Iaito Minosaka Tensho Koshirae Akechi Mitsuhide

Made to Order | Production: ~
Order today and we will ship before
In stock: ships within 2 working days
Order today and we will ship before
Availability : around (Shipping date estimation)
¥180,000 ~
Excl tax - Shipping Included Excl tax - Shipping surcharge for Africa & South America
Price may increase depending on customizations
This combination is unavailable. We have reset the options.

This Iaito is handmade in Japan at the "Minosaka" forge using 100% Japanese materials. All accessories such as Tsuba, Menuki, Saya, etc. are also produced in Japan at traditional workshops specialized in the manufacturing of accessories for Shinken (real Katana). Particular attention has been paid to details during the manufacturing of this high-end model.

The Tensho Koshirae is a famous style because one of its variations was used by Akechi Mitsuhide a Samurai responsible for the death of Oda Nobunaga. This specific model is the variation used by Akechi! In addition to the black buffalo horn Kashira and solid silver Fuchi, which are classic Tensho style pieces, this model features a genuine Shinken Tsuka with a makisame and a genuine Urushi lacquer Saya with a Kaeshitsuno.

Unlike standard Iaito Tsuka, which have only a strip of same placed into the tsuka wood structure, this model offers a fully same wrapped Tsuka, made the exact same way as for a Shinken, which makes the Tsuka much stronger and slightly thicker.

For this model, you cannot choose the Saya lacquer, which is genuine traditional Urushi Tamenuri lacquer. Urushi is a traditional lacquer that is very popular in Japan but hard to work with. Traditionally, most Shinken Saya were lacquered with Urushi of various color but for this specific "Akechi Mitsuhide" model, it is Tamenuri, or Crimson red.
The saya is mounted with a Kaeshitsuno, a horn fixed on the Saya to lock it in the belt and ensure it won't pull when drawing the sword.

The cost of the Makisame is about 45,000 YEN and the cost of the Tamenuri Saya is about 75,000 YEN. If those options could be tweaked for a lower cost, this model is designed to have the same mount quality as a Shinken for a very long durability. Therefore, those 2 options justify the price of this model, both in term of durability and craftsmanship quality.
For other options, please order the Tensho Koshirae model and customize it to your liking.

Option recommendations for this model, by Minosaka's craftsmen

  • Hamon: Suguha
  • Habaki & Seppa: Shonai gold Habaki & Silver Seppa
  • Tsuba: Hyotan
  • Tsukaito: Navy silk, Katatemaki (the original Akechi model has a Katatemaki wrapping, however, for intensive use, we recommend Hinerimaki or Hiramaki)
  • Same: Black
  • Menuki: Hishi
  • Saya: Kuroro
  • Shitodome: Gold Shitodome
  • Sageo: Navy silk

Although you are completely free to select the options you like the most, the options above show the standard mount as recommended by Minosaka. Those recommendation take historical records and aesthetic into account.

Technical Specifications
Fuchi/Kashira FKM109 - Tensho
Fuchi (solid silver): 40 x 24 x 10 mm
Kashira (buffalo horn): 36 x 21 x 7 mm
Blade bottom width ~32 mm
Blade end width ~20 mm
Blade bottom thickess ~6 mm
Weight for 2.45 Shaku ~840 g without Saya | ~1,150 g with Saya

Iaito Customizations

All orders are final. No modification or cancellation will be accepted once an order is placed. Even shorter production delays do not give right to cancellation.

The production time is 3 to 5 weeks for Minosaka Iaito6 (standard) to 10 (full custom) weeks for Jisei Iaito (without including possible holidays) depending on selected options. We will contact you within 3 business days after you passed your order if the completion date estimated by the workshop is later than the shipping date indicated at checkout.

To ensure that you haven't missed anything, all options must be selected, even when you want a standard element.
Even if an option is visible on the product's pictures, it is not available for this specific product if it is not visible in the selection. All available options are displayed in that selection and we will not accept any request for options not listed below.

We strongly recommend reading in details our guide "How to Choose your Iaito" and taking time to make sure that each option corresponds to your wish before placing an order for a custom Iaito.


Blade Length


This combination is unavailable. We have reset the options.

The blade length is measured in the Japanese traditional unit called Shaku. One Shaku equals 30.3 cm, or roughly 1 feet (0.994 Ft.). Its sub-unit is the "Sun". There are ten "Sun" in one "Shaku", so 5 Sun can also be written 0.5 Shaku. Please note that a blade length does not include the Habaki (see pictures), but is measured in a straight line from the tip (Kissaki) to what is called the Munemachi (base of the blade), hidden under and partly covered by the Habaki. Light and standard blades are available for lengths up to 2.55 Shaku and thick/heavy blades are available for lengths up to 2.70 Shaku, owing to the alloy’s resistance. Wakizashi are available from 1.30 to 1.50 Shaku.

Here is the text for the Satsuma Koshirae Monster:

The blade length depends on your height, on your arms length and on the school in which you practice. The size table below is the official recommendation of the Japanese Iaido Federation. Women are advised to use a blade one size shorter than that of men of the same height. We also recommend for people who are not specialists (Aikidoka for example) to use a blade a size shorter than the recommendation, because it will make the sword unsheathing/sheathing easier.

Please also make sure to consult your teacher to check that the size table below is applicable to your school.

Please note that the size recommendation does not apply to Wakizashi as the Iaido federation does not provide such recommendations. However, we do recommend avoiding too long blades for small practitioners

Your height Length for men Length for women
~ 150 cm 1.30 shaku / 39.4 cm N/A
~ 150 cm 1.35 shaku / 40.9 cm N/A
~ 150 cm 1.40 shaku / 42.4 cm N/A
~ 150 cm 1.45 shaku / 43.9 cm N/A
~ 150 cm 1.50 shaku / 45.4 cm N/A
~ 150 cm 2.20 shaku / 66.6 cm N/A
~ 155 cm 2.25 shaku / 68.2 cm 2.20 shaku / 66.6 cm
~ 160 cm 2.30 shaku / 69.6 cm 2.25 shaku / 68.2 cm
~ 165 cm 2.35 shaku / 71.2 cm 2.30 shaku / 69.6 cm
~ 170 cm 2.40 shaku / 72.7 cm 2.35 shaku / 71.2 cm
~ 175 cm 2.45 shaku / 74.2 cm 2.40 shaku / 72.7 cm
~ 180 cm 2.50 shaku / 75.8 cm 2.45 shaku / 74.2 cm
~ 185 cm 2.55 shaku / 77.3 cm 2.50 shaku / 75.8 cm
~ 190 cm 2.60 shaku / 78.8 cm 2.55 shaku / 77.3 cm
Up to 200 cm 2.70 shaku / 81.8 cm NA

Blade Groove


This combination is unavailable. We have reset the options.

The groove, called “Hi” or “Bohi” in Japanese, has several purposes: it can make the blade lighter and more flexible, or it can help to drain the blood for instance. Minosaka offers a few custom options for the groove but of course, there is no finish available when the chosen option is "without groove".

  • Standard groove: the most classical groove.
  • Without groove: this option makes the blade heavier. Removing the groove increases the total weight by about 50 g on standard blades, and up to 150 g on heavy blades. The whistling sound disappears almost completely.
    This option requires a fully custom-made blade, which pushes the production time to about 6 weeks.
  • Hi Dome: Standard: the groove has an ogival shape and stops approximately 4 cm from the Habaki.
  • Hi Dome: Kakinagashi: the groove goes on under the Habaki. It makes the blade even lighter and moves the balance of the blade further towards the Tsuka.
  • Hi Saki: Shinken: this kind of finish looks like the grooves that can be found on Shinken. The tips of the grooves where they connect with the Kissaki (tip of the blade) are manually and delicately crafted so that both merge very naturally in the form of a triangle (standard groove have an ogival shape). This option is particularly good-looking.

Blade Hamon


This combination is unavailable. We have reset the options.

For a real steel blade, clay is applied on the blade before the cooling process, and the difference in hardness between the edge and the rest of the blade results in this line called "Hamon". It defines the transition between the region of harder martensitic steel at the blade's edge and the softer pearlitic steel at the center and back of the sword. This difference in hardness is the goal of the whole process; the appearance is purely a side effect but the Hamon became a very important artistic feature that defines the level of mastery of the swordsmith. As Iaito are being made from an alloy, the Hamon is printed by depolishing the blade using specific patterns. Minosaka's craftsmen do their best to reproduce the most famous Hamon.

The Suguha, Midare, Notare and Gunome Hamon are standardized Hamon. They are a kind of combination between the most common types of existing Hamon. All other models are fairly faithful reproductions of Hamon existing on ancient blades. Hamon are named either by the name of the Samurai who possessed the sword (for famous swords) or by the name of the Swordsmiths (for the most famous swordsmith). Their price depends on the quantity of work needed to reproduce them.


Habaki & Seppa


?
?
This combination is unavailable. We have reset the options.

The habaki is the piece of metal circling the base of the blade. It has two main purposes: locking the tsuba in its place and holding the sword into the Saya.
Unlike the Shinken Habaki which can be very expensive, the Iaito Habaki are standardized and gently forced into place. This means that it is not recommended to remove or change the Habaki on a Iaito blade.
Habaki are made of brass and are available in two different designs: standard and Shonai (old design) and in 3 different finishes: black (oxidised), gold plated and silver plated. Please note that due to the oxidation process, it is not possible to blacken the Shonai design.

The seppa are washers used in front and behind the tsuba to tighten the fittings, made of copper or brass. They are compulsory to keep the Tsuba safely into place.
They are available in black (oxidised), gold plated brass and silver plated brass.


Tsuba


?
This combination is unavailable. We have reset the options.

The Tsuba is the sword's guard. It has the function of protecting the hand from the opponent's blade but also from having one's hand sliding onto the blade during Tsuki (thrust) techniques.
However, it has two other qualities: aesthetics and balance adjustment. During the Edo period, the Tsuba turned progressively into a decorative ornament. It was often generously well made, giving every sword a personal and particular touch.

There can be one or two holes on the sides of the Tsuba. They were used to unsheathe the Kogatana (small knife) or Kogai (hairpin) that were fitted inside the sides of the Saya. Tsuba used to be made by entire dynasties of craftsmen who only specialized in that particular field; they have almost vanished in the present time.

The average weight of a standard Tsuba is 120 g.
A heavy Tsuba (> 120 g) will tend to shift the balance downwards the handle, making the Iaito easier to handle whereas a light Tsuba (< 120 g) will push the balance towards the Kissaki, the tip of the blade. The latter is recommended if you decide to focus on cutting training. You will find below some pictures of all our Tsuba but also details on size, material, and weight.

Please note that the pictures above only display the front side of the Tsuba. You can find pictures of the reverse of each Tsuba on the dedicated product page.

Tsuba Technical Specifications

Tsuba Technical Specifications
Code
Name
Description Material Dimensions Weight
TM001
Washi
Eagle Blackened iron 75 mm x 70 mm x 4.1 mm 136 g
TM002
Yagyu
Name of a famous Samurai clan. Also called Kuruma Sukashi. Blackened copper 75 mm x 73 mm x 5.3 mm 123 g
TM003
Shippo
The 7 treasures (gold, silver, pearls, agate, crystal, coral, lapis lazuli) Blackened iron 74 mm x 70 mm x 4.1 mm 135 g
TM004
Hanjiro
Favored by the famous samurai Hanjiro. Blackened copper 79 mm x 65 mm x 6 mm 142 g
TM005
Umetada
Design by a famous blacksmith of the Edo period Blackened iron 84 mm x 75 mm x 4.3 mm 150 g
TM006
Hyotan
Gourd (calabash) Blackened copper 71 mm x 70 mm x 5 mm 126 g
TM007
Musashi
Used by the most famous of all samurai Blackened copper 74 mm x 74 mm x 7.1 mm 146 g
TM008
Kasuga
Kasuga refers to the shape of the Tsuba. Blackened iron 84 mm x 76 mm x 4.1 mm 138 g
TM009
Ameryu
Dragon under the rain Blackened iron 81 mm x 77 mm x 4.1 mm 147 g
TM010
Namako
Holothuroidea (sea cucumber) Blackened iron 74 mm x 69 mm x 4.1 mm 90 g
TM011
Muji
Plain (no pattern) Blackened iron 74 mm x 69 mm x 4.1 mm 134 g
TM012
Kagecho
Butterfly shadow Blackened copper 74 mm x 72 mm x 5 mm 106 g
TM013
Nami
Waves Blackened iron 81 mm x 77 mm x 4.1 mm 145 g
TM014
Hirata
Design by a famous blacksmith of the Edo period Blackened copper 76 mm x 72 mm x 4.5 mm 120 g
TM015
Higo
A famous design of the Higo province (now Kumamoto) Blackened iron 75 mm x 71 mm x 4.1 mm 90 g
TM016
Shin Umetada
Design by a famous blacksmith of the Edo period Blackened iron 85 mm x 76 mm x 4.1 mm 165 g
TM022
Icho Zogan (Kasuga)
Kasuga shape with silver ginkgo arabesque Blackened iron 84 mm x 77 mm x 4.1 mm 141 g

Tsuka Length


This combination is unavailable. We have reset the options.

The Tsuka, or handle, is made of Japanese hackberry wood. On a Shinken, the Same is a piece of shark skin wrapped around the wood to reinforce the Tsuka structure. However, the Tsuka on a Iaito only features small pieces of shark skin that are inlaid in the wood on each side, for the aesthetics but also, so that the cost remains affordable.

The length of the Tsuka is measured including the Fuchi and the Kashira dimensions. Depending on the kind of Tsukaito (cotton, silk, leather), the length of the Tsuka can be slightly adapted to get a precise result.
In most schools, the length of the Tsuka should be sufficient to put one hand of the practitioner three times (that is, there should be a space equal to one hand between your hands when you hold the sword).
The length of the Tsuka will also have to be rather important regarding the balance of the Iaito. If you want to keep a standard balance, we recommend that you follow the indications below.

Blade Length Recommended Tsuka Length
1.30 ~ 1.35 Shaku blade 5.5 ~ 6 sun Tsuka
1.40 ~ 1.45 Shaku blade 6 ~ 6.5 sun Tsuka
1.50 Shaku blade 6.5 ~ 7 sun Tsuka
2.20 ~ 2.25 Shaku blade 7.5 ~ 8 sun Tsuka
2.20 ~ 2.25 Shaku blade 7.5 ~ 8 sun Tsuka
2.30 ~ 2.35 Shaku blade 8 ~ 8.5 sun Tsuka
2.40 ~ 2.45 Shaku blade 8.5 ~ 9 sun Tsuka
2.50 ~ 2.55 Shaku blade 9 ~ 9.5 sun Tsuka
2.60 ~ 2.70 Shaku blade 9.5 ~ 10 sun Tsuka

Tsukaito


This combination is unavailable. We have reset the options.

The Tsukaito has two main goals: it serves as a grip and it holds the Tsuka tightly. A tightly wrapped Tsuka is extremely important for security.

Cotton allows better absorption of the sweat but it is less durable than silk and leather. It is the standard option for most Iaito.
Silk feels a little harder and is sometimes not recommended for beginners. However, it has a significantly longer lifespan.
Sweat is not really absorbed by Leather but this latter offers an excellent grip and it is the most durable material. Leather is available in standard and suede version (napped finish). The latter has a slightly better grip but it is slightly less durable.

Please note that those materials are made traditionally - they are not mass-produced. Therefore, colors can slightly vary depending on the batch.
In general, the Tsukaito is of the same color as the Sageo to keep the fitting harmonious, but this is not compulsory; you can select two different colors if you like.


Tsuka Same & Maki


?
?
?
This combination is unavailable. We have reset the options.

The Samekawa or "shark skin" is the part under the Tsukaito. Shark hunting is no longer practiced nowadays; therefore, despite the name “samekawa”, it’s actually stingray skin which is used. Its main goal is to keep the Tsukaito into place and to reinforce the Tsuka structure. The Same is sanded and polished in order to produce a durable superior-quality type of leather.
On live blades (Shinken) mounts, the Same is a "maki same", which wraps the Tsuka wood. However, for cost reasons, the Iaito Tsuka is made with two rectangular pieces of Same inlaid in the Tsuka. This is called Tanzaku-same.
The "Makisame" is a large piece of stingray skin which wraps the Tsuka. It makes the Tsuka slightly bigger and it significantly strengthens it, which improves its grip and its lifetime. The Makisame is made the same way Shinken Same are made.

Please note that we also offer a plastic Same option for customers concerned about animal protection. The plastic Same is only available in white or black, and as a "Tanzaku Same only" (Makisame is not possible).

The Tsukamaki is the way the tsukaito (cord) is wrapped around the Tsuka. The Hinerimaki is the standard wrapping, known by all practitioners.
The Hiramaki is a very specific wrapping that enables to make the centre of the Tsuka flat. This is a popular wrapping in Iai schools which use an important number of single-handed techniques/moves.  
In order to hold the Menuki correctly, the cord goes over the Menuki on each side (which may significantly hide the Menuki if it’s a small one).  Please note that we do not recommend this wrap for intensive practice as it is less durable than the standard Hinerimaki wrap.
Finally, the Katatemaki style is more designed for decoration than practice because it doesn't hold as well as the other wrappings. It is however proved that it was the wrapping used by the famous Samurai Akechi Mitsuhide. Given that the side parts of the Tsuka are left naked, this wrapping is only available with the Makisame option.

In option, we offer to put 2 Mekugi (peg) in the Tsuka. This may reassure you as 2 Mekugi make you feel safer. However, from the craftsmen's point of view, since Iaito are very rarely taken apart, this option is unnecessary. This option is not available for the Hiramaki.


Menuki


?
?
This combination is unavailable. We have reset the options.

The Menuki are ornaments on the Tsuka to insert into the handle so as to fit into the palm for grip. Originally, they are meant to distract the eyes from the Mekugi (peg). It is generally placed under the wrapping, but they may also appear on the wrapping, especially with a Ikkan-maki or Hira-maki wrapping style. Several thousands of designs have been created over the centuries. It is considered as jewellery and as such it has inspired many craftsmen.

The Menuki are usually located on the top of the left side (omote) and at the bottom on the right side (ura). We also offer two other possibilities: center both Menuki (on each side), or reverse positions (also called Sakasa Menuki) which will place the Menuki under your palms rather than under your fingers.

Menuki Technical Specifications

Menuki Technical Specifications
Code Description Material Length x Width
MM001
Hishi
This made in Japan Menuki features is a caltrop, also called "devil pod", an aquatic plant. Aluminum 15 mm x 34 mm
MM002
Sake
This made in Japan Menuki features a chum salmon. Sake symbolizes luck and was a very common offering to the gods. Brass 14 mm x 45 mm
MM003
Kenmakiryu
This made in Japan Menuki features a dragon wrapped around a sword. Aluminum 09 mm x 68 mm
MM004
Tombo
This made in Japan Menuki features a dragonfly. The dragonfly, or Tombo in Japanese is also called "Kachi Muchi", insect of victory. Aluminum 13 mm x 39 mm
MM005
Sakura
This made in Japan Menuki features cherry blossom, the luminous and beautiful yet fleeting and ephemeral Japanese cherry tree flower. Aluminum 11 mm x 11 mm
MM006
Ryu Sho
This made in Japan Menuki features a small dragon. It is similar to the bigger version. Brass 11 mm x 38 mm
MM007
Ryu Dai
This made in Japan Menuki features a big dragon. It is similar to the smaller version. Brass 11 mm x 53 mm
MM008
Tsukushi
This made in Japan Menuki features a horsetail, or Equisetum for its scientific name. Brass 06 mm x 58 mm
MM009
Botan
This made in Japan Menuki features a peony flower. Brass 12 mm x 54 mm
MM010
Hitsuji
This made in Japan Menuki features a lamb, symbol of peace and well-being. Brass 11 mm x 27 mm
MM011
Kenkatabami
This made in Japan Menuki features the "Maru ni Kenkatabami" Kamon. This Japanese crest was very popular among the samurai class and was adopted by many clans. Bronze 16 mm x 49 mm
MM012
Mukade
This made in Japan Menuki features a Mukade, a rather huge Japanese centipede. Brass 9 mm x 52 mm
MM013
Kuyomon
This made in Japan Menuki features the symbolic 9 planets in the Buddhism cosmogony. Bronze 15 mm x 45 mm
MM014
Ebi
This made in Japan Menuki features a prawn. Its popularity comes from its symbolism of vigor and longevity. Aluminum 11 mm x 7 mm

Saya Kurikata (optional)


?
?
All mandatory fields must be filled.
This combination is unavailable. We have reset the options.

The Kurikata is the piece placed 8 cm from the Koiguchi (Saya hole) on the Omote side of the Saya, used to interlock the Sageo.

The Kurikata is usually placed 8 cm from the Koiguchi. Depending on your body type and on the school you practice, you may want to move away the Koiguchi a little. You can set the position up to 20 cm from the Koiguchi, but it shouldn't be farther than 12 to 15 cm. This option increases the production time to about 5 to 6 weeks.

The Shitodome is a small piece of brass, gold or silver plated, inserted in the Kurikata (the hole in which the Sageo goes). The Shitodome is purely decorative.

Please note that Shitodome only fit on regular Kurikata. If you select a Shitodome for a Dotanuki model with a metal Kurikata, it will be replaced by a standard Kurikata.


Sageo


This combination is unavailable. We have reset the options.

The Sageo, the twisted lace which is provided on the Saya Kurikata, has two main purposes: it is tied to the Obi (belt) to prevent the Saya from falling when the sword is carried by its owner, and it has an ornamental purpose when the sword is displayed. Some Koryu also teach how to use the Sageo as a weapon or to tie an opponent's hands (Hojujutsu). It is also said that the lace serves as a spiritual bond between the samurai and the sword.

Iaito Sageo are usually made of lower quality synthetic silk (not offered here) cotton or silk.
Cotton Sageo are available in plain colors as well as in check patterns.
Silk Sageo are only available in plain colors. Silk Sageo are woven more tightly than cotton but are also thinner, which gives them a harder touch than the cotton ones.
The colors may vary slightly depending on batches due to the traditional dyeing techniques.

The standard Sageo length is 220 cm. Only the silk Sageo is available in 240 cm.

All Iaito are delivered with the Sageo tied with a knot called "Ronin" knot, the way most craftsmen do. It is the most common knot for decorative purposes.

Recommended Accessories

Nishijin Weaving Carry Bag
Iaito Cover (Bag) Made of Synthetic Leather
Iaito Carry Bag Kanoko
Double Iaito Carry Bag (Synthetic Leather)
Synthetic Leather Iaito Bag (made in Japan)