real damassteel katana

by Youri Daschot

QUESTION: How is it possible to be sure that a katana is made of real damassteel, not fake etched damas? I mean, I want to know how, not how much damas would cost!



ANSWER: Hi Youri,

Actually - if someone is selling a Katana and calling it 'Damascus Steel' - it sounds an alarm bell for me..! The reason is, Damascus steel has NOTHING to do with Japanese swords (it is a middle eastern sword making technique), and no one actually knows how to make it any more..!

What most sellers who call their swords 'Damascus' steel are referring to is FOLDED steel swords. However, folding a Japanese sword is these days a largely obsolete technique - though very popular with 'marketers' if you know what I mean (many people think Japanese swords were folded 1,000,000 times or something - but the reality is they were usually folded around 6 to 7 times, rarely more than 13 or 14 - because after that, the steel becomes rather crumbly...)

Click here for more information on the different processes and what they actually DO for the sword

Hope this helps.

- Paul

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