Sword Question

Originally asked on the Weapons forum, and someone
said there might be some info to be gained here.

Who has the better deal for a quality sword? Some that's actually usable, but also looks good enough for me to have out.

Cold Steel - For some reason I don't entirely trust their stuff. Mostly because I haven't heard any reviews.

Museum Replicas - I heard their older swords by Tozando(?) were better, and the newer stuff by Windlass Steelcrafts is of questionable quality.

Kris Cutlery - I have only heard good things, but visual appeal on some of their blades is kinda lacking.

Bugei - Expensive and their whole "real katana had extra long hilts" thing rubs me the wrong way, and can be debated. Plus I find the extra long hilt to look funny.

Paul Chen - Heard the tangs are weak except in one or two of the swords. I just can't remember which ones were good.

Everything I've heard about Cold Steel has been positive, and, although I havent handled any of their swords, their knives are very nice.

Cold Steel - The steel is good, but from what I see and have felt, the weights and balances are off. In fact, I held their replica Tulwar las night and I feel it is a club. Especially after handling originals from the 17th century. Cold Steel's 1796 pattern saber is supposed to be lighter. I would like to feel that.

Museum Replicas - The Windlass stuff isn't newer. they have had Windlass swords for many years. It is hit or miss with Windlass. The temper and quality s good, but sometimes the weight and balance is off, depending on the sword. Some are very good. TFS has quite a few good Windlass swords with good balance.

Kris Cutlery - Not too sure. Doesn't look good to me. Those shipping weights are way too high, I think - even if they are including the box.

Bugei - Don't know.

Paul Chen - I haven't heard anything about the tangs, but some of his swords are ok, some feel too heavy. He supposedly makes a good katana. Some of his rapiers feel good, some too clumsy.

For a solid, affordable european sword, I'd go with Angus Trim. You can get his swords at www.allsaintsblades.com. They tend to look a bit "machined" though.

Kris Cutlery katanas are pretty good, from the reviews I have read. Apart from the Bingo Mihara katana, they dont look very good, but theyre solid, differentially heat treated swords. I dont think the weight of their katanas are too much. As far as I can recall, theyre about 2-2.5 lbs. Their Euro sworsd are on the heavy side though.

Angus Trims blades are very good from what I have seen and felt.

Very light and well blanced, like the originals.