Author Topic: I have never seen chisels like these.  (Read 3802 times)

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Offline Lemwise

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I have never seen chisels like these.
« on: September 18, 2017, 07:51 AM »
Saw this posted on Reddit. We all know the Swiss made Rali chisels with a replaceable blade but I've never seen an oire nomi style chisel with one. If I had to guess I'd say it's some kind of HSS blade. Very unusual.


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Offline HarveyWildes

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Re: I have never seen chisels like these.
« Reply #1 on: September 18, 2017, 11:11 AM »
Saw this posted on Reddit. We all know the Swiss made Rali chisels with a replaceable blade but I've never seen an oire nomi style chisel with one. If I had to guess I'd say it's some kind of HSS blade. Very unusual.


That's a new one to me as well.  At just under $100, it seems like a gimmick, and unnecessary unless you really abuse your chisels.  I wonder (1) if the blades might be carbide, (2) how much the replacements cost, and (3) how well the screwed on blades handle heavy use.  I wonder if the blade will eventually torque away from the body under enough force.


Speaking of heavy use, I just got a 24mm Masashige Tataki (timber) chisel from Hida Tool for my son - I was in the San Francisco east bay and managed to work in a visit to their retail shop.  I was wondering what distinguished a Tataki chisel from a regular chisel - it's the heft.  It feels like it weighs about 3X what a normal bench chisel weighs, and will certainly be able to stand up to heavy timber frame use.


I also picked up a couple of Masashige paring chisels for myself.  I'm not really a Japanese chisel guy, but have wanted to try Japanese paring chisels for a while now.  I'm looking forward to giving them a try - my initial impression is that they feel nicely balanced and easy to manipulate.  But unless they are really superior, they will probably end up with my other Japanese chisels in my son's shop.




Offline Lemwise

  • Posts: 260
Re: I have never seen chisels like these.
« Reply #2 on: September 18, 2017, 11:43 AM »
I also have something nice in transit to me. A 5 piece set of Fujikawa 'yasaku' professional grade chisels from Workshop Heaven.

As for the chisels in the picture, they're probably meant to be used as beaters. I don't think a serious Japanese craftsman would use these for fine work.

Offline Svar

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Re: I have never seen chisels like these.
« Reply #3 on: September 18, 2017, 11:51 AM »
At just under $100, it seems like a gimmick
A $100 chisel is high end in my world.

Offline Lemwise

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Re: I have never seen chisels like these.
« Reply #4 on: September 18, 2017, 03:08 PM »
In my world as well.

Offline lwoirhaye

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Re: I have never seen chisels like these.
« Reply #5 on: September 18, 2017, 04:15 PM »
Keep in mind the traditional Japan chisels have a hollow ground back and the edge needs to be "tapped out"  when the hollow catches up with the edge.  It's a maintenance hassle today's tradesmen in Japan may not want to deal with.

Offline Lemwise

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Re: I have never seen chisels like these.
« Reply #6 on: September 18, 2017, 04:47 PM »
Keep in mind the traditional Japan chisels have a hollow ground back and the edge needs to be "tapped out"  when the hollow catches up with the edge.  It's a maintenance hassle today's tradesmen in Japan may not want to deal with.

I've actually asked Mr. Fujikawa about this and he says tapping the edge is a big nono. He says that during normal sharpening you always do the back as well so the hollow won't catch up with the edge. If it does catch up with the edge you're to use a coarse stone to reduce the hollow. I'm inclined to believe what the maker says and not what someone on a forum says.

Offline lwoirhaye

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Re: I have never seen chisels like these.
« Reply #7 on: September 18, 2017, 05:25 PM »
You sure got a way with people, bruh.

To put it in standard English, "you are a jerk".  I saw your reactivity in another thread but it wasn't directed at me so I ignored it. Now I see it's a pattern.  Even if you think I am wrong, your response was rude.

I won't be engaging with your "friendly" chats in the future.
« Last Edit: September 18, 2017, 07:52 PM by lwoirhaye »

Offline Lemwise

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Re: I have never seen chisels like these.
« Reply #8 on: September 19, 2017, 03:02 AM »
That last sentence probably wasn't necessary. But you know what, this is just a forum. Don't get so upset over what someone you have never met and never will meet says online. I'm just a bunch of letters on your screen.

Offline HarveyWildes

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Re: I have never seen chisels like these.
« Reply #9 on: September 19, 2017, 01:30 PM »
At just under $100, it seems like a gimmick
A $100 chisel is high end in my world.
And in mine as well, if it performs to its price.  If it doesn't perform well, it's overpriced but not high end.

But that wasn't my point.  A router bit that has braised carbide edges generally goes for less than a router bit with replaceable carbide edges.  Since $100 isn't unusual for a Japanese chisel, I was sort of expecting that a chisel with a replaceable blade would run $150-$200.

All that said, if anyone gets hold of one of these chisels and can report on how it performs under light use and then under heavy use, I'd be interested.

Offline Lemwise

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Re: I have never seen chisels like these.
« Reply #10 on: September 19, 2017, 02:30 PM »
All that said, if anyone gets hold of one of these chisels and can report on how it performs under light use and then under heavy use, I'd be interested.

I seriously doubt you will ever see these chisels outside of Japan. They look like an item that the Japanese only sell in Japan.
« Last Edit: September 19, 2017, 04:18 PM by Lemwise »

Offline Rip Van Winkle

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Re: I have never seen chisels like these.
« Reply #11 on: September 20, 2017, 08:55 AM »
At just under $100, it seems like a gimmick
A $100 chisel is high end in my world.
And in mine as well, if it performs to its price.  If it doesn't perform well, it's overpriced but not high end.

But that wasn't my point.  A router bit that has braised carbide edges generally goes for less than a router bit with replaceable carbide edges.  Since $100 isn't unusual for a Japanese chisel, I was sort of expecting that a chisel with a replaceable blade would run $150-$200.

All that said, if anyone gets hold of one of these chisels and can report on how it performs under light use and then under heavy use, I'd be interested.


There are japanese hand planes that use replaceable cutters like the swiss Rali brand planes, although the planes are made in the "traditional" japanese style, with a body made from a block of wood, and an iron or steel blade body that holds the replaceable cutter, but that still needs to be tapped in like on a traditional japanese plane. I believe there are at least two different brands as well with different cutter systems.

The replaceable japanese planes may be made for hobbyists who do not have a proper set of sharpening stones yet or they may be made as an option for craftsman who do not want to carry around a full set of sharpening supplies for quick jobs. Like the Swiss Rali planes they may also be used for rough work, or trimming hard or difficult material like laminates, or reclaimed wood that might otherwise damage a high quality blade. I believe the cost of the replaceable blade japanese planes is actually lower than that of most traditional japanese planes except the lowest cost ones.

Those chisels might be made for laminates, or they might be manufactured for non traditional japanese woods such as high silicate exotics like purple heart or other ultra hard South American lumbers.

If you knew who manufactured the chisels you might be able to find them on Rakuten, or from one of the traditional japanese carpentry tool exporters.

Offline Lemwise

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Re: I have never seen chisels like these.
« Reply #12 on: September 20, 2017, 01:39 PM »
So I received the 5 piece Fujikawa set today and they're going back. I'm so very disappointed with the overall quality of these chisels. All of the heads on the smaller chisels bend to the left, none of the bevels are square, the finish on the small chisels looks like it was done by a chimp and the lamination on the 30mm chisel is just awful. How the heck did this blade get approved?

So here's what I'm going to do now. Dictum in Germany sells chisels made by Yoshiro Ikeda, that's the same blacksmith who makes the famous Kunikei chisels. They're basically the same as the Kunikei chisels but these don't have the black ferrule and hoop. They cost more so I'm just going to take my time and buy one every month for the next 5 months.
« Last Edit: September 20, 2017, 02:38 PM by Lemwise »

Offline rst

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Re: I have never seen chisels like these.
« Reply #13 on: September 20, 2017, 06:18 PM »
Cheez Lemwise, I just bought the same five piece set from Japan Woodworker (Woodcraft) and mine were beautiful.  I ran mine over my DMT Xtra Xtra Fine (8000) and they were perfect.  You got screwed.

Online Peter Halle

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Re: I have never seen chisels like these.
« Reply #14 on: September 20, 2017, 06:22 PM »
Maybe with pricing advantages here in the US it might be worth investigating if a friend to friend transaction would be beneficial?

Peter
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Offline Bert Vanderveen

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Re: I have never seen chisels like these.
« Reply #15 on: September 21, 2017, 07:38 AM »
Maybe with pricing advantages here in the US it might be worth investigating if a friend to friend transaction would be beneficial?

Peter

Well, lately (at least that is my experience) the Dutch border inspectors are really hitting US imports with taxes and duties — even ones by persons, not firms. Most of the time any savings that apply are wiped out by that, and there is also a lot of hassle involved (shipments getting hold over for quite a long time, in some instances; the postman wants to be paid in cash, etc.).
Way better to have friends that travel and can 'smuggle' the stuff for you.
Cheers, Bert Vanderveen

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Offline Lemwise

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Re: I have never seen chisels like these.
« Reply #16 on: September 21, 2017, 12:15 PM »
The difference between this Fujikawa set and the 24mm Matsumura chisel I have is night and day. The Matsumura has a clean, tidy lamination line and the finish of the blade and neck is very fine with clean lines and no coarse grinding marks. You can clearly see he paid a lot of attention to the details.The price is also very good so I think I'm just going to order the 5 piece Matsumura set instead of ordering Kunikeis over several months. The edge is still a bit chippy from the hardening process but I think that will stop after sharpening it a few more times.

Offline derekcohen

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Re: I have never seen chisels like these.
« Reply #17 on: September 21, 2017, 09:03 PM »
Did you contact Stu at Tools from Japan, or consider the Koyamaichi I recommended?

In Stu you are getting a recommendation from someone who is an expert on the subject, and you can trust you will get value for money (no matter how much you spend).

Regards from Perth

Derek

Offline Lemwise

  • Posts: 260
Re: I have never seen chisels like these.
« Reply #18 on: September 22, 2017, 07:27 AM »
I have not considered the Koyamaichi chisels because of the simple fact that Dutch border inspectors are not only hitting US imports but imports from Japan too (and many other countries as well). They're busy little bees. The shipping + taxes makes them too expensive.

Without me knowing it my girlfriend asked my lead shipwright what size chisel I use the most and she ordered this for me as a present. https://www.dictum.com/en/tools/woodworking-metalworking/chisels/japanese-type/710358/tasai-oire-nomi-chisel-blade-width-30-mm
Luckily he was right and this is the size I use the most  [laughing]


« Last Edit: September 23, 2017, 10:17 AM by Lemwise »

Offline Lemwise

  • Posts: 260
Re: I have never seen chisels like these.
« Reply #19 on: September 24, 2017, 06:49 AM »
So there has been a new development. I know a rather famous knife maker in Japan, Shinichi Watanabe. He lives in Sanjo where a some renowned chisel blacksmiths also live. We chat from time to time and I never thought to ask him about chisel because he's a knife maker, until last night that is. It turns out he personally knows the blacksmiths behind Tasai, Kiyohisa, Funahiro and Kikuhiromaru. He's going to see if he can get me a good deal on 5 blades (I only need the blades). I can turn the handles myself and a buddy has a metal lathe and he can make the ferrules and hoops. This should save me quite some money.

Doing it this way should make it quite difficult for a customs officer to determine the value if they pick out my package for inspection. After all, a chisel blade has no commercial value. It's only the complete product, a chisel, that has commercial value.
« Last Edit: September 24, 2017, 05:00 PM by Lemwise »

Offline derekcohen

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Re: I have never seen chisels like these.
« Reply #20 on: September 24, 2017, 09:04 PM »
Good luck with Kiyohisa. I have a set of slicks .... which are just superb! However they were a 3 year wait when I bought them about 10 years ago. Currently I understand the wait time is 6 years or more for any of his chisels.





Incidentally, do you know how a Japanese chisel handle is fitted? It is a combined tang and socket. Don't forget that the chisel also needs a hoop. There is quite a bit of work involved in handling the chisels from scratch. I recommend that either you get the chisels with fitted handles, or purchase a cheap Japanese chisel to pull apart for practice.

Regards from Perth

Derek

Offline Lemwise

  • Posts: 260
Re: I have never seen chisels like these.
« Reply #21 on: September 25, 2017, 11:29 AM »
Good luck with Kiyohisa.
I didn't say I'm getting Kiyohisa blades. I said Watanabe is going so to see if he can get me a good deal on 5 blades. Any of the blades made by the blacksmiths Watanabe knows is fine by me.

Quote
Incidentally, do you know how a Japanese chisel handle is fitted? It is a combined tang and socket. Don't forget that the chisel also needs a hoop. There is quite a bit of work involved in handling the chisels from scratch. I recommend that either you get the chisels with fitted handles, or purchase a cheap Japanese chisel to pull apart for practice.
Yes, I know it's socket and tang construction. I'm going to turn the handles myself and a buddy is going to make the ferrules and hoops on his metal lathe. It shouldn't be that much work if we're precise in our measurements. It's not rocket science, just a simple chisel.

Offline Lemwise

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Re: I have never seen chisels like these.
« Reply #22 on: September 29, 2017, 03:57 PM »
This morning I got an e-mail from Shinichi Watanabe because he found some old blades for me if I can afford them. The sizes are 9, 12, 15, 21 and 24mm made from White #1 steel and the brand is Masanari. He told me these blades were made in the late 70's and that they have age hardened. I had no idea steel could become harder by aging but Watanabe tells me this is most certainly the case. Given his reputation and knowledge of steel I don't doubt what he tells me. Anyway, he also told me that the hardness is of Kiyotada level (apparently Kiyotada made ridiculously hard blades) and that blades this hard and tenacious are no longer made. The price is a bit steep though so I have to think it over a bit. I'm probably going to buy them because this is a once in a life time opportunity.

Offline Lemwise

  • Posts: 260
Re: I have never seen chisels like these.
« Reply #23 on: October 06, 2017, 07:25 AM »
.
« Last Edit: October 06, 2017, 11:29 AM by Lemwise »

Re: I have never seen chisels like these.
« Reply #24 on: October 10, 2017, 05:28 PM »
This morning I got an e-mail from Shinichi Watanabe because he found some old blades for me if I can afford them. The sizes are 9, 12, 15, 21 and 24mm made from White #1 steel and the brand is Masanari. He told me these blades were made in the late 70's and that they have age hardened. I had no idea steel could become harder by aging but Watanabe tells me this is most certainly the case. Given his reputation and knowledge of steel I don't doubt what he tells me. Anyway, he also told me that the hardness is of Kiyotada level (apparently Kiyotada made ridiculously hard blades) and that blades this hard and tenacious are no longer made. The price is a bit steep though so I have to think it over a bit. I'm probably going to buy them because this is a once in a life time opportunity.

I have some older high quality steel chisels that probably have age hardened. They still sharpen very well but are a little more tedious to resharpen. Swedish E A Berg Steel chisels.  I don't think there is any particular value to chisels being that hard. For the most part the edges become brittle and when you get a nick in the edge it only takes more work to resharpen it.

Modern "hard" chisels are usually crap.

Personally I don't buy into the whole "high end - high priced chisel circuit". I have a few supposedly great Jap chisels and some are quite good but I still haven't found a single one that is _better_ than my old vintage E A Berg Steel chisels, they sharpen beautifully, hold their edge and are easy to resharpen. Can't ever think I need "better" and they pop every now and then for a song on the second hand market. I  have about twenty at the moment and they will last me throughout my professional life.

The chisels in the start of the thread is not something that would interest me. Overworked design - for what purpose? A "simple" chisel can be beautiful but part of it lies in the quality of cut and steel.

I paid about the same for the whole lot of my high quality steel chisels as two high end Jap chisels would cost and I wouldn't trade a single one of them for a Jap chisel. Not knocking the Jap chisels though - but I don't find them special nor very cost effective. The set posted earlier in the thread sure look nice though! 

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