'Shogun's Gift' Hand Forged Minamoto Katana in 1095 with a clay tempered blade and Makuri Lamination.
This hand forged katana is clay tempered. This involves smearing clay on the blade during heating and quenching to offer a uniform hardness to the blade and remove weak points which can occur when the heating or quenching is less even. It also allows the smith, by placing the clay thicker on certain parts of the blade, to make the edge harder (thus more able to keep the famous razor sharp samurai edge) and the rest of the blade less hard but more able to absorb impact.
The blade is also laminated using the ‘Makuri’ lamination process. Makuri lamination is extremely complex and the few remaining sword makers able to perform this technique consider it the hardest. It involves leaving versatile soft steel in the centre of the blade fully surrounded by more brittle solid steel.
The hamon on this sword is real. There is no bohi (groove in the blade for weight reduction). The wooden handle is wrapped in genuine Stingray skin (Samekawa) before the traditional cotton handle wrapping (Tsukamaki). The saya (sheath) fittings are of buffalo horn. The sageo (or ‘ito’) – which is the material wrapped around the saya – is made of purple silk. The wooden box, silk sleeve, cleaning kit and stand are included.