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Thread: 25th Anniversary Paul Chen Shinto Katana

  1. #1

    25th Anniversary Paul Chen Shinto Katana

    I just received the 25th Anniversary Paul Chen Shinto Katana, WOW, what an awesome looking sword . The finishing is beautiful and the new High Alloy steel looks impressive.

    I am just wondering how sharp it should be.

    I tried cutting a piece of A4 paper, but it wouldn’t do it. I then cut a water bottle. It went through with no real problem, but it did not cut as easy as I expected. I have not yet tried a tatami mat, but reckon that should be the ultimate test. I am however hesitant as I bought it more so as a collectors item than a cutting sword.

    How sharp is a Hanwei swords supposed to be out of the box?

  2. #2
    The paper test is actually not that accurate on cutting performance. You can look into the term (hira) niku. The thinner the blade, the better performance on paper and mats but also the faster the edge gets dull or damaged.

    Besides, after an afternoon of mat cutting, most swords need some stropping of honing maintenance anyway

    There is of course the chance that your blade isn't polished the way it should be.
    You can turn the cutting edge towards a source of light. If the light bounces back on the cutting edge it's not polished very well.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeffrey Ching View Post

    Besides, after an afternoon of mat cutting, most swords need some stropping of honing maintenance anyway
    After nearly 6 years of cutting with it, I've never stropped a blade.
    Bartender and Brewmeister for the Pub


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  4. #4
    Thanks Jeffrey. I will give the reflective test a go.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Mat Rous View Post
    After nearly 6 years of cutting with it, I've never stropped a blade.
    Haven't seen a blade that didn't become dull after some period of time. Of course when properly hardened the edge will remain relatively 'sharp'. Some cutting materials dull the blade faster than others but still... You might want to give it a try and see what the cutting performance difference is

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeffrey Ching View Post
    Haven't seen a blade that didn't become dull after some period of time. Of course when properly hardened the edge will remain relatively 'sharp'. Some cutting materials dull the blade faster than others but still... You might want to give it a try and see what the cutting performance difference is
    This is cutting Wara

    It's sharp enough to cut in kata and static Tameshigiri forms - why would it need to be sharper?

    I can see that some blades needing a bit of work now and again but not, as you state, every session. That would indicate it's too soft.
    Bartender and Brewmeister for the Pub


    Stranger in a Strange land

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    I picked up a Bamboo mat, cut a tatami with it then stroped it, that was day one, haven't done anything to it since,That was over a month ago, with a fair amount of cutting, besides cleaning,It's the best inexpensive blade to date,I've cut with all the practicals, including the XL's, this is the best, I admit I've no history with the Shinto.

  8. #8
    Has the shinto katana really been around for 25 years, it doesn't seem possible.
    "When I sharpen my flashing sword and my hand grasps it in judgment, I will take vengeance on my adversaries and repay those who hate me..."

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by J. Bouthner View Post
    Has the shinto katana really been around for 25 years, it doesn't seem possible.
    C.A.S. regarded their own longevity as a company and not Hanwei or the Shinto. A visit to the C.A.S. site mentions that. Why did they choose the Shinto? I don't know.

    Cheers

    Hotspur; seems like a long time even for the company name to have been around

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Glen C. View Post
    C.A.S. regarded their own longevity as a company and not Hanwei or the Shinto. A visit to the C.A.S. site mentions that. Why did they choose the Shinto? I don't know.

    Cheers

    Hotspur; seems like a long time even for the company name to have been around
    Hi Glen it's good to read posts from you again. Since you left SBG quite some time ago I hadn't had the pleasure of reading you spurts of knowledge.

    Anyway aboug CAS Hanwei - CAS has indeed been around for that long, if I'm not wrong it was around as CAS Iberia. They sold primarily knives and SLOs until Hanwei acquired them. Now they're CAS Hanwei and sell functional katana and Euro swords.

    As for the Shinto I've never cut with the 25th ann. version but the regular one is quite sharp and does a good job at cutting. I'd be confused if this blade had niku though since Hanwei isn't well known for niku on their katana.

    Sam

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sam H. View Post
    Hi Glen it's good to read posts from you again.
    I'm not exactly a stranger here.
    Since you left SBG quite some time ago I hadn't had the pleasure of reading you spurts of knowledge.
    September (or was it August?) just last year. One might regard my postscripts as an ever evolving signature. Percy is noted both in my various avatars as well as my post scripts.
    Anyway aboug CAS Hanwei - CAS has indeed been around for that long, if I'm not wrong it was around as CAS Iberia. They sold primarily knives and SLOs until Hanwei acquired them. Now they're CAS Hanwei and sell functional katana and Euro swords.
    Yes, noted. I somehow lost a decade but 1985 seems about right for when magazine advertisements started to show up. I think I was more caught up in the Shotgun News, S.O.F. and Hemmings Auto News magazines/rags at that point in my life.
    As for the Shinto I've never cut with the 25th ann. version but the regular one is quite sharp and does a good job at cutting. I'd be confused if this blade had niku though since Hanwei isn't well known for niku on their katana.

    Sam
    Hanwei seemed to go light in the spring/fall 2003 generations of what later became the "Classic" line, with XL swords and others coming along in different weights. My one Hanwei, a fourth generation PK has a smidge of niku but more notably just a more robust blade overall than the later Classic PK. When the second generation of Practical Plus came through with the lighter blades (along with the Shinto and Golden Oriole), many were quite upset and the search for remaining "fat" stock was an almost immediate quest that lasted a couple of years on the boards. I would be hesitant to label all Hanwei katana as inherently flat without niku but there has certainly been a trend of catering to light and cutting ability. An overall graph of all Hanwei katana (including the Bugei blades) might show quite a diversity I could guess at but don't have the facts for.

    Cheers

    Zonker; not any easier to explain perhaps but a change in pace for the curious
    Last edited by Glen C.; 09-05-2010 at 06:23 PM.

  12. #12
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    Glen I hadn't been active on SBG since shortly after that. I got caught up in life since then with family problems and have now just gotten back to sort of restoring my life to normalcy. Anyway you are correct - as of late the majority of Hanwei's katana are catering to the light cutters with little to no niku. Perhaps the 25th Anniversary Shinto marks a return of niku on Hanwei's production katana?

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