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Leather Shim for Tightening Tsuba


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My Edo period nihonto has a slightly loose tsuba. It has original seppa and I don’t believe I need replacements. Maybe less than a mm thickness added would tighten everything up. I’ve read on here before about using a leather shim. Any recommendations on what type of leather and where the shim would be placed in fittings? Thank you 

-Mike 

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Seppa come in many different thicknesses for precisely this situation.

You might be better off looking for a set of nominally thicker seppa or just the one.

This often happens as the habaki can indent into the seppa.

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Leather has problems and benefits, the problem being it promotes verdigris on copper alloy, the benefit is that it is easy and forgiving. Adam has made a good suggestion, depending on the amount of play I would consider making one/two out of aluminium foil.

 

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Mike, it is not uncommon for collectors to stack a couple of seppa on one side to tighten things up.   It is worthwhile to accumulate a supply of seppa to have on hand for this purpose.  Often the dealers on Yahoo/Buyee sell huge bags full of them for little money.  

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Mike I have also seen swords with a very thin sepa shim made from white plastic. Most of the ones that I have seen had the white plastic on both sides of the tuba which made it look like it belonged there. The important part is that You are happy with the results.  Good luck

           MikeR

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Yes, I have used old credit cards cut into small strips or squares to great effect in removing play in the Tsuba on a few of my swords. They are easy to precisely fashion and they don't compress or wear like leather, but that being said leather is much better for making Seppa.  

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