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Uneven finish on Moritaka 210mm Wa-Gyuto

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

 

Hi all,

 

I've been a regular reader of this forum for a few months now, but this is my first post. Thanks to everyone for making this site such a great resource!

 

A few weeks ago, I purchased my first hand-made Japanese kitchen knife, a Moritaka 210mm Wa-Gyuto, from their Aogami #2 series. I'm absolutely in love with it, and have had a great time becoming familiar with the in-and-outs of hand-made Japanese carbon knives.

 

However, I have a question regarding the finish on the blade.

 

Previous to owning this knife, I used (and still use) a couple decent stainless knives (a santoku and a yanagiba), and had been teaching myself to sharpen them on water stones. I've become fairly proficient at it (a sprinkling of blood and sweat later...), but have had a hard time achieving a uniform finish on this Moritaka.

 

I'm not sure whether this is normal and just a result of the hand-finished blade, or whether it's due to something I'm doing wrong. I can achieve a mirror-like finish on some of the blade, but there are patches of it that seem to retain a rougher (or at least, more matte) finish than others. I've tried different finger positions/pressure points, angles, etc., but can't seem to figure it out. I've also ensured that my stones are flat by truing them with a DMT DiaSharp 220x plate, but seem to be getting the same results.

 

I intend to let a patina form on the blade, so I'm not totally concerned with maintaining a uniform level of polish for its own sake; I simply wonder if this might indicate something negative in any way (improper sharpening, uneven blade surface, etc).

 

Just to clarify: I'm not referring to the kurouchi finish, which I'm not interested in removing; the area in question shows itself intermittently from near where the kurouchi finish ends and extends almost all the way to the edge. I've taken an extreme closeup of a section in the final photo to demonstrate the two different finishes that seem to be present.

 

Photos are attached. Any help would be greatly appreciated!

 

cole-moritaka-gyuto-210mm-finish1.jpg

 

cole-moritaka-gyuto-210mm-finish2.jpg

 

cole-moritaka-gyuto-210mm-finish3.jpg

post #2 of 9

the moritaka is a clad knife... its one harder core steel sandwiched between two layers of softer steel... the misty part you see that wont polish (between the beginning of the kurouchi and about 1/2 way or 3/4 of the way down to the edge is the softer steel cladding.

 

Its should have contrast like this:

485218_10150727659468860_369479678859_9583757_1303464240_n.jpg

post #3 of 9
Thread Starter 

Hot damn — this is the second time Mr. Broida's helped me out with questions on this knife! Haha.

 

Thanks a lot for the response, Jon. That makes sense to me.

 

So, does that mean the kurouchi is actually sitting on a layer of the harder (more polished) steel? I ask because at the edge of the kurouchi (just before you start to see the misty, softer layer), you can see a small patch of more highly polished steel (as is seen on the edge of the blade).

 

Apologies in advance if any of this doesn't make sense. Ah, the joys of learning about carbon knives… ;)

post #4 of 9

nah... the kurouchi is on the softer steel... its just that the ridge where the kurouchi begins tends to get more pressure in sharpening so it can sometimes appear more polished.  Try lighter pressure while sharpening (and more mud if thats possible with your stone)... it should help give you a better finish.  What kind of stones/sharpening set up are you using?

post #5 of 9
Thread Starter 

Hmmm, gotcha! Will try that out.

 

Currently using a King combi-stone — 1000x and 4000x. I just bought a DMT DiaSharp 220x to keep them nice and flat (on the advice of one of your videos, actually…!). Perhaps different stones would be better suited to the Moritaka?

post #6 of 9

those stones should be perfectly fine

post #7 of 9
Thread Starter 

Great to know. Thanks again!

post #8 of 9

no prob

post #9 of 9
Thread Starter 

Well, it seems, with an hour or two of re-working the blade on the stones, I was able to create a more evenly gradated finish, and remove a small chip that Dave (DuckFat) was kind enough to point out to me. I even put on a microbevel afterwards, to hopefully avoid any chipping in the future. redface.gif

 

Thanks, all!

 

cole-moritaka-after1.jpg

 

cole-moritaka-after2.jpg

 

cole-moritaka-after3.jpg

(Sorry for the distortion on this shot… shooting through a loupe isn't the most technically pleasing for close-ups… haha)

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