Photos of my work.
L6 Katana by Howard Clark
Antique Tonbo (Dragonfly) fuchi
Custom tsuba with Tonbo Theme commissioned through Legacy Arts Swords
Tsukamaki by Jesse Pelayo
Polish and mounting by Keith Larman.
If you want to see how this project started out, click here.
Basically I started with a really nice dragonfly fuchi and a tsuba I had commissioned through Ted Tenold's Legacy Arts Swords. And of course I had a really nice L6 katana from Howard Clark. I decided to use a horn kashira (which I am quite partial to actually -- I think they look very elegant) and designed a custom tonbo mon based on classical mon designs.
One thing that was nice was that the dragonfly on the fuchi lined up with the dragonfly on the tsuba.
So I played off of that theme and aligned a mon ghosted in the finish of the brown saya to align on the other side...
Here is the overall sword. Nice, gentle sori carried into the tsuka as well. Oh, yes, the tsuka is wrapped in brown doeskin.
Just as a note, I find it interesting that many people focus on things like the pretty saya, the hamon on the blade, and other "shiny" obvious stuff. What is more important, often, is the foundation work, the shaping, the crispness, and the overall quality of the work on everything else. A nice hamon shows that the smith was able to handle a clay heat treatment. However, a graceful blade, well forged, well shaped, with crisp lines and cleanly curving surfaces is another issue entirely. Too many people focus on the things that IMHO are of the least importance while missing some of the most critical parts of the art/craft of the Japanese sword.
And for other details the seppa are made from thicker copper sheet fitted exactly to the fuchi and saya sizes. I radiused the edges, polished them, then had them gold plated. The habaki is silver and was heavily plated at the same time to exactly match the seppa.
Copyright © 2006 by Keith Larman. Duplication or Copying prohibited without permission.