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Thread: Tsuka ????

  1. #1

    Tsuka ????

    Ok , i have just taken down my Oni Forge Medium Katana and discovered the below pictured. I dont know if this is a cracked core or just the two halves. Also is it general practice to shim the tsuka (with a chopstick)?



  2. #2
    That is a cracked core. It is unsafe as it is.
    Keith Larman
    Summerchild Polishing and Modertosho Modern Japanese Swords
    "They say I have ADD, but ... Hey, look, a chicken!"

  3. #3
    Oh, and I can't even imagine how it would be a good thing to shim a tsuka with a chopstick... If there is *that* much room and it then it gets cracked... Something is seriously wrong.

    Shims are usually thin pieces of wood strips -- think veneer. And with those you want to use a wood like birch for the veneer because it can be crushed a bit and compressed. If you need to take up *that* much empty space the tsuka quite simply doesn't fit and should be redone.
    Keith Larman
    Summerchild Polishing and Modertosho Modern Japanese Swords
    "They say I have ADD, but ... Hey, look, a chicken!"

  4. #4
    OMG..THAT is SERIOUS !

    Get in contact with the supplier ASAP and threaten legal action on account of H&S
    Cryf oedd calon hên y glas glogwyni,
    Cryfach oedd ei ebill ef a'i ddûr,
    Chwyddodd gyfoeth gŵr yr aur a'r faenol,
    O'i enillion prin a'i amal gûr.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Gwyn Mowll View Post
    OMG..THAT is SERIOUS !

    Get in contact with the supplier ASAP and threaten legal action on account of H&S
    Actually I'd just contact the supplier first and ask them how they will address the problem. Starting with threats of legal action is rarely the start of a pleasant conversation...
    Keith Larman
    Summerchild Polishing and Modertosho Modern Japanese Swords
    "They say I have ADD, but ... Hey, look, a chicken!"

  6. #6
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    A phone call with the lawyer would cost more that the sword is worth... besides... threatening legal action over a cracked tsuka core is ...


    Best to contact who ever you bought it from and see what they will do. The tsuka is unusable as is.

    I have never seen a tsuka shimmed with a chop stick before....
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  7. #7
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    ouch. thanks for posting this, I'll proceed to check my Oni Shobu's tsuka..
    Certified nerd; if you need an Excel sheet or an AutoCAD drawing done, just drop me a PM!

  8. #8
    thanks guys I thought it was a crack but wanted to make sure. I got it directly from Loren so it will be a little tough getting a hold of him. And yes its a "chopstick shim job" the other side acutally has chinese writting from a resturant. Ill post it up here later. I can't belive a company like Oni would put this out. Just think how many people don't take their katanas apart. Scary!!!

  9. #9
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    lol somebody just had lunch and then he build your tsuka
    en forgot to glue to other half of it.
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  10. #10
    Yeah thanks, Im glad your laughin JK. heres the pic of the chopstick. either that or they were to lazy to throw away their trash after lunch.


  11. #11
    I should clarify my wording... I said cracked -- that's not accurate. It looks like the glue seam gave up the ghost. So the glue didn't' hold. But it is not accurate to say the core is "cracked" per se. Unfortunately it goes the entire way under the ito and so the only way to find out if the entire seam is bad is to unwrap the tsukaito.

    But that said, fixing that would be a waste of time if it needed a freaking chopstick to tighten the fit... It doesn't fit correctly to begin with. So repairing and re-wrapping wouldn't make much difference.

    In other words... You need a new tsuka. Completely new. One that fits snugly without the necessity of eating utensil insertion...
    Keith Larman
    Summerchild Polishing and Modertosho Modern Japanese Swords
    "They say I have ADD, but ... Hey, look, a chicken!"

  12. #12
    But imagine the convenience....they forgot to put forks and knives in the bag and all of your silverware is dirty...

    Edit: Of course you'd have to buy another sword in order to have a pair of chopsticks...
    Alright! You and your bastages can gamble. But don't try no fargin' trick, otherwise you wind up with your bells in a sling!

  13. #13
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    appalling

    and judging by Lorens habit of poor communication and missing emails you might have a tough time contacting him .

    Is this the worst case of poor workmanship yet seen around production tsuka ?

    without the chop stick the blade would fall out of the core - someone needs a disciplinary at the factory - I hope they are not on piece work and paid by the unit because then they will do almost anything not to have a part rejected - remember the cheness blade that snapped at the machi ? It had been welded back together and put into stock as new rather than drop a unit of production off quota - the blade snapped again during a few light swings , same thing here by the looks of it .

    that chopstick says to me that someone at Oni's factory does not give a damn about quality at all .
    " Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil's schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms."



    Ephesians 6:11

  14. #14
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    Hello Michael...

    Nice new signature...

    And problems like these made me buy a PC PK with the tsuka epoxied to the nakago... Yes, I know, it's not traditional, I can't oil under the habaki, but...

    Production katana at that price range or lower are crap anyway...
    So, it's not going to be a family heirloom... When it rusts, or I get bored with it, I'll do something to it... Probably nasty...

    Anyway, in the meantime, I don't have to worry that the tsuka will fail, or how to get decent bamboo mekugi (you have to put in new mekugi every so often, the old ones get worn, especially on cheap production katana where they hold the blade instead of the friction fit between tsuka core and nakago) after taking it apart a few times to clean under habaki...

    I wonder, is the new PK (in all it's incarnations) still epoxied, or is it now more traditional and dismantable...?

    If only the production katana had a good fit in the tsuka and nakago that was properly worked with a file to give it more grip...

    Ah well...

  15. #15
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    Hi Hrvoje

    Yep I am also seriously sceptical of sub $300 swords for cutting use , Ive gone in the opposite direction to you though and Ive had my two cutting katana remounted from the blade up with hand carved tsuka , full same' , quality fittings etc - I know it would have been cheaper to just buy MAS or Bugei but ive now got two of my favourite blades mounted in their sunday best

    I believe the Oni medium katana is about $399 - $499 which makes that shim an even worse sin - ok plenty of tsuka are shimmed , its normal practice , but a chopstick - and I bet if you look closely there will be food canker left on it - why would they have chopsaticks in a sword factory if not to eat with ( shudders )

    yeah - ive ressurected the old sig from 05 - its more appropriate
    now than ever
    " Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil's schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms."



    Ephesians 6:11

  16. #16

    Wink

    Well, Ive still have not contacted Loren yet in reguards to the Chopstick shim or a new Tsuka. Im still thinking of my options. I dont really cut with this blade so i might use this as a good starting off point for a project.

    Question for all hope you can help. I know that this blade is hybrid polished probably to about 800 grit. I would like to do a hybrid polish to a highter grit 2000-3000 grit then etch the hamon due to Oni's having a lowkey hamon display. When you guys polish them up what type of wet sandpaper and lubricant do you use? Also what is the method as far as direction of the strokes and are you polishing the blade on the paper like the traditional way (sort of) or putting the paper to the blade (Bob Villa) way? Are you using some sort of sanding block? No one seems to explain this, I know its alot of questions but please help me. Thanks Again, you friend the "Chopstick Samurai"

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Keith Larman View Post
    But that said, fixing that would be a waste of time if it needed a freaking chopstick to tighten the fit... It doesn't fit correctly to begin with. So repairing and re-wrapping wouldn't make much difference.
    My thoughts exactly. I had a production katana with a similar split at the seam. As long as the wood itself isn't compromised, a regluing (I use expoxy frequently to make doubly sure) could be a remedy, but it would need to be rewrapped to make sure. In fact I would have done a full rayskin wrap if it were mine to make ULTRA sure that doesn't happen again. When I can I have the rayskin go under the fuchi so even the mouth of the tsuka cure is bound in rayskin.

    What no one has mentioned is that the chopstick might have been the CAUSE of the split. The same tsuka core I fixed had a large shim in it (a bamboo splint) and out of curiosity I mounted it without the shim. No problems at all, perhaps the shim was put in for no reason or was put on the wrong tsuka, I had a tight fit. I would see if it can be mounted without the chopstick shim, or with a much smaller one. It probably still requires a little shimming, but perhaps the chopstick forced the core apart.
    Every time I put on a suit for a wedding or other event, I feel like I'm wearing optimal clothing for an epic fight scene...

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  18. #18
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    Actually Loren would not have been aware of this at all and he probably as much as anyone will want to get to the bottom of how and why this happened .

    I take back what I said about Lorens Communication issue's - he's obviously on the ball again now as I sent a mail to him the other day and got a reply in less that 36 hours so he's obviously back to running at full steam -

    you need to contact Loren anyway so he can investigate this at the forge end and ensure a repeat never happens again as its a health and safety issue - you sort of have an obligation to let the vendor know just like he is obligated to make good on your tsuka .

    Mick
    " Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil's schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms."



    Ephesians 6:11

  19. #19
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    ...and then there was two:



    My Oni Shobu tsuka is bust. Totally bust. It's cracked at the very top of the tsuka, and from there on the glue has given up as far down the seam as I can see. It is painfully obvious that this is a "one-size-fits-all" tsuka-core. As this is a second-hand sword (previous owner didn't use it for anything other than display) I can't really do much about it, but I'm *SO* through with production swords.. At least the ones in "factory"-koshirae.
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  20. #20
    sorry and happy for your discovery

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joe DAgostino View Post
    sorry and happy for your discovery
    Yeah, I'm glad I uncovered this before I took the sword into actual use. Removing the tsuka was a pain too, since it was apparently hammered on.

    How do I know it's a "one-size-fits-all" tsuka-core? When I squeeze the top of the tsuka and the cracked halves are together, the width of the nakago-ana is 6mm, and the nakago that should go in is 7,5mm..
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  22. #22
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    While from a 300$ sword this is still unacceptable. The chopstick is to much.Talk about adding insult to injury,very sad.
    Last edited by R.C.Goetz; 01-06-2008 at 12:02 PM.

  23. #23
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    market leaders

    How many Hanwei Paul Chen tsuka have you heard of cracking like this ? at the seams or panel inlet ? or anywhere ?

    I cant think of a single one , not one , what mkes this so special is consider the number of Paul Chen katana that have been sold in the last 8 or 9 years , it must be many thousands of especially the low to mid range lines - ever heard of a musashi daito or a wind and thunder core cracking in half like this ? me neither .

    is it any wonder why hanwei and paul chen continue to be the market leader by a big margin .

    new guys on the block like cheness and oni have already got lines of product obsolete and discontinued like the kanbei and ukigumo but hanwei are still making upgraded versions of the same swords they were making 9 years ago - shinto , musashi , golden oriole etc

    maybe these tsuka failings are a symptom of a brand trying to offer too many variants too soon
    without first getting there bread and butter lines
    as close to refined as production swords can get .
    " Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil's schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms."



    Ephesians 6:11

  24. #24
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    ... but I'm *SO* through with production swords.. At least the ones in "factory"-koshirae. [/QUOTE]

    don't be so quick to dump all production swords together. The tsuka on my Bugei bamboo fits perfectly.

    It might be worth pointing out that in the law there is a doctrine known as the warrant of usability. It basically requires that something be fit to be used for the purpose for which it is advertised. A sword shimmed with a chopstick cannot be safely used for its intended purpose.

    tk

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Kehoe View Post
    don't be so quick to dump all production swords together. The tsuka on my Bugei bamboo fits perfectly.
    My angst towards production swords goes beyond tsuka-issues.. I got the Shobu just out of curiosity (and because it was so cheap), and that proved to be the last drop that causes the overflow. With a quick overseeing I can spot half-a-dozen flaws in it, and another half-a-dozen small things I'd have done differently if I was the manufacturer that would have made this a much more appealing (rather than appalling) sword. I know, it's just a $200 sword, but why make things wrong on purpose?

    Regarding Hanwei's tsuka, indeed I have not heard of a broken tsuka yet. Nor have I ever seen any inspected, including my Orchid (I haven't bothered to disassemble it because I only display it for now). And as an aside, I hate the axe-handle shape that (all?) Hanwei katana have.
    Certified nerd; if you need an Excel sheet or an AutoCAD drawing done, just drop me a PM!

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