Modern Made Swords for Sale
Bob Engnath Katana
Bob Engnath spent several years making Japanese styled swords by stock removal methods with a differential heat treating in his Glendale, California workshop. Many within the Japanese Martial Arts community came to know his work for its simple, durable, functional designs that were the first reasonable sword available for the practitioner, other than novelty display swords or valuable Nihonto. He fostered interest and indeed began or encouraged many of today’s respected sword makers on their paths in the budding domestic sword community, including Scott Slobodian and Howard Clark. He gleened knowledge where he could, even sought the experience and help of Japanese swordsmith Kuzan Oda, a student of Yoshido Yoshihara. Before Bob began making swords he was already a well respected knife maker and overwhelmingly loved man in the community for his generous and happy go lucky nature. Swords he made are uniquely recognizable as his works.
This Bob Engnath Katana was polished and mounted by me in 1997 and has been used in practice and competition with great success by Big Tony Alvarez. Bob Engnath passed away, and Tony decided to retire this sword from regular service and focus on a sword made by Howard Clark. This sword displays all the features one would expect from an Engnath Katana. It is a bold, powerful blade in the U no kubi kissaki shape. The habaki was originally cast by Bog Engnath in solid silver. The silver higo style fuchi/kashira, keyfret seppa, and silver Fudomyo menuki are from Fred Lohman Company. The menuki are mounted to palm side. The tsuba is antique iron.
Nagasa: 29 5/8 inches
The 14 inch Tsuka is full wrapped same’ with gold silk ito.
The hamon is komidare based on suguha with deep, bright nioiguchi, ashi, yo, and as I call them; falling water that are somewhat like stacked uchinokes, which I’ve only ever seen on about half of Engnath swords. The boshi is maru with a deep turnback that becomes interrupted muneyaki. Muneyaki is common on Engnath’s longer blades because he used it as a form of both stiffener and limiter for sori development.
Condition is used but not at all unattractive. The polish has some marring and scuffing from use, but the shape and aesthetic quality are intact and impressive.
Engnath swords are earnestly sought by collectors and practitioners alike and are becoming increasingly difficult to acquire as most that own them do not want to part with them. This is a chance to own a sword that was produced at the height of Bob’s career, with a record of performance he would be proud of.
Bob Engnath Tanto
This shobuzukuri tanto by Bob Engnath was polished in 1999. It has a solid silver habaki and alder shirasaya. The nioiguchi hamon runs deeply to the edge with ashi and some little falling water patterns, ending in a yakitsume boshi falling off the mune. The polish is in wonderful condition. A great example of a well known and highly regarded American bladesmith in ready to enjoy condition.
Nagasa: 6 ¾ inches
This splendid set of Katana and Wakizashi was forged by Howard Clark, and polished and mounted in about 2002. Howard Clark is currently not accepting any commissions for his work due to popularity and demand. In light of this, and given that his focus is more geared toward his advanced L6 and 1086 metallurgy productions, finding available forge folded works by him has become increasingly difficult. The steel in these swords begins from basic 1095 and 1005 folded to create an average carbon content of about 1070 to 1075, or about equal to the upper limits of traditional Japanese carbon content.
Unlike many daishos, this set was forged and mounted as a complementary set and not brought together from two different swords. Howard prefers to create daishos from the same batch of material so to reflect the intention of them as a set based on the character of the steel, the forging, and the heat treat. Truly, this makes a set of swords that are immediately and obviously a matched set. This is quite rare in traditional and in contemporary sword history.
The swords were originally polished and mounted en suite in the Higo style by Legacy Arts using fittings from the Fred Lohman Company. The mountings are still in excellent shape, attractive, and tight. The current owner chose to have the katana rewrapped in black leather by the Fred Lohman Company for usage in iai after the original purple became soiled with use. The wakizashi is still wrapped in the original purple. Both are still very tight, well done, and ready for enjoyment.
The set has been “previously loved” in every sense of the phrase, meaning that it was not only utilized for practice, but also lovingly cared for. The condition of the blades is still excellent, and although the katana has been used for cutting, the polish is still shows the blades activity well and is not a detraction. There is no damage to the blades, and no flaws. The wakizashi was only lightly used and the polish is also in excellent condition. The handles, fittings, and saya are also in excellent condition. The tsukamaki on the katana is the only obvious difference in the pair, and is easily remedied by rewrapping back to purple silk, or to leather on the wakizashi. Both tsuka are constructed in Maedare Samekise (fully wrapped, overlapped concealed seam same’).
Specifications on the swords are as follows;.
Length of cutting edge: 71.12 cm (28 ¼ inches)
Length of cutting edge: 48.26 cm (19 5/8 inches)
Overall, a beautiful set of swords by a top contemporary American smith.
Separate sale of these swords will be considered at the prices of:
Price includes packing, shipping, and insurance to domestic US and Canada, the sword bags shown, and a cleaning kit.