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Imperial Navy Sword

Article about: Hi Guys, This may be the nicest sword I have ever owned. My First Imperial Navy Sword. I’m excited about this one, awesome hamon, Condition is fantastic. I want to remove the handle so I can

  1. #1

    Default Imperial Navy Sword

    Hi Guys,

    This may be the nicest sword I have ever owned.
    My First Imperial Navy Sword. I’m excited about this one, awesome hamon,
    Condition is fantastic. I want to remove the handle so I can photograph
    The Kanji. Then I can send up some better pictures.

    I have only removed pegs in the past how do I remove this cherry Blossom Peg?

    Never seen this type of peg before,
    Are these screwed together or pressed?
    Any Help would be fantastic.

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  2. #2



    The blade appears to be very shiny. If it's a plated blade, as many were, then there probably won't be any kanji on the nakago. Can you please clarify that point before we give further advice?


  3. #3


    I do not “think” that this blade is plated.
    I did not realize that plated blades would have a Hamon that ran into the Boshi.
    I will provide better pictures tomorrow when I have outdoor light.

    Thank You Stu

  4. #4


    That is unbelievible beautiful service dress sword! Exactly what I've been looking for forever! Keep me in mind if you ever decide to trade or sell

  5. #5


    The blade has an artificial hamon. Do not attempt to remove the handle as you will likely damage the blade and there will be no gain of information. Hand forged blades are never found in these type mounts. The blade is similar to those found in Imperial Army and Police model dress sabers. You have a very fine clean example. congratulations.


  6. #6


    Very nice sword, looks like early one with more than one sakura on the scabbard fittings. Love it.
    Is the blade sharp?
    To my eyes it it dosnt look like the parade sword but the 1883 pattern ,but with a blade made at that time.
    I think the sakura mekugi is like the dirk type ,so need to unscrew.

  7. #7

    Default Imperial Navy Sword more pics

    You guys are are great but now I have conflicting opinions which is what this forum is all about.
    I learn at every turn here.
    The blade on this is NOT dull like a parade sword, It is sharp.
    Based on my “limited” experience I can tell you this, when compared to the Japanese chrome police sword I own with fake hamon,
    It is not the same. The hamon on my police sword does not go to the Boshi. And really looks fake.
    While the finish of the blade does look similar this hamon goes to the Boshi.
    This one “looks” Kinda fake to me, there is no discoloration or cloudiness that seems to be associated with tempering.
    It seems that instead of tempering maybe etched?
    The hamon on this sword does not appear to be like the katana I have owned different Hada.
    I also think that the handmade blades I have had in the past feel heavier than this Navy blade.
    How are fake Harmon's made during WW2 Era?

    Sometimes when collecting these swords emotion comes into play and we want something to be what it is not.
    We think (me) well maybe it is, throwing away our common sense and knowledge for the moment.

    Here are some more pics

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  8. #8



    In answer to your question; "How are fake Harmon's made during WW2 Era?", I can say that both acid etching and sand blasting have been used in that time period.


  9. #9


    You build a beautiful sword like this and put a machine made blade with fake hamon, I kind of don’t understand this aspect of Japanese sword making.

    Here is where it gets cloudy for me so you fake the hamon, does that not cheat the solider out of what a hand made sword represents?

  10. #10


    Bob has often stated that the best way to evaluate a sword is to do it in hand. I agree, and yours is a good example of why that is so true. Photos can often be used but sometimes they don't show what needs to be seen. I also find that the term hand made is often used differently by different levels of collector. When I am speaking with an experienced student of nihonto I understand the term hand made means traditionally made because that is the context within which we would be speaking. Hand made can also be a Showato that was semi-machine made, oil tempered and hand finished. Again, the context of the discussion reveals the meaning. I could bang an old leaf spring from a Jeep into a flat bar, sharpen one edge, add a handle and call it hand made. Obviously an exaggeration but used here to illustrate the breadth with which that term is used.

    As to your sword, I have yet to determine in my mind to what degree it's hand made. I still see a very shiny blade similar to a plated example with what I believe is a fake hamon. Thomas, who I respect, sees it differently I think at this stage. Regardless it's an outstanding example of whatever it turns out to be so please don't be disappointed. Keep in mind also that the number of people requiring swords in a land where the sword defined the history of the nation, and the military, was immense. Large heavy blades were more labour intensive to make, the failure rate higher and much more difficult to carry around when not required for combat. A light weight plated blade looked good on a parade ground and was a lot less weight on a belt. Keep in mind these soldiers were not much over 5' tall in that era.

    So, let's continue the evaluation and see what we come up with. I can tell you that I have not taken the tsuka off a sword model such as yours. I have been told that some have a reverse thread on the pin so if you decide that you want to look for kanji keep that in mind. I'd suggest you now you wait for instructions from Thomas (Gunto) on just how to do it if you feel the risk of damaging the piece is acceptable to you.

    Some better photos of that blade may still be in order. Keep flash, flood or any other bright light off the blade. Try just illuminating the room itself to a high degree and take photos in the resulting ambient light.

    Above all else take this one step at a time and keep in mind that while you may be hoping for something more than we initially see your starting point is already far above average.


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