One of the nice aspects of collecting Samurai Sword and Sword Fittings is that I get to meet people from all over the world. It is great that virtual strangers can help each other and bond through sharing a common interest- the love of Samurai Swords and/or their fittings.
Certainly if it wasn't for others reporting mantis fittings for sale, I wouldn't have half the collection that I have now. Nor would I have an idea of what I had in my possesion. I appreciate the help and try to recipricate whenever I can. I am always looking for pieces to add to my collection (Note: looking doesn't always mean affording unfortunately). At this point I have many people who I call my Minions of Mantis. If you have or find something for sale I would really appreciate you contacting me. Even if something isn't for sale, I keep photo's of items that aren't for sale or that I couldn't afford at the time, etc.. These pictures are for my personal reference only. My Collecting passion for preying mantises ends with Samurai sword fittings. I don't own nor want any other items with a mantis on them. ok, I have 1 t-shirt and I do use real mantis insects in my garden.
I am interested in koto sword schools with superb hada in ko-mokume/itame and nioi based hamon in ko-midare/suguha. I prefer a hamon that is subtle but actually has lots of activities. One of the schools is the Mihara school that exhibit strong Bizen influences, ie. Nioi hamon with a great hada but yamata shape. I have a kaga late nambokcho/early muramachi katana that exhibits these characteristics. I wouldn't pass up a ko-bizen sword either, if given the chance. I think/hope you get the idea.
Another hobby is collecting Leverlock automatic knives. Leverlocks are a specific type of release mechanism for switchblades. Germany is mainly known for this mechanism, however, Italy, Japan, India, and Spain have produced these types of knives. I like unusual and rare leverlock knives. Switchblades are actually legal in many states. There is a federal ban on importing/selling over state lines. However, the law is really out of date, especially considering there are now spring assisted knives that are faster than automatics. While this is a fun hobby, my 1st passion is and always will be Samurai swords!
Please feel free to contact me on any matter and even if I can't help you, I can probably point you to someone who can. Also, would appreciate any comments/corrections on my collection and/or their descriptions. I am not a programmer and many of my pictures aren't great (when I took them they were for my records and I wasn't intending to create a website with them). If you want me to reshoot something let me know and I will try to do it as soon as I can. Thanks for viewing.
Ken aka "The Mantis Dude"