How much does a Japanese sword cost?

Once you get interested in Japanese swords, you will be curious to know

how much they would be.

How much do you think they are on average? 


This is a tough question to answer.

The price of the sword varies greatly depending on several elements:

when it was manufactured, who the artist is, how the quality is,

if it is damaged, if it comes with a certificate, etc.


The price ranges from $3,000 to $100,000 and up.  



What do you think of the price range?

If you are thinking to learn about Japanese swords, you must have thought

“That’s too expensive!”



Since I am an antique shop owner, occasionally I meet foreign people

who think they can purchase Japanese swords for $200 to $300.

I’m ashamed to say that I was one of those people before I started

this business. 


Unfortunately, you can’t buy a real Japanese sword for that kind of price.

No matter how cheap, you have to spend 10 times more than that

to purchase a real sword. 


But are Japanese swords really expensive? 

Is the price of sword hight?


As I explained in the previous email, Japanese swords are made of

Tamahagane, steel produced by a processing method specific to Japan.

Processing Tamahagane, and forging, shaping and polishing swords,

as well as manufacturing equipment like Koshirae (mountings) are

all done manually by professional sword craftsmen. 


In order to make one Japanese sword, roughly 10 craftsmen are involved.

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Moreover, a Japanese sword can’t be made in a day.

Processing blades and making parts take at least a month. 


If you simply consider labor costs, it’s not too hard to imagine that

you can’t afford a sword for 200 to 300 dollars. 


On top of that, taking the cost of Tamahagane and amount of charcoal

needed for firing into consideration, you can say that $10,000 for one sword

is not too expensive at all. 



Moreover, except for modern swords, the number of antique swords is limited.

They went through several battles, but still keep the original shape.

They are very valuable swords. 


So please rethink if Japanese swords are expensive or not after taking

these elements into consideration.  


Well, if you surfed the Net about Japanese swords, you must have thought

“you can find lots of swords affordable for 200 to 300 dollars.”


 I’ll explain more about that tomorrow. 

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