Samurai Swords – Sword of the Warrior

History

From a historical point of view, Samurai swords were one of the traditionally made Japanese Samurai swords that were used by Samurai of feudal Japan. This weapon is characterized by its curved, slender and single edged blade. Samurai sword guard could either be circular or square in shape. It has a long grip that can allow the user to use both hands at the same time. Samurai weapons like these were produce in response to Samurai warriors wearing their tachi with the cutting edge up. This sword’s popularity came about because of the changing techniques in close combat warfare. The goal of using these Samurai swords is to allow the user to draw and strike the enemy in one fluid motion. The victory of the Samurai lies in his quickness in responding to a fight. The Samurai sword was worn using a belt like sash. This was often paired with a shorter sword. These pair is referred to as daisho. This privilege is given to the Samurai only. These swords represent his power and social standing. This gives him the honor to be known as a warrior of feudal Japan.

The Legend of Samurai Swords

Before the advent of those samurai swords, swords were imported from China. One of the famous swordsmith and his son forge a high quality Japanese blade. This replace the broken swords use by army that suffered irreparable damage during one of the wars. The next war turn into victory for the Japanese thanks to this sword. The Samurai sword is the Samurai soul. This deep attachment to his weapon results to a perfect blend of form and function. This is why using the finest and purest steel is essential. The process of producing a sword like this takes time before the process is not done step by step following the traditional sword making techniques of the master swordsmiths. The perfect balance of properties makes this sword a durable and highly prized weapon. A single sword like this shows a 500 year old masterwork.

Samurai Swords Forging and Construction

Tamahagane is used to create a Samurai sword. This is a specialized Japanese steel. Not all Samurai weapons use this kind of special material.  The process of producing these Samurai swords were equally special. With older steel the swordsman uses higher oxygen concentration. This removes the impurities of the blade thus making it stronger. Differential hardening or quenching is use to produce a gentle curve. Wet clay slurry is use to coat the blade before it is quenched. When subjecting these blades in such high temperature this produces a very hard form of steel. After the forging process, the blade is sent to be polished. The polishing process usually takes from one to three weeks. Fine grains of polishing stones are used to make these blades shine like a mirror. The blunt edge is given matte finish to emphasize the hamon. The final process calls for drilling a hole in the non-edge part of the blade or tang. Bamboo pieces are tied using a cord. Because of the processes that these Samurai swords have gone through these are well known for being exceptionally sharp and tough.

Sword Creation Process

  • Smelting the steel
  • Dissolving the carbon
  • Removal of impurities
  • Forging the sword
  • Coating
  • Curving the blade
  • Polishing
  • Additional final touches

Samurai Today

This sword remains appealing to a wide range of people even those that are of different culture. Some martial arts promote the use of these swords by teaching different kinds of techniques of using it.  However, the ownership of a sword like this follows strict regulation. This must be accompanied with proper authentic registration. There are makers of modern day swords like this that still use the best kinds of materials.  In movies or in stories, these swords inspires legends and invincible warriors of long ago. Myths have been form inspired by this sword. Some of them are true and some are not.

  • Swords like these can cut through silk when it is drop on the blade. The truth is that Japanese swords can slice objects when the blade is pulled across the target. This means no slicing will take place when the cloth is drop on the blade
  • This can chop other swords into two. The fact is that if a sword is hit in the wrong angle it can break however, chopping will not be able to cut the sword in half
  • Trapping a blade using two hands is a skill that can be mastered. Movies are responsible for this myth. The truth is if anyone attempts to do this they will likely get cut
  • Samurais are not allowed to place the sword in its scabbard without drawing blood. Fact is that this is not true and it’s just a myth
  • Thousands of sword like these were thrown into the ocean when Japan surrendered to America. Fact is that only some were cast into the sea aboard ships just like any other forms of weapon onboard. This was done to prevent the Japanese soldiers from causing harm with the use of weapons like these

Proper Maintenance

If these Samurai swords are not properly stored this can damage the swords beyond repair. It is therefore essential to store the blade horizontally in its sheath. The curve must be place down with the edge facing up. Oiling, powdering and polishing is needed to keep the blade from falling into rust. The use of choji oil is advisable since this oil has the right ingredients to protect the blade from rust. If the sword is stored for a long period of time it is essential to inspect it frequently and air it from time to time to prevent mold and rust from damaging it. Samurai swords have remain to be perfect examples of beauty and skillful engineering. Not all kinds of swords can have the power to pierce and slash. This makes these swords highly versatile weapon in battle and out of it.