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Nihonzashi Sword Store & Dojo
 5980 66th St N Suite M
St Petersburg FL 33709
Email: info@nihonzashi.com
Phone: 727-329-9679 
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Sword Sharpening and Polishing

Don't let a dull sword make the difference between success and failure! We have been sharpening katana for over 10 years and know what makes a great cutting sword. We only sharpen katana / wakizashi that were designed for tameshigiri (test cutting). We will not sharpen decorative stainless steel blades sold as "battle ready" or antiques (we will sharpen gunto of known value).  We offer a lifetime 1/2 Price Sharpening and 1/2 Price Repair on any Shinken or Iaito you purchase at Nihonzashi (click here if you qualify).

General Information about Sharpening and Polishing

Sharpening is not a cosmetic polish but does affect the whole surface of the blade! It is not intended to make the sword look good. It makes the sword cut better. One of the basic requirements for Tameshigiri is a sharp well shaped katana edge. If you are not sure your katana needs sharpening, check out our "Is my Sword Sharp?" page.  The blade surface must be polished (not cosmetic) and the geometry correct. Most practitioners make the mistake of trying to sharpen their own blades with products designed for knifes. It is the whole surface and not just the edge that makes the katana cut well.

We can optimize the edge for soft or hard targets. Soft targets include tatami and beach mats. Bamboo is considered a hard target. We use a series of Japanese water stones and diamond polishing abrasives ranging from 80 to 10,000 grit to put a razor edge and polished surface on your katana. A standard sharpening only sharpens about 14 to 16 inches of the blade which is used for cutting. This is normally the only part that becomes dull.  We will also sharpen the kissaki.

We also offer a sharpening polish that removes all of the diagonal scratches from the water stones and continues the polish to 40,000 grit.  While this does not improve the cutting ability of the sword, it does make it look much better.  A Hybrid Polish includes cleaning up all surfaces of the blade and enhancement of the hamon.  This will make your sword like new.

The katana should have a removable tsuka. Please email us if you wish to sharpen a sword with the tsuka permanently attached. We will remove the tsuka and straighten the blade as part of the normal process.  Swords should be shipped with saya and fittings to protect the blade.  The tsuba can be removed to reduce the dimensions of the sword, but the sword should be shipped with the tsuka and mekugi peg to keep the blade from being forced into the saya and splitting it.

Blade Straightening

Bent swords are a standard part of tameshigiri training.  Shinken are designed to bend and not break.  As long as the hardened edge has not cracked, the sword can be straightened.  We will use wood straightening jigs to get bends and twists out of your swords.  Please order any sharpening services using the Katana, Wakizashi, or Tanto price lists at the bottom of this page and remember to include return shipping.

Standard Sharpening (Monouchi Only)

A standard sharpening only sharpens about 14 to 16 inches of the katana which is used for cutting (including the kissaki). This is normally the only part that becomes dull.  The sharpened half of the blade may vary from the rest of the blade and there may be some faint scratches left from coarser stones.  Please order any sharpening services using the Katana, Wakizashi, or Tanto price lists at the bottom of this page and remember to include return shipping.

Whole Blade Sharpening

A whole blade sharpening includes the cutting edge back to the habaki. This type of sharpening is useful for dodan cutting which uses the entire length of the blade. It also produces a uniform finish over the entire length of the blade but there may be some faint scratches left from coarser stones.   Please order any sharpening services using the Katana, Wakizashi, or Tanto price lists at the bottom of this page and remember to include return shipping.

Sharpening Polish

A sharpening polish sharpens the whole blade including the cutting edge back to the habaki. This type of sharpening produces a uniform finish over the entire length of the blade.  It also refines the finish further than the standard and whole blade sharpening using abrasives going to 1/4 micron.   Please order any sharpening services using the Katana, Wakizashi, or Tanto price lists at the bottom of this page and remember to include return shipping.

Hybrid Polish

A hybrid polish adds clean-up of all the blade surfaces and cosmetic enhancement to the hamon.  It sharpens the whole blade and polishes all surfaces using abrasives going to 1/4 micron.  It also includes a light chemical etch to further bring out the hamon (hardened edge).

Additional Chip/Nick Removal

Chips and nicks in the blade can be removed as long as they do not go past the hamon.  Chip and nick removal over 1/64th of an inch are an additional charge to standard and whole blade sharpening.  Chips and nicks are removed by reshaping the blade on a slow speed wet grinder before sharpening.  A large part of the blade may need to be reshaped to keep a proper blade geometry.  Please order any sharpening services using the Katana, Wakizashi, or Tanto price lists at the bottom of this page and remember to include return shipping.

Additional Edge Reshaping

Reshaping can be important for katana that have poor edge geometry.  We can optimize the edge for soft or hard targets. Soft targets include tatami and beach mats. Bamboo is considered a hard target.  The edge is reshaped using a slow speed wet grinder before sharpening.  Please order any sharpening services using the Katana, Wakizashi, or Tanto price lists at the bottom of this page and remember to include return shipping.

Additional Reshaping of Broken Kissaki Tip

A kissaki can be reshaped to repair a broken tip.  The kissaki is reshaped using a slow speed wet grinder before sharpening.  Please order any sharpening services using the Katana, Wakizashi, or Tanto price lists at the bottom of this page and remember to include return shipping.

Shipping / Drop off / Pick up  Address (store hours)

Nihonzashi Sword Store & Dojo
5980 66th St N
St Petersburg FL 33709

727-329-9679

Repair costs should be pre-paid. Please include  return shipping with your payment. Please send a copy of your Paypal receipt and any special instructions with the sword. Swords will be returned in their original packaging. Normal repairs will take from 4 to 6 weeks.  If you need it completed faster please purchase 'rush service'.

Katana Price List

Wakizashi Price List

Tanto Price List