In this project I tackle a much requested miniature weapon build, the mini Katana. Despite weighing only 1.2g and being only 71mm long, this miniature Samurai sword has a fully functioning highly polished razor sharp blade and is very cheap to build.
The secret to any sort of mini Katana was always going to be the blade, and the best steel I could find at a low cost and easily available was a 3″ (75mm) paint scraper or filler knife. The characteristics of the steel used are more or less perfect. It’s hardened but flexible, meaning it will hold an edge and not snap when in use, but is still cuttable with hand tools. You can cut a small amount of steel from the end to make a sword (I made two), and still use it afterwards.
I later improved the threaded Katana handles looks by applying a little permanent marker to the thread, spreading that around with nail varnish to give a more convincing look, see the Deadpool image in the gallery below.
Mini Katana blade
Cutting the blade is simple with a Junior hacksaw as long as you use a decent blade and take your time, I found the Eclipse brand of hacksaw blade to be high quality and long lasting. You could also use a Dremel with a thin grinding or cutting disc but you would have to cut slowly and carefully. Any prolonged cutting will increase the heat of the metal and potentialy ruin the hardened spring quality of the steel, and your sword.
For a 3″ or 75mm paint scraper or filling knife chopping 4mm off the end should give you enough spare metal to sharpen the Katana and file a slight hollow into the back of the blade to give it its iconic shape.
Sharpening the Katana
Once you have a nice even angle filed onto both sides of the blade you can then sharpen the blade, but first you might want to make a sheath from 3 – 4mm heat shrink. By fitting the heat shrink sheath at this early stage you should find that it slips on and off perfectly after a final sharpen.
A kitchen knife sharpener with a tungsten V will do the job, the finished blade is acceptable. For a really sharp edge I ground both sides carefully on a fine whetstone.
The above project is aimed at adults for education and entertainment purposes only, not to replicate. Anyone doing so takes full responsibility for their own actions.