Custom Katana – Batch 41 Update

Right now we have about a month to go before batch 41 of the SBG Custom Katana is due. And the good news is that the forge has ALMOST completed this batch and (fingers crossed) if everything goes smoothly completing the last few swords and customs does not mess us around too much this time, there is a reasonable chance that this time we may be on track for delivery on or even slightly ahead of schedule.. (though I may regret saying that! As I said, fingers crossed).

I have just sent out an email update to all the people who are waiting on this batch, but in the meantime will share a couple of cool pics with you from the forge showing the swords in various stages of completion.

The two swords one down from the top with black leather and rayskin saya are a Daisho set, and each one of the blades here have either complex Kobuse or Sanmai laminations, which is GREAT news as these are the ones that take the longest to make..!

The saya are not yet completely dry on some of them due to seasonal rains in Longquan – and so curing the wood is taking longer than usual and slowing the whole thing down. And the one right at the bottom is awaiting its ito wrap – so excuse the sword nudity..!

Since everything is going relatively smoothly, batch 42 should also be on time to take new orders once the swords are all shipped and the forge are busy twiddling their thumbs. So will update you on that again in due course..!

  • Paul

Finally Here and Finally to Spec – Gus Trim Designed Kingston Arms Medievals!

Gus Trim is a legend in the sword industry – not only is he famous for his own high performance swords – but in recent years has shared his expertise at sword design with the likes of Valiant Armory, Dragon King (i.e. the recent A.P.O.C. Tactical series) and as we will discuss in this post – Dragon King..

The first attempt at making these two new swords kind of went awry. Some either missed the memo or misread an email or otherwise messed up the specs of the first two swords – and they ended up with the wrong color leather handle, pommels switched over, and heavier and generally off spec..

Here are a couple of side by side pics demonstrating what I am talking about:


Apart from the pommel and leather being wrong, the Knights sword is 3oz heavier than Gus’ specs and with the point of balance 1″ further down the blade towards the tip.


Same as the other one, but 5oz overweight, 1/2″ too short and a point of balance 3/4″ further down the blade than what it should be.

Well, the good news is that the correct specification swords finally just landed and, unlike the first attempt, are spot on to Gus’ demanding expectations.

Click for more info

Click for more info

Not only are they to spec, meaning they have optimized handling and cutting ability rarely – if ever- seen at this price point, but in every respect they are head and shoulders above any other medieval swords seen near this price point.

Here is what the official distributor, Cas Iberia, has to say about it:

Atrim Design Swords

We spent a lot of time discussing with Gus his methodology for developing what he would call a “performance-oriented” sword. Without getting too deep into it Gus, along with Tinker Pearce, was one of the pioneering sword makers to incorporate the notion of harmonic balance into his sword designs. Informed by historical examples and his own experimentation Gus has been making swords for decades now that seem to float in your hand. For this sword Gus left the aesthetics and materials up to us, it was the design (weight, balance, taper, harmonics) we had to get right. It took several rounds of samples (not to mention a botched first run) but we finally nailed it.

Not satisfied with just getting the design right we wanted to push it farther. We had the fundamentals down but chose to take the materials and fit and finish a step ahead. The blade is hand forged mono-tempered 9260 spring steel, flat ground with a handsome satin finish. The fittings are high quality stainless steel exactly matching Gus’s design. The grip is a solid wood core, cord-wrapped for strength with a textured leather over-wrap. The scabbard is a solid wood core, with stainless steel chape and stitched leather wrap.

Bottom line, these are the best performing production medieval swords available.

Oh, and for the bargain hunters reading – there is at the time of writing this post around half a dozen of the OFF SPEC swords available to purchase with a $110 discount.. Not bad for some minor deviations from Gus’ design – and GREAT value if you take them at face value – expertly tempered, super tough 9260 Spring Steel blades!

But if you want to grab one of the discontinued Off Spec Swords – you had best get in quick. Once they are gone, they are gone for good and are rare enough that they have true collectors item potential.

Click for more info

Click for more info

A.P.O.C. Tactical Series Now in Stock – But Not For Long..

As the sheer number of pre-orders demonstrated (we sold out of our allotted quota in a couple of weeks) the 9260 Spring Steel Swords designed by Gus Trim and brought to life by the good people at Dragon King are proving to be too popular for their own good. Or at least, too popular for those of you who don’t pull the trigger on these while they are actually available..

Click for more information

Click for more information

Well, now is your chance. The pre-orders have all gone out and we have an extremely limited last chance supply of both the Cutlass and the Katana in stock and ready to ship.

The only catch is that demand far exceeds the current supply. And the swords are as good, or even better than many people expected. Here is a quick customer submitted review on the Katana (5 out of 5 star rating):

Alright, finally even though the shipping was earlier than expected. First of all the sword is solid and symmetrical! Sheath is a good intial concept. Just the right amount of weight not too light and not too short. This is sharp as can be. I will re review after a cutting session. And yes this is tatami and bamboo capable from the feel.

Shout outs to Dragon King and SBG for running the interview. And props resonates through out!

  • JSamurai

So long story short – they are finally here and in stock – so get them while you can..

Sneak Behind the Scenes Peak at Some Swords Coming Down the Line from BCI

As many of you will know, in March this year I took a trip over to meet the guys behind Blade Culture International (BCI) in the Philippines. And if you read our write up on the visit, you will know I was seriously impressed by the quality of the work they do there..

So much so that I have invested in a couple of mid-sized orders with them on a wide variety of blades – and with BCI selected as the official manufacturers of our pending line of battle ready fantasy swords from last months ‘Design a Fantasy Sword Competition’ from our monthly newsletter and forum, the orders will only be getting bigger.

While the 3 swords that are coming in are not yet completed, I thought I would share with you all some pics the forge sent me showing a behind the scenes peak at some work in progress shots.

The first is perhaps my favorite and immediately drew my eye when I saw it in their showroom, and that is their stunning Celtic Sword (click on the pics for a much larger image).

Indeed, it was the intricate details of this particular sword that inspired me to think ‘man, these guys could make some really nice fantasy swords’ and handling of this nimble, wickedly shaped leaf blade has to be experienced to be believed.

Next up is the Roman Gladius, another fast handling blade of around the same dimensions that put my beloved Generation 2 Gladius to shame..

And the last preview is of their awesome interpretation of a Chinese Jian.

It is simple in appearance, but is what many Chinese sword enthusiasts have been crying out for – a decently balanced Jian without the bells and whistles for serious martial arts applications..

As stated, more designs are coming down the line over the coming months from the fantasy sword competition, and in the meantime we also have some stock of their Filipino Line – including the Panabas, Espada Y Daga Blade Set and many more exotic and reasonably priced hand made traditional swords.

So stay tuned everyone, these swords will be worth the wait, priced as low as humanly possible and only available in limited quantities..

Project X Japanese – 5 Day Extension

We have had a lot of requests for an extension over the last 10 days..

And since this is such a rare opportunity (these swords have only been offered once or at the most twice over the past 5 years) we were able to convince the Master Smiths to grant us a 5 day extension..

So if you have an interest in getting your hands on one of these rare, heirloom quality Soshu Kitae Laminated blades – you have exactly 5 days to go before this window of opportunity slams shut and the next opportunity to buy, is unclear and unknown..

Click here to check out the 8 models before they are gone