Saya (Scabbards)

Your Saya will be hand carved, hand filed and sanded (custom made) to fit your sword blade.  Traditional HONOKI wood is used and each Saya is fitted with genuine Water Buffalo horn parts (no plastic or wood) and after proper shaping and sanding, it is coated with 12 layers of genuine hand rubbed Japanese Cashew lacquer (no auto paint or spray can used in our shop).   As a result of our high standard of workmanship and care, our Saya have been judged to be a superior value when compared to all others.

For Saya restoration and replacement, we provide:

Our choice of using aged salt free Honoki wood guarantees that your Sword will not suffer the very common rusting and pitting problems that has been associated with Honoki wood.  Most kiln dried wood has a moisture content of 12 to 15% which can contribute to premature rusting of your sword blade. 

Each Saya is fitted with genuine Water Buffalo Horn Kurikata, Koiguchi and Kojiri and each is available with a Sageo of your choice.

Same' covered Saya:

The above Same' has been sanded smooth and filled with polished lacquer.  Same' added to the Koiguchi area (as above) is also offered 'un-sanded' (painted black) and is preferred by those who enjoy a rougher texture. 


Rattan-covered Saya:

The above Saya features Rattan covering on the Koiguchi area.   Available with clear lacquer (as above) or lacquered to match the color of the Saya.


Red Streaked Saya:

The above style of Saya is another classic design that was very popular during the troubled times of the 1860's - 1870's.  It is designed to create the illusion of an old piece of lacquer work that has been painted with alternating layers of black and red, and then worn down over time from handling to reveal the bottom color.

Custom Saya colors, the red streaked style, Rattan or Same' or metal parts added to the Saya are available as 'extras'.

Same' (stingray skin) sanded, lacquered & polished $40/inch,  Un-sanded w/or w/out lacquer  $35 per inch. Minimum of 6 inches

Rattan (when available) added to your scabbard: $25 per inch if lacquered & polished.  6 inch minimum.

Custom (other than black) colored Saya are $100 and up, depending. . . .

Saya made with the 'streaks' (displayed above) are $120 extra.


Unless specifically requested otherwise, our Saya are fitted with the popular & exclusive below horn Kurikata # 32.


Kurikata # 32 features a smoothly polished hole that totally eliminates Sageo fraying and the need for Shitodomé.



Our SHIRASAYA are made of traditional Japanese Honoki wood.  Decorative black water buffalo horn Mekugi-ana 'horn' reinforcements or Koiguchi / Fuchi / Koiguchi bands are available at additional cost and are not part of a 'standard' Shirasaya.



NOTE: Sword blades sent for restoration should be mailed (U. S. Postal Service) in their original Saya if possible.  If no Saya exists, contact us for instructions and photos of how to mail a 'bare blade'.

If the original Saya is partially or fully split, it may still be used to safely mail the sword providing the Saya is securely taped together with lots of 'duct' tape or Nylon reinforced tape.

THE 'Old' Saya:  Unless you have a special need for the 'old' Saya, because they have no value, they are normally trashed. If your sword blade is being polished, it is best to put it in a newly made Saya.  If for some reason you want the original Saya or Tsuka returned, make sure to print your name & address on a tag and secure the tag to them along with a note indicating your desire to have them returned... otherwise we will assume you no longer have a need for it.

Please use the U.S. Postal Service for sending swords and add 'insurance'.  Insurance will often require a signature and as a result, your sword will not be left on our doorstep.  (Please avoid using UPS, FED-EX, DHL, etc....)

Proper sized cartons (6 x 6 x 48 inches) and the preferred plastic bubble pack material are available at all 'UPS stores'.   

Please, no 'peanuts' when packaging of your sword.

Please, when you prepare to send your sword, please keep the sword bag and Sageo.

To eliminate damage to your sword while it is in transit, avoid using sub-standard packaging or light weight round paper tubes normally meant for engineering plans or calendars.  We don't want our P.O. carrier seriously cut by a poorly packaged sword.  For your benefit, avoid using heavy plastic pipe because the weight will cost an arm & a leg to mail.

Very Important:  When mailing your swords, in addition to all of your 'contact' information, please place your 'LIST' of 'wants & needs' in an envelope and tape it to the sword handle where it won't get lost.  Send your sword to the below address.

Saya Prices

Shirasaya Prices

Call for details:    503-282-4567


-or- write to:

FRED LOHMAN - 3405 N.E. Broadway -

Portland, OR  97232-1818   U.S.A.