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Old 03-12-2014, 12:56 AM   #1
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Default Cold steel Warrior vs Ronin "Hagakure" katana review

Hey guys. Little out of the blue, but I thought I'd do a little review of my new toys. I've been training with the katana since I was 12, and the martial arts since 4. I have always collected the weapons in had training with. Second to the vintage cold steel tanto knife I recently acquired , I've had few opportunities to own such pieces of art, and felt the urge to share their beauty.


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Top Ronin - white saya
Bottom Cold Steel - Black saya

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..


..

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Spot the JUNK! In the middle of beauty and quality, is a reproduction flea market special. While it's treated me well in training, and still will, this is hardly the katana to take into battle. Doesn't look half bad, but the blade is ridiculously light (great for kata) and I would hardly trust it to cut a single mat, much less the triple mats the other two are capable of. While it looks OK, and is sharp, it's not worthy of being called a katana.

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The tips are quite different too. The hardened portion of the tip is slot larger on the cold steel. Here you can see the Ronin blade is more designed for agility, and the Cold steel for power.


The big bruiser Cold Steel Warrior on the bottom . The Ronin "Hagakure" on the top . You can see the more pronounced natural bend in the Ronin. (which actually naturally happens during the tempering process) the cold steel is 1055 monotempered carbon steel, it's longer, heavier, and has a 6" balance point, making it blade heavy for maximum cutting force. It has a bo-hi (blood groove) to try to remove some weight, but it's still by far the heavy duty cutter. The Ronin smaller, lighter, more curved blade with a 5" balance point, makes it extremely responsive, and agile. It has no bo-hi to keep weight into the smaller more narrow blade, making it exceptionally forceful for the size of the blade. "HAGAKURE * is a piece of Japanese literature explaining the life of the samurai as a falling leaf. The blossom on the iron guard and saya ornaments is to represent the falling leaf, or" hagakure "

The Ronin "Hagakure"
Traditional iron fittings, (which easily rival the cold steel fittings ) the saya (scabbard) is ornamented in Buffalo horn. Manta ray skin wrapped in silk for the hand. The attention to detail is some of the best I've seen in modern forged katana, and according to "sword buyer's guide" and many other sources, it's unanimous that Ronin katana has the most traditionally crafted katana on the market in its class ( modern forged shinken) 1060 monotempered carbon blade has been torture tested to prove this is the most resilient blade a katana has ever had. The steel is even more durable, and is a more ideal blade than the traditional steel/iron folded blades of the past. I know it was an art, and alot of mythology surrounds the construction of the katana, but the reason for folding was to mix the types of steel to get a more uniform blend of metals. They also only had the high carbon steel in the cutting edge, so the sword would be flexible, yet hold an edge. This problem is now solved by spring steel, which can both hold an edge and flex extremely well. While old katana would chip, or bend under stress, these new blades have been tested to hack through 2x4, bent into a horse shoe , just to spring back to dead straight, and still have a shaving sharp edge. If that was done by a traditional katana, it would damage the cutting edge and actually hold the bend you put in it. So while the traditional method produces a beautiful Damascus steel, it was nowhere as strong as the modern forging process. ( I still want traditional forged sword  who wouldn't) the wave line you see on old traditional katana is called the hamon line. Made by covering the back of the blade with clay and quenching in water. This made the cutting edge cool rapidly, to make a strong hard edge And the back cool slowly to retain the flexibility. The modern swords with hamon lines are often faked with acid, and many still think it's from sharpening. Since monotempered modern swords do not need two different types of metal, they have no hamon line. Unless the sword is traditionally folded and tempered it should not have a hamon.

It's the best of both worlds.
The hardest most durable tempered steel, with the elegance of traditional aesthetics, make this a battle ready piece of art. completely feels alive in your hands, making the cold steel feel like a bat. (although that "bat" will make its way through thicker targets than its little sister) The weight balance and shape are exactly the same as hundreds of years ago, whereas the cold steel is more of a brute, who's design has been modernized even in the blade shape to be a tad less curved. Both still cut like razors and are shaving sharp right out of the saya. The cold steel will easily sail trough thick heavy targets, while the Ronin is better handing making it better suited for multiple strikes and slashes. Both are highly recommended in the martial arts community and would serve well in training and battle.
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Old 03-12-2014, 01:58 AM   #2
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Default Re: Cold steel Warrior vs Ronin "Hagakure" katana review

indeed works of art for sure! Almost has as much sting as a 3 watt 445nm but 100 times nicer to look at! lol
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Old 03-12-2014, 02:32 AM   #3
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Default Re: Cold steel Warrior vs Ronin "Hagakure" katana review

thats sick! Never would have guessed that about you, Tmack! Sweet blades too...katanas have always been my favorite type of sword. If i had one im sure id end up killing myself though lol
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Old 03-12-2014, 02:48 AM   #4
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Default Re: Cold steel Warrior vs Ronin "Hagakure" katana review

Yeah I've made a little career out if all my training. Really a dream to have my own school, but right now I'm teaching under the owner. My love is jiu-jitsu, and traditional tae kwon do, that's what I teach. But I'm still a student of kenjistu.
I've actually seen more students injure themselves unarmed if you can believe it. When your holding a razor sharp blade, safety is first on your mind.
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Old 03-12-2014, 03:03 AM   #5
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Default Re: Cold steel Warrior vs Ronin "Hagakure" katana review

snatch the zasers from my hand grasshopper ! lol now you know how old I am !
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Old 03-12-2014, 03:06 AM   #6
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Default Re: Cold steel Warrior vs Ronin "Hagakure" katana review

Lol if anyone does any Zaser snatching, I have two lessons for them. I just reviewed them
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Old 03-12-2014, 04:44 AM   #7
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Default Re: Cold steel Warrior vs Ronin "Hagakure" katana review

Nice stuff Tmack! Had no clue you liked this kinda stuff! I have a nice hand forged one myself. Show and tell time!

Gotta keep it well oiled and cleaned...and keep people from touching it...or else I'd end up with a bunch of orange fingerprints pretty fast. It's a fully and traditionally hand made, full-tang, and fully sharpened sword made from real tamahagane (hand picked high carbon steel 1095 grade). It is clay tempered, so it has a real Hamon (the wavy part on the front which is created from the tempering as the fore of the blade is hardened more than the back), not a polished-on one. It also has no Hi (blood groove). It has a brass Tsuba (guard), with a dragon and horseman, and a few other things on it and the retainging ring for the handle, dragon ornaments under the wrap, and real rayskin for the cover, the endcap is also brass, with a buddha shrine on it, and it artisted by hand with real gold and silver.

some quickie pics:










cleaning the other day:

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Old 03-12-2014, 07:08 AM   #8
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Default Re: Cold steel Warrior vs Ronin "Hagakure" katana review

YTMND - Dragon Painted RIGHT ON THE BLADE.
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Old 03-12-2014, 10:02 AM   #9
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Default Re: Cold steel Warrior vs Ronin "Hagakure" katana review

Good to see this Tmack. A traditional Katana would be very nice to own but the prices!!! I also have a couple of Katana's made from 1080 steel. I have no recognised training with them though but like you I spent many years studying and teaching Tae Kwon Do which I enjoyed very much.
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Old 03-12-2014, 11:03 AM   #10
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Default Re: Cold steel Warrior vs Ronin "Hagakure" katana review

Thanks guys.

@ ultimate - beautiful blade man.
My next purchase will be a traditional katana for display purposes of course.
Can you believe on more than a few occasions people have walked in to train with traditionally forged swords like that! Unbelievable lol.
I wouldn't be clanking tamahagane. That stuff is hand made and selected in the mountains of Japan.
That sword must have been several thousand dollars if it's real tamahagane! Very impressive. Only a handful I men in Japan are even qualified to forge and inspect the steel of that nature, then it's off to the VERY few master sword smith's for scrutiny and folding. Mind blowing the work it takes.
Ronin katana makes a nice modern forged katana that's still folded, with a clay tempered real hamon, but my god, not from real tamahagane!
My swords are monotempered spring steel, which is stronger than traditional folded blades, but not nearly as beautiful, the traditional method is just such an art. For collection purposes I must have one.
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Old 03-12-2014, 02:01 PM   #11
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Default Re: Cold steel Warrior vs Ronin "Hagakure" katana review

Beautiful blades! spent 7 years in Japan and never did get any traditional blades myself.
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Old 03-12-2014, 04:39 PM   #12
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Default Re: Cold steel Warrior vs Ronin "Hagakure" katana review

Man that would have been top priority to bring home at least 1!
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Old 03-12-2014, 06:32 PM   #13
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Default Re: Cold steel Warrior vs Ronin "Hagakure" katana review

Indeed. I do occasionally do some work tamashigiri with it, but it's mostly a ceremonial blade. It rarely is beyond decor. But it feels amazing to hold. Not too heavy, but still weighted, and it just seems to call out to you when you looks at it. It's so alive, unlike most practice swords. Very expensive, and a gift from a dear dear friend and my family, which only makes it more special. I treasure it quite a lot.

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Old 03-12-2014, 06:39 PM   #14
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Default Re: Cold steel Warrior vs Ronin "Hagakure" katana review

That's the difference between my two shinken. The cold steel while the more powerful cutter, doesn't feel alive like the Ronin. It's recovery after a cut is almost spring like. It feels like once you put pressure for it to go a direction, it wants to go that way. Hard to explain if you haven't handle a properly weighted katana.
But the cold steel is a Damn light saber. The video on their website is sick. Sails right through the torso of a pig, cuts it's head off like a joke.
Love both of then, but the Ronin has been much more carefully crafted. Nothing like yours aesthetically, but tough as nails .
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445nm MS-Envy 2645mw*
445nmMarble Zaser 2940mw*
445nmMag Light Mr crouse Heatsink 2790mw Jayrob & Speedy78*
445nmWicked Laser EVO E2 Custom M140 G2 1580mw*
520nm Sipik 125mw*
532nmHL532 505mw bloompyle
532nmCree B68 Pman Special 120mw, B&D 86mw,
638nmMarble Zaser 510mw *
650nmSFCR 280mw Joker
LK-3D Projector Hakzaw1 GB
Casa CTL-HM Projector Livinloud GB. -----((O))
Chauvet 40 DMX Controller Brucemir
Ophir 5w LPM*
R, G, B, V Marble Zaser set
Need a custom build? Send me a message

LED's - TK75vn killerthrow, BTU Shockervn, MX25L3vn, D40avn, TK61vn ( 622kcd!!) , D25Cvn ti, Mm15vn, V11rvn, V25cvn, C20cvn, S200c2vn, convoy m1 xml2 3a X2 , convoy c8, Tcr10vn, Tcr2vn VIP, X60vn V2, Hc90vn , Mh25, K40mvn (mtg2),Sd6vn, Pd35vn (xpl triple) Sinner titanium xml2
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Old 03-12-2014, 06:45 PM   #15
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Default Re: Cold steel Warrior vs Ronin "Hagakure" katana review

I know what you mean. It's much faster and easier to make your cuts solid, and flow more naturally, but spiritually it feels alive too. It's hard to describe, especially as it was a gift from so many, it feels like they're all with me each time I pick it up.

Also 800th post!

Last edited by ultimatekaiser; 03-12-2014 at 06:46 PM.
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Old 03-12-2014, 06:50 PM   #16
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Default Re: Cold steel Warrior vs Ronin "Hagakure" katana review

Oh so anytime you'd like to buy your buddy Tmack, a genuine tamahagane katana, you will be with me always

I know exactly what you mean. Even in the aspect of a blade. I have a benchmade balisong that was given to me by someone very special that's not with us anymore. Every time I pick it up, I get the same feeling.

There's something personal, and spiritual about a blade, especially one that takes so much soul, and meaning in the construction.
__________________

NOIR Lasershields OD7 DBY Filter Operator
405nmMarble Zaser 1060mw *
405nmFocus pen 80mw Pman
445nm Cypress 2750mw*
445nm MS-Envy 2645mw*
445nmMarble Zaser 2940mw*
445nmMag Light Mr crouse Heatsink 2790mw Jayrob & Speedy78*
445nmWicked Laser EVO E2 Custom M140 G2 1580mw*
520nm Sipik 125mw*
532nmHL532 505mw bloompyle
532nmCree B68 Pman Special 120mw, B&D 86mw,
638nmMarble Zaser 510mw *
650nmSFCR 280mw Joker
LK-3D Projector Hakzaw1 GB
Casa CTL-HM Projector Livinloud GB. -----((O))
Chauvet 40 DMX Controller Brucemir
Ophir 5w LPM*
R, G, B, V Marble Zaser set
Need a custom build? Send me a message

LED's - TK75vn killerthrow, BTU Shockervn, MX25L3vn, D40avn, TK61vn ( 622kcd!!) , D25Cvn ti, Mm15vn, V11rvn, V25cvn, C20cvn, S200c2vn, convoy m1 xml2 3a X2 , convoy c8, Tcr10vn, Tcr2vn VIP, X60vn V2, Hc90vn , Mh25, K40mvn (mtg2),Sd6vn, Pd35vn (xpl triple) Sinner titanium xml2
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