Fixing a Loose Saya
by Jarrod Guerrero
(Mangilao, Guam, U.S.)
QUESTION: Over periods of sheathing and un-sheathing katanas, the saya sometimes become very loose. Like if you were to tip the sword over to where the blade points upwards, the sword would just fall out.
As with a new katana, the sword kind of locks into place in the scabbard or (saya) as I should be saying. Is there a way to prevent an already good saya from becoming loose?
Also, if the saya has already become loose, is there a way to fix or correct this problem? Thank You!
ANSWER: Absolutely! :-)
Just about all production Katana have some issues with the saya. The best ones start out a little too tight, but others start out loose and it kind of comes with the territory if you know what I mean. So much so that just about all Hanwei Katana actually include a leaflet on how to fix the problem!
What you need to do is to 'shim' the saya. There is a basic guide available online here that shows you the ropes, though there are others with more or less detail out there too.
Hope this helps.