Several Styles of Ray Skin ( Samegawa) Wrapping on Handle
(The blue part is ray skin. It is a view from the fuchi and the reverse side of handle wood. The fuchi and kashira are removed in the pictures.)
1. Tanzaku (Channelled)
This style is used only for cheap swords. It is small meaning to use ray skin.
2. Maru-gise (Round wrapped)
It is common on good quality swords. Usually the joint is at the centre of reverse side. Sometimes it can be placed near the back or near the cutting edge.
3. Maedare-gise (Round and Half)
This style is the most tough. But it was not common in old days. Because, it is not easy to make a good work, and expend much ray skin. We can find this style of handle only on the swords in feudal lord collections, or some Samurai's who prepare his sword carefully.