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Are Munetoshi Katanas Good? (T10 Steel)

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Are Munetoshi Katanas Good? (T10 Steel)

Postby Brian_ChargersFan » Tue Jun 19, 2012 4:58 am

I was very close to getting a Kris Cutlery 26II but the DH blade got me thinking that I might be better off with a TH blade such as the Ronin Dojo Pro or DF Musha. Furthermore, I'm still on the fence on whether I like the saya, ito (b/c black isn't available), and menuki (some dark bronze looking one, when I'd prefer gold/brass) that comes with the KC anyway. Since I want a blade with a Bo-Hi, I've been patiently waiting and waiting on the back-ordered list for the DF Musha through Kult of Athena for months on end. So still with no Katana, I just find myself researching, watching videos on youtube, browsing various sites that sell Katanas, etc... and that brings me to SwordNArmory.com and my question...

What are your thoughts and experience with the Munetoshi T10 Katanas? I'm a little drawn in by the Dancing Crane Model because it has a Bo-Hi (which I like) and a pretty cool looking Hamon. I'm most likely going to sit around and wait for a DF Musha (w/ Bo-Hi) but down the road I don't think I'd be able to fight the call to get at least one Kat with a Hamon... I'd love to get the Hanwei Bamboo Mat but that's pretty expensive. I'd like to stay in the sub-$300 category...

Here's the Munetoshi I'm talking about.. I wonder if the fittings are any good because there's no mention on the materials used which I'm guessing might be some zinc alloy or something (like Cheness Kats):
http://www.swordnarmory.com/Dancing-Cra ... h-3302.htm

On a side note, also on SwordNArmory's site, there's a Musashi 1060 Musha Spring Steel Katana that seems pretty similar to a DF Musha... anybody know anything about it?
http://www.swordnarmory.com/1060-Spring ... 5012bk.htm

Thanks in advance... you guys rock on this forum BTW!
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Re: Are Munetoshi Katanas Good? (T10 Steel)

Postby johnwalter » Tue Jun 19, 2012 6:56 am

I currently own six Munetoshi,was eight,and my son has one.Imo,for the price they sell at,they are very,very good.
Not sure about the fittings on the crane,but all the ones I have are well made.
Id also stay on the list for DF musha for a tough beater.
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Re: Are Munetoshi Katanas Good? (T10 Steel)

Postby Krelian » Tue Jun 19, 2012 12:05 pm

From everything I've heard Munetoshi makes pretty good swords for the money.
I believe their low to mid range swords can suffer from the typical tsuka/fittings flaws that can be found on any low to mid range Japanese-style sword.
Inspect your new arrival thoroughly and immediately notify them if anything is off and I'm sure you'll end up just fine.

John, have you ever posted pictures and/or a list of your swords?
We have a Member Collections sub-forum for just such a post.
It sounds like you have a (not so) small armory and I'm sure I'm not the only one who would love to see it! =)
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Re: Are Munetoshi Katanas Good? (T10 Steel)

Postby Brian_ChargersFan » Tue Jun 19, 2012 1:56 pm

Thanks for the response Krelian and John. Do you know how the T10 steel holds up being differentially hardened? The description on the crane says it has light Niku to make it a nibble fast cutter but they claim that its very durable and can take some abuse (I was under the belief that less niku = weakness). But any idea what's the RC hardness of the
Edge/spine? Edge retention and durability from the edge chipping? I suppose I'm wondering how this Kat being made of T10 would be superior to say a Musashi Bamboo Warrior which is less than half the price?
Last edited by Brian_ChargersFan on Tue Jun 19, 2012 3:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Are Munetoshi Katanas Good? (T10 Steel)

Postby adrian.jordan » Tue Jun 19, 2012 3:01 pm

I've had two, the Take and the Light Cutter, and they are pretty good. They both suffered from some issues, but I was able to get them quickly resolved. The steel is definitely better than what is on a Musashi. The blade is more robust and the heat
treatment is better. The T10 is less durable than either the KC or Ronin. I would probably opt for one of those over the Munetoshi if given the chance. However, Munetoshi is pretty good, and my experiences with SwordNArmory have always been quick, polite and ended satisfactorily.
Last edited by adrian.jordan on Tue Jun 19, 2012 3:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Are Munetoshi Katanas Good? (T10 Steel)

Postby Jakeonthekob » Tue Jun 19, 2012 3:05 pm

T-10 is basically .9-1 carbon content which is extremely high. So you'll get an edge of HRC 58-60 (in some cases, even more 0.o) and the spine is usually at about HRC 45ish. You have to realize that DH blades have the pro of being able to hold a sharp edge for a long period of time, but they will take a set if you cut improperly with it. Properly spring-heat treated blades are much more durable and are much more forgiving on botched cuts but have less edge retention. So if you hit concrete with a T-10 DH blade then extremely high chance that it will chip. A TH blade given the same scenario will have a rolled edge.

The Crane is pretty durable as far as a DH T-10 blade goes. It does handle very well so it is very well suited for batto/nukitsuke/etc. Edge chipping really depends on what you want to cut. The Crane should be able to handle 1-1.5" diameter bamboo with little to no problem at all, given good technique. Anything other than that and tatami and bottles, it's all on you and may be destructive/damaging towards the sword. Light niku means that it is more suitable for softer targets such as mats and bottles. Cutting bamboo is definitely possible, as I have had no problem cutting bamboo with the Munetoshi Light Cutter which has about the same amount of niku.

More niku doesn't mean a better edge, it just means that there's much more tolerance for the edge to take a botched cut and not break/chip as there is more support. More niku also means more efficient separation of thicker and denser targets.

Musashi swords are usually made of 1065, 1060, or 1045, sometimes 1055. Mostly I think of a DH 1065 sword from Musashi and it is a very good budget sword. However the edge HRC is about 53-55 and spine is pretty soft around HRC 40. It definitely will not hold an edge longer than a DH T-10 sword but has less chances of chipping an edge. It will bend easier from lateral stresses as well.

So you must take all the characteristics of any type of carbon steel blade as well as the HEAT TREATMENT and geometry of the blade (ie thickness, weight, POB, etc). Try to get the performance characteristics that you want first, then focus on aesthetics. No use trying to use a sword that looks good but doesn't handle the way you like.

Hope this helps!
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Re: Are Munetoshi Katanas Good? (T10 Steel)

Postby Jakeonthekob » Tue Jun 19, 2012 3:08 pm

adrian.jordan wrote:I've had two, the Take and the Light Cutter, and they are pretty good. They both suffered from some issues, but I was able to get them quickly resolved. The steel is definitely better than what is on a Musashi. The blade is more robust and the heat
treatment is better. The T10 is less durable than either the KC or Ronin. I would probably opt for one of those over the Munetoshi if given the chance. However, Munetoshi is pretty good, and my experiences with SwordNArmory have always been quick, polite and ended satisfactorily.



Hey Adrian! You also have to remember that KC and Ronin make their swords with medium to heavy niku, which alters performance characteristics. Not to sound pushy or nit picky (please forgive me) but the overall weight as well as POB and even motohaba, sakihaba, motokassane, and sakikassane make a big difference as far as handling and cutting performance. Besides, a DH blade will never be as tough as a TH blade. That's why a TH blade is my choice for the zombie fest ;)
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Re: Are Munetoshi Katanas Good? (T10 Steel)

Postby Brian_ChargersFan » Tue Jun 19, 2012 3:18 pm

Jakeonthekob wrote:That's why a TH blade is my choice for the zombie fest ;)
Oh I LIKE THAT!!! Haha.... Yeah I'll continue to wait for the DF Musha in that regard.

As for a second Kat with a real hamon and good for light swift cutting, I'm going to really consider the Munetoshi T10 line. Thanks to everyone for the explanation and input!
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Re: Are Munetoshi Katanas Good? (T10 Steel)

Postby adrian.jordan » Tue Jun 19, 2012 3:22 pm

Jakeonthekob wrote:
adrian.jordan wrote:I've had two, the Take and the Light Cutter, and they are pretty good. They both suffered from some issues, but I was able to get them quickly resolved. The steel is definitely better than what is on a Musashi. The blade is more robust and the heat
treatment is better. The T10 is less durable than either the KC or Ronin. I would probably opt for one of those over the Munetoshi if given the chance. However, Munetoshi is pretty good, and my experiences with SwordNArmory have always been quick, polite and ended satisfactorily.



Hey Adrian! You also have to remember that KC and Ronin make their swords with medium to heavy niku, which alters performance characteristics. Not to sound pushy or nit picky (please forgive me) but the overall weight as well as POB and even motohaba, sakihaba, motokassane, and sakikassane make a big difference as far as handling and cutting performance. Besides, a DH blade will never be as tough as a TH blade. That's why a TH blade is my choice for the zombie fest ;)


That's exactly what I meant, my man, hahaha.
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Re: Are Munetoshi Katanas Good? (T10 Steel)

Postby johnwalter » Tue Jun 19, 2012 5:20 pm

Krelian wrote:From everything I've heard Munetoshi makes pretty good swords for the money.
I believe their low to mid range swords can suffer from the typical tsuka/fittings flaws that can be found on any low to mid range Japanese-style sword.
Inspect your new arrival thoroughly and immediately notify them if anything is off and I'm sure you'll end up just fine.

John, have you ever posted pictures and/or a list of your swords?
We have a Member Collections sub-forum for just such a post.
It sounds like you have a (not so) small armory and I'm sure I'm not the only one who would love to see it! =)

No I havent Krelian,I may take the time and do that,nothing special tho.Down to 15 or 16 kats currently,sold off most of my higher priced ones.
Ken-Zen Ichi Nyo

If you want to see,see right at once.When you begin to think,you miss the point.- Zen master,Dogo

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