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Old 05-07-2009, 12:06 PM   #26
Keith Larman
Location: California
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Re: Iaito Sword Question

And I left something out...

Of course the most relevant advice is "ask sensei". That's the same answer she'd get there. But some posters in this thread offered up advice that is, well, not so good. And that advice reflects their lack of experience with traditional sword arts and the requirements they bring to the table. And a newcomer like the OP isn't necessarily equipped to distinguish good advice from bad. So again, back to the idea of finding a forum focused on the arts you're studying... There are better replies in general on a topic like this *and* there is more implicit "peer" review as there are more people there who know better who will step in to correct misconceptions.

Again, no disrespect intended.

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Old 05-09-2009, 02:08 AM   #27
kironin
 
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Re: Iaito Sword Question

For experienced advice, I would be inclined to suggest she sign on to iaido-L but we are not a really a chatty bunch on there,
though I agree you would not likely see some of the comments made here ever seriously suggested on there.

http://www.uoguelph.ca/~iaido/iai.sign-on.html

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Old 05-09-2009, 11:09 AM   #28
Keith Larman
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Re: Iaito Sword Question

Yup, been a member of that list for, geez, many years now. I just get the digest now as there are so few posts. But yes, that's another good resource.

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Old 08-28-2009, 01:10 PM   #29
ninjaqutie
 
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Has anyone heard more about Budo Aoi?

Budo Aoi? Last I heard they weren't quite living up to their delivery claims for their iaito. I was still considering them and wanted to know if any of you has heard anything as of late.

~Look into the eyes of your opponent & steal his spirit.
~To be a good martial artist is to be good thief; if you want my knowledge, you must take it from me.
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Old 08-28-2009, 03:11 PM   #30
ninjaqutie
 
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Re: Iaito Sword Question (Aoi Budogu)

Just thought I would let you all know, I had a convo with a rep today about a particular iaito and this is what I got. Times may be different for more customized one's though.

Hello. Right now I am in the beginning stages of purchasing a couple of iaito. Right now I am just looking around trying to find a sword that I like. As it so happens, I really find your Yamazakura Koshirae Iaito rather lovely. I have been given the impression by several people that your turn around time isn't what is advertized on your site do to slow turn around times in Japan. A couple people I have spoken with have been waiting about a year.

I was just wondering if you could give an estimate as to how long it would take for an iaito like this to be delivered from the time of purchase? I know times vary and situations can change, but I was hoping to use this time frame to estimate when I should order me and my husbands iaito. We aren't quite ready for one yet, so a wait wouldn't be an inconvenience. Any help you could give me would be much appreciated.

Thank you,
Ashley

Hi Ashley,

Thank you for your email and interest in Aoi Budogu Products.
We have been experiencing delays from all 3 of our contracted crafting companies for a little while, but these delays are slowly receding and we are receiving more constant and more frequent shipments.
For the Yamazakura, we are looking at a timeframe of about 6-8 months if not a little sooner.
I know that it seems quite long, but we have done all of the footwork when setting up the company over 10 years ago and remain with these top 3 crafting companies in Seki, Japan. Keeping it genuine and tradional.

Please let me know if you have any further questions or concerns.

Kind Regards,

Ryoma
Aoi Budogu
Sent: August 28, 2009 12:01 PM
Subject: [AOI BUDOGU] Contact from Customer

~Look into the eyes of your opponent & steal his spirit.
~To be a good martial artist is to be good thief; if you want my knowledge, you must take it from me.
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Old 08-28-2009, 03:58 PM   #31
HL1978
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Re: Iaito Sword Question (Aoi Budogu)

one of my iaido students waited 13 months and reversed the charges.

there are people on kendo-world who are still waiting 16+ months. It is a supplier issue.

I waited about 1 year for my last iaito as there was a wood shortage apparently.

Last edited by HL1978 : 08-28-2009 at 04:02 PM.
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Old 08-28-2009, 04:00 PM   #32
ninjaqutie
 
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Re: Iaito Sword Question (Aoi Budogu)

Was it a "standard" or a "custom" iaito? How long ago was this (if I may ask)?

~Look into the eyes of your opponent & steal his spirit.
~To be a good martial artist is to be good thief; if you want my knowledge, you must take it from me.
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Old 08-28-2009, 11:21 PM   #33
ChrisMoses
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Re: Iaito Sword Question (Aoi Budogu)

Order from someone else, they simply cannot get iaito in a timely manner. People are waiting years after they paid for *any* iaito they order from these guys. I think it's a genuine problem with their distribution channel (meaning I don't think they're crooks) but go elsewhere (Tozando, bogubag, Kim Taylor...) if you actually want to get something in a reasonable time.

Chris Moses
TNBBC, "Putting the ME in MEdiocre!"
Shinto Ryu Iai Battojutsu
TNBBC Blog
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Old 08-29-2009, 12:53 AM   #34
George S. Ledyard
 
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Re: Iaito Sword Question

Quote:
Jim Alvarez wrote: View Post
Hi Asley,

All comments so far have been great.

One thing I would also suggest is that you ask the other students in the dojo if you can swing their iaito's to see if you prefer the models that they have. If there is a good variety to sample it will give you a good idea of what you like and don't like.

Try to note weight, balance, tsuka shape (narrow, wide) and how it fits in your hand. Check the tsuka-ito (wraping) and fittings (tsuba, fuchi/kashira) to see if they are loose. If the iaito is not that old and things are loose the construction is not at a higher quality.

There are also models made of steel rather than zinc/aluminum alloy. They tend to be heavier and are closer to what a shinken might feel like. Being steel they are less prone to flexing like the alloy blades.

I know David Goldberg personally and his iaito's are superbly constructed. They are made of steel and he can probably accomodate your sakura theme.

As far as Bujin hakama they are great and come in a variety of materials, blends and cotton. They do tend to cost but the quality is more but it's like buying a good set of clothes over something from a Walmart type of retailer.

Take your time in choosing as you probably only want to do this once as a good iaito and hakama can last you quite some time.

Good luck with your training.
I use an iaito made by Dave Goldberg... It's a work of art and is VERY fast in the hand. The balance was just what I wanted as well.
- George

George S. Ledyard
Aikido Eastside
Bellevue, WA
Aikido Eastside
AikidoDvds.Com
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Old 08-29-2009, 07:58 AM   #35
HL1978
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Re: Iaito Sword Question (Aoi Budogu)

Quote:
Ashley Carter wrote: View Post
Was it a "standard" or a "custom" iaito? How long ago was this (if I may ask)?
Check on kendo-world.com in the iaido section for the people waiting 16+ months.

I believe my student's was a standard one. They will give you your money back minus 20 or 30%, I forget exactly. I believe my student eventually wound up with store credit after he tried reversing the charges.
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Old 08-29-2009, 10:18 AM   #36
Rennis Buchner
Join Date: Jun 2008
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Re: Iaito Sword Question

Quote:
Shany Golan wrote: View Post
The most widely used Practice katana is: Paul Chen PPK (Practical Katana Plus), it's quite cheap and very worth the money.
Maybe in the West among mall martial artists, but not by people actually involved seriously in traditional iai arts. Last time I spent a good chunk of time back in the US I actually bought one of them and it was a waste of money. Limited size options, very poor balance, worse fittings, the saya was poorly made and didn't fit the blade very well (a problem I have noticed in many Chen blades of many levels of "quality")... While the price is right for beginners, I would argue that not much else about it is. Especially for beginners, the weight and balance problems would tend to encourage improper technique and body use, not to mention encourage repetitive stress injuries. More over, since they actually have a live edge, the danger factor is much higher for a new person unused to using a live blade and not a risk many sensei would be willing to take.

For people who are unaccustomed to Japanese made iaito, one might not see much difference in comparisons to a Chen, etc type of blade, but over long periods of use the difference in quality is pretty apparent. My first iaito lasted me about 14 years of very hard use and my current one is a lower end Tozando which has seen usage that most would consider absurdly excessive in the last year and a half and the wrapping on the tsuka is still as tight as the day it arrived and no loosening of the tsuba either (there is koiguchi wear, but at the level to be expected of a sword at its level of use. For the record, on my original iaito I had the tsuka replaced once to something that fit my hand size and those wrappings stayed tight as well for the 8 years I used the sword with that tsuka. That job was done by one of Peter Boylan's suppliers he uses at budogu.com). The higher quality Tozando iaito are basically made at shinken level specs minus the hand forged blade. Of the major iaito companies that are readily available in the West I find Meirin's to maybe be the weakest (most are fine, but the balance on some, especially the budget and "Gaikokujin-yo" ones I find to be a bit lacking), but even those are far superior to much of what Chen and company are putting out and I know several people who use them with no complaints. As a comparison, the Chen PK Plus I had saw very little use but the wrapping of the tsuka-ito started shifting nearly immediately and began loosening up at a shockingly rapid rate.

My advice, as an iai guy, would be to save up the extra dollars and invest in a proper Japanese made iaito that will most likely last you a decade or two under proper use. Yes some are better than others, but actually much of what is being sold by various companies these days is all being sourced from the same handful of places in Japan these days.

One important thing already mentioned, is that if time is an issue, contact them first and see what is in stock and if possible order from their stock on hand. Due to various supply issues customer order swords (namely anything with requested blade length, tsuba, tsuka warping, etc) are taking longer and longer to assemble due to major delays in various parts (blades and saya seem to be the major issues lately). I actually ordered a second cheap Tozando iaito to send to and leave in the US for my visits home and even with that I was told to expect a 2 and a half month wait. It came in on Thursday about 2 weeks ahead of schedule, but that wait was considerably longer than even two years ago and over seas orders usually take at least twice as long, if not more. So again, your best bet is to call first and check what they physically have in stock and ready to send out first.

Random babble from the iai-side of things,
Rennis Buchner

Last edited by Rennis Buchner : 08-29-2009 at 10:20 AM.
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