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How to measure for new koshirae?


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Hello Everyone,

 

I am seeking some advice on how to measure for my sword fittings. I have a few blades in need of a new habaki, tsuba and tsuka. I was wondering if there was some golden rule measurement to make sure the fit for each item is correct and lines up with the mehugi-ana. And for the habaki, how to measure and ensure it fill fit snugly on the blade, and will also fit the tsuka and tsuba!

 

I have been shopping for new koshirae on the Japanese auction sites, and it would help me to know what to look for, as most of them have measurements posted. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
 

Thank you in advance,

 

Gordon S

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Hi Gordon,

It isn't difficult to find tsuba to fit a sword but habaki and tsuka have to be made to fit the nakago and the craftsperson will have to have the sword in hand to do that.  Trying to find existing pieces to fit, especially the habaki, is a waste of time.

Grey

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Agreed, in full. There are just too many dimensional elements to try to fit an existing set of koshirae & tosogu to a blade. Many moons ago, I managed to kluge something together, but, looking at the assembly a year or so later, it was obvious that I'd wasted both time & money.

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On 12/12/2020 at 6:50 PM, PNSSHOGUN said:

It can be exceedingly difficult to find existing Koshirae to match a blade, considering each Koshirae is custom fitted to a sword. Have you thought about having Koshirae made using existing antique fittings?

That is a really good idea, and likely my only option. Either this or shirasaya, as the blades are bare currently. How would this work, and what is the name of the trade that does this? Are these people easy to locate? I know polishers are very rare around here (I am in Canada). 

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On 12/12/2020 at 7:35 PM, Grey Doffin said:

Hi Gordon,

It isn't difficult to find tsuba to fit a sword but habaki and tsuka have to be made to fit the nakago and the craftsperson will have to have the sword in hand to do that.  Trying to find existing pieces to fit, especially the habaki, is a waste of time.

Grey

Thank you so much! What would the craftsperson be called? Is there a term or? I know polishers are very hard to find around here., but not sure what a koshirae maker would be called. 

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On 12/13/2020 at 4:28 AM, Ken-Hawaii said:

Agreed, in full. There are just too many dimensional elements to try to fit an existing set of koshirae & tosogu to a blade. Many moons ago, I managed to kluge something together, but, looking at the assembly a year or so later, it was obvious that I'd wasted both time & money.

Yes, may just get some custom stuff made, and put on a better tsuba and menuki etc. 

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