Blade types of Japanese sword

Blade types of Japanese sword

The term zukuri refers to the shape and form of the Japanese sword. Most Japanese swords are shinogi-zukuri and hira-zukuri, but the fashions of the times and the changes in fighting styles have led to a wide variety of shapes, but the shinogi-zukuri is still the most popular, as evidenced by the evolution of the Japanese sword itself. The unique use of the Japanese sword, the two-handed grip, is optimized for the Japanese domestic battlefield, emphasizing the two-handed grip, and has structural features that set it apart from other one-handed swords of similar length. The center of gravity of a two-handed sword is relatively forward compared to that of a two-handed sword, and a sword optimized for two-handed use is extremely inconvenient to use compared to a one-handed sword if it is held in one hand. This is why shinogi-zukuri swords are so popular in Japan, and the two go hand in hand.

What are the types of katanas?

- The most common blade design
found on Japanese swords, or rather long swords. On the blade there is a shinoji, which is the thickest part of the blade, with yokote and a sharply defined tip. Blades in shinogi-gukuri, as the name suggests, have a shinogi closer to the mune than the cutting edge, a ko-shinogi, and a yokote. Also called bon-suku.



- A blade without shinogi ot yokote, thus nearly
flat on both sides. The tip area is also not sharply defined. This type first appeared in tachi procuded in
ancient times. Tanto and ko-wakizashi from after the Heian period are
mostly in hira-zukuri.

jokoto or chokuto (Morokiriha-zukuri)
This is the oldest style of Japanese sword, the blade is straight, the shinogi is positioned close to the edge of the blade, the tip area is very narrow, and the shinogi is also all straight.
- Also katakiniba- sukuri Sword
construction where one side is in hira-zukuri, and the other in kiriba-
gukuri. This tsukurikomi appeared towards the end of the Kamakura
period but came again in fashion in the early and towards the end of
the Edo period.
-The shinogi extends all the way down the blade to the tip, but the tip area lacks a clear outline. Basically a shinogi-qukuni without jokote where the shinogi-ji drops off towards the mune. This rather sharp looking interpretation reminds
reminds of an iris (shobu) leaf, thus shobu-zukuri. A shobu-zukuri is mostly seen on tanto and wakizashi of the Muromachi period and there are two different kinds of shobu-zukuri. At one the shinogi meets in moroha-zukur-manner the very tip of the
sword and at the other, it runs like the ko-shinogi up to the mune, just without yokote.
It is basically shinogi-zukuri, but nagamaki-zukuri is characterized by a large groove (Hi) starting from the top of the blade's stem, and shinogi-ji forms a steeply sloping edge to the mune from the groove. Below the main groove and below the shinogi line, there is also a thin soe-bi.Some experts assume that the nagamaki reached its peak of usage in the Muromachi period and that it evolved from the overlong nodachi or odachi used in the previous Nanbokuchö era. The nagamaki is
designed for large sweeping and slicing strokes. Traditionally the nagamaki was used as an infantry weapon and warriors used it against horsemen.
kissaki-moroha-zukuri (kogarasu-zukuri)
This type of sword was first seen in the Heian period on a sword called koga-rasu maru. kissaki-moroha-zukuri has the grooves and beveled edges of nagamaki-zukuri, and the blade is curved, with a double-edged blade, with an edge that extends along the surface of the mune for half the length of the blade, and a soe-bi that extends almost all the way to the the tip of the blade.
kissaki-moroha-zukuri (kogarasu-zukuri)

What is the best type of katana blade?

Since few swords from the early Heian period have survived intact to the present day, it is difficult to determine when the Japanese sword changed from straight to curved. According to historians, the change in the shape of the Japanese sword is attributed to the fact that after the middle of the Heian period, when wars continued, the curved sword, which was easy to use on the horse, became popular due to the widespread use of cavalry, and the cross-section of the Japanese sword changed from the flat hira-zukuri and chokuto to the diamond-shaped shinogi-zukuri. At this time, shinogi-zukuri, one of the basic features of the Japanese sword, had already appeared, and shinogi-zukuri was stronger and had more cutting power than hira-zukuri or chokuto.

The thicker the blade, the stronger it is, but it is subject to greater frontal resistance, making it difficult to go deeper; conversely, as the strength becomes lower, the frontal resistance is less and it is easier to go deeper, but after a certain depth the lateral resistance becomes greater and it is harder to pull out. This is why shinogi-zukuri has become an inevitable trend.


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