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Thread: Saya Pin and Hole

  1. #11
    I have a question that has been looming in my mind.... One of my first serious knives I purchassed was a masamoto KA 270mm yanagiba from Korin and the Saya came with had a very small hole in place where the "normal" pin hole would go... Why do they do this? Is is so that you create your own pin?


  2. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by BurkeCutlery View Post
    I use guitar bridge pins. I find them cheaper, easier to replace, and way more reliable than saya pins. Not traditional at all though.
    That's a good idea!

  3. #13
    or you can just grab a leftover piece of hardwood and a pocket knife and make your own.

  4. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by Don Nguyen View Post
    How should it be done properly?

    What size is the hole normally drilled? Does the pin taper? What else is there to know?

    Thanks. Sincerely,

    Put your knife on top of the saya, so that the handle is flush against saya side's edge. Mark where you want your pin hole. I typically drill it flush against the heel, but you might want to give yourself a little room for error.

    If you make your own sayas, it makes sense to drill a pin hole on the cavity side before gluing, and then transfer it to the other side.

    Most Japanese sayas are without distal taper, so you don't need to worry leveling it when drilling a hole.

    Holes on Japanese sayas vary, Masamoto can ship with a tiny pin hole, while Nenohi are close to 4.5-5mm.

    I find best hole size for me to be about 4mm, not too big and not too small. Bamboo skewers are about 4.5mm, so should you need a source of cheap pins, those could be had in abundance.

    I make pins myself, so I normally shape them to fit 4mm hole. I do taper my pins.


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  5. #15
    Thanks for all the help everyone!

    The bridge pins work fantastic. I shortened them just slightly, but enough to account for the taper.

    I think it looks pretty good too. Certainly better than one I would make.

  6. #16
    Looks very nice.

    It certainly is a quick fix!

  7. #17
    Nice! You can thank Son for bringing me the enlightened idea. Can't believe it was under my right hand for years and I had to find it on a phone call from across the country!

    You can really squeeze them in there too, if the knife is going to get jostled around, like for travel--just push it in until you have to press it against the counter to get it to pop out.

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