O Katana

One of the most honored and valuable weapon of the samurai warrior is the katana. When a samurai was born, a special sword was taken into a room and when he died, the sword would be placed next to him. In between those two events when the samurai lived his daily life, he would always rest his sword by his pillow and sleep next to it.

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The Katana would be constantly at the samurai’ side since it was a symbol of his discipline, physical strength, as well as his loyalty. The katana sword featured a razor sharp edge and its sharpness would always exhibit the point of pride of the samurai while also allowing it to be a very effective tool for executing precise thrusts and cuts during chaotic battles.

The katana is a kind of nihonto that is usually referred to as the samurai’s sword. The katana sword is depicted by its distinctively unique appearance which is a slender, single-edged, and curved blade. The weapon also featured either a square or round-shaped guard plus an extended tsuka that would allow the wielder to easily grip the weapon with two hands.

The weapon has been associated with the samurai warriors of the warring period of Japan and has also become highly popular due to its sharpness and cutting prowess.

Original price was: $559.Current price is: $499.
Original price was: $559.Current price is: $499.

The O Katana Sword

The O Katana is a word utilized during the modern times and also in the West; it basically translates to large sword or long katana. True to its name, the O Katana is much longer compared to the standard katana and although it is lengthier compared to other swords, it still features adequate mass, allowing the wielder to easily carry the weapon through tough targets while also having extended reach that is relative to regular katanas. The blade of a regular-sized samurai sword usually measures around twenty-five to twenty-nine inches while an O Katana has no set length but is usually thirty to thirty-nine inches.

The abnormally lengthy blades are called the Nodachi or Odachi and are often carried across the wielder’s back. The term Odachi is often utilized as the synonym of the Japanese sword since this means great sword while the Nodachi literally refers to field sword. These types of swords were utilized during the warring period of Japan since these provided the foot soldiers better advantage when it came to their reach. In this day and age, the great swords are illegal in Japan so citizens are prohibited from possessing the Odachi unless its function is specifically for ceremonial purposes only. Compared to the set length of the Odachi which is about three shaku, the large katana only has a measurement of over two shaku and not more than three.

Blades that are much longer than two shaku are referred to as the daito or long katana, and to qualify as one, the sword’s blade should at least be longer than two shaku which is about twenty-four inches or sixty centimeters. While there is a well-defined limit to the large katana’s length, its upper limit is not much enforced.

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History of the O Katana

The familiar types of the katana sword first appeared during the Muromachi era within the years 1392 to 1573 AD since the Japanese’s history of weapon craftsmanship goes all the way back to over two thousand years. As for the weapons, the long katana eventually developed and appeared to be tapered from the tsuka up to the tip; these were made to be ridged for more strength and were slightly arched right at the base.

To provide better functionality to the needs and necessities of the foot soldiers, much shorter swords were eventually developed to cater to the needs of soldiers during battle. The form and body of the katana allowed the soldiers to move freely and easily, letting them cut and draw with ease and with just one stroke. During the fifteenth century, the cavalry men also preferred utilizing the O Katana since they usually dismounted their horses to engage in hand to hand combat. Eventually, a much shorter sword appeared and this was called the wakizashi; the weapon soon joined the katana in a samurai warrior’s arsenal. When the two swords were carried together, the pair would be called the daisho which means big little.

The origins of the O Katana are still unknown yet despite this, it is usually associated with a combination of both the Japanese and Chinese craftsmanship. Additionally, there were also numerous evidence that the O Katana was brought in to Japan from China but in a much earlier style and form. During the more peaceful days during the years 1615 to 1868 in Japan’ Edo period, the daisho became the symbol of status for every samurai warrior – the only individuals in society who were privileged to carry two swords. As time passed, the swords (including the O Katana) ended up becoming more symbolic than functional; so because of this, the quality of these blades eventually deteriorated, but its designs and aesthetic beauty improved greatly.

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Construction of the O Katana

The production of swords is considered as a highly respected and refined art in the country, and it was also part of a ritualized method that requires a long time of thorough training. To create a durable and effective O Katana, smiths used to heat blocks of steel which he would hammer, fold, cut, forge, and then reforge to adequately remove all unnecessary impurities in the blade. The process will create a finely-layered blade that is hard yet not brittle; the process of folding in much softer iron just close to the last part of the process would add more buoyancy to the weapon while the final process of tempering the blade would produce an unusually hard cutting edge. After completing the process, the swordsmith will polish the blade to give it adequate shine that will help expose more of the blade’s one-of-a-kind structure and razor-sharp edge.

Storage and Maintenance for the O Katana

When the O Katana is not properly stored or maintained, this could become irreparably broken. The blade of a large katana should be kept in a horizontal position while in its sheath, with its curve facing down and its edge facing up to keep its edge from deteriorating faster. It is also vital to regularly oil the blade, as well as polish and powder this thoroughly. The classic oil to use for maintaining the weapon’s blade is Choji oil – this consists of 1% oil for fragrance and 99% mineral oil. If the sword will be kept for lengthier periods, it should be occasionally checked on and aired to prevent mold or rust from forming.