What you need to know about Katana Kissaki - The tip of Katana sword

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Everything You Need To Know About Kissaki

The Japanese word for the tip of a katana's blade is Kissaki. However, many also refer to the tip of a samurai blade as Boshi, which can confuse many. To clear up this confusion, here I bring you everything you need to know about Kissaki!


What Is Kissaki?

The pointed, rigid tip of a Japanese katana is called the Kissaki. In Japanese swords, the Kissaki plays a crucial role. 

There is a common misunderstanding between the Kissaki and the Boshi; the latter is the Hamon design within the tip.

The Katana Kissaki is honed and polished to a mirror finish as the final step in the manufacturing process. Kissaki is divided into numerous categories based on blade length, profile, and arc.


What's The Usage Of Kissaki?

A sword's point is one of the most crucial factors that determine its worth. So a Katana's value is highly dependent on its Kissaki. 

Any cuts, marks, or flaws will hurt the sword's value when buying or selling a Japanese katana. However, whether the defects are located on the blade itself or at the Kissaki can significantly impact its performance. 

To use a traditional metaphor, the Kissaki represents the "face" of the sword. Hence, sustaining injuries elsewhere on the body rather than to the face is preferable. Strangely, people would call Katanas with no recognizable forge "headless" long ago and were thought to be worthless by many. That's why master artisans would craft the Kissaki with great care. 


What Are the Common Lengths Of Kissaki?

There are three different types of Kissaki, namely "O-Kissaki," "Chu-Kissaki," and "Ko-Kissaki," depending on their respective shapes and sizes (large, medium, and small).

The Ko-Kissaki has the shortest blade tip of any Japanese sword, which is fitting as "Ko" means "little." The tip is about the same size as a regular Chu-Kissaki but is substantially shorter. It's only about 3 centimeters long —compared to the rest of the blade.

Typically, a chu is between four and six centimeters in height. The length of this Kissaki is just slightly longer than the breadth, making for an attractive proportion.

The O-Kissaki, as the name suggests, is the longest and narrowest Kissaki alternative. Swords with blades over 90cm (35.5") typically include this design. The Kissaki measures 7 and 8 centimeters and features a Fukura Kareru or straighter bend to the tip.

You can order an advanced custom katana and asked for customized length Kissaki. 


Frequently Asked Questions

  1. How Long Does it Take to Polish Kissaki?

Ans: Kissaki is notoriously time-consuming to polish due to their complex geometry and non-uniform shape. Polishing the Kissaki can take as much time as polishing the rest of the blade. Unlike the rest of the Katana, where large strokes work well, the tip's surface area is complex, and you can only polish it in small increments.

  1. What Is the Difference Between Kissaki and Boshi?

Ans: The kissaki is the sharp tip of a Katana. On the other hand, the Boshi is basically the end portion of the Hamon line that is on the kissaki. 

Conclusion 

The Kissaki is one of the most crucial parts of a Katana, yet many confuse it with another part, Boshi. To remove this confusion once and for all, this article has covered everything you need to know about Kissaki. Thanks for reading till now, and don't forget to check more katana parts in this guide.

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