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#424559 - 01/25/10 02:16 AM What's so good about legendary Japanese swords?
TaekwonDoFan Offline
Member

Registered: 01/23/10
Posts: 271
TKD is the only martial arts I've ever practiced - though Hapkido self-defence techniques have been included in my training, I remain primarily a kicker.

So I've been wondering about the idea that one sword is really better than the other, because I keep seeing this in films and books. I just saw Kill Bill Vols I and II, and the heroine was asking for a hattori sword, which is supposed to be better than other swords.

I presume a hattori sword is a fictitious type of sword, but is a really good sword made by a master better than an average sword made by an average swordsmith? IOW, can a hattori sword break a normal sword in two?

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#424562 - 01/25/10 01:20 PM Re: What's so good about legendary Japanese swords? [Re: TaekwonDoFan]
Kathryn Offline
Member

Registered: 09/24/09
Posts: 262
Loc: Washington, DC
The short answer is, yes.

If you are ever offered the opportunity to even just hold a katana made by a reputable forger, I hope that you will take advantage of it. The best way to learn how to recognize a good sword is to get near them.

Having said that, katanas are generally customized to the user, and a good swordsmith understands how to match the blade to the user's physique and style. Length and balancing points are common points of customization.

I would let go of the whole Hattori thing, because it is fictional. The ones you see being sold are replicas and for fun only.
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#424563 - 01/25/10 02:19 PM Re: What's so good about legendary Japanese swords? [Re: Kathryn]
TaekwonDoFan Offline
Member

Registered: 01/23/10
Posts: 271
I'm learning something new, thanks. smile

Can a good sword break the blade of a not-so-good sword?

I'm asking because I'm thinking of trying kendo, just for fun. And collecting good swords may not be a bad hobby either.


Edited by TaekwonDoFan (01/25/10 02:20 PM)

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#424569 - 01/27/10 08:29 AM Re: What's so good about legendary Japanese swords? [Re: TaekwonDoFan]
Kathryn Offline
Member

Registered: 09/24/09
Posts: 262
Loc: Washington, DC
If you have an interest in Kendo, I strongly recommend checking out the website of the international kendo federation, and seek out a group that is affiliated.

But the first rule is to know your weaponry, and the art of kendo does not use live steel. You would spar with a special bamboo sword that allows for whacking without injury to others.

Some kendo groups also train in the art of iaido, and that would involve using a live steel training sword called an iaito.

As for breaking swords, any sword can be damaged or broken in ordinary training or in a battle situation. Fittings can come loose, and striking can crack the steel. Again, it is a fiction that you can purchase a sword that will be unbreakable. As a fan of Japanese cinema, I can tell you that samurai movies do not have plotlines about magical swords or unbreakable swords. The focus is usually on the skill of the warrior.

Good luck to you!
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#424574 - 01/27/10 11:55 AM Re: What's so good about legendary Japanese swords? [Re: Kathryn]
TaekwonDoFan Offline
Member

Registered: 01/23/10
Posts: 271
Good point, and thanks.

So what's the difference between a good sword and a not-so-good one?

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#424661 - 02/01/10 09:08 AM Re: What's so good about legendary Japanese swords? [Re: TaekwonDoFan]
Kathryn Offline
Member

Registered: 09/24/09
Posts: 262
Loc: Washington, DC
I don't want you to think that I am ignoring your question, it's just that I don't know what you mean by a 'good sword'.

To a weapons user, any weapon that serves its purpose would be 'good'.

If you mean what kind of sword do collectors seek, there are many good websites on the subject, and I encourage you to learn more about them there.
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#424698 - 02/02/10 06:23 PM Re: What's so good about legendary Japanese swords? [Re: TaekwonDoFan]
JMWcorwin Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 07/13/07
Posts: 731
Loc: SoCal, USA
cheap sword
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9o-DCk2qhDM

good sword
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pJZ5J7h_L1w&feature=related

But, as previously posted, if you really look online and even if you search the sword arts forums here, there's lots of knowledge to be had beyond what you see in a flea market replica sword catalog. It just requires a little bit of reading. This is something that can't be explained in a one sentence reply.
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#424963 - 02/13/10 03:30 PM Re: What's so good about legendary Japanese swords? [Re: Kathryn]
seibukanUK Offline
Member

Registered: 11/30/07
Posts: 43
Hi
It is interesting that you state that Kendoka just whack each other. So, I take it that they do not try to replicate cutting each other and therfore Kendo has no relation to the sword arts. I must add that I don't do Kendo but do Iai and Ken and was always under the impression that Kendo was a bit more than the art of whacking and had some relationship with the sword arts. If Kendo is the art of whacking, better off doing Ken or Iai they are real sword arts. You can whack any where
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#424965 - 02/13/10 04:35 PM Re: What's so good about legendary Japanese swords? [Re: seibukanUK]
TaekwonDoFan Offline
Member

Registered: 01/23/10
Posts: 271
Whacks on, whacks off, whacks on, whacks off. Very good, Daniel-san. smile

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#433084 - 07/05/11 01:26 AM Re: What's so good about legendary Japanese swords? [Re: TaekwonDoFan]
47MartialMan Offline
Member

Registered: 11/17/04
Posts: 180
Apart from what some others have posted, a good sword would not necessarily be an old-ancient--collectible.

The methods and understanding of metallurgy have far advanced in modern era and process than any old-world manufactured

Simply, a good sword is going to cost more

This is a great site and place to start;

http://www.sword-buyers-guide.com/buy-swords-online.html#battle-ready


Edited by 47MartialMan (07/05/11 01:33 AM)

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