Bu Jin Design's jo and bokken are made of select domestic hickory by a local woodworker. To ensure straightness and strength, we take the extra step of laminating strips of wood with opposing grain into blanks, from which the weapons are turned. We have found that this process produces a reliable, long-lasting product, and a training weapon you can count on for years of service when properly used and cared for.
Our tanto, not needing to withstand impact, are made of solid cherry, maple, hickory and walnut. Like the jo and bokken, they are handcrafted in small lots and receive individual attention.
Caring for your Wooden Training Weapons
All Bu Jin Design training weapons have been professionally crafted and finished. Each training weapon is ready to use as is and will provide years of service. You may wish, however, to personalize your training weapon with a little hands-on care. Your training weapon is an important companion and inspection and maintenance should be an accepted part of ownership.
Initial care (optional)
In its new condition, the Bu Jin training weapon has been hand sanded to 400 grit and finished with at least three coats of hand applied oil(a mixture of tung oil and boiled linseed oil). To condition the wood even more, we recommend the following procedure:
First, using 400 grit wet/dry sandpaper, sand your training weapon lengthwise, with the grain. (Note: it is not necessary to remove the original finish from your weapon prior to conditioning). Blend equal parts of linseed oil and tung oil and apply the mixture with your bare hands to your weapon, allowing the warmth of your hands to work the oil into the wood. Wipe thoroughly with a soft cloth and let dry for 24 hours, checking periodically to remove excess oil. Repeat the oiling/drying process two or three times. Following this initial treatment, the oil mixture may be applied about once a week for two months, and once a month thereafter. Sanding should be done as needed prior to oiling.
An optional ingredient in the oil mixture is beeswax. Shave about 3/4 cup of beeswax into a double boiler, add 1 cup each of the two oils above, and heat the mixture slowly to melt the beeswax (CAUTION: Beeswax is combustible, so use with care). Allow to cool, and follow application procedures above.
Long term care
With use, sweat from your hands will react with the oil and wood, and the grain may rise slightly in places. Impact with other training weapons will cause dents and these spots should be sanded and oiled as needed. Monthly maintenance is a good idea.
Do not expose your weapons repeatedly to extremes of heat or cold; e.g. do not store in the trunk of your car. When transporting your weapons in the trunk of a car do not place heavy bags on top of them.
The life of your training weapon depends, in large part, on proper technique. Many a bokken and jo have met with early demise due to the crude but (sometimes) effective "baseball bat" technique.
A spiral movement (created by a quick twist of your wrist) should be used when striking with the jo, bo or bokken. In most cases there should be no head-on impact; instead, one weapon should glance off the other. Attention to good technique will extend the life of your wooden training weapon considerably.