Hardcover: 168 pages
Publisher: Kodansha USA; 1 edition (September 7, 2012)
Product Dimensions: 10.3 x 0.7 x 7.6 inches
Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars See all reviews (45 customer reviews)
Best Sellers Rank: #564,558 in Books (See Top 100 in Books) #48 in Books > Crafts, Hobbies & Home > Antiques & Collectibles > Firearms & Weapons > Swords & Knives #136 in Books > Engineering & Transportation > Engineering > Materials & Material Science > Metallurgy #594 in Books > Engineering & Transportation > Engineering > Reference > History
This is probably the best book in English ever written for learning how to understand and appreciate the Japanese sword. When this book first appeared almost 20 years ago, there was little detailed information in English outside of specialist journals and similar publications on how they were made, especially the details of the hand-forging, heat-treating, and tempering methods which are still being done today just as they were thousands of years ago.By varying the carbon content and temperature of the forge, the smith can either add or remove carbon or oxygen from the steel to get the right carbon content in the finished blade (about 0.7 percent). I enjoyed reading about the tatara, or iron smelter, which wasn't invented in Japan but seems to have originated in Manchuria and then brought to Japan by way of China or Korea. It's during this phase that certain impurities such as sulphur are removed as slag and carbon is added to produce steel, although the resulting steel is still low quality as the distribution of carbon isn't uniform enough to produce a strong sword.It was also fascinating to learn about how the hamon or temper line is created and made to appear (it marks the boundary between the hard martensite edge and the softer baenite), and the rediscovery of how to create the utsuri, which was highly prized on swords of the Bizen school but was lost for hundreds of years until just recently, and involves another change in the crystalline structure of the steel between the side and the back of the blade. I also learned how to appreciate the different crystal structures (nie and nioi) and textures that make up the appearance of the blade (jintetsu) and what to look for in a good sword.
Bento Box Cookbook: Delicious Japanese Cooking Recipes For Lunch And Dinner (Bento Box Recipes, Japanese Cooking, Japanese Recipes, Japanese Bento, Sushi, Rice Cooker) The Art of the Japanese Sword: The Craft of Swordmaking and its Appreciation The Craft of the Japanese Sword The Japanese Sword (Japanese Arts Library) Genki: An Integrated Course in Elementary Japanese II [Second Edition] (Japanese Edition) (English and Japanese Edition) Beyond Polite Japanese: A Dictionary of Japanese Slang and Colloquialisms (Power Japanese) Japanese Slanguage: A Fun Visual Guide to Japanese Terms and Phrases (English and Japanese Edition) Confessions of a Japanese Linguist - How to Master Japanese: (The Journey to Fluent, Functional, Marketable Japanese) Tai Chi Thirteen Sword: A Sword Master's Manual The Art and Craft of Handmade Books (Dover Craft Books) Tsuba: Japanese Sword Guards The Art of Japanese Sword Polishing Japanese Swords: Cultural Icons of a Nation; The History, Metallurgy and Iconography of the Samurai Sword Japanese Swords: Cultural Icons of a Nation; The History, Metallurgy and Iconography of the Samurai Sword (Downloadable Material) Bokken: Art of the Japanese Sword (Literary Links to the Orient) Mugai Ryu: The Classical Japanese Art of Drawing the Sword Japanese Takeout Cookbook Favorite Japanese Takeout Recipes to Make at Home: Sushi, Noodles, Rices, Salads, Miso Soups, Tempura, Teriyaki and More (Takeout Cookbooks 6) Japanese Cooking Made Simple: A Japanese Cookbook with Authentic Recipes for Ramen, Bento, Sushi & More Photographic Collection of Unknown Tea Bowls: Picking out Unknown but Wonderful Tea Bowls Japanese Pottery and Tea Ceremony (Japanese Edition) Bento cookbook :Learn to prepare delicious bento launch box to style japanese (japanese cooking 1)