|Good Starter Swords
Three good starter swords are:
What makes a sword a good starter? It is tough and can take a beating. It has some good values and it has acceptable appearance for the price. You can do stupid things with it (such as hack at branches or plastic trash cans or rolled up paper or let it rust) and not feel like you ruined a work of art. Outside of Del Tins and the katanas I can recommend, the three swords linked to from the top of this page are all good starter swords of their own type for around two hundred dollars.
And yes, if you can afford to start with a Del Tin -- start there. But if you aren't sure, don't have the money and want to pick up what is known in the industry as a "beater," then this is the place to start.
For rapiers, visit the Rapier link and start browsing. For a beater katana, visit Kris Cultery -- and be aware that if there is a problem with your order, they cheerfully refund or replace swords (at least so far -- the true constant is that things always change).