Tomboyama is proud to announce that it’s very own assistant swordsmithing instructor, Gabriel Bell, will be competing in the upcoming season finale of History Channel’s hit show Forged in Fire. Forged in Fire Season 3 Episode 16 will air on Tuesday, February 14th 7pm EST on History Channel. The episode titled “Redemption” will be Gabriel’s second appearance on the show.
Forged in Fire has been a hit show for History Channel and continues to set viewership records. Its popularity got it renewed for a fourth season and is great indicator of the growing enthusiasm in the techniques and traditions of swordsmithing.
We invite our dear alumni, friends and family to tune in and join us as we cheer him on. If you are in the Portland, Oregon area, Gabriel is hosting a live episode viewing party that night (Februrary 14th) at Shut Up And Eat restaurant on SE Gladstone. Food and Drinks are available. And yes, kids are welcome! Best of luck Gabe!
Monday March 27 – Friday, March 31 – Basic Forging Course
Saturday, April 1 – Sunday, April 2 – Kajioshi Course
Saturday, April 8 – Sunday, April 9: Oregon Knife Collectors Association (OKCA) Knife Show in Eugene, Oregon
Monday, April 17 – Friday, April 21 – Basic Forging Course
Saturday, April 22 – Sunday, April 23 – Habaki Course
Monday, May 15 – Friday, May 19 – Intermediate Forging Course
Saturday, May 20 – Sunday, May 21 – Kajioshi Course
Monday, May 29 – Friday, June 2 – Kajioshi-Habaki Combo-Course
Monday, June 26 – Friday, June 30 – Basic Forging Course
Saturday, July 1 – Sunday, July 2 – Kajioshi Course
Monday, July 24 – Friday, July 28 – Basic Forging Course
Saturday, July 29 – Sunday, July 30 – Habaki Course
Monday, August 21 – Friday, August 25 – Koshirae Course
Saturday, August 26 – Sunday, August 27 – Tsuka-maki (Handle-wrapping) Course
Monday, September 4 – Friday, September 8 – Basic Forging Course
Saturday, September 9 – Sunday, September 10 – Kajioshi Course
Monday, October 2 – Friday, October 6 – Basic Forging Course
Saturday, October 7 – Sunday, October 8 – Habaki Course
March 14th, at 7pm PST, Michael and Gabriel Bell of Dragonfly Forge will be the featured speakers of “Earth, Wind, Water, and Fire: The Art and Science of the Japanese Sword” at Linfield College in Mcminnville, Oregon. The panel discussion will include Tianbo Xao, professor of physic, Brian Winkenwder, professor of art history, Chris Keaveney, professor of Japanese, and Jesus Ilundain-Agurruza, professor of philosophy. The event will be held in Ice Auditorium in Melrose Hall.
The event is free and open to the public. The lecture will also be live streamed from those unable to attend. Link to follow soon.
Our radio segment on the Jefferson Exchange, March 8th, 2016, with Geoffrey Riley is available for listening on the JPR website.
Tomboyama is offering for the 2016 school year something old and something new.
We’ve had many requests to do another Oroshigane Seminar, having not done so for several years. This is a weekend event on converting pure iron into high quality sword steel.
Oroshigane is the process by which carbon content is adjusted; It can be iron to which carbon is added or steel of too high a carbon content needing a reduction in carbon. Once adjusted this steel is termed Tamahagane, “jewel blade metal”.
We will be adding carbon to electrolytic sponge iron (denkaitetsu in Japanese), thus making Tamahagane.
This steel and the steel smelted from high quality sand ore are the only materials allowed in modern Japanese swords, as the two are chemically nearly identical.
The new part is this year we will follow up the weekend seminar with a five day course using the steel just made, which we are calling our Advanced Forging Course. This will include assembling a billet of steel and folding the metal for the required number of folds. When the folding is done a bar will be drawn out and cut to make blanks that will be forged to shape. Each student will have enough material to forge a tanto.
This promises to be an interesting and challenging course and will aid in the understanding of the Japanese sword.
An alumnus of our dojo wrote about his experience here in 2015 during a Basic Forging Course.
“The course is not easy per se, but it’s deeply satisfying. I’d even say it was meditative. You’re able to comfortably lose yourself in the task at hand, while also earning a deeper appreciation of just how much time a steady hand takes to develop. At the end of the course, you have a living blade that you yourself have shaped and created, and a wealth of knowledge. It’s a beginner’s level course, but you leave empowered and equipped to return home and continue your education via honing your skills until you can return to Coos Bay for the next class.”
One can read the whole entry on his blog, The Parlous Professional