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jezah81
27th November 2006, 08:50
Hi Guys,

Something I always hear about and have read about got me thinking. Do shinsakuto blunt faster than the older swords such as the shinto and shinshinto blades? Also, when a nihonto gets blunt is the only way to get it sharp again by sending it to a polisher and get it repolished again or is there a more simple way such as a sharpening stone that anyone can use to sharpen the blade?

Kind Regards,

Jeremy Hagop

Hishaam Bendiar
27th November 2006, 10:59
Hi
Try asking your question at the swordforums (http://swordforum.com/)

cheers

Andy Watson
27th November 2006, 11:00
Jezah

I don't know about the first question but you wouldn't want to try polishing a shinken yourself. I believe it is a highly refined skill to polish and sharpen without taking the hamon out of distinction.

Even when I use a bit of Brasso and a cotton bud to take out any rust spots I hate myself for doing it.

Andy Watson
27th November 2006, 11:01
Jezah

I don't know about the first question but you wouldn't want to try polishing a shinken yourself. I believe it is a highly refined skill to polish and sharpen without taking the hamon out of distinction.

Even when I use a bit of Brasso and a cotton bud to take out any rust spots I hate myself for doing it.

Brian Owens
1st December 2006, 05:47
...Do shinsakuto blunt faster than the older swords such as the shinto and shinshinto blades? Also, when a nihonto gets blunt is the only way to get it sharp again by sending it to a polisher and get it repolished again or is there a more simple way such as a sharpening stone that anyone can use to sharpen the blade?
Often, modern blades are shaped to do well cutting soft test targets (like wara) for demonstrations. As such their niku is often less than older, battle-worthy, blades. So they would tend to get dull faster. But that's not true of all new blades, just many. There are some very good, meaty, blades being produced today if one knows what to look for.

As for sharpening: yes, you can do it yourself; but if it's a valuable sword you run the risk of ruining the aesthetics of the blade if you haven't been trained in the proper methods. If you have an inexpensive "cutter" and you aren't interested in preserving the finer qualities then you could use common sharpening stones and methods, but I wouldn't try it on a true nihonto because you could turn a valuable art object into a weed whacker.

HTH.

jezah81
1st December 2006, 10:53
Thanks to all the answers fellas. Brian, I have also read that many shinshinto blades had scant hira niku also, so in your opinion, would they blunt just as quickly as a shinsakuto?


Kind Regards,

Brian Owens
1st December 2006, 12:25
...Brian, I have also read that many shinshinto blades had scant hira niku also, so in your opinion, would they blunt just as quickly as a shinsakuto?
I'm far from an expert in these matters, but my feeling -- based on my limited understanding -- is that any blade with scant niku (all else being equal) will tend to dull and/or chip more readily than a meatier blade. Of course, all else is seldom equal, and much would depend on the type of construction, the type(s) of steel, the heat treating method, etc.

Shinshinto blades, on average, probably saw less hard use than shinto or koto blades, and so a different aesthetic was often applied to their making. Form followed function (or lack thereof), and all that stuff.

If I'm way off base here, I'm sure someone with more knowledge will correct me.

chrismoses
1st December 2006, 15:55
Thanks to all the answers fellas. Brian, I have also read that many shinshinto blades had scant hira niku also, so in your opinion, would they blunt just as quickly as a shinsakuto?


Kind Regards,

There are a LOT of factors here. If you're cutting reeds or makiwara, a good edge will hold up for a surprisingly long time. If you're cutting a lot of harder targets (bamboo/bone) you should probably look into getting something like the "Samurai" from Bugei, as it seems to have been designed for that sort of thing. A good sword that was polished correctly will hold an edge for a very long time if used and cared for properly. Is this a hypothetical question or are you concerned about a sword you own?

jezah81
2nd December 2006, 01:57
Thanks for the replies again guys. To answer your question Chris, I am asking because i own a shinsakuto that i purchased that was custom made for me. Its a blade that was made as a joint effort (gassaku) by Kanetsugu and his son Kimura Mitsuhiro from Kyushu. I have been cutting yellow bamboo with it for about 4 weeks now. I am also planning on cutting mats also in the future.

Kind Regards,

kdlarman
3rd December 2006, 01:12
So basically you're asking if shinsakuto (of which there are a couple hundred smiths) dull faster than blades from shinto and shinshinto times (thousands and thousands of smiths of various schools and style)?

Do cars today run out of gas faster than cars of 20 years ago?

Depends on the car, the MPG's, the size of the gas tank, how they're driven, where they're driven, whether their tires are flat, and on and on and on...

jezah81
3rd December 2006, 09:59
Thanks for your answer Keith. I get what youre saying. Is it true then that most shinshinto and shinto blades were made with scant hira niku?

Thanks again,

Kind Regards,

Maro
3rd December 2006, 20:49
Jeremy, you are cutting Yellow Bamboo with a Blade you had custom made?

That's not really advisable. Bamboo should only be cut when Green. Even then, it's considered a hard target.

If you have damaged the edge on the Yellow Bamboo, cutting mats might be more difficult than you think.

jezah81
4th December 2006, 01:17
Hi Mat,

Thanks for your reply also. As far as i can see, there is no damage done to the edge, and it still passes the paper cutting test. I believe there are several species of bamboo, green bamboo being one type and yellow being another. The bamboo that i cut wasnt dried or aged, it was straight out of the ground and on my cutting stand. I think the yellow bamboo is of the Chinese species and the green more so Japanese.

Anyway, thanks again.

Kind Regards,

Maro
4th December 2006, 03:20
Well that's good new Jeremy, it wasn't clear from your statement.

I'd hold off on the bamboo though - I leave that to my Wind and Thunder. My DF is strictly for wara.