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How to bring swords to japan? 2008/2/7 00:08
I am planning an Iaido training week in japan. I heard gossips that I am not allowed to take my stainless steel sword to Japan. Can you send me the rules, regulation there?

by Istvan Csizmeg  

Iaido 2008/2/8 01:45
Wouldn't the Iaido association be able to help you with this question? Wouldn't it be easier to use a sword from the dojo you'll be visiting?

From the IMAF FAQ, from the section Visiting Japan:
Do Japanfs strict laws governing the importation of real swords extend to Iaido, Iaido practice swords or wooden swords?

In general, no, but it is the sole responsibility of each individual to determine the correct procedure for Japanese Customs. IMAF Headquarters cannot and will not assume any responsibility in these matters.
by Kappa rate this post as useful

I can't help you 2008/5/15 03:53
But I can quite easily understand wanting to bring your own katana, it's not only a very personal thing, but few samurai would let another use his sword.
Is it an Iaito or shinken your wanting to bring in?
I can have a look around for you maybe.
by 8thsinner rate this post as useful

don't bother 2008/5/15 07:11
Stainless steel swords are not real swords. Carbon steel and damascus steel are the only metals that a real swordsmith will use, and that's all across the world. I hate to be the one to break it to you, but your sword is a replica.

You're better off not bringing a stainless steel sword, because you would likely be thought less of as a result.
by Andrew rate this post as useful

sword 2008/8/20 15:00
When I was in Japan a few years ago, I saw a foreigner checking a sword in at customs (He had it tagged and in a special case, the customs officers were checking it over with special tools), so it can be done.
by Nakamura rate this post as useful

No replica 2008/8/21 02:43
Andrew, an Iaito is a sword specially made for the practice of the martial art, Iaido, which is usualy made of a soft metal (like stainless steel) and blunt.

They balance and weight are made to feel like a shinken, a steel blade with a live edge, and they are far from replicas.

As for the the original question, you may be able to bring an iaito to Japan but it is probable that you will have to explain and show proof that you will be using it for martial arts practice. It's much easier to try and ask if the dojo where you will be training can provide you with a iaito while you are there.
by HB rate this post as useful

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