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Chests

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  • the.lady.phoenix@gmail.com
    Hi all, I am looking for examples of chests used in Japan pre Edo, however the only examples I have found have been small laquered chest unsuited to travel and
    Message 1 of 15 , Oct 16, 2010
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      Hi all,

      I am looking for examples of chests used in Japan pre Edo, however the
      only examples I have found have been small laquered chest unsuited to
      travel and camp life.

      If anyone has had better luck, I would hope they would share their
      findings, perhaps as an A&S report, shared to the list.

      Sara
    • JL Badgley
      ... What kind of chests, and what is unsuited about them? Plain wood or lacquered chests were fairly common. I don t have details handy, but they usually have
      Message 2 of 15 , Oct 16, 2010
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        On Sun, Oct 17, 2010 at 10:23 AM, <the.lady.phoenix@...> wrote:
        > Hi all,
        >
        > I am looking for examples of chests used in Japan pre Edo, however the
        > only examples I have found have been small laquered chest unsuited to
        > travel and camp life.
        >

        What kind of chests, and what is unsuited about them?

        Plain wood or lacquered chests were fairly common. I don't have
        details handy, but they usually have four~six legs. Two at each
        corner, and then two in the middle (on longer, rectangular ones).
        This is actually great for camping because it keeps your stuff off the
        ground.

        What specifically are you looking for, if not that?

        -Ii
      • Solveig Throndardottir
        Noble Cousin! Greetings from Solveig! ... There is even an arrangement by which a narrow, possibly four legged, chest can be mounted on someone s back like a
        Message 3 of 15 , Oct 16, 2010
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          Noble Cousin!

          Greetings from Solveig!
          > Plain wood or lacquered chests were fairly common. I don't have
          > details handy, but they usually have four~six legs. Two at each
          > corner, and then two in the middle (on longer, rectangular ones).
          > This is actually great for camping because it keeps your stuff off the
          > ground.
          There is even an arrangement by which a narrow, possibly four legged,
          chest can be mounted on someone's back like a back pack. Various sorts
          of things were and still are carried on the back in Japan. Please do
          not assume that lacquered objects are unsuited for camping.

          Your Humble Servant
          Solveig Throndardottir
          Amateur Scholar
        • the.lady.phoenix@gmail.com
          I m saying I think they look unsuited, for a varitity of reasons. 1) they are small and leggless 2) highly decorated and painted 3) they go together like a
          Message 4 of 15 , Oct 16, 2010
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            I'm saying I think they look unsuited, for a varitity of reasons.

            1) they are small and leggless
            2) highly decorated and painted
            3) they go together like a shoe box so upsizing would be impractical

            I'm saying all the ones I've found are like that, none that have legs,
            and certainly none that could more then a bento for 2-4 people (and
            that later number means stingy amounts for the 4 people).

            I'm hoping to find something I might be able to make in the range of
            70~ liter storage capacity, as I am assuming wood and that means
            weight and so one like 2x the size would need like a forklift to get
            in and out of the transport, out of plastics easy to make and lift,
            wood not so much. I'm looking for a something to store and transport
            my camp supplies in.

            Sara

            On 16/10/2010, Solveig Throndardottir <nostrand@...> wrote:
            > Noble Cousin!
            >
            > Greetings from Solveig!
            >> Plain wood or lacquered chests were fairly common. I don't have
            >> details handy, but they usually have four~six legs. Two at each
            >> corner, and then two in the middle (on longer, rectangular ones).
            >> This is actually great for camping because it keeps your stuff off the
            >> ground.
            > There is even an arrangement by which a narrow, possibly four legged,
            > chest can be mounted on someone's back like a back pack. Various sorts
            > of things were and still are carried on the back in Japan. Please do
            > not assume that lacquered objects are unsuited for camping.
            >
            > Your Humble Servant
            > Solveig Throndardottir
            > Amateur Scholar
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
          • LJonthebay
            Please check out the thread at http://tousando.proboards.com/index.cgi?board=research&action=display&thread=3387 It includes links to a karabitsu how-to by
            Message 5 of 15 , Oct 16, 2010
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              Please check out the thread at
              http://tousando.proboards.com/index.cgi?board=research&action=display&thread=3387

              It includes links to a karabitsu how-to by Ishiyama Gen'tarou Yori'ie and images of some period karabitsu.

              Saionji no Hana
              West Kingdom
            • Solveig Throndardottir
              Noble Cousin! Greetings from Solveig! ... 70 liters sounds unreasonably large to me. That is what 4272 cubic inches which measures something like 16-1/4 inches
              Message 6 of 15 , Oct 16, 2010
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                Noble Cousin!

                Greetings from Solveig!

                > I'm hoping to find something I might be able to make in the range of
                > 70~ liter storage capacity, as I am assuming wood and that means
                > weight and so one like 2x the size would need like a forklift to get
                > in and out of the transport, out of plastics easy to make and lift,
                > wood not so much. I'm looking for a something to store and transport
                > my camp supplies in.

                70 liters sounds unreasonably large to me. That is what 4272 cubic
                inches which measures something like 16-1/4 inches to the side. OK
                Maybe it isn't so unreasonably large. Further, it sounds like
                something which could comfortably be made out of wood without
                requiring a fork lift to pick up. Wood need not be impossibly heavy in
                order to make a serviceable box. I will see if I can find that image
                of people with wooden back packs climbing a mountain which I posted a
                link to a few years back. Anyway. Even 140 L sounds doable to me at
                this point.

                Your Humble Servant
                Solveig Throndardottir
                Amateur Scholar
              • Solveig Throndardottir
                Noble Cousin! Greetings from Solveig! Here is an image of people wearing tabidansu (travel chests) http://demoivre.org/Japan/tabidansu.jpg I was also going to
                Message 7 of 15 , Oct 16, 2010
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                  Noble Cousin!

                  Greetings from Solveig! Here is an image of people wearing tabidansu
                  (travel chests)

                  http://demoivre.org/Japan/tabidansu.jpg

                  I was also going to mention karabitsu, but those have already been
                  mentioned. The cords are used to tie down the lid.

                  Here is a link to a site by Ishiyama dono where he describes making a
                  karabitsu.

                  http://www.ee0r.com/proj/karabitsu.html

                  If you search for karabitsu on the web you will turn up a number of
                  images for the things.

                  Now then. Karabitsu means "Chinese chest" while tabidansu means
                  "travel chest". Both designs appear to be period.

                  Regardless the relevant Japanese terms are 旅箪笥 tabidansu and 唐
                  櫃 karabitsu. If the kanji survive your email program, try searching
                  for them at google.co.jp and be sure to click on 画像 which is the
                  search button for images. Searching for tabidansu will overwhelm you
                  with tea ceremony images as the things are used in the tea ceremony.
                  However, I do not know another term for them.

                  Your Humble Servant
                  Solveig Throndardottir
                  Amateur Scholar






                  [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                • Elaine Koogler
                  To be honest, I m not sure how far back they go, but I do know that at least during some periods in Japan, the tansu was used. Typically, it was made of
                  Message 8 of 15 , Oct 17, 2010
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                    To be honest, I'm not sure how far back they go, but I do know that at
                    least during some periods in Japan, the tansu was used. Typically, it
                    was made of paulownia or elm with iron fittings. They varied in size
                    but were usually large enough to carry one's possessions when
                    traveling. They could be stacked on on top of another to provide more
                    storage space. When traveling, poles were run through the handles that
                    existed on each end of the tansu. The one reference I found online with
                    a date says that these were used during the Edo period, but I have to
                    believe that something similar must have been used earlier.

                    Kiri

                    On 10/16/2010 11:23 PM, the.lady.phoenix@... wrote:
                    >
                    > Hi all,
                    >
                    > I am looking for examples of chests used in Japan pre Edo, however the
                    > only examples I have found have been small laquered chest unsuited to
                    > travel and camp life.
                    >
                    > If anyone has had better luck, I would hope they would share their
                    > findings, perhaps as an A&S report, shared to the list.
                    >
                    > Sara
                    >
                    >

                    --
                    "/It is only with the heart /that one can see clearly; what is essential
                    is invisible to the eye."
                    --Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, /The Little Prince/


                    [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                  • James Eckman
                    You can find small chunks of paulwonia masquerading as cutting boards in dollar stores sometimes. You can buy boards online and yes it is extremely light. Your
                    Message 9 of 15 , Oct 17, 2010
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                      You can find small chunks of paulwonia masquerading as cutting boards
                      in dollar stores sometimes. You can buy boards online and yes it is
                      extremely light. Your tools will have to be very sharp to cut it without
                      crushing it.

                      Don't bother with it for cutting boards though, about the silliest
                      application for it that I can think of!

                      Jim
                    • Elaine Koogler
                      Or find a sympathetic friend who lives in Virginia or Maryland. Paulownia trees grow wild here, and this area is where the Japanese are getting much of what
                      Message 10 of 15 , Oct 17, 2010
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                        Or find a sympathetic friend who lives in Virginia or Maryland.
                        Paulownia trees grow wild here, and this area is where the Japanese are
                        getting much of what they use today. There was some kind of blight on
                        the trees in Japan, so they have to import what they use. It sometimes
                        gets so bad that scavengers will actually steal trees from people's
                        yards. I have a couple in my yard that I planted...one blew over in a
                        storm and I was able to sell the wood very quickly! No...to answer your
                        question...I don't have any that look to come down anytime soon. If so,
                        I'll let the list know.

                        Kiri (guess where my name came from??? However the English name for the
                        tree is actually a 19th c. Russian word. Amazing what you discover when
                        you're trying to register an heraldic title!)

                        On 10/17/2010 10:58 AM, James Eckman wrote:
                        >
                        > You can find small chunks of paulwonia masquerading as cutting boards
                        > in dollar stores sometimes. You can buy boards online and yes it is
                        > extremely light. Your tools will have to be very sharp to cut it without
                        > crushing it.
                        >
                        > Don't bother with it for cutting boards though, about the silliest
                        > application for it that I can think of!
                        >
                        > Jim
                        >
                        >

                        --
                        "/It is only with the heart /that one can see clearly; what is essential
                        is invisible to the eye."
                        --Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, /The Little Prince/


                        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                      • Dean Wayland
                        Greetings Kiri-dono, et all, ... My group here in the UK, did a lot of research in to these items some years ago in an attempt to solve our in-camp storage and
                        Message 11 of 15 , Oct 18, 2010
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                          Greetings Kiri-dono, et all,

                          >To be honest, I'm not sure how far back they go, but I do know that at
                          >least during some periods in Japan, the tansu was used. Typically, it
                          >was made of paulownia or elm with iron fittings. They varied in size
                          >but were usually large enough to carry one's possessions when
                          >traveling. They could be stacked on on top of another to provide more
                          >storage space. When traveling, poles were run through the handles that
                          >existed on each end of the tansu. The one reference I found online with
                          >a date says that these were used during the Edo period, but I have to
                          >believe that something similar must have been used earlier.
                          >
                          >Kiri

                          My group here in the UK, did a lot of research in to these items some
                          years ago in an attempt to solve our in-camp storage and transport
                          needs. I now have eight, which are used for everything from carrying
                          jinmaku (camp curtains), through armour, bedding, clothes and all those
                          little things that make life in 16th century Japan so pleasant,
                          including my nice new hibachi, Yay, heating!:-)

                          The term "tansu" is today used by dealers as a catch all term for chest
                          like furniture, but this is because most survivors are of Edo period
                          make. The pre-Edo version is called "hitsu", hence the term
                          "yoroi-bitsu" for one form of armour chest.

                          Our typical hitsu measures 21.5" tall (of that 5" is the lid), by 17.5"
                          long, by 16" wide, and are made of 1/4" thick wood, normally pine, but
                          also paulownia, elm (zelkova) and cypress. We have a few that were made
                          out of 1/2" wood so they could be sat on or stood on, but they are heavy
                          to carry, and so all our new ones are thinner. We do have larger ones,
                          but again they end up too heavy when loaded, to be comfortable. Most are
                          painted to seal them from the weather, but some are plain wood. The
                          joints are simple comb joints in most cases. We're going to be building
                          some nagamochi, long chests, for carrying lightweight but bulky items
                          like futons.

                          The narrow end can be fitted with either metal or rope handles for
                          portage purposes, using a rectangular pole and a couple of peasants -
                          which are never around when you want them.

                          We had a black smith turn out several dozen handle sets for us, and they
                          work superbly. Now loading and unloading is a dream, we wouldn't be
                          without them, and they really make the campsite look excellent.

                          Anyway I highly recommend the following book, which although it
                          concentrates on the Edo period has a wealth of information on kit from
                          as early as the Heian era, right through to Meiji and Taisho. At the
                          back is a stunningly useful visual history of different types of kit.
                          For example, lighting, bedding and cooking gear.

                          http://www.amazon.com/Traditional-Japanese-Furniture-Kazuko-Koizumi/dp/08
                          7011722X#_


                          Anyway, I hope this helps.

                          Yours

                          Dean

                          (SHOGUN: 1543-1640)
                          http://www.thefightschool.demon.co.uk/SHOGUN.htm
                        • Jeanel Walker
                          kon ni chi wa I have an idea for you for storage if your interested and you can enjoy some play time too. I made this hollow so i can stash my mundain stuff
                          Message 12 of 15 , Oct 18, 2010
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                            kon ni chi wa

                            I have an idea for you for storage if your interested and you can enjoy some play time too. I made this hollow so i can stash my mundain stuff in...just a thought and its not hard to make
                            http://iolii.deviantart.com/gallery/#/d20v69t

                            http://iolii.deviantart.com/gallery/#/d20wl2i

                            http://iolii.deviantart.com/gallery/#/d20vvzh

                            http://iolii.deviantart.com/gallery/#/d20vv7u

                            May the joy of your past be the worst of your tomorrows!!!
                            Jeanel Walker aka Eilionora "Takaatsu" of Kisimull
                            http://i249.photobucket.com/albums/gg208/brytephyre/Takinagadevisesm.jpg
                            http://i249.photobucket.com/albums/gg208/brytephyre/Eilionoriadevicesm.jpg


                            --- On Mon, 10/18/10, Dean Wayland <dean@...> wrote:

                            From: Dean Wayland <dean@...>
                            Subject: Re: [SCA-JML] Chests
                            To: sca-jml@yahoogroups.com
                            Date: Monday, October 18, 2010, 10:22 AM







                             









                            Greetings Kiri-dono, et all,



                            >To be honest, I'm not sure how far back they go, but I do know that at

                            >least during some periods in Japan, the tansu was used. Typically, it

                            >was made of paulownia or elm with iron fittings. They varied in size

                            >but were usually large enough to carry one's possessions when

                            >traveling. They could be stacked on on top of another to provide more

                            >storage space. When traveling, poles were run through the handles that

                            >existed on each end of the tansu. The one reference I found online with

                            >a date says that these were used during the Edo period, but I have to

                            >believe that something similar must have been used earlier.

                            >

                            >Kiri



                            My group here in the UK, did a lot of research in to these items some

                            years ago in an attempt to solve our in-camp storage and transport

                            needs. I now have eight, which are used for everything from carrying

                            jinmaku (camp curtains), through armour, bedding, clothes and all those

                            little things that make life in 16th century Japan so pleasant,

                            including my nice new hibachi, Yay, heating!:-)



                            The term "tansu" is today used by dealers as a catch all term for chest

                            like furniture, but this is because most survivors are of Edo period

                            make. The pre-Edo version is called "hitsu", hence the term

                            "yoroi-bitsu" for one form of armour chest.



                            Our typical hitsu measures 21.5" tall (of that 5" is the lid), by 17.5"

                            long, by 16" wide, and are made of 1/4" thick wood, normally pine, but

                            also paulownia, elm (zelkova) and cypress. We have a few that were made

                            out of 1/2" wood so they could be sat on or stood on, but they are heavy

                            to carry, and so all our new ones are thinner. We do have larger ones,

                            but again they end up too heavy when loaded, to be comfortable. Most are

                            painted to seal them from the weather, but some are plain wood. The

                            joints are simple comb joints in most cases. We're going to be building

                            some nagamochi, long chests, for carrying lightweight but bulky items

                            like futons.



                            The narrow end can be fitted with either metal or rope handles for

                            portage purposes, using a rectangular pole and a couple of peasants -

                            which are never around when you want them.



                            We had a black smith turn out several dozen handle sets for us, and they

                            work superbly. Now loading and unloading is a dream, we wouldn't be

                            without them, and they really make the campsite look excellent.



                            Anyway I highly recommend the following book, which although it

                            concentrates on the Edo period has a wealth of information on kit from

                            as early as the Heian era, right through to Meiji and Taisho. At the

                            back is a stunningly useful visual history of different types of kit.

                            For example, lighting, bedding and cooking gear.



                            http://www.amazon.com/Traditional-Japanese-Furniture-Kazuko-Koizumi/dp/08

                            7011722X#_



                            Anyway, I hope this helps.



                            Yours



                            Dean



                            (SHOGUN: 1543-1640)

                            http://www.thefightschool.demon.co.uk/SHOGUN.htm

























                            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                          • James Eckman
                            Posted by: Dean Wayland ... Yes that is an awesome book, there s another one much like it that when I can remember the name I will send it along. If I get
                            Message 13 of 15 , Oct 18, 2010
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                              Posted by: "Dean Wayland"

                              > Traditional Japanese Furniture Kazuko Koizumi

                              Yes that is an awesome book, there's another one much like it that when
                              I can remember the name I will send it along. If I get some free time, I
                              do plan a tansu for my art supplies!

                              Jim
                            • James Eckman
                              *Not the one I was talking about but... Traditional Japanese chests : a definitive guide / Kazuko Koizumi Jim * [Non-text portions of this message have been
                              Message 14 of 15 , Oct 18, 2010
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                                *Not the one I was talking about but...
                                Traditional Japanese chests : a definitive guide / Kazuko Koizumi

                                Jim


                                *


                                [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                              • Dean Wayland
                                Hi Jim, ... Ooh, new, published in April. Thanks for that, I am now 23 pounds the poorer, but richer by virtue of having ordered a new book for my library.
                                Message 15 of 15 , Oct 19, 2010
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                                  Hi Jim,

                                  >*Not the one I was talking about but...
                                  >Traditional Japanese chests : a definitive guide / Kazuko Koizumi
                                  >
                                  >Jim

                                  Ooh, new, published in April. Thanks for that, I am now 23 pounds the
                                  poorer, but richer by virtue of having ordered a new book for my
                                  library. I'll let you know what I think of it once it arrives.

                                  All the best

                                  Dean

                                  --
                                  Dean Wayland
                                  Head Of The Fight School
                                  http://www.thefightschool.demon.co.uk
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