Sword Buyers Digest - Issue 144, March 2020
What a month it was in February..

The Novel Coronavirus not only dominated world news, but has also had quite an impact on sword production and sword stock levels in the sword market - following hot on the heels of an already long break for the Lunar New Year..

But the good news is, the forges are back at work playing catch up, restocks are being prepared for shipment, and things are finally starting to more or less get back on track..

So with that out of the way, let's take a look at what else has been happening lately in the world of swords shall we?

Swords in the News
Positive Sword Related Stories in the News
Having made over 1000 swords in his time, and learning mostly by trial and error, Edson Suemitsu has been dubbed Brazils Last Samurai - though there is a price error in there (prices in USD for his works would actually be from about $1300 to $5000, but as explained in the article, he doesn't do it for the money)

You never know what you might find tucked away in a hidden corner of a garage in the United Kingdom. But the red rusted 'piece of junk' that they thought might be worth a couple of hundred pounds turned out to be a 15th or 16th century Scottish sword that sold for £30,000 at auction to a Canadian buyer..! One mans trash..
Safe fighting with steel swords in full plate armor? Probably not so much.. But it doesn't seem to bother these Russian hard men any.. (video)
Documenting an excellent exhibition of Japanese swords, art and culture - the exhibition explores the blurring social lines between the Samurai and the merchant classes in the late Edo period on display at the Utah museum of fine arts.

Albion are pretty advanced with their CNC milling. But compared to 'metamorphic manufacturing' its really quite wasteful and not very precise. The future master sword makers may well soon be machines..

With Coronavirus/COVID-19 dominating the news last month, it's been hard to find some decent sword news this month. So if you can't beat 'em - discover the much more deadly plagues facing our medieval ancestors, and some timeless wisdom on how they dealt with outbreaks that make the Coronavirus look rather tame by comparison..
From the Interwebz
Every now and again we stumble upon a cool image, infographic or something else sword related from around the web.

Here is a comical little graphic I recently uncovered with a tongue in cheek account of what your favorite type of sword says about you..
Would love to know who the original creator of this is, mostly it is just a pin on pinterest.com, but whoever made it - thanks for the laugh.
Special Digest Readers Poll RESULTS:
What you want from JAPAN!
You might recall last issue we asked what additional items from Japan you guys might be interested in, and want to take a moment to personally thank the 387 people who took a moment out of their day to respond. Thanks folks! :-)

Naturally, you may also be curious about the results. So without any further ado, here are the raw results.
No overwhelming winner, but stands, polishing stones and cleaning kits proved to be the most sought after items, followed by scrolls and wall hangings (which makes sense as they can compliment a sword display ever so nicely), and then the results are really something of a mixed bag..

Thus, the search is on - starting with cleaning kits and deer antler sword stands, some new, some antiques like this:
It is early days yet, but we will continue to update you as we uncover more hidden Japanese treasures!
New at the SBG Sword Store
Quite a few new and exceptional deals are currently available in the SBG Sword Store - including quite a few closeouts and liquidations perfect for bargain hunters and sword buying opportunists.

But before we get to those, it is with great pleasure that this issue of the digest introduces a new line of swords by one of the great icons of the sword industry, Mr. Clyde Hollis.
Clyde originally started his own line of swords in the late 1990s - Generation 2 (now known as Legacy Arms) and was a close friend of the late, great Hank Reinhardt - working with him before his untimely death from pneumonia to create a line of swords based as closely as possible to actual antiques Hank either owned or had extensively handled..

Now he is back with a line of swords made by none other than our friends at Blade Culture International in the Philippines - each model made to Clyde's own exacting specifications.

Stock levels are very low at the moment as he only got (literally) a couple of each model in with the first run and we are very proud to stock what is available at the SBG Sword Store with FREE SHIPPING in the USA (and reduced price shipping everywhere else).

Great to see him back and looking forward to support him as his line continues to grow and expand.
Pompeii (Super Special $386)
Crecy Archers Sword ($580)
Mainz ($486)
Last Chance Hanwei Closeouts
Hanwei are retiring 4 very cool blades and liquidating them off at super low prices. So as always, we have passed on the savings to you guys so grab what you can while you can. Once these discontinued closeouts are sold, they are gone forever..
Survival Kukri NOW $137.49
Musashi XL Lite NOW $475
Musashi XL NOW $475
Musashi Elite NOW $470
More one off deals, some scratch and dent items and a brand new and very affordable sword line are all coming to the store literally in the next few DAYS. So to stay on top of each new release and development, subscribe to our store newsletter here
It was finally completed a couple of months ago, but here is the last part of the video we have been following from time to time as popular medievalist and Youtuber Lindybiege forges his sword "Arnander" from start to finish in Glastonbury, England. And for those of you who want to start at the very beginning and follow the whole process through, below are links to the entire series:

Best Forum Posts
There is no doubt that the Coronavirus has had a very big impact on the sword making industry in Longquan. But how worried should you be about ordering from China right now? Forum members weigh in with their opinions.

Is there an ideal point of balance for a medieval sword? Some very interesting answers in this thought provoking thread - especially the post by Brian from DBK Custom Swords

It was a long time coming, but man was it worth the wait and as to be expected from Brendan from FableBlades, is truly exceptional in every way..

One of our members shares their experiences when first joining a HEMA (Historical European Martial Arts) club. Get a sense of what to expect.
Subscribers Poll:
What sword would you like us to make next?
If you are a long term digest subscriber, you will know that for the last couple of years or so we have been trying our hand at designing and making original - but fully functional and practical - fantasy sword designs.

Recently, you will see that we have branched out to make a freestyle Zelda sword for a customer, and to keep the costs down for the customer, and offer others who might also want a chance to grab a custom sword for pennies on the dollar, we had to use an economy of scale and make a minimum one time run of 20pcs (for copyright reasons, we don't want to tread on anyone's toes - so each run will be a one off for hard core fans only).

No doubt there will be a number of you who are fans of the original Nintendo game who would love to own a hand made, custom version if the price is right. But in this poll we ask the question - what sword of legend would YOU most like to see made real in steel?

Naturally we can't present EVERY sword possible here - so instead I have listed some of MY personal favorite fantasy swords that do not currently have a decent, licensed version available as well as an 'other' option if I have completely missed the mark. ;-)

So without further ado, here's this months poll question:
What famous fantasy sword would you like to see us make next?
Stormbringer, Sword of Elric
Anduril, Lord of the Rings
Sword of Omens, Thundercats
Ramirez Dragon Hilt Katana, Highlander
Sakabatō, Reverse Blade Katana, Rurouni Kenshin
Elf Sword, The Elder Scrolls: Skyrim
Dawnbreaker, The Elder Scrolls: Skyrim
Seeker Sword, the Sword of Truth
Masamune Sword, Final Fantasy
Other (please email you suggestion)
If you select the 'other' option, please reply to this email with the name of the sword in the body of the text in your reply.

Looking forward to hearing from you all (it doesn't mean that we will necessarily make the most popular sword in this poll, but instead we just want to get some idea if any of the above designs are appealing).
I hope you enjoyed this months edition of the digest. Until next time, stay safe and happy swordening all..!

  • Paul