Jon thanks for the education. This is the type of information I was looking for, now i just need to make a decision! If I go KS on the Yanagiba and Deba then it will be longer before I can get enough funds for the Usuba. Are there other manufacturers I should consider as a better value? (You can PM me if required by forum rules. I don't mean to get anyone in trouble) I looked at Tanaka but have heard his steel is very reactive and KC recommended either Masamoto or Aritsugu for a Usuba as their QAQC is high and will help guarantee a straight edge. The long and short is that I am leaning towards Masamoto as they tend to be in stock, have high quality and can be sold fairly easily if I choose to upgrade in the future.
I am really intrigued by the Usuba especially the off the board work. I have a Watanabe Nakiri and can do half decent katsura muki on cucumbers though the edge is not as straight as a usuba. I read on another forum about someone making potato chips practicing the horizontal under the finger slice. Is this a common technique? How do you do it without shaving a finger? Is it like slicing fish with a yanagiba only horizontal instead of angled? What other techniques are unique to the usuba? (Sounds like I might have to start a new thread)
I told myself my knife buying was complete...and although I am sticking to this, the only other knife I will buy is going to be a yanagi...as single-bevels have eluded me all of this time.
Taking the advice of KC, I also planned to get a KK or KS (although I love the look of the Gessin Hide that Jon has, but don't want to pay more than $300).
What other 300mm yanagis do people have experience with that are a good buy in the $250-300 range?
The Yoshihiros are supposed to be really good. Jon sells some and so does my japaneeds on ebay.