View Full Version : Damascus and patina: How they doin'?

05-14-2012, 09:45 AM
I haven't seen much in this forum on how carbon damascus knives appear after steady use, and I thought a thread along those lines would be useful. I'm especially interested in the way subtler patterns fare and have attached a photo of a Shigefusa side-by-side with a mustard finished Rader, the latter not damascus of course but an example of one solution to dealing with patina and the unevenness with which it forms. Do craftsmen ever consider the way the two interact or do they view the knife more as a blank canvas with usage and appearance out of their hands and out of their concern?



05-14-2012, 01:26 PM
Good question, it's one that I've asked as well. Jim started a very popular patina thread on here with pictures of all different kinds of carbon steels and patinas, including damascus (starts here: http://www.kitchenknifeforums.com/showthread.php/299-My-favorite-color-is-BLUE!-A-patina-thread?highlight=blue+patina).

I've had a couple damascus knives etched by Mr. Rader and he achieves a very dark, contrasty, and even finish. I've found that the etched surface is less reactive and seems to support a more even an subltle patina development without obscuring the underlying pattern.
Kitaji Shig (over a feather pattern suji from Catchside):

Macro of my Rader Gyuto: despite months of use, you can see that almost no patina has formed;

Un-etched Catchside Suji, the pattern was always very subtle and fine, but you can see that a heavy patina kind of obscures parts of it:

05-14-2012, 03:35 PM
Great thread! Wish I'd been on this site a year ago to see it. Does anyone have an update?

Pensacola Tiger
05-14-2012, 03:45 PM
Michael Rader 4" damascus parer

June 2011 (BNIB)


May 2012



05-14-2012, 03:50 PM

I think that parer needs a new home. I think Norway is a good spot. Send it to me, and Ill send one back :)