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Old 06-11-2000, 06:21 PM   #1
tarik
 
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Cool

My new sword has arrived!

I managed to get a great deal because the person I train in sword with was ordering >5 swords for several people. It's one of those Chen made (Chinese hand forged) swords.

Of course, I had to pick up my own sword cleaning kit, and then, mainly due to guilt, and the fact that I couldn't practice last night, I got my old European blades (Toledo, hand forged steel) off the wall and cleaned and oiled them also (with their own tools).

Looking forward to learning some actual cutting.

Tarik
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Old 06-12-2000, 05:38 PM   #2
akiy
 
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Materials?

What are you going to be cutting?

For that matter, what are good materials for people to use for cutting purposes? I've only done cutting on makiwara (rolled up tatami mat covers, soaked for a bit) and bamboo. I heard people mention corn husks, too.

Any one have recommendations and information on good materials for cutting?

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Old 06-13-2000, 12:59 AM   #3
tarik
 
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Bamboo... still looking for a source, but I may just plant my own supply in a set of deep planters.

Also, cheapo grass mats from Chinatown (my teacher suggested it until we can find bamboo).

We've also been guilty of cutting light brush, but it's not great for the blade.

I basically suck rocks right now. I have a reasonable cut, but it goes to hell when I use a sharp blade.

Tarik
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Old 06-13-2000, 07:50 PM   #4
Norman
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Tarik,
I am just curious about your new weapon.
Do you happen to know what material is is made from (the carbon content of the steel) ?

I am a blacksmith and have made all kinds of European weapons and armor, although the bulk of my buisness is colonial restoration work (hardware such as hinges, door handles, fireplace equipment, etc,..)

I am new to Aikido (havent started class yet, still looking at a schools) but have spent a great deal of time learning european swordsmanship.

If I could know the carbon content of the steel in your sword, I could help with care and usage of the blade.

Heres a basic table;
If you tap the sword against another piece of metal, listen to the ring.
as a general rule mild carbons ring will disipate very quickly. it will sound "dull" where as a higher carbon blade will ring for quite some time before the sound dissipates. (example: an anvils face is made of a much higher carbon steel than its body, try to imagine the classic ringing of an anvil. that is a high carbon sound)

now to see if your blade is tempered;
Mild carbon blades cannot be tempered to any great degree. so if you have a high carbon blade you can see if it is tempered correctly by bending the blade to an angle no greater than 80 degrees and seeing if it springs back to true.
(this method is best avoided unless you are pretty sure it is tempered correctly. If it begins to bend easily then continue, if it is hard to bend the blade, dont)

If you find that your blade id of a high carbon content, and tempered correctly, then you can cut anything you wish. I do demonstrations of cutting through cinder blocks with mine (that one really sells swords *smiles*)

If you come to the conclusion that your blade is of a mild carbon content then please be carefull with it. its edge will become marred easily when hit against a blade of a higher carbon content.

As far as care keep the blade oiled with linseed oil, its expensive, but great. an alternative is WD-40 but truthfully you need to apply it too often, and isnt really meant for it anyways. what you are tying to do with the oil is fill the poures of the metal. humidity will cause moisture to seep into the poures and start to rust
(rusting is the process of taking carbon out of the steel)

Hope that helps !
Theres nothing like a new blade !

Norm

"We see the world as WE are, not as IT is, because it is the I behind the EYE that does the seeing"
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Old 06-26-2000, 11:30 PM   #5
tarik
 
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Errr....

I'd rather not play bendy with it. From your description of the metal, I'm sure it has a fairly high carbon content. My European blades flex quite well, in fact, without taking a permanent bend.

But my (admittedly fairly small) understanding of the different approach to tempering involved with Japanese blades leaves the spine fairly soft and the edge fairly brittle.

I don't know what that implies to flex, but I do know that straightening a sword after some poor cutting practice is not all that uncommon a practice.

Tarik
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Old 06-29-2000, 07:39 AM   #6
Nick
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Hey-

Although not a blacksmith, I do know quite a bit about Chen's katanas. I was wondering- do you know what kind of Chen Katana it is? He does The Shinto Katana (US $400, usually), the Miyamoyo Musashi Daisho (Longer handles), Golden Oriole Katana (Gold fittings, if I remember coorectly), and his "practical katana" (US $115). I can imagine if you got the Shinto katana (which you more than likely did), you will have no problems. The practical katana is just that- a cheap, albeit well made sword, but don't go cutting cinder blocks .

Kanpai,

-Nick

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Nick Porter
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Old 07-06-2000, 12:13 AM   #7
tarik
 
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I'm not totally certain. It is a heavier cutting blade intended for tameshigiri. It normally goes for around $300, but we got a deal on it because we bought in bulk.

Tarik
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Old 07-06-2000, 02:21 PM   #8
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Quote:
tarik wrote:
Errr....

I'd rather not play bendy with it. From your description of the metal, I'm sure it has a fairly high carbon content. My European blades flex quite well, in fact, without taking a permanent bend.

But my (admittedly fairly small) understanding of the different approach to tempering involved with Japanese blades leaves the spine fairly soft and the edge fairly brittle.

I don't know what that implies to flex, but I do know that straightening a sword after some poor cutting practice is not all that uncommon a practice.

Tarik
Tarik,

A well made Japanese blade has a HARD edge, not brittle. Sometimes the swords had to penetrate armour, including the helmet. A brittle edge would not have lasted long in combat. And soon after, nor would the sword maker !! ;-)

Regards,
Dan Pokorny
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Old 07-06-2000, 02:51 PM   #9
Keith
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The best source of info I've found on the web for Japanese swords and Chen swords in particular is Bugei Trading Company's message forum. Go to http://www.swordforumbugei.com/ubbcg...i?action=intro
There are people who regularly post there who are professional sword polishers as well as blacksmiths. I know I've seen detailed info about the carbon content of Chen swords, as well as info about materials for tameshigiri (Rolled up beach mats! Go figure)

No, I don't work for them, and no it's not a big ad for Bugei's stuff. Good place to learn, not a lot of chit chat.
Keith Engle
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Old 03-24-2005, 07:45 PM   #10
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Re: New cutting blade (ken)...

Quote:
Nick Porter wrote:
Hey-

Although not a blacksmith, I do know quite a bit about Chen's katanas. I was wondering- do you know what kind of Chen Katana it is? He does The Shinto Katana (US $400, usually), the Miyamoyo Musashi Daisho (Longer handles), Golden Oriole Katana (Gold fittings, if I remember coorectly), and his "practical katana" (US $115). I can imagine if you got the Shinto katana (which you more than likely did), you will have no problems. The practical katana is just that- a cheap, albeit well made sword, but don't go cutting cinder blocks .

Kanpai,

-Nick
Sorry to butt in on the convo, but can the practical PLUS be used for light tameshigiri (i.e. tatami mats soaked for a while, bamboo etc.) You said it was cheap, yet well made, but does cheap mean inexpensive, or flimsy?

Good judgment comes from experience, and experience comes from bad judgment.
-Barry LePatner
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Old 03-25-2005, 08:06 AM   #11
cguzik
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Re: Materials?

Quote:
Jun Akiyama wrote:
What are you going to be cutting?

For that matter, what are good materials for people to use for cutting purposes? I've only done cutting on makiwara (rolled up tatami mat covers, soaked for a bit) and bamboo. I heard people mention corn husks, too.

Any one have recommendations and information on good materials for cutting?
I've always been impressed with melons, pumpkins, 2 liter soda bottles, and big slabs of meat.

Just kidding! (running for cover)

Chris
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Old 03-25-2005, 09:48 AM   #12
Walter Wong
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Re: New cutting blade (ken)...

Quote:
James Matarrese wrote:
Sorry to butt in on the convo, but can the practical PLUS be used for light tameshigiri (i.e. tatami mats soaked for a while, bamboo etc.) You said it was cheap, yet well made, but does cheap mean inexpensive, or flimsy?
The Practical series of Paul Chen are a risk to cut with. More so with the recently made ones. The poor heat treatment isn't quite what you want in a cutter. Combine that with the thinner and lighter blades they are making the Practical series with, it's a gamble of when your Practical will break. As a first sword for cutting, it would be more ideal to get a mid range Paul Chen/Hanwei like the Shinto, Mushashi, Golden Oriole and Tsunami. They have better heat treatment. A better choice is his high end line, Kami, Tiger, Orchid and Bushido. An even better choice of Paul Chen's are the standard line he makes exclusively for Bugei. www.bugei.com

Last Legend offer decent cutters as well. www.lastlegend.com
Personally I wouldn't pay anything lower than $600.00 for a Japanese styled sword for tameshigiri.

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Old 03-28-2005, 03:22 PM   #13
samurai_kenshin
 
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Re: New cutting blade (ken)...

Quote:
Walter Wong wrote:
The Practical series of Paul Chen are a risk to cut with. More so with the recently made ones. The poor heat treatment isn't quite what you want in a cutter. Combine that with the thinner and lighter blades they are making the Practical series with, it's a gamble of when your Practical will break. As a first sword for cutting, it would be more ideal to get a mid range Paul Chen/Hanwei like the Shinto, Mushashi, Golden Oriole and Tsunami. They have better heat treatment. A better choice is his high end line, Kami, Tiger, Orchid and Bushido. An even better choice of Paul Chen's are the standard line he makes exclusively for Bugei. www.bugei.com

Last Legend offer decent cutters as well. www.lastlegend.com
Personally I wouldn't pay anything lower than $600.00 for a Japanese styled sword for tameshigiri.
Thanx...i'll be sure to look into those last legend ones

Good judgment comes from experience, and experience comes from bad judgment.
-Barry LePatner
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