 inches or 21.65mm

Width at Habaki: 1.04 inches or 26.52mm

Kissaki Length: 1.6 inches or 40.64mm

Overall Length: 33 inches or 838.2mm

 

The blades overall hamon pattern is obscured but it appears to a form of notare but I cannot honestly say to what degree or if it is simply a more complex pattern hidden by the lack of polish. The blade seems to be healthy enough to receive a new polish and I do not detect any fatal flaws; the yokote is intact as well. I think this blade is on its first polish but someone may have taken a buffing wheel or something similar to it as the metal has a 'slicked' appearance to it. I am also unable to remove the habaki as it is firmly rooted on and appears to already have taken a beating from a previous owner attempting to remove it.

 

Opinions of all kinds are welcome. I bow to the knowledge of my betters!

 

Thanks guys!

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Chris,

we are looking at photos, so nothing I say is 100% safe. To me the blade looks as if it was heavily corroded at one time in it's life and has then landed in the hands of someone with a grinder. Have a close look at the SHINOGI; it looks rounded to me. Then, to show the HAMON, the blade was obviously etched. In the photos it is difficult to see, but it looks as if the HAMON does not continue all the way to the BÔSHI. I suspect the blade could have been in a fire.

The NAKAGO has been tampered with as well, so the original patina seems to be lost. 

Probably others with better eyes can tell you more details.

 

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Dear Chris.

 

It's always difficult to do any sort of informed kantei based on an out of polish sword but here  are some thoughts.  First, 26.52 mms seems very slender for a sword of this length but what that gives us is an ubu sword of 27" length with  an extended kissaki.   You suggest the sword is Koto based on the nakago colour, caution here, the colour and condition of the nakago depends on how the sword has been treated and this seems to have had a hard life.  I would hope for a smoother and deeper patina for a koto sword.  Although it technically qualifies as an o kissaki it does not look like the classic version of that feature.  If I am seeing things correctly the sword has a raise shinogi.  

 

So what we have is an ubu sword, 27" nagasa, maybe a raised shinogi.  If we are looking for the classic o kissaki then Nambokucho, Momoyama or Shinshinto spring to mind.  However if we are seeing a slightly elongated kissaki then perhaps late koto also.  Ubu at this length is not Nambokucho, nothing suggests Shinshinto so we might be looking at late Koto early Shinto.

 

All of this is speculative as we cannot see anything really of the hada or hamon and you don't give the kasane.  I realise that I'm not helping with this word but some things to think about.  Also to remove the habaki a couple of soaks in really hot water should do the trick, obviouslu you are going to dry the sword carefully in between.  Let us know how it turns out.

 

All the best.

 

Crossed post with Jean so all that he said as well!

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I wouldn't call than an o-kissaki - still looks chu, to me. Shinogi is definitely rounded, but the nakago looks okay.

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The shinogi is still present and sharp overall, its the overall slick appearance that made photography difficult. It makes sense that it may have been exposed to an acid, as that would definitely lead to a 'slick' look. I will have to get it into the hands of someone more experienced. I cannot say about the nakago, other than it does look correct to me; but I am nowhere near as experienced as you guys. May I know what makes you believe its been tampered with? I want to know what to watch out for in the future.

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Are you saying that the shinogi should be even more pronounced than it currently is? If so, that does go along with the idea of its heavy mistreatment. In hand, there are places where it is less strong but it is present throughout and does not seem to go off-symmetry. I am also examining the boshi closely, I will see if I can trace a line on an image to show where I think the hamon is.

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Also, what qualifies as an o-kissaki? Is it 1.5 or 2 inches or longer?

 

http://www.ksky.ne.jp/~sumie99/kissaki.html

 

Here he indicates it is 2x the yokote. I think this qualifies it, but I could be wrong.

 

 

When kissaki lenght is egal the moto haba it's called chu kissaki, if it's longer than moto haba, it's called O Kissaki, shorter = ko kissaki  

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