compiled overview of the 70-ton No-Dachi NDA-1K 'Mech, from various BattleTech novels and game sourcebooks:

The Federated Commonwealth's success with the Hatchetman, and later with the Axman sparked an interest among Draconis Combine BattleMech manufacturers in creating a similar close-combat unit. Attempts to copy the Hatchetman design met with failure at every turn. Security surrounding the development of that 'Mech was simply too tight.

Abandoning the idea of stealing the Hatchetman, Combine 'Mech manufacturers began to create their own hatchet wielding 'Mech designs. To their surprise, however, prototype hatchet 'Mechs met with a lukewarm reaction among Combine test pilots. The problem seemed to be psychological; the ideal of the samurai was so firmly ingrained in the minds of modern MechWarriors that they considered wielding an axe barbaric. Designers then replaced the bulky hatchet with an elegant katana sword, which proved far more successful. Early BattleMech swords were so fragile, however, that they tended to break on their first impact with a target. Modern construction methods eventually solved this problem, but the 'Mech designers needed a good test case.

They found one in the Eleventh Legion of Vega, which was arranging the manufacture of BattleMechs with its long-time business partners, the Cosby Myomer Research Firm. The resulting 'Mech, named the No-Dachi after the Japanese long sword, turned out to be a literal "cutting-edge" machine, created with advanced components from across the Draconis Combine.

The Cosby Myomer Research Firm had been working on perfecting triple-strength myomer for more than five years by the time the DCMS perfected the technology that made a 'Mech-mounted sword possible. Cosby scientists stepped up their schedule and managed to complete their work in time for the improved myomer to be included in the assembly of the No-Dachi.

Triple-strength myomer and a seven meter long katana make the No-Dachi a dangerous close-combat fighter. Its array of short-range weapons and exceptional speed for a heavy 'Mech reinforce this role. The primary source of the No-Dachi’s firepower is a pair of shoulder mounted, medium-range, missile racks. These newly developed weapons launch large salvos of unguided rockets at ranges of up to 450 meters, though their inherent inaccuracy makes them most effective against targets closer than 100 meters. Few complaints have come from the Eleventh Legion of Vega, as the cash-strapped unit can obtain reloads for the weapon easily and inexpensively.

A medium laser, a pair of SRM launchers, and an erPPC round out the 'Mech's weapons. The PPCs came from the same surplus batch that went to Independence Weaponry’s Akuma 'Mechs, so they cost little to incorporate into the No-Dachi. The heat generated by these PPCs caused headaches for Panther pilots, but is a boon to No-Dachi pilots, who must "run hot" to get the benefit of the triple-strength myomer.

The bulk of No-Dachis in service are with the Eleventh Legion of Vega. Some have been sold to other DCMS units, though the majority of No-Dachis not stationed with the Eleventh are posted with other Legion of Vega units. The new 'Mech has yet to be tested in combat, but analysts predict that the 'Mech's close-combat attacks will prove devastating against Clan opponents.

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