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Posted: 5/29/2003 9:52:38 AM EDT
Anyone have any opinion on these? I got a catalog from Cutlery Shoppe and noticed one in there for 285.00.Listed as battle worthy, made out of 1050 carbon steel etc. I have a couple Cold Steel knives and they're built like tanks.Workhorse type knives. I'm basically looking for a nice "conversation" piece for my den, but don't want to buy any gun show "3 for 19.99" type swords. Thanks in advance.
Link Posted: 5/29/2003 10:07:49 AM EDT
"battle worthy" is what i would call them. also "good for the fight" "tough enough". the best damn wall hanger you will find. check out [url=http://www.museumreplicas.com/home.htm]Museum replicas[/url]
Link Posted: 5/29/2003 10:35:01 AM EDT
If you can afford a little more and want uncompromising quality, I would recommend the Shinto Katana from Cas Iberia. It's hand forged in the traditional methods, and authentic down to the last details; including real ray skin wrapped around the sword's handle. These swords are fully functional. The cheapest I've ever seen these was for $469.95 here: [url]http://www.knifecenter.com/knifecenter/cas/shinto.html[/url]
Link Posted: 5/29/2003 11:08:45 AM EDT
The Cold Steel version looks nice and seems sturdy and well-made. I haven't tested its battleworthiness, nor do I think I ever will, but I have a feeling it would hold up reasonably well. If you're looking for absolute authenticity, you'd best look elsewhere. The Cold Steel sword doesn't have the temper line that you'll find on the genuine article made using traditional methods. On the other hand, it doesn't have a fake temper line like you'll find on cheap imitations. Overall, a good product forthe money, in my judgment. Oh yeah-- $285 sounds like an excellent price. I think paid something like $350-$400 for the wakazashi and $450-$500 for the katana.
Link Posted: 5/29/2003 2:11:38 PM EDT
The Paul Chen swords are regarded as a good buy by Japanese Swordsmanship afficionados, but I have also heard some criticisms. They should stand up to emergency use and routine cutting practice. Getting a Japanese sword properly sharpened is not a do-it-yourself affair. Sword polishers study FOR YEARS to learn how to protect the edge geometry, refine the blade shapes and bring out the beauty in the grain of the steel. An inept sharpener will damage the effectiveness of the edge and can marr the sword costing mucho dinero to properly repair. A real, hand forged Katana is a multi-thousand dollar investment. Chen uses machine forging to shortcut the process. He also is not the only person making these, he just owns the foundry and leads it. The Cold Steel blade should make a nice wall hanger and is probably capable of inflicting serious wounds if required. No sword, no matter how well made, will survive edge to edge contact with another sword for very long. Deep nicks and cuts will be inflicted on the edge and these will cause stress risers that will make the blade more likely to break at one of those points. If one must parry with a sword blade, the idea is to take the opponent's edge on the side of the blade and at an angle that deflects the incoming blade's path away from the defender, but still roughly along the original angle thus opening the opponent to a counterattack. Avoid stainless steel swords, they are wallhangers by default. Stainless steels are too brittle for swords. The Cold Steel swords look pretty good for non-tradational construction. Should serve you well.
Link Posted: 5/29/2003 7:29:00 PM EDT
Cold steel swords are for all intents and purposes, non traditional, but very functional weapons. To my eye, they look good, not great, but good. By all accounts they're also tough enough to preform as should be expected from a good sword. They're a little overweight according to some, but given historical swords varience from peice to peice, even of the same basic type of sword, thats for forgiveable. They're not nihonto, of course, but they're good functional swords that will serve you well and you'll have a lot of fun with. They're better then "wallhangers". And probably tougher then the hanwei/paul chen shinto, many reports on the shinto katana's, at least the early ones, indicate brittle edges and wood thats to soft to properly support the tang. You might consider a hanwei "practical katana", if you just want a nice looking, but functional conversation peice. These run about 170 dollars. Also, someone posted a link to museum replica's. They're stuff is very nice looking in the pictures, but they're are mixed accounts of quality, it's really luck of the draw. They have good prices, but you might recive an inferior product depending on the day of the week. Swords are actually a big intrest of mine and I know a fair bit about them, both the orginals, and most modern repro's. If you need any advice feel free to contact me. I should be able to help you out, and welcome to the hobby, if this is your first one. They're every bit as addicting as black rifles ;)
Link Posted: 5/30/2003 11:08:09 AM EDT
Katherine is right about Museum Replicas. Most of their stuff is made by Windlass Steelcraft in India. Some of the swords are decent, not great, but decent, others are pure crap. CAS Iberia's own swords are garbage. Wallhangers at best and most of them too "pretty" to be believable. Up the scale a bit are the swords from Del Tin in Italy. Those swords are much closer to historical specs and pretty well made. They are certainly up to most swordsmanship practice, but not to full contact combat or extensive cutting. Fulvio Del Tin does not make his swords for combat and cutting and has no intention of altering his designs to make them suitable for such use. There are a number of swordsmiths out there that produce high quality swords that are truly combat ready, at fairly reasonable prices (but not Japanese Swords, there are some intricasies involved in their construction that make them a whole lot more expensive to make.) The Cold Steel swords are probably decent. European style smiths of note include Angus Trim and Armart of Europe. Both put out well reviewed blades at prices most of us could afford with a stretch. The real premium swords are differentially tempered. That is they are tempered harder at the edge than at the spine or core of the blade, allowing a hard, sharp and surable edge with a more flexible backbone that resists breaking and bending. It's not an easy skill to master and it drives the prices of those blades WAY up. Traditional Japanese swords would be differentially tempered. Oddly enough, the Vikings also knew something about the technique as well as how to take advantage of the properties of different types of iron and steel to produce a superior composite swordblade. In the viking case, they would wrap steel wire around an iron core and then forge weld the materials together. The result is a sword with a harder edge and skin and a softer core. The effect was to turnt eh sword into a sort of spring. The hardness of the skin resisted bending, while the inner core resisted breaking, the tension between them created a blade that would flex without breaking or permanently taking a set, and could hold a keen edge. In some especially well preserved viking swords you can still see the remnant patterns of the wire wrapping. Swords are cool and European swords and swordsmanship are woefully underappreciated.
Link Posted: 5/30/2003 11:14:49 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/30/2003 11:23:47 AM EDT by SeaDweller]
Those Cold Steel Japanese swords are chicom.
Link Posted: 5/30/2003 11:17:34 AM EDT
Mad Dog Knives makes one that's pretty solid, if the MD knives I've examined are any guide. I think they're about $500.
Link Posted: 5/30/2003 11:40:09 AM EDT
One day I want to have a wall of the real deals. 14-17th century period Samurai swords. I found places that make modern day ones in japan. Most good condition ones go from 10-60,000 bucks though. I know of one sword they found stuck half way through an iron stove in Japan. He must have been pretty mad that day ;) CT
Link Posted: 5/30/2003 12:29:03 PM EDT
I'd have to comment on Manhattan's ideas.. having a wall full of the real deals.. you better be really stinking rich. The problem is, most swords, authentically forged Japanese blades, are family heirlooms. Very doubtful that anyone would sell a family heirloom, especially a Japanese, with a real family blade. You're right about new blades, and their cost. Authentically forged blades can cost tens of thousands of dollars. And they will cut through some serious shit, that's for sure. I think I read a few years ago that there are still a few swordsmiths in Japan that do it the traditional way. Some are considered 'National Treasures'. The man, not the blades he makes. There is a guy close to Austin (or used to be), I think named Daniel Watson, who forges swords in a more traditional way. Not neccessarily Japanese style, but he does temper the steel, and guarantees them against normal use, and reasonable abuse. He uses a tempering technique that is quite unique, and from what I read, it was actually outlawed by the Catholic church in the middle ages. It's called 'Live Steel'. It has something to do with the way the steel molecules align, which cause a sort of magnetic field. You're supposed to be able to feel it. Thus the church thought it was demonic, and banned it. Check him out: [url]www.angelsword.com[/url] I've seen a few of his peices up close, and had a fried that purchased one from him. ABSOLUTELY top notch craftsmanship. The swords were absolutely beautiful.
Link Posted: 5/31/2003 1:09:59 AM EDT
Originally Posted By icemanat95: The real premium swords are differentially tempered. That is they are tempered harder at the edge than at the spine or core of the blade, allowing a hard, sharp and surable edge with a more flexible backbone that resists breaking and bending..
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This is exactly the way that Paul Chen's Shinto Katana offered by CAS Iberia is tempered ... I don't see how that's garbage?
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