Fuchi – Hilt Collar of a Samurai Sword
Fuchi is the hilt resembling a cap type collar that lies between the tsuka and tsuba. This covers the opening in the tsuka of a Japanese sword. Even the tang of a sword goes into the tsuka through the opening in the fuchi. Alkuchi was a style of mounting in which the Fuchi Katana meets the koi-guchi. Some tsuka are constructed as single piece. This simply means that this tsuka has no separate fuchi, kashira and menuki. There are different types of Fuchi which includes Fuchi Katana, daisho pair, a style with dragons and with crouching lions. Katana Fuchi Kashira is handmade copies of museum like high quality original blade parts obtain from collections. These are not just from Japan alone. Some are made in the United States. Most of these are made of steel, silver, gold plated and multi-plate. In the case of multi-plate this is a silver base part that is gold plated and patinated. As a rule of thumb those that are made from the Edo period onwards are generally made of metal and manufacture as a set with the Kashira. Other styles of Katana as the Katsumushi which has a dragon fly theme.
Katana Fuchi Kashira Origins
Generally speaking, Fuchi Kashira follows no given pattern. This simply adapts to the result of the forging process made on the blade. This new pattern was produce by using new metallurgical techniques and the use of heat treatment protocol. The evolution of the designs coincides with the evolution of the tsuba patterns. This shows the symmetry between Fuchi and Kashira. This only proves that having the right Katana parts on hand will visibly show the complexity of the pattern designs and the materials used during construction. Rich owners can be assured that the most expensive pieces of Katana Fuchi are those that are made of onerous materials. The best kinds of Katana are those that are handmade using prime materials. Kashira can be customized depending on the pattern use or the maker who produce the Katana. The price of the unit depends on the process on which the sword was produced. As mentioned handmade Katana are more expensive.
Fuchi Kashira Materials & Construction
Most of the Katana Fuchi Kashira is made of metal. The specific metals used are either iron or alloys of soft metals. The pattern used can be of the same material or a different one. The reason for using shining metal is to make this visibly apparent when mounted on the Katana. Materials can either be any of these: Copper, Brass, Gold, Silver and Iron metal. Since the unit is handmade the basic shape is tested on the tsuka so that it can fit the upper and lower border. Forged metal is used on the dimensions of the tsuka so that it can sustain its form. This will ensure that it can withstand the vibrations of the Tang. The pattern maker must be an expert to be able to let the blade through while the other place can be seen on the face of Kashira.