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Old 02-13-2011, 08:42 PM   #14
JO
Dojo: Aikikai de l'Université Laval
Location: Sainte-Catherine-de-la-J.-C., Québec
Join Date: Jun 2000
Posts: 292
Canada
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Re: Review: Kingfisher Woodworks Enhanced Appalachian Hickory Bokken

I've had my new enhanced hickory weapons for a little over a week now. I've been using them for suburi in my living room. If you go to kingfisher's specials page:
http://kingfisherwoodworks.com/specials3.htm
I have Enhanced jo 0583 and the sister bokken to Enhanced Aikiken large 0659.

I will start by saying I got very good service from kingfisher, wouldn't hesitate to di business with them again.

First the bokken. With the dense enhaced hickory and the thick aikiken large shape, it is by far the heaviest bokken I've had. However the balance is quite good and I'm getting used to it. My wife's grade 5 hickory aikiken medium is feather light by comparison. The feel of the enhaced hickory finish is nice and "dry", but not as much of an advantage as on the jo. As far as looks go, he wasn't kidding in the description. With all the odd dark blotches, it isn't a display piece. But that wasn't what I was looking for. I was looking for a sturdy bokken that would survive the training against the various tropical woods others in my dojo use, and the discount for the looks made this one I could just afford.

Now the jo. I'm happy with the bokken, but the jo is really great. The denser, heavier material gives it a nice heft and deciciveness but without it feeling excessively heavy. The finish is the best part though. It feels completely dry. It slides perfectly during transitions but stops as soon as you add a bit of pressure to you grip. Really enjoying the overall feel.

I will put the jo to its first paired practice tomorrow. I'll write in again after putting the weapons through some contact practice.

Jonathan Olson
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