Introduction: How to Make a Bamboo Practice Sword ( Shinai ) That Looks Like a Bokken

Picture of How to Make a Bamboo Practice Sword ( Shinai ) That Looks Like a Bokken

As my first Instructable, I'm gonna show you how to make a Shinai that looks like a Katana. Mine turned out pretty well, and I hope yours will to. This Idea came to me when I saw valkiraun's bokken Instructable. Please enjoy, and don't bite!

Step 1: Materials

Picture of Materials

These are the materials needed for this project:

- Cloth
- Bamboo
- Duct Tape
- Sandpaper
- Saw ( On another Pic )

Let's get building!

Step 2: Cut!!!

Picture of Cut!!!

Cut the bamboo. I prefer a Katana-Styled edge ( Well, at least it's meant to be a Katana edge, 'till I realised it looks more like a Ninjato's edge ), but it's up to you. The length of the sword is also up to you. ( I prefer one of those medium-length swords ( Like a not-too-long katana or a wakizashi )

Step 3: Making the Handle

Picture of Making the Handle

For the handle of the sword, I first wrap it around with Duct tape, and wrap that with cloth. i doubled it because I want a nice, thick handle, and i don't have enough cloth to keep wrapping in around 'till it becomes quite thick. If you have enough cloth, then just screw the tapes. Putting lotsa cloth works better. I can get the cloth to stick using superglue or even better, rice-paste glue. If you want the handle to look good, apply the glue neatly.

Step 4: Sanding

Picture of Sanding

After you're done with your sword, sand it using Sandpaper so it becomes smooth. it will also clean splinters.

Step 5: Done!!

Picture of Done!!

Have fun training with your new sword! And remember, although this is a Bamboo Sword, it is by no means harmless. It can still severely injure or even kill people if handled with stupidity. It is a very good training tool though, it rarely ever dents ( I'm not sure if this thing can even dent ), and it's incredibly sturdy. I used this when sparring with my friends because they look pretty good ( for me anyways ) and is just about as durable as a Bokken and very easy to make. I managed to make good money selling these to local school bullies, because " it's usable for fighting and it's sturdy, and if it breaks, you can just whip it up for us in less than an hour. Nice job, dingus! ", as the bullies said.


ali-soltani2000 (author)2017-02-22

احیانا شما ایرانی نیستی؟

MikeyMonX (author)2015-10-30

Mr. Camisado, this sword is one of the best beginner's instructables ever! Thanks

MikeyMonX (author)2015-10-30

RagingBlade, c'mon. His sword may look too cliche but at least it's more practical and easier. It just needs further design such as scabbard, tsuba and a strap.

RagingBlade (author)2013-08-06

Are people really impressed by this??? do they actually read this instructable saying "wow! I had no idea how to wrap tape around a stick!!!"

erickahuna (author)RagingBlade2015-08-14

you just cant agree with what peole want to make so get out of here

crampedyogapositions (author)2009-05-11

what rank are you? i am a shodan in kendo and i think that this is the stupidest thing that i have ever know that they make curved shinai that are specifically shpaed like boken and they still have the 4 parts, please tell me what the point of this is?

i have to agree,

Cheap-arse Bokuto-like Shinai that you can make in a few minutes when you're bored.

Tek909 (author)2013-05-07

no kendoka in their right mind would ever use this for kendo, or suburi or..... actuly no kendoka would ever use this. Anything with shinai in the title will get kendoka reading and we are tought to treat a shinai with respect and care, just like a real sword. probably why your getting alot of negative or agressive commends.

esmith5 (author)2011-04-30

I really like this instructable, thanks. I'm gonna make one out of the bamboo that I found in the woods. Do you have any idea how I can make a hip sheath for this? That would make this much more useful for me.

k_man93 (author)2010-02-23

 did you quote the simpsons?

~DaDawg~ (author)2009-07-12

dang kid, you really got the buisness end of all these guys on here that supposedly know so much about bokken and shinai, yet they cant even understand the title of a tutorial for a " Bamboo Practice Sword ( Shinai ) That looks like a Bokken" i dont know how much clearer that title can get. Anyway, i got your back kid, and i understood it the first time i read it.

Camisado (author)~DaDawg~2009-07-12

Finally, a dude that can comprehend English. Lol thanks, I have a lot of other weapons posted up on my profile, such as my steel Tonfa pair and my homemade machete. Check them out and leave a comment if you can! =)

corey_caffeine (author)Camisado2010-01-09

Shinai are made from four slats of bamboo arranged in a square "tube" with each slat forming one side, these are then tied and fitted with a suede grip, and a tsuka. This is most definitely not a shinai.

wizard744 (author)2009-08-19

u know theres not a peice of bamboo in tenneesse AGGH can you make a vid of you chunking a aluminum pipe thatd be cool 2 see me and my friends are in a laire group and i have a few questions 4 you so if you could get in touch with me thatd be great !

spydyr (author)wizard7442009-12-10

You are wrong. At the TVA dam, specifically the Weir Dam, in Sullivan county there are several acres of 30 foot tall bamboo. Nice 2 in- 3 inch in diameter bamboo.

Camisado (author)wizard7442009-08-20

Umm... Ok? If you have questions you wish to ask me, then please do so.

azurelupine (author)2009-11-25

Luckily, there is a forest or 'stand' of bamboo about three blocks from my house, its about four or five acres deep, and the landowner lets me cut as much as I need! Yippee!

huyhuyhuytae (author)2009-07-11

you can get bamboos in some garden store or dollar store

Camisado (author)huyhuyhuytae2009-07-12

I know.


themaskedwolf (author)2009-05-08

Dont over sand as u will destroy the strongest part of the bamboo which is the outer shell of the bambo. sand down the Ring growths so that they are smooth with the rest of the bamboo.

Camisado (author)themaskedwolf2009-05-08

Thanks for the advice!

chocowubbles (author)2009-04-05

I dont know what kind of bamboo you use, but the bamboo I have in my backyard breaks easily, not too good for swordfights. I guess my bamboo just sucks

Chocowubbles alot of people mistake Cane for bamboo they look simular and Cane is usually very flexible and is usually used for short time fishing poles in N. America. Bamboo is rarer and When u find it u will know it

Camisado (author)chocowubbles2009-04-05

The bamboo I have is VERY tough. I can heavily dent an aluminum pipe using this practice sword.

Camisado (author)2009-04-01

Dude, I clearly said in the title, "a shinai that looks like a bokken". This is a bamboo sword meant to look like a bokken, not a real shinai. Real shinais are more tube-like in appearance and made out of split bamboos. READ THE TITLE FOR GOD'S FLIPPIN SAKES!

Camisado (author)2009-01-17

I know, but this one just happened to be around the length of a katana. It's obviously a little long to be a Wakizashi way too long to be a Tanto.

Camisado (author)2009-01-16

For gods sakes, I know what a Shinai is. I clearly stated that this is a shinai that "looks like a bokken", not a traditional kendo shinai.

thoraxe (author)2008-10-24

hmmm.... what you should have done was !. Take a larger diameter piece of bamboo. 2. Split off 2 pieces that will be the length from spine to edge. 3. shape the two pieces to they come together at a point when put together, and a flat or rounded shape at the top. they should form a upside down teardrop shape.

Camisado (author)thoraxe2008-10-24

I know what a Shinai looks like. This is just an easier way to do it in which you can hurt your enemies more :P

grimfig (author)2008-09-02

I don't understand how you kept the cloth to stay on the bamboo. Could you explain?

Camisado (author)grimfig2008-09-03

As far as I can remember, it was either superglue, rice paste glue, or a non-visible knot.

grimfig (author)Camisado2008-09-03


littletom34 (author)2008-06-20

1. Shinai are made from split bamboo. This makes them a bit safer to use without wearing padding. What you made is more like a bamboo boken. Boken are intended to be used in armored sparring. Hitting someone with one of these could do some major harm.

2. Putting a pointed end on it is dangerous in the "you'll shoot your eye out, kid" category. Shinai have padded tips.

Camisado (author)littletom342008-06-21

Sorry for the late reply, and YES, I'm with you. what I am making is more of a bamboo bokken. but I can't say 'Bamboo bokken' Because Bokken means Wood Sword. and bamboo bokken means Bamboo wood sword, and it's just.... weird.

jeffconnelly (author)2008-06-12

FINE! i'll comment! lol!

Camisado (author)jeffconnelly2008-06-14

I get my bamboo from a bamboo tree..... there's a lot of trees growing near my house.

Camisado (author)Camisado2008-06-16

Yes, what I mentioned is that there is a lot of bamboo TREES in my house. i didn't imply that bamboo is something or another thing

tjboling (author)Camisado2008-06-16

uh actually, Bamboo is a grass.

That's pretty cool. where do you get your bamboo? the only stuff I have is for staking plants up with!

Camisado (author)2008-06-08

Please comment! Constructive criticism is fine, but don't bite!

About This Instructable




Bio: Hey there. I'm a huge fan of video games, particularly sanbox titles like Grand Theft Auto IV. I also like games that are emotional ... More »
More by Camisado:Generic, Machete-Length KnifeSolid Hardwood Battle-Ready Bokuto (Japanese Practice Sword)Aborigine War Club (I did Everything Except for the Woodburning)
Add instructable to: