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 Post subject: Protection for polished blade during mounting
 Post Posted: Sat Nov 26, 2011 12:24 am 
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Joined: Wed Nov 16, 2011 8:31 am
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Location: Greece
If a polished blade is having new koshirae made, how does the mounter protect it from scratches during all the woodwork?

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John Coritidis


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 Post subject: Re: Protection for polished blade during mounting
 Post Posted: Sat Nov 26, 2011 4:50 am 
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John -
It is my understanding that the sword is sent to the saya-shi twice during the process. Once early on so that he can take measurements and start on his rough work while the blade is beaing polished. Then just before the final stages of polish it is handed over to him again for fine tuning the fit of saya using the blade in near finished state.

The wood of the saya should not be able to scratch the blade, therefore a careful artist can work with the blade and saya and not affect the polish. Thats what I think I was told...
-t

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 Post subject: Re: Protection for polished blade during mounting
 Post Posted: Sat Nov 26, 2011 8:20 am 
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I think it is 100% true, but what if the blade is already polished?

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 Post subject: Re: Protection for polished blade during mounting
 Post Posted: Sat Nov 26, 2011 6:51 pm 
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Hi John,

They cannot protect the blade. The best options are as Tom described, getting your saya made in between the blades polishing processes, because if they scratch it the scratches can be removed before the final polishing with not too much trouble.

They have to keep 'placing' the blade into one half of the saya at a time, then temporarily join the two halves to make sure the halves match, then keep sliding the sword in and out to make sure it fits. This inevitably leads to hike of some kind. Either by the lateral placing of the blade in the scabbard, or from its touching in places where it hasn't been carved out enough yet when sliding the sword in and out. They cannot cover the blade in anything, as this would distort the true shape of the blade, and the saya would not match.

The other option is that you by a pre made saya from a company like Noshudo, and they match the curvature of your sword as best they can with one of the various curved saya that they have, and professionally carve out the koi-guchi to fit your habaki.

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 Post subject: Re: Protection for polished blade during mounting
 Post Posted: Sat Nov 26, 2011 7:47 pm 
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I suppose that all those antique blades that were remounted in ww2 military (or any modern) koshirae were repolished or definately suffered scratches during the process...

This is bad, because cancels all my plans for future koshirae on some polished blades of mine...

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John Coritidis


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 Post subject: Re: Protection for polished blade during mounting
 Post Posted: Tue Nov 29, 2011 10:17 pm 
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Sorry for the double post, but my best bet to confirm or deny my assumption of the previous post that a remounted blade in polish would suffer scratches in the process and would then need a "touch up" polish to remove the scrathes...

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 Post subject: Re: Protection for polished blade during mounting
 Post Posted: Fri Dec 02, 2011 2:40 pm 
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John,

As pointed out, there is not way to *assure* that scratches will not happen. Mounting the sword requires processes which are by nature, threatening to the finish. Good craftsmen will take every precautionary measure to protect the blade, but aside from contact with wood, tools, or just handling, it only takes a fragment of stray material or dust to scratch a finely finished sword.

That said, I will say that it is possible to make a new saya for a completely polished blade with no adverse effects to the polish in the end. However this is a combination of extreme care and skill by the craftsman, and good luck. For the most part, the blades polish can be protected during mounting of tsuka, tsuba, etc., by cleaning the blade carefully, oiling heavily, then wrapping in plastic wrap, then placing in a heavy cardboard sleeve. Habaki can also be made to a polished blade protected in this way, but obviously the habakimoto (area the habaki seats) may suffer some scratches during the fitting process.


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 Post subject: Re: Protection for polished blade during mounting
 Post Posted: Sun Dec 04, 2011 3:27 pm 
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Thanks!!!

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