I meant to write about the new Tanakas after they were listed on my site. It was about 1am that day I finihsed listing them, got tired so I decided to leave it until the next morning. Then they were all sold that night so it would be kinda strange to write an introduction thread with nothing to sell, also because of the large number of orders, I had to do all the handle installation, sharpening and packing, which means I didn't get a chance until today to sit down and write something about them.
I want to take this chance to explain what is going on with Tanaka, specifically about the supposingly discontinued ginsan line and the blue 2 stainless clad. Address some of your concerns about "missing out".
The Ginsan: K&S exclusive
Yes, the ginsan were officially discontinued because of the steel supply issues, Tanaka was never able to get a reliable supply of ginsan, which seems odd to many. Instead of constantly having to reject his customers, he discontinued the entire line. Of course ginsan material still shows up time-to-time and it was late 2015 that Tanaka-san told me he has secured some ginsan steel. Having forged a close relationship with Tanaka-san, he agreed to allocated the entire lot of material to me, effectively making it K&S exclusive
I didn't announce this back then becasue there is no ETA on these blades, I simply don't know when and how many they will show up, and I don't feel like giving customers any false information. Well finally there are coming
What sort of models?
I asked for a thin grind version and the standard (old) nashiji, and asked for all the common profiles including suji, petty. Again I am not sure when they will come, please don't even bother asking me, the answer from Tanaka-san is always "a little longer" (I am hoping to receive another batch by xmas). Anyway, the Nashiji is here to stay, and the thin grind migaki is something I wanted to try with Tanaka. Convincing him to make something thinner. I see this as an collaboration between Tanaka and K&S, to transform the image of Tanaka being "rustic, cheap, good but rough" to the next level, with better product line, better f&f and a BETTER handle
How many do you have, will I miss out? I am quietly confident that there will be a few hundred blades in total, however they are delivered in batches, with each batch about 20 to 30 blades. Please do put in your email at the "notify me" box on my site so that you can be notified when I add more stock. Alternatively, please follow my Instagram at instagram.com/knivesandstones where I usually show off new arrivals.
The Blue 2 Stainless clad
If it was to pop up by itself instead of showing up alongside the ginsan, I am sure it will be a star as well. Similar story to the KU line, I was told by you that the iron cladding of the damascus blue 2 could be reactive, I did move my ass and ask Tanaka for solutions. Apart from the KU, the stainless clad is another answer. It has a similar grind to the blue 2 damascus. I think the KU and stainless duo solved the reactivirty problem nicely.
All up, K&S is now carrying the B2 damascus, B2 KU and B2 stainless; along with the new Ginsan, R2 Wa, all with the rounded spine, choil and K&S custom handles. I am sure you won't find a better tanaka elsewhere