We have a soft spot for the knives coming out of the Sukenari blacksmith shop, located in Toyama Prefecture. On our last visit there we were really impressed with their forging and shaping techniques, especially with some of the more unusual alloys. This particular knife line is made with the excellent alloy, ZDP189.
ZDP189 is a powdered metallurgy steel. It is very high in Carbon and Chromium content which make the steel quite expensive to produce. Its main attributes are high wear resistance and the ability to harden to a very high rating. In this case 65 Rockwell. Of course, this makes it a bit tougher to sharpen by hand. But once achieved, it holds its edge like few other steels.
Hinaki-san of Sukenari takes the core ZDP189 and wraps it in a layer of soft stainless steel to protect the inner core and reduce weight. As both alloys are fully stainless, maintenance of the exquisite blade is kept to a minimum. He grinds the blade with an even 50/50 bevel. The profile is typical kiritsuke, fairly flat with that great looking and very thin tip. This is a push cutter’s dream machine. It is also very versatile as the tip allows for intricate work and access to hard to reach places.
The beautifully crafted blade is mated to a fine custom oval handle. The Sukenari ZDP189 Kiritsuke 240mm is a truly outstanding item that will last a lifetime. It performs as well as it looks while remaining easy to care for.
Location: Toyama Japan
Construction: San Mai
Core Steel: ZDP189
Knife Type: Kiritsuke
Edge Length: 231mm
Edge Grind: Even (see choil photo)
Handle: Custom Oval
Wood Type: Buckeye Burl
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