Hard & Soft Beni

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bdel01
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Hard & Soft Beni

Postby bdel01 » April 25th, 2018, 2:52 pm

I would like to start a conversation and learning thread on the differences of Soft beni vs Hard beni. I think it would be great to learn and spot the difference. from what i hear hard beni appears brighter and more red at first but will not last, whereas soft beni will last. Of course i could be wrong, hence the thread! Also would like to see pictures of the two
-best
ben

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PinkRules
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Re: Hard & Soft Beni

Postby PinkRules » April 27th, 2018, 10:56 am

Color is only one of many indicators but not always a reliable one. Beni presentation, depth, evenness, pattern, and especially beni plate edge all need to be taken into account.

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Russell Peters
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Re: Hard & Soft Beni

Postby Russell Peters » May 2nd, 2018, 12:52 am

Here are a couple of pictures of a Showa with hard Beni. You can see in the second picture that the Beni has fallen apart a little more than the first. What is hard Beni? A lot of people associate hard Beni with a specific color of Beni, darker reds, and, on the whole, it is pretty accurate. A 'simple' way of thinking of hard Beni is Beni that is finished. Once Beni is finished it usually has no where to go except down. Remember, I said that is a 'simple' way of thinking about it just to give you an idea. Continuing on that line then, what is unfinished Beni? Unfinished Beni is Beni that is continuing to grow and thicken. Each year adding more and more to it until it becomes very thick. Mr. Sakai likes to think of it as layers of paint. The third picture is that of Beni that is still building and you can see that the center of the scales has a darker area called 'Hoshi'. This shows that when the fish is growing that the Beni stretching with the growth. It is more elastic so it does not break up. This type of Beni is what is referred to as 'soft' Beni. It also appears thick but not in the sense of being one dimensional, you should be able to see some depth in the Beni but it is not necessarily translucent. Hard Beni is the opposite and the surface is very solid. It can be like glass but it does not hold up when the Koi grows, it breaks apart, and usually will disappear. The first and second pictures show hard Beni on the same Showa but a year apart.

Is soft Beni a guarantee that the Beni will not break up as well? No.
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bdel01
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Location: NJ & RI

Re: Hard & Soft Beni

Postby bdel01 » May 9th, 2018, 3:13 pm

Thank you Russ. So if i understand correctly when you can see the depth of the beni regardless of the shade thats how you know its "Soft." Whereas the first pic appears to be very bright and colorful but since you cant see the scales its actually a thinner dark layer that almost sits on top of the scales and will eventually break up.

Its interesting that even the sumi broker up.
-best
ben

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Marilyn
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Re: Hard & Soft Beni

Postby Marilyn » May 9th, 2018, 7:16 pm

Not Russ but I don't think that is what he is conveying regarding the Beni.

If you look at the first koi, the Beni has depth. What it does not have is each scale indicating what we call Hoshi or Beni development. The first koi has completed its Beni journey. It is all there and monochromatic with no indication of elasticity and future Beni development and growth.

The second koi, OTOH, shows much potential in future Beni development. Each scale has Hoshi, which is the stretch of the beni as the koi is growing. Hoshi, literally translated, means star. The center of each scale has a darker center, showing the color the Beni is headed to at completion but it is not there yet.
Btw, Hoshi is not necessarily seen on tosai. It's part of the equation but is not the whole picture.

mplskoi
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Re: Hard & Soft Beni

Postby mplskoi » May 11th, 2018, 9:00 am

On the fish with the color breaking down- the beni has only broken down a little, but the Sumi has broken down A LOT. I would guess if we were counting scales that the Sumi has broken down at almost a 10 to 1 ratio to the beni.
Was the hard beni a sign that the Sumi was also weak?
Are there times that beni holds and Sumi breaks?
Is there hard and soft Sumi?

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Marilyn
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Re: Hard & Soft Beni

Postby Marilyn » May 13th, 2018, 7:28 am

I don't know if this is how the Japanese would refer to it but all color on a koi, even the skin, has a shelf life. Less desirable specimens lose their Beni and/or Sumi well before a koi has reached maturity. Everything ages and the genetic tendency for them is what we try and figure out when looking at the colors on a koi. That is why elasticity is so important.

Years ago, I commented that I felt it made Showa particularly difficult to select. Trying to find a koi that has all the colors coming to completion at the same time does make it challenging. Very rewarding but challenging.


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