Katana vs Broadsword

katana-shoujo-by-hamada-youho.jpg

A short animated gif purportedly highlighting the much vaunted efficacy of the katana in comparison to a mere broadsword has surfaced, inciting a storm of controversy.

Katana vs Broadsword

Needless to say, internationally this short video has inspired much discussion of the merits of the two blades, the test itself, and of course the excessively exaggerated properties of the katana.

2ch for its part is aghast at the soul of the samurai being turned and bent asunder by rude barbarian steel:

They’re using it wrong!

This is probably just an imitation using cheap steel…

Even a katana gets bent and broken. I don’t see the point.

A Japanese blade bends!?

Looks cheap.

Ah, the way the light reflects off it is all wrong – an obvious fake.

It’s no fake. Also, cutting and striking are two different things. If you want to ‘cut’ you need the right technique.

Doesn’t this make a steel shield the ultimate defence?

People really have too many illusions about these blades. Looks cool anyway.

You shouldn’t use all your strength when swinging a blade anyway.

Foreigners really worship katana and ninja a little too much.

Steel wouldn’t bend like that! Is it aluminium?

Steel would never bend like that!

Because a broadsword is a blunt weapon.

Just proving why the spear is superior again.

Seriously? Excuse me while I go to the shop to sell Masamune…

A Japanese blade’s strength lies in its ability to dispatch an enemy in but one stroke, it doesn’t rely on sheer hardness. These foreigners like flashy things so perhaps the harder thing looks stronger to them.

The usual:

All those foreigners have are cheap Chinese copies!

Under these conditions a hammer is best!

After the sakoku [closing of the country to barbarians], the samurai were just playing at swordfighting and the Japanese sword became nothing but a mere decoration. The blades used in the west continued to be honed in real battle – it’s obvious they’d be stronger.

Just the sort of idiotic test some fool barbarian would concoct, eh?

Not a real katana. As for the foreigners leaping to defend it – I laughed!

Aren’t those foreign anime otaku just mistaking ‘the sword that cuts iron’ for reality?

Foreigners absolutely worship katana.

Why? TMNT or something?

Probably Highlander’s fault.

Ideal:

blacksmith-katana.jpg

Actuality:

Katana vs Broadsword

So this ‘katana’ is going to be recalled too?

Who would have thought 2ch harboured so many experts on metallurgy and swordcraft?


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    Comment by Anonymous
    19:23 06/03/2010 # ! Neutral (+0.4)

    It depends on the sword quality and the blacksmith that made them.

    Comment by Anonymous
    02:10 21/12/2010 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    origin of the gif part one and two:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qpEC38sL3iU
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5Hy_A9vjp_s

    for those that don't understand german:

    The one doing the destruction test is a german blacksmith who made the sword using genuine tamahagane (special japanese sword steel) as raw material. (unfortunately they don't state what exact blade construction he used)
    But it's definitely folded and the hamon is real.

    his web page for further reading:
    http://www.seelenschmiede.de/frameset.htm
    (link to his japanese stuff http://www.seelenschmiede.de/japanschwerter.htm)

    Some general stuff about swords I haven't seen mentioned (might have overlooked them though ^^;):

    That a katana bends under extreme stress is actually a sign of quality for japanese blades (being able to bend it back after a fight was preferable over the sword snapping)

    Tamahagane is not a very good steel, and the folding process is necessary to even it out. (the impurities do help the folding though, as they decrease oxidation.., so you don't need to use as much borax or sand in the process..)

    I actually contacted hitachi metal co. some years ago, as they did a research on tamahagane properties,
    The result was that the strength of a japanese sword has nothing to do with traditional steel used but is only the result of the blade construction. tamahagane does not have any special properties. (except for being very "bad" impure steel)

    The main difference of Japanese and later european blades is the hardening process (the steel needs to be chosen accordingly). European blades are hardened to flex and turn back into the original shape, this does not allow an edge as hard and sharp as that of japanese blades, but the swords will be able to take a longer beating.
    (and, when fighting an armored late medieval knight, using the sword used more like a hanbo, short spear or hammer, as the plate was pretty much immune to cuts... so a semi blunt edge was preferred for versatility. Sharp enough to cut unarmored archers, blunt enough to wrestle a knight.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l4W9B_Ybmro
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f6Pnw-9A8qQ )

    Japanese blades have a harder edge (and soft back and core) making it possible to sharpen/polish them to a much greater degree. But they will usually stay bent if you bend them.
    (I won't go into rockwell, martensite, austenite, bainite etc.. the post would get a bit long...)

    Old european weapons of late roman and viking periods actually had properties much like those of japanese swords (layered folded steel of varying carbon content (more carbon = harder) with differentially heat treated edges. Unfortunately they used to bury the swords with the owner.. so there aren't many left that didn't turn to rust)
    Very simplified one could say that the europeans moved to a different manufacturing process in the search for more effective weapons, whereas the japanese sticked with the older process, refining it to a point where it turned from being a craft for producing effective tools to being an art in its own right.

    (there is also pattern welded steel (moving from folding out impurities to using prefabricated refined steel of different carbon content) and stuff like bulat, wootz etc.. use wiki for further reading)

    ... there are recent developments fusing the manufacturing methods (L6/bainite...) combining flexibility with a hard edge in the production of modern katana (as there is less of a market for european shapes)... but these shouldn't be confused with traditionally made swords, and are result of "western" technicians reevaluating and dismissing traditional japanese blade construction.

    on weapon weight:

    European sword vary greatly in weight and shape, but when comparing the double handed counterparts and adjusting for size and weight differences of the owners, the european and japanese weapons had roughly the same weight and even weight distribution.
    ...especially if you compare the katana with a kriegsmesser, a weapon also built for semi-soft targets.

    (it's the same when comparing single handed swords, broad or of later thinner type and a chinese jian... the large european pommel actually puts the point of balance closer to the grip than on the chinese cousin)

    .....

    Avatar of Mike
    Comment by Mike
    22:04 09/12/2011 # ! Good (+0.4)

    so really, when it comes down to the fight, its just about personal skill isn't it.

    Avatar of Ore wa seitei Souther!! Nanto rokusei no teiho![Takemaru]
    01:22 21/01/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Agree. There is no sense in comparing these weapons, as they made for different purposes. Katana was designed to fight lightly armored samurai, board swords are technically blunt weapons, used to fight heavy-armored knights.

    Katana have the edge in a fight, because it is lighter and faster, but gonna be in trouble if the opponent is armored or he manage to break it with the more sturdy broadsword.

    Comment by Anonymous
    02:19 21/12/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    rereading the thread.. past 3/4 of it, it seems that I did overlook that much of the stuff I wrote was already stated, sorry
    I hope I could at leas add a little of additional information ^^;

    Comment by Anonymous
    14:21 06/03/2010 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    I laugh at all the ignorents thinking a katana would prevail against western armors. Western armors were made to whistand the assaults of many kind of weapons including bows (at the exception of the english long bow and the xbows) flails and 2 handed swords. To actualy pierce it you needed "can oppener weapons" and a lot of time. To actualy beat a 13th century full plate wearer you needed guns or to have downed the knight and oppen his armour or place a styleto between the plates or use a blunt weapon and mash the corners of the plate to turn the metal to pierce the knight flesh with the points made of the armor. Finaly you could hit with a spear with a HUGE strenght to pierce the plate and the chain and the garnment.

    Katana were used against unarmored opponents, it was made to cut flesh and bone. It always was about being swift and cut well. The japanese armors were made of bamboo, bone and brass witch is heavyer and more fragile than westerness steel. Basicly Katanas were never made to face a metal plate or an other blade at all actualy. The mentality in the fight for the japanese never was to bloc the direct attack with your blade, hit first basicaly was the idea or dodge because your blade could break if you were using it to bloc.

    Those who think otherwise are ill informed, I'm an armorer I made a lot of armor and weapons, I made a lot of experiments and I can assure you, katana due to their fabrication techniques will break or bend against westerness heavyer counterparts it's a fact whatever some idiots think.

    Comment by Anonymous
    01:38 22/02/2013 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    You are wrong a katana would have spilt the long sword had it not been in a mount. Due to the design they are far superior to any other sword.

    Comment by Anonymous
    17:26 06/03/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    actually, it depends on the era. armor used by samurai changed over time, just like it did with european knights.
    Earlier samurai armor was made of leather and bamboo. But later samurai armor was made of laquered metal overlaps. Kind of like scale mail.

    Comment by Char
    15:26 06/03/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Thrusting type swords such as the Rapier were one of the innovations for dealing with armor.
    Instead of using slashing or hacking moves you use thrusting type attacks and try to stab the opponent at a weak point.

    Comment by Anonymous
    11:12 04/01/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    yup. samurai had a big ass club for hitting armored opponents.
    kinda funny if you think about it. :)

    Comment by Anonymous
    18:54 06/03/2010 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Fuck yeah Broadsword!

    Comment by Anonymous
    10:19 10/03/2010 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    "Aren’t those foreign anime otaku just mistaking ‘the sword that cuts iron’ for reality?"

    This.

    "Who would have thought 2ch harboured so many experts on metallurgy and swordcraft?"

    I lol'd at this.

    Comment by Anonymous
    17:38 06/03/2010 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    That katana could be a cheap factory job made in China for all we know. Just go to a tourist shop in Chinatown and plunk down $40.

    Anyway, cheap blade or not, the guy in the video is doing it WRONG. He obviously does not know how to use a katana.
    Katana were meant to be used to generate an arc of cutting force. This cutting arc is made with the last 3 inches of the blade. As you can see in the video, the impact is in the middle. WAY off.

    The fact that the guy in the demo can't even hit with the right part of the katana probably also means he does not know proper cutting technique. It takes a lot of training to cut the right way. A LOT. But when you do it, you can cut through two, three or even four human bodies in one stroke. That's how katana used to be tested in old Japan. They used condemned crimminals. The more prisoners a blade could go through, the higher grade it recieved and thus the higher price it could command at sale.

    Comment by Anonymous
    17:47 06/03/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    1) The weight distribution of Katana does not vary that wildly depending how you swing. Either way, Katana is generally much lighter than the typical broadsword. This is called physics.

    2) You are inferring that the broadsword can't do the same, which is untrue. Broadswords have been used to cut down everything from light armor and in most testing, it slices right through a whole pig or a block of wood, whatever.

    3) Inferring the 'skill' of a weapon to one another is just nonsense. Western swordsmen can have just as much if not more overall weapon skills than Japanese swordsmen. In terms of history, the West has been in on these weapon technology for eons longer than the Japanese.

    Comment by Anonymous
    16:21 07/03/2010 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    I inferred no such thing. You did. You jumped to conslusion of what I meant.

    What I am saying is that in the hands of someone who does not know how to use it properly, a katana's true cutting power will be greatly diminished. I know this from first hand experience. I tried and only managed a partial cut through a dummy. Then a master did a clean cut through two dummies.

    Someone may be highly skilled with a broadsword, but that does not translate to great skill with a katana. And vice versa. The two weapons were designed differently and meant for use with different techniques. You use a whole different set of muscles when striking with a katana compared to a broadsword swing.
    Again, I know this from firsthand experience.

    It's also not just weight disbribution. It's, as you said yourself, physics. This also includes things like leverage and velocity. An arc of force generated halfway down a sword is not going to be as strong as a full length arc. You can see how this works for yourself. Perhaps when playing baseball.

    Comment by Anonymous
    20:32 06/03/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Well not that much lighter. European swords were known for good handling and balance, while Japanese swords were more known for sharpness and quickness of draw.

    But other than that, yeah.

    Comment by Anonymous
    01:45 22/02/2013 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Wrong a katana was afar superior weapon.

    Avatar of Shippoyasha
    Comment by Shippoyasha
    21:31 06/03/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Yeah, it's not like those broadswords are actually 'heavy'. It's just that compared to the Katana, it's still much densely made and simply the bigger of the two. Sometimes even as much as about 80% heavier than normal Katanas.

    Comment by Anonymous
    23:34 19/12/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Not at all. Because European swords had much better material and craftsmanship, they were less dense and at the same time stronger.

    Comment by Anonymous
    07:52 08/03/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5Hy_A9vjp_s&list=FLS4Ff2OUDLoVOLXluNs1obQ&index=35&feature=plpp_video [http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5Hy_A9vjp_s&list=FLS4Ff2OUDLoVOLXluNs1obQ&index=35&feature=plpp_video]

    The katana was forged using traditional tamahaganae steel. Technique or not (and all swords are used to generate cutting arcs, that's the whole point of the weapons), katana are fragile weapons.

    Comment by Anonymous
    01:43 22/02/2013 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Wrong you obviously know nothing about a katana. If it was real it would have gone right through the longsword. Japanese swords were just better.

    Comment by Anonymous
    10:23 06/03/2010 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Katana relies heavily on user technique.
    It's made to strike the opponent not their sword anyway :p

    and broadword, ah.. I love it when they snap after striked by zweihander

    Comment by Anonymous
    22:23 06/03/2010 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    so it shows that you can be a rich dick that fucks up two perfectly good swords.

    Comment by Anonymous
    18:47 06/03/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    only swords made in china will bend

    Comment by Anonymous
    07:50 08/03/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    ALL swords bend. They have to. If you knew anything about the katana that you fap to, you would know what they are essentially a thin strip of hard steel sandwiched between much softer steel.

    Comment by Anonymous
    17:54 06/03/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Look at how well anime has brain washed all you fucking retards, you can't even trust your eyes.

    Comment by Anonymous
    17:51 06/03/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    As a iaido and battodo specialist, I can say he doesn't use his katana very well. We cut with the point, more effective than the middle of the blade. And a real tamahagane katana costs thousands of dollars, so, is he using a hand-made high quality saber or a simple cheap chinese copy,

    Comment by Anonymous
    17:51 06/03/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    HAIL BRITTANIA!

    Comment by Anonymous
    21:48 06/03/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    NIPPON BANZAI!

    Comment by Anonymous
    21:38 06/03/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Depending upon the quality and care of the blade, I'd say this is accurate. Steel today is made to bend, not break. You can also see, there are two grooves where the blades met, and that is also very real and very accurate.

    If a blade were to break, it would have to be under very, very excruciating and damn near unreal circumstances. I imagine the guy who swung the blade knew what he was doing, and was probably just as surprised as many of us are.

    Avatar of Callysto
    Comment by Callysto
    20:47 06/03/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    I believe they actually ran a simulated test based on data from the show Deadliest Warrior. Ninja/Samurai Versus Spartan Warrior.

    If I remember the Katana did not bend or break but it was incapable of doing any damage due to teh spartans shirld and armor.

    However when the ninja was behind the spartan the katana was more effective due to less armor.

    In th end the spartan won like 75 percent of the time due to the ninja not being able to pierce it's armor with any of its weapons.

    The times ninja did win was due to extremely accurate strikes or shots that pierced the vulnerabilities of armor that were not protected or by blinding the spartan and slitting it's throat.

    Either the way the Katana did not fare well, and the ninja never even attempted to cross swords blatantly against the spartans broadsword.

    Comment by Anonymous
    04:58 08/03/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    funy they used spartans who were using bronze weapons made during the early part of the antiquity, meaning about 3000 years before the ninja/samurai...

    Comment by Anonymous
    16:10 07/03/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    that show sometimes makes mistakes, though.
    Ninja did not use katana. They used ninjato. The techniques utilized are completely different.

    I also remember the show they did with mafia vs. yakuza. They said mafia would win because the yakuza used nunchaku while the mafia used stilleto. But yakuza would probably use tanto for a close fight. Not nunchaku.

    Comment by Anonymous
    07:26 27/05/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    actually 'ninja-to' are a thing of myth, and that show was 98% pure bullshit.

    Comment by Anonymous
    21:48 06/03/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    HUNTER WEAPON!

    Comment by Anonymous
    22:08 06/03/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    it's not a weapon, it the person using it.
    katana is cooler anyday.
    a good example is if i have a knife vs a trained martial artist likelihood of me cutting or stabbing him is close or next to nothing.

    Avatar of Mike
    Comment by Mike
    22:14 09/12/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    well that depends, anything can happen in a fight, anything

    Comment by Anonymous
    19:41 06/03/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Its funny how much discussion there is when in truth each sword has its own merits and style. The Katana is folded steel and most European swords though not folded are forged to be durable. Europen swords were heavy and hard because they had to contend with European armor. The Katana's blade was not meant to meet the blade of another weapon but rather for cutting the adversary. This is why alot of Japanese sword styles rely so heavily on the style of cut and the use of Kata for timing. If you watch some of the kata you'll notice they angle the katana in a way that either makes the blade meet the side of the other sword or the two sides meet. Exactly what the test proves in the video is moot, however we can infer that despite the weapon it is the skill of the person holding it that decides any real outcome. Both weapons are beautiful and equally deadly so stop aruing over the superiority of each and agree that it would be one hell of a fight to see two trained swordsman go at it.

    Comment by Anonymous
    11:25 06/03/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    you may block 1 bullet, but can u block THE WHOLE MAGAZINE ???

    Comment by Anonymous
    11:09 06/03/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    That video is crap and so is the katana used.

    http://swordforum.com/summer99/howardclark.html
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fM9zhwdIRgY

    Comment by Anonymous
    12:35 06/03/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    That show is BS.
    I know, because I has tried it at some point where I want to test the strength of the Katana I made.
    Ok, now is a few points to be added to the post.

    1: It is, Idiot beyond comparison to try and 'bash' something with a Katana, as previosly mentioned by some of the annoymous fishies out there: Katana is a weapon of grace, which modelled after a long time of study and prefect engineering: the curve, being the weakest point that hold the brittle blade is supported by bow-like structure, to provide support as well as absorbing the impact and distribute it evenly to its surrounding, making the blade is slightly resist to breaking. Katanas are made curved to increase the contact area, giving it more suitable to slash than to hack something to: even in the bushido art, there are some schools that teaches how to 'retrieve' the blade, A.K.A pulling back the sword just after the impact to cause more friction and in turn, cuts deeper.

    2: While broadswords user can whack something off, even break a concrete pipe (I tried it, and my wrists end up being sprained. ROFL) without having any skills or all, it is not because it is made from tougher alloy or so: It is the weight distribution of the blade. Because the mass of the blade is concentrated in-between the middle of the sword (near the tip, and do not count the hilt.), anyone who learned physics would know the acceleration one provides with the swing will produce more centrifugal force than any katana would produce, even with the same weight (to confirm this, try to release your grip while swinging your sword-better try this in a open lot or something without people walking, otherwise you cold be jailed because 'sword-hammer throwing which impales somebody named *insert name here*'. You will see, broadswords (or anything like that) will travel just like a giant-sized throwing darts, and rarely spins on the air while katanas will spin and spin and spin...

    It is because the weight of the katana is concentrated near the hilt part: this would mean the sword handling is more easy and more swift movement could be made. And it also provides the 'sweet spot', where the energy accumulated from your swing is concentrated to a peculiar spot: the 1/3 of the farther end of the blade, bear the tip of the sword. As you see in the pic, the idiot tester bashes the katana in the middle-which is not the place where the energy concentrated most. That explains the poor cutting power, and why it bends.
    Why it bends, do you ask?

    3) Even proper made katanas has their flaw.
    Katana, being made from thin layers of steel, coating a soft spine, is a special kind of sword: they have their weak point as well as the good one.
    -Section: Edge.
    Made from: layered high-carbon steel, or in metallurgy, Pearlite.
    Pearlite is steel which is rigid and harder than untreated iron or steel of kinds. It is named so, because the pearl-shaped, mirror-like dot which appears in the core iron when it is formed. It is known for its hardness and the sharp edge it produces; it also known to retain the edge well: but it is also brittle and prone to cracking if the quenching goes awry.
    The quenching itself, like most of you have known by the means of youtube, is the process which incorporates the different-ratio cooling: the part covered by ash and mud will gain less heat then the uncoated part, and while cooling it will cool down more slowly, making the different type of steel produced by the method. Because of the difference of the steel’s properties, the pearlite will extend, making the katana slightly curved in shape.
    The plus:
    *Because the thin layer of the carbon-rich steel, the edge is far sharper than any sword which is only tempered or forged with the cast method. Imagine a stack of HVS paper: their edges is there, ready to be sharpened anytime and provides a razor-sharp blade, just like your -run-on-the-mill- Gillete.
    The minus:
    *Carbon-rich steel is more brittle than its counterpart, the pure iron. This, is considered the only flaw of the katana. Without their soft steel core, even the katana forged from Damascus (I’ll cover about this later) will chip-and highly likely, break, unlike those in mangas.
    The Sword-core.
    Made from low-carbon steel. It has its own name-which I forgot.
    The steel here actually, come from the same chunk of iron-Tamahagane, which translated to ‘Jewel Steel’ because of the quality exhibited-and the painstaking process to made it. The difference between them is the process: while the steel which will become the edge will not be cooled down with water, and the excess firescale-a layer of rust made from the contact of red-hot iron with water (which is, H2O. They will react and form FeO2, which is rust; and the Carbon inside the steel will react with the excess O2, making CO2 or CO-this could poison the smith when the room is not properly ventilated) will be brushed off. Repeat and rinse, there you’ll have a low-carbon steel.
    The Low-carbon content of the steel makes it more ductile-more malleable-as well as impact-resistant. They are known to resist breaking by deforming just like a lump of clay would.
    The plus:
    *They absorbs the impact just like a cushion…seriously. And that is their only purpose.
    The minus:
    I don’t know if there is one. Who uses their sword-core to hack enemy, anyway?
    The Blade.
    Made from different material, according to the smith and the style.
    When I mentioned the blade, I mentioned the flat side of the sword: the one which bears the hamon, or wave-pattern. Many people thought that this part of the sword is useless, but in reality it is far then being so.
    The blade can be made outright from the same material of the edge, which is the old-stlye. Or can be made from the low-carbon steel, that is the feudal-style (it is more easier to craft one this way): The material difference-as well of the structure of the blade can make miraculous thing happen, like bending completely like in the vid, or cutting through metal sheets.
    There are three major styles of blade forging:
    *The ‘edge’ style.
    Just like your car wiper, this style puts the edge on the edge (this is not a pun) of the blade. In this oldest style, the edge is directly mounted on the blade, making the soft-steel as the complete part of the blade.
    *The ‘hotdog’ style.
    The extension of the ‘edge’ style which makes the high-carbon steel covers the core steel, leaving only small portions of the core exposed at the opposite direction of the edge. This style is used when you wanted to get a katana which will not have scratch-mark, usually caused by guarding.
    *The ‘wrapper’ stlye.
    In this style, which then divided into two more styles, the soft inner core is blanketed by harder metals, such as higher-carbon content-steel. This provides a good (and obviously, harder blade that can be used to guard as well as reinforce both the edge and the core, making it almost impossible to bend upon swinging or impact (athough it will bent when hammered from the sides. What wouldn’t?)
    There is also the filler-groove, or blood-groove method, but I will not mention it here.
    Somewhere in the post I recall someone who writes that the back of the sword will be used to block an incoming attack of sort—that is, a mere lie: true katana swordmaster block with the flat side of the sword, and then ‘throws’ the attacker weapon with a heavy swing to the side or upward slash, throwing them off-balance, disarming the enemy and crating an opening which they could land a slash or two. But there is always an exception; that is, what style the sword is forged with: the ‘wrapper’ style enables the katana to have the back part of the sword as guarding edge, that are also could be used to shatter the foe’s blade, given it made from the other two styles. Then such, the ‘wrapper’ style is considered the most perfect style. And no, adding titanium to the alloy will not make your katana harder or lighter. It will, trust me, make it more brittle then ever.
    The Hilt.
    Is made from white oak or another kind of wood, which sap is non-corrosive. Coated with coarse rayfish skin to aesthetic value, or to prevent the blade from slipping, and then binded by coarse silk. The tang is held by to pieces of wooden nail.
    What made this part special is the armguard (Tsuba), which bear intricate pattern that symbolizes the holder: be it his/her status or bloodline, to a mere artpiece.
    To summarize it, Katana is far more complicated than a piece of flat steel which had been sharpened and given a handle.
    Back to the video. Now look more closely as the camera zooms in to the chipped, alas, bent katana. From my observation , the katana data is as follows:
    ‘edge’-style with accessory filler-groove, made none other than cheap stainless steel. And the hamon is highly likely a faux: it does not bear the crystalline pattern of the steel, thus meant it has not yet undergo the tempering (by this I meant the heat-treatment and quenching), that is proven why it can bent strangely (because the inner tension stored by the back-part of the sword while in the quenching process, in reality-and if it has been tempered, it should break, not bend.)
    While the broadsword is as follows:
    Same stainless, reinforced from blowback because tied with chain to the table. Wider and fatter than your average katana, of course.
    So , using average logic, when two material of the same kind clashes with each other, which will win: The one with more mass, or one with less mass, but more speed?
    Q.E.D. By the one who is pissed off by the frugal show.

    Avatar of ranivus
    Comment by ranivus
    17:11 06/03/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    You put too much thought into this anon... not many will read the whole thing.

    Avatar of Shippoyasha
    Comment by Shippoyasha
    17:43 06/03/2010 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Also one of the most butthurt and backtracking kinds of comments one can make for a desperate and futile plea that Samurai swords can cut like they do in anime... Pathetic.

    Comment by Anonymous
    19:04 06/03/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    well, it cuts well, but not to the extent the anime and manga shows to.

    It is my job-for the one who knows the fact better than average people to shine a new light to your-covered-by-scales-of-prejudice-eyes...so you won't make the same mistake like the one in the video think-and done.

    Comment by Anonymous
    12:43 06/03/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Japan isn't known for its vast natural resources. One of the reasons the swords were folded many, many times was to remove the impurites of the metal. Swords were not made to clash against metal like in the animation.

    Comment by Anonymous
    10:32 06/03/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    They should use a depleted-uranium damascus-blade with chinese war sword design. That would win against anything, except perhaps against BErserk's Gutts' sword!

    Comment by Anonymous
    10:08 06/03/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    I think the katana is imitate too.
    But, in this test, true katana is also same result.
    It is different the way to cut.

    Comment by Anonymous
    10:47 06/03/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    What's with the voice over translating for that old man in gun vs katana? It sounds stereotypical...?

    Comment by Anonymous
    10:48 06/03/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fxYvwEnKRjA

    Avatar of Imyou
    Comment by Imyou
    10:55 06/03/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    I've studied a hell of a lot of bladesmithing and metalurgy as it applies to steels, and there is so much wrong with this comparison.
    First, let me get the biggest thing out of the way: Comparing Eastern and Western swords is retarded, especially katana vs broadsword because that's like comparing a screwdriver to a hammer. Which is better? The real question is better at what? (Samurai vs Knight is also stupid because you will NEVER agree on which samurai, which knight, what age, what style, which equipment, which conditions, and so on. They both had fighting systems that worked for them in their own conditions. Just let them be...)
    Also, the tester there had zero technique. You could probably fuck up a very nice katana pretty badly hacking at a soft, green 2" diameter tree branch like that.
    To make matters worse... it's a broadsword - a sword known for being a huge honkin' ton o' steel. Maybe a katana could cut it... or at least partway into it... if the broadsword wasn't heat treated, and the tester used a proper zantetsuken technique - assuming those aren't mythical. This would work because the edge would be far harder than the steel it's cutting, it wouldn't impact hard enough to shatter the edge, but it would draw and slice the target (like a drill bit boring into annealed steel.) It still wouldn't do the katana any favors though - they're best used on soft things, like people...
    The spray of metal dust is promising - at least the katana probably had SOME edge hardening. I suspect it's a new make, because that bend is ridiculous. The core and spine of that blade are way too soft. I'd say a bend like that makes sense for a Howard Clark katana, except... his are TOO good. (I can't see one taking that kind of damage, even from hacking at rocks. They could bend that far sideways though... and return mostly true.) Anyway, I'm not sure what that sword is for - perhaps iaido tameshigiri demonstrations? I'm not even sure it's all steel... all the katana and similar classes of swords I've seen tend to fail by breaking off, or shattering the edge to useless raggedness a long way down the blade, exposing the soft core and crumbs of edge metal.
    Anyway, this proves nothing, and it's a dumb, arbitrary test to begin with. If the katana cut the broadsword in half, it would be an impressive show of skill for the weilder, but nothing mindblowing. You could test the swords in a fixture that brings them edge to edge at the same speed and force, in a way that totally doesn't simulate a sword fight, and then you'd get into an almost particle physics level world of minutae as the relevant questions came up of what the molecular composition of the alloys used in each blade were, the homogeneity of the alloys, if multiple alloys were used, what their thicknesses, locations, and geometries were, how blade geometry affected the kinetic energy at points of impact (betcha I have a khukri that could cleave a katana in half in the hands of an amateur... because it's hard as a diamond figuratively, heavy and thick, and the geometry makes it vorpal - anything on the sweet spot is severed effortlessly - but katanas aren't made for that abuse any more than they're made to be laid across two tables and smashed with a hammer) ...how heat treating and tempering were done, what the balance of austensite to martensite in each blade was around the strike zone, etc... and that massive inquiry that would take a team of scientists a week to digest would tell you about that one specific incident that they tested - not how good each type of sword is.

    Comment by Anonymous
    13:15 06/03/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Excellent. You know swords. Martensite and austenite!

    Comment by Anonymous
    04:52 07/03/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    katana vs. nuclear bomb

    katana: 0
    nuclear bomb: 120.000












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