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Katana Identify Help

Discussion in 'Sword Discussion' started by MichaelWestwood, Oct 12, 2019.

  1. MichaelWestwood

    MichaelWestwood

    12
    Oct 12, 2019
    Hi All, I bought this katana at a knife shop. I haven't taken it apart yet to look for a signature. I just knock out the peg? Anything to watch out for when taking apart?
    From these pictures any idea how old this might be and from where/whom?
    Thank you.
    https://photos.app.goo.gl/dFeS8HPwXYUYbBrE8
     
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2019
  2. MichaelWestwood

    MichaelWestwood

    12
    Oct 12, 2019
    Post
     
  3. Triton

    Triton Gold Member Gold Member

    Aug 8, 2000
    I do not claim any particular expertise but it looks like a low quality Chinese katana (Tachi actually) approximation. In short pretty mich what I would expect to find at most knife shops. I personally would not bother to take it apart.
     
    MichaelWestwood likes this.
  4. MichaelWestwood

    MichaelWestwood

    12
    Oct 12, 2019
    What makes you say that? It’s clearly handmade - the hamon is too uneven/broken to be otherwise?
    I think the mokume grain structure is beautiful. You have seen this in low quality Chinese swords?
    Also you can’t tell from pics...but it looks and feels old. The lacquer has micro cracks. The knife shop got it from a guy who owned a pawn shop 30 years ago. An old man brought it in and said it is from WWII. I think it’s much older.
     
  5. MichaelWestwood

    MichaelWestwood

    12
    Oct 12, 2019
    Triton - why do you say Tachi? Tachi’s have much more curved blades (very little curve in this blade) Plus they are worn blade down. This is blade up. So Katana, no?
     
  6. horseclover

    horseclover Basic Member Basic Member

    Nov 21, 2000
    Welcome aboard

    No. The hangers are fitted on the spine side, so the edge would be on the bottom when worn. It is indeed a knock off of a genuine sword. There is no real reason to take it apart. A little knowledge goes a long way to understanding this to be a decorative sword.

    https://www.japaneseswordindex.com/

    Cheers
    GC
     
    MichaelWestwood likes this.
  7. MichaelWestwood

    MichaelWestwood

    12
    Oct 12, 2019
    Hi
    Hi GC,
    So if there is a mei it’s probably a fake?
    What else indicates a knock-off?
    Is it a handmade knock off?

    Thanks for your reply.
     
  8. MichaelWestwood

    MichaelWestwood

    12
    Oct 12, 2019
     
  9. MichaelWestwood

    MichaelWestwood

    12
    Oct 12, 2019
    Also, is it hard to take apart and put back together? I mean why won’t I want to take it apart to see what’s there?

    Thanks
     
  10. horseclover

    horseclover Basic Member Basic Member

    Nov 21, 2000
    Given an opportunity for you to learn, it does not appear anything I might further offer will help you understand what you believe to be authentic is a decorative sword.

    Enjoy
    GC
     
  11. MichaelWestwood

    MichaelWestwood

    12
    Oct 12, 2019
    I don’t know if it’s authentic or decorative. That’s why I’m posting on here!
    But a link to a bunch of articles is not helpful. I simply want to know WHY it’s decorative. All of the things that you see that point to that. If you don’t want to tell me - no worries.
     
  12. SouthernComfort

    SouthernComfort Gold Member Gold Member

    456
    Dec 8, 2011
    I hate to be blunt, but after reading the previous posts it is clear you don't want help with this.
    You only seem want someone to agree with your preconceived notion that it is Japanese and you didn't get ripped off.

    Read this slowly and let it sink in: CHINESE FAKE !!!

    "What makes you say that?" "I simply want to know WHY it’s decorative"
    Obviously not what you want to hear but, everything about this thing screams Chinese fake!
    Blade geometry is wrong!
    Hada is wrong!
    Bohi and boshi are horrible!
    The entire koshirae is wrong, fittings are clearly not Japanese!
    You did not provide a photo of the nakago (Tang) or mei but I will bet you $500 it is wrong also!

    "Also you can’t tell from pics...but it looks and feels old."
    Yes I can and no, it does not!

    "the hamon is too uneven/broken to be otherwise?"
    It may be handmade or partially handmade, but if it was, it was handmade in China!

    "I think the mokume grain structure is beautiful. You have seen this in low quality Chinese swords?"
    Yes, it is one of the first things that indicates a Chinese fake.

    "An old man brought it in and said it is from WWII. I think it’s much older."
    He was wrong. You are wrong, it's not!

    "I mean why won’t I want to take it apart to see what’s there?"
    They are just telling you that it is a pointless, waste of time.

    This post clearly indicates that you have absolutely no knowledge regarding Japanese swords. But thats ok, let this be a lesson for you. Study, read, learn before you throw your money away again.

    I am providing you with a couple of links which may help. Here you can read some basic info and look at some legitimate Japanese swords.
    If you would like some help in acquiring a genuine Japanese sword contact me, I will point you in the right direction.
    http://yakiba.com/beginner_page.htm
    http://yakiba.com/Newlisting.htm
     
    MichaelWestwood likes this.
  13. MichaelWestwood

    MichaelWestwood

    12
    Oct 12, 2019
    Thank you all.

    I agree it’s a Chinese fake now. How do I delete this thread?
     
  14. MichaelWestwood

    MichaelWestwood

    12
    Oct 12, 2019
    SouthernComfort I very much appreciate your bluntness and detailed response. Thank you.
     
  15. SouthernComfort

    SouthernComfort Gold Member Gold Member

    456
    Dec 8, 2011
    :thumbsup:

    Don't be distraught, you are far from the first person to make this mistake. The key is knowledge, but knowledge is only gained by desire and the willingness to study and learn.

    "Knowledge is Power"
    -Sir Francis Bacon 1597
     
    JJHollowman and MichaelWestwood like this.
  16. Triton

    Triton Gold Member Gold Member

    Aug 8, 2000
    I guess my knee jerk reaction here is that perhaps it would be wise to move slowly on that.
     
  17. Triton

    Triton Gold Member Gold Member

    Aug 8, 2000
    As previously noted Japanese swords are not my particular area, but even to the casual observer this one has major problems. Those were already addressed above. Most of us blew it on our first sword. This one is better than the one I bought. Even in my area I would be extremely careful in purchasing purported originals. I know many things to look for... But not everything to look for. There is no substitute for study and research.
     
    MichaelWestwood and JJHollowman like this.
  18. JJHollowman

    JJHollowman

    593
    Jul 16, 2016
    Even with all this above being said if it has an actual hamon it's probably 1045 carbon steel-meaning you can enjoy some light cutting with it. Start slowly to be on the safe side. Light cutting means water bottles, large fruit and rolled up and taped newspaper or cardboard, not hardwood or bones. Always do side cuts, never use it like a meat cleaver because if it snaps guess where the snapped off portion will go? - Back at you. One side of the peg is smaller than the other, tap the small side and it should come out. If you mess it up, whittle a chopstick from a takeout place into a new peg, you wouldn't be the first to do that.
     
  19. Bigfattyt

    Bigfattyt Gold Member Gold Member

    Jun 23, 2007
    I can't see the pics at all.

    I own no Japanese swords. I've read, watched videos, perused real examples for years, watches videos of Japanese Smith's make them...and also many videos and WIP's for foreign sword smiths making their versions.


    I'd not be confident in buying one my self, outside of some recommended sources here.

    Stick around and use the knowledge here. It is a valuable resource, even if you are not in the market for a Japanese sword.
     

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