Thanks for sharing that Janet
I know someone that likes to 'test' my bokkens too and similarly saying it was too light. I don't mind,
part of training I guess. I've used white oak before but at the moment am partial to hickory.
Thanks for this! I just recently purchased a hickory bokken and jo from SDK. I was a bit concerned because I've been accustomed to using the white oak Iwama bokken and white oak jo, the hickory ones just seemed a bit light and I was worried about heavy contact (kumitachi, kumijo).
It seems, according to your posts, that they should fair pretty well. I do have a question however...is it a good idea to condition the weapons with oil before heavy contact?
white oak is slightly denser than hickory so the feeling of the bokkens are different. However denser wood doesn't relate to high impact strength. An interesting article re. specific gravity and impact strength which you might have come across.
Its really up to personal choice which wood you prefer. Its good that you've already experienced both so you can choose which one feels better to you. White oak is more dent resistant so you'll probably notice more bumps on your hickory bokken. Its advisable to slowly 'break in' hickory weapons ie. moderate contact to compress the surface of the wood over time.
I didn't oil my bokkens before using them. They should have already been oiled after being made. But I don't think it would hurt if you chose to oil it before practice.