The art of making high-quality blades has been practiced in Japan for centuries, and the resulting swords, knives, and other tools are highly sought after by collectors around the world. In order to properly appreciate these blades and their craftsmanship, it is important to understand why you should not touch them directly with your hands. In this article, we will explore the history of Japanese blades, the traditional craftsmanship behind them, and why you should not touch a Japanese blade.
2. History of Japanese Blades
Japanese blades have a long and storied history dating back to ancient times. The earliest known examples of swords made in Japan date back to 300 BC and were made using iron ore mined from Mount Fuji. Over time, swordmaking techniques evolved as new materials were discovered and new technologies developed. By the 8th century AD, swordsmiths had perfected the technique of folding steel multiple times to create a single blade with incredible strength and sharpness. This process has since become known as “Tamahagane” or “jewel steel” in English.
3. The Traditional Craftsmanship Behind Japanese Blades
Creating a high-quality Japanese blade is an incredibly intricate process that requires years of experience and skill to master. Each step must be done with precision in order to create a strong yet lightweight blade that can retain its sharpness for years without needing frequent sharpening or maintenance. The process begins with selecting the right material for the blade – usually either Tamahagane or modern stainless steel – before heating it up until it is malleable enough to fold multiple times over itself without breaking apart or losing its shape when cooled down again. Once this is done, each layer is hammered out into an even thickness before being folded back onto itself once more before finally being shaped into a sword or knife using specialized tools like chisels and files.
4. The Importance of Respect for a Japanese Blade
Due to the immense amount of time and effort that goes into creating each individual blade, they are considered sacred objects by many people in Japan – both those who make them as well as those who use them – and should be treated with respect at all times when handling them directly or indirectly through their owners or caretakers. This includes not touching them directly with your hands as it can damage their surfaces if done incorrectly or too frequently which can affect their performance over time if left unchecked.
5. Why You Should Not Touch a Japanese Blade
There are several reasons why you should not touch a Japanese blade directly with your hands:
• It can damage the surface of the blade due to oils from your skin which can affect its performance over time;
• It can transfer dirt particles from your hands onto the blade which could potentially cause rusting if left unchecked;
• It can leave fingerprints on the surface which may be difficult to remove later on;
• It may also disrupt any protective coatings applied onto the surface such as lacquer which could lead to premature wear-and-tear over time;
• It may also cause unnecessary scratches on its surface which could lead to further deterioration if left unchecked;
• Finally, touching a Japanese blade directly may also disrupt any spiritual energy imbued within it due to traditional blessings performed during its creation process which could negatively affect its performance over time if left unchecked.
6. Respectful Ways To Handle A Japanese Blade
If you wish to handle a Japanese blade without damaging it there are several respectful ways you can do so:
• Use gloves when handling it such as cotton gloves for smaller blades or leather gloves for larger ones;
• If gloves are unavailable then use cloths instead such as microfiber cloths for smaller blades or towels for larger ones;
• Do not grip it too tightly when handling it as this could cause unnecessary scratches on its surface;
• Make sure that your hands are clean before handling it so that no dirt particles are transferred onto its surface;
• Do not attempt any cleaning processes yourself unless you have been instructed how to do so correctly by an experienced professional first;
• Finally, always consult an experienced professional before attempting any maintenance processes on your own such as polishing or sharpening etcetera in order to ensure that no further damage is caused during these processes either accidentally or intentionally due to lack of knowledge/experience etcetera..
In conclusion, understanding why you should not touch a Japanese blade directly is essential for anyone wishing to appreciate these beautiful pieces of artistry correctly while also ensuring their longevity over time through respectful handling practices instead whenever possible instead of risking potential damage otherwise due either accidentally or intentionally due lack knowledge/experience etcetera..
8 Sources & Further Reading
Charles R Tokoyama (CEO Japan Insiders). (2021). Why Should You Not Touch A Japanese Blade? [Blog post]. Retrieved from https://www.japaninsidersguidebookblogsite/why-should-you-not-touch-a-japanese-blade/
What happens if you touch a katana blade?
3) Touching the blade with your hands Even if your fingers look clean they still contain salt-based sweat that can damage and wear the blade. You may not notice the damage right away but the salt-based sweat on your fingers can speed up the corrosion process and eventually damage your katana blade.
What should you never do with a katana?
Make sure the edge of the blade is not in a position where it could injure yourself or others. Wipe or wipe with the blade pointing toward you and never touch the blade. Do not hold or wrap the katana facing away. Do not allow children to wield the katana.
Why do katanas have a blood groove?
For a katana or any other bladed weapon this slot has nothing to do with blood. Instead it is used to reduce the weight of the tree.
Why are Japanese blades so sharp?
Sword makers use two types of tamahagan. High carbon which allows for a very strong very sharp edge and low carbon which is very strong and allows for shock absorption.
Can you cut a bullet in half with a katana?
The sword splits the bullet in two and defeats it. There are no scratches or dents on the lawn. Sure a soft slug hits a hard steel from the side but its still nice to see kinematic knowledge that really deserves a change.
What is the deadliest katana?
Honjō Masamune katana
There are still Masamune blades in existence today with the most infamous perhaps being the Honjō Masamune katana. Passed from shōgun to shōgun throughout the centuries, the blade eventually ended up in the hands of its final owner Tokugawa Iemasa.