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Japanese Swords

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  # 1 Keep the samurai sword properly sheathed, in a well-fit sheath that is firm enough to prevent it from getting damaged by bumps or jars. It's important to both sheathe and unsheathe the samurai sword correctly in order to prevent damage to the blade. When unsheathing the sword, grip the wrapped part of the scabbard with one hand and the handle with the other. Use your thumb to edge the guard away from the scabbard until you break friction.

# 2 Store the sword horizontally with the edge facing up. The correct way to do this is to use a dedicated samurai sword stand. The stand keeps the sword properly balanced and protects the blade from damage caused by stress or by falling from its position. Wipe the scabbard.

#3 To preserve the attractive sheen of lacquer on the scabbard you should use a soft cloth to wipe the scabbard on a regular basis. Hold only the wrapped sections of the scabbard and wipe the part with the cloth, going back over it once or twice.

# 4 Clean the blade. It's best to use a blade cleaning kit for this, but it's not essential. Carefully clean the blade of residual oil with a piece of rice paper. Then, use a powder ball to lightly apply special sword polish evenly over the blade. Finally, apply two or three drops of sword oil along the blade and spread it gently with another piece of rice paper. It is important to store your samurai swords in a cool, dry, air conditioned environment. It is not really a lot of work to maintain a samurai sword, just use your best judgement for most things.

#5 Enjoy and respect your samurai swords, and they will bring you happiness for generations to come. They can be a family heirloom passed down through the generations.