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Charles
09-28-2003, 08:27 AM
We've been doing a bit of Ni To in the Dojo so I picked up an "econo" pair of bokken. It'll be interesting to see how long it takes to break one, but the shoto seems a little long to me. Before I schlep the things down town I'd like to cut them to their proper length. Has anyone an idea of what that would be?

Bronson
09-29-2003, 04:21 AM
I don't know about "official" sizes but in the Kingfisher Woodworks catalog they are:

Aiki-ken long sword

overall length: 42"

handle length: 11.5"

Aiki-ken short sword

overall length: 26"

handle length: 7.5"

If I had to ask anyone a question about bokken it would be Brad at Kingfisher...he's done his homework.

Bronson

Brion Toss
09-29-2003, 01:58 PM
Hello,

In a genetically homogeneous country like Japan, standard bokken lengths make a lot of sense. Likewise, competitions might require standard lengths, as some fighters in the past have cleaned up with extra-long bokkens. But as a moderately tall person, I can tell you that a standard-length bokken is ludicrously short, more like a wakazashi than a katana. So how about the idea of making your bokkens long enough that a clean draw is just possible? This seems to be at least one basis for the standard length. A tall person would have a reach advantage, but they'd have that anyway, and the extra length negates at least some of that because it slows the movements.

Yours,

Brion Toss

Charles
09-29-2003, 02:27 PM
I went with a 27" overall and a 8 1/2" handle. I can always take a little more off. Thanks, It didn't ocur to me to cut from both ends.

Larry Feldman
09-29-2003, 03:51 PM
If you order from Kiyota, there is a choice of bokken by 'Schools' Yagu-Ryu, Itto-Ryu.

They vary in lenght (and width) slightly.

I usually get the Yagu_ryu for women and kids as it is thiner and lighter (but longer). The Itto Ryu is thicker (and a little shorter) and takes a beating better.

It is better suited for bigger stronger body types.

Kevin Wilbanks
09-30-2003, 02:57 PM
I was taught - by Kobudo/Iado people - that the proper sword length is measured by grabbing the handle with your right hand up against the tsuba (or where you pretend it is on a bokken), then letting the arm and sword dangle at your side. The blade should be just long enough so that it won't touch your toes/the front half of your foot.

Kevin Wilbanks
09-30-2003, 03:03 PM
BTW, I think the Itto Ryo bokken are quite a bit meatier than the Yagyu Ryu... too much so for me, in fact, although nothing like the absurdly huge blunt logs that are the Bujin standard. Since swords are supposed to be weilded with quickness, I never understood the big, chunky bokken thing. My bokken is an Itto Ryu that I shaped and shaved down. I probably removed about 15-20% of its weight. I wouldn't mind having an even lighter one as well.

Bronson
10-01-2003, 12:49 PM
I was taught - by Kobudo/Iado people - that the proper sword length is measured by grabbing the handle with your right hand up against the tsuba (or where you pretend it is on a bokken), then letting the arm and sword dangle at your side. The blade should be just long enough so that it won't touch your toes/the front half of your foot.
Also, while shopping for a new iato I was told that the convention for handle length is 1/3 the blade length.

Bronson