John, Looking again at this image carefully in order to try and read the signature, it suddenly occurred to me that there is something odd here. The plate with the signature on it is obviously old but the plates riveted to it are virtually unpitted. The rivets look odd as well, is there any chance of seeing the whole bowl? Ian B
Dave, to expand on my comment that the rivets look modern. They are perfectly flat with no evidence of hammer marks at all. They have the appearance of having been supported on a stake and "riveted"( peened) oved on the outside. P.S.J.
I used a steel pin the other day as a rivet, I made sure that I hammered it up a little to look right before applying the age-old acid. If you hammer the end of a modern rivet too much it can break off. We know that the saotome worked like machines, but you can clearly see that these rivets are really machined made. As they are either side of the mei plate it suggests three motivations.
1. Repair. (Where you would see maybe a couple) 2. Modern Construction 3. Fakery at work, a mei plate being inserted.