I know I may be a little late, but will give my two cents worth. I have been collecting Japanese swords for about twenty years but, that doesn`t make me a expert. If this were my sword I would find a honest dealer in swords that can translate the writeing on the tang, if any. Just because a tang has writeing on it does not make it a good sword. Many signatures were forged (faked) to get a higher price out of it. Quite often a sword will not have any characters on the tang and be a very high grade and important piece. The main thing to look at is the quality of the blade. That can be a science in itself. Chances are you have a partial machine made sword with a oil (not water) temper. If you could send some pics I may be able to tell what you have. No guarentees, but will try. Your sword may be worth anywhere from absoultly nothing to priceless.