Unfortunately, Nine Circles USA is closed. If you are in USA looking for a kendo equipment shop, please click here.
Nine Circles USA is one of the sponsors of this website and the present of the company, Mr. Rodney Uhler, visited us at kendo seminar we had in Indiana in September 2011. Since then, my students and I have been in contact with him.
Since Nine Circles USA is located in Michigan, USA, it is very convenient for us who are located in Indiana. Every one of my students who ordered products from them, including me, was surprised how fast their service was. As a matter of fact, I ordered 15 shinai and received them next day. That is very fast.
Personally I haven't purchased a lot of products from Nine Circles USA yet. But through talking to Mr. Uhler and how satisfied my students are with their products I highly recommend the products of Nine Circles USA. Especially if you live in Midwest, USA and you need products really quickly, purchase from them.
It is unnecessary to say how important it is that products carry good quality, especially shiai. Shania is the first thing I always check when dealing with a new kendo shop.
If you are looking for a daily practice shiai, I strongly recommend their shiai. There are two reasons that I recommend their shiai for daily practice use.
You don't want to use a bad quality shiai for your daily practice because it breaks too easily. If it breaks too easily, now only it costs you more but also it increases risk of hurting your training partners. The worst thing we can do in kendo is to hurt our training partners.
Many people do not want to pay a lot at the beginning. But it is very hard to find a reasonable shiai and good quality. But here is your answer.
Their 39 shiai is $25 per shiai. And of course you have to pay for shipping and handling. But $25 per shiai is very reasonable and especially with this quality of shiai.
One of the reasons why their shiai is reasonable is that the leather parts of shiai they use are not pricy. So they can provide their customers with good shiai with reasonable price.
You might think that if the leather parts of shiai are not pricy ones, they may be worn out quickly. These parts are good enough to last long.
Let me show you some photos.
The length: 39
*Click to Enlarge.
Maruyama uses pricy tsuka (leather parts) for their practice shinai whereas Nince Circles USA uses non-pricy tsuka (leather parts) for their practice shinai.
If you are a beginner or kyu holder, you do not need any fancy leather parts.
Tsuka length is my most favourite thing about their shinai. I like a shorter tsuka. The length of tsuka in already made shinai is a bit too long for me, so I usually make it shorter. But the tsuka length of Nine Circles USA shinai (39) is just right for me. * Of course this is a personal preference so this may not apply to you.
This comparison of tsuka length is not really fair to Maruyama Kendo Supply because Maruyama's shiai in the picture has been used for a while so it is a bit stretched. But you can see the difference in the length.
If you are interested in their products, please contact Mr. Rodney Uhler, the president of Nine Circles USA or you can use the contact form below.