Jiro Tsuchime Wa Petty 150mm Taihei Tagayasan Handle (#315)
Jiro Nakagawa-san (@jiro2310 on Instagram) is a true one-man shokunin that lives alone in the countryside. He sought out skilled craftsmen around Japan including a master sword polisher to learn the techniques of manipulating traditional materials, and have practiced the art of calligraphy for over 20 years to enhance his hand chiseling/engraving. His unique skill sets, humility, and willingness to improve all of his domains as a craftsman make all Jiro forged items worth treasuring for years to come. We are honoured to carry his masterpieces, and cannot wait to see what amazing work he will be putting out in the future.
Jiro’s blades have several unique qualities about them. Start by looking at the blade, each completed with a rustic kurouchi and kasumi finish. Each knife is imbued with a finely finished edge, the result of hand sharpening on Japanese natural stones. All of his White #1 carbon steel knives are water quenched to bolster the hardness in the blade.
As your gaze turns to the Wa-handle, note that they are made from a beautiful dark wood known as Tagayasan (or more generically, ironwood), crafted by Tokyo-based handlemaker Taihei. The name stems from the exceptional hardness, durability and corrosion resistance of the wood, which is commonly used for other purposes such as wooden swords. (Jiro’s blades do have some extra heel height and as a result, are heavier for their size).
Finally, the thick tang and neck are a trademark of Jiro-forged blades, done to provide even weight distribution when in use. The thick tang and neck also serve as proof of Jiro’s hand lamination, rather than the pre-laminated blanks that most smiths use for convenience.
Note: It is important to be careful when working with the tip of the knife, as Jiro prefers to taper his blades very thinly.
As a one-man operation, the number of knives he can produce at a time is very limited and thus, each individual blade we receive from him is revered. One will not easily forget a Jiro blade after seeing one and feeling its presence. Each knife encapsulates Jiro’s craftsman soul and it is impossible not to be moved by one of these. Knife purists looking for a wholly unique blade with ultimate sharpness and fantastic performance, look no further than Jiro-san’s work.
A petty (utility) knife probably gets used most often after your all-purpose knives. It can be used to cut small fruits, vegetables, and even some smaller cuts of meats (and many many more things, like cutting through plastic wrapping from a grocery trip!) If you have one, for a quick meal for two, you may just get it done without a chef's knife.
Brand: Jiro 次郎
Blacksmith: Jiro Nakagawa 中川 次郎
Producing Area: Nagano/ Japan
Steel: Yasuki White (Shirogami) #1, Soft Iron Clad
Handle: Taihei Tagayasan & Buffalo Horn Ferrule Octagonal
Total Length: 283mm
Edge Length: 145mm
Handle to Tip Length: 161mm
Blade Height: 42mm
Handle Length: 122mm
Hand Orientation: Ambidextrous
Date of manufacture: November 2021