Right, Dave didn't mean that. But Mr Tanaka in Kyoto, apparently, has someone who claims to be his international distributor, perhaps because they did make some sort of agreement together. Anyway, I'm not sure if Tanaka is aware the name of his shop is used in the way it is around the internet.
Originally Posted by maxim
I saw Tanaka stamping his stones himself, but I believe he has the authority to do so as he is or has been the president of the Kyoto toishi association (not sure of the official name). No, he doesn't stamp anything 'Tanaka Toishi' and that wouldn't be normal anyway. He just stamps the stones with their proper names, 'Nakayama...' etc. I think the logo Dave posted above was just created to look cool by so-and-so; doesn't seem to help, though, as I don't think many people on this forum or elsewhere know who Tanaka is and, besides, there are many other stone sellers in Kyoto too.
Sorry for the confusion, I did not mean to disparage the reputation of Mr. Tanaka. My reference was to this stamp, and type of thing, seen outside of Japan when someone represents themselves/their products as something that can't be verified and/or compared.
Private labeling of synthetic stones happens and must be looked out for but doing this to naturals is really taking the mick.
As always with natural stone purchasing you MUST know your source - Caveat emptor!
While I'm typing here I'd also like to mention that buying naturals from anyone other than a dealer who uses and understands these stones intimately is something to stay away from. If you buy from a knife store to go type place you take a chance on what you get. Yeah sure you can likely return it (for a re-stocking fee?) but why not give a dealer like Maxim a chance to fill your needs (from the get go) as you'll likely get what you need or close to it straight away. If bottom feeding natural stone dealers continue to be supported there may come a time when the guys like Maksim won't be here for us. Just something to consider....
Good point there, Dave...
I boght a few stone Crome the seller on eBay. I honestly didn't even know what maruka meant at the timeand knew I was taking a risk. They where not horrible stones for under $100 but it really bothered me to find out they are counterfeit. It's like buying a knock off Rolex. It might be a decent watch but it is not what it claims. I would rather it say nothing. I reported two sellers last night for selling these stones on eBay.