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Hitohira Togashi White #1 Mizu Honyaki Yanagi Sakimaru 330mm Ziricote Handle (Saya)

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€1.950,00 EUR
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€1.950,00 EUR
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Honyaki is an incredibly challenging traditional forging technique where a blade of a single steel is differentially hardened to create a hard edge and a softer spine, similar to the way Japanese swords are made. 

This combination of hard and soft steel is something we regularly see in Japanese knives but then with two different steels. Called “San-mai” on double bevel blades and “Ni-mai” on single bevel knives. 

With Honyaki the blacksmith creates a soft and hard section with one steel. This is done by meticulously applying a thick layer of clay along the spine and a thin layer along the edge in preparation for the quenching process. This is what creates the beautiful Hamon, the separation line between hard and soft steel. 

The clay coating on the spine reduces the cooling speed when quenched resulting in a softer structured spine in contrast to the edge section where the thin coating  allows the metal to cool rapidly making the metal hard. 

The soft steel acts as a shock absorber, protecting the harder edge. 

This is a water quenched (Mizu) White steel #1 blade which is considered the hardest and most challenging of all combination. Also the fact that this is a very long Sakimaru Yanagi and was forged in the summer makes it considerably more impressive.  

The main reason to forge blades this way is that the steel takes on higher hardness allowing it to hold sharper and keener edges. This results in much higher quality textures on product surfaces when cut, all to elevate the overall quality of the food it cuts.

The difficulty of this technique is astounding, next to the application of the clay it requires tons of experience of blacksmith and sharpener and numerous factors, e.g., the water temperature, the steel temperature and the surrounding temperature, play a vital role in the process. Only a handful of craftsman have the skills to produce Honyaki blades.

Master Kenji Togashi is one of the most celebrated and distiguisted blacksmith from Sakai. Not only a “Dentokogeshi” (certified traditional craftsman) but also awarded with a medal from the emperor for his accomplishments and service. One of the, if not the, most honourable and prestigious decorations in Japan. He is amongst the very few remaining blacksmiths in Japan with the skillset to forge water-quenched Honyaki blades. A true master of traditional techniques. Togashi made knives are characterised by their durability and hardness while still easy to sharpen. Not only the steel quality but also their in-house sharpening is praiseworthy. In charge of the in-house sharpening is Kenya Togashi, the third son of Togashi San, and from him we see some of the most true and consistent single and double-bevel sharpening we've come across. All their knives really feel like they've been made with the intention to last for years.

Detailed Spec

Brand: Hitohira ひとひら
Smith: Togashi Blacksmith 富樫打刃物製作所
Producing Area: Sakai-Osaka/ Japan
Profile: Yanagi Sakimaru
Size: 330mm
Steel Type: Carbon Steel
Steel: Honyaki Yasuki White (Shirogami) #1
Handle: Ziricote & Buffalo Horn Ferrule Octagonal
Come with Saya
Total Length: 487mm
Edge Length: 319mm
Handle to Tip Length: 334mm
Blade Height: 39mm
Thickness: 3.3mm
Handle Length: 152mm
Weight: 282g

*Please understand that all pictures on our website are made of random samples and as most products are made with natural materials by hand the color, appearances and even measurements can slightly vary. Please contact us if you wish to see the exact item we have on hand.