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Thread: Identify this Mystery Deba of Doom?

  1. #1

    Identify this Mystery Deba of Doom?

    Well, not really 'of Doom' - but who can resist such a snappy, alliterative title....

    This small Deba dates from the late '40's or early '50's - part of a set made for a woman who was about 4' 10" tall and maybe 95 pounds dripping wet - so all of the knives are somewhat undersized, but they seem well-made, all have fitted Sayas, and have seen many years of hard service.

    One unusual feature on all four knives is the inset bolster and pinned tang - which I've not seen on any recent knives. Yeah the recessed bolster does have a smooth, sleek, 'aerodynamic' look, but it has to be seriously weak, as three of the handles show repaired cracks.

    The set consists of four knives, a 155mm Deba, a 210mm Yanagiba, a 180mm Nakiri, and a 220mm Suminagashi - my furshlugginer camera died while shooting the Deba, but I'll post more pictures to this thread when it returns.

    All of the blades are signed, so if someone on the board can read cursive Kanji, or perhaps hirigana script, maybe their origin can be found - we think that they may have been purchased through the Kintetsu Department store in Osaka, but that's a guess since we know the family had an account there.

    Here's a close up of the maker's signature in a vertical orientation:

    Which may help to read the letters - and no, I've not a clue as to why these pictures are coming out so blessedly small - mutter, mutter, mutter....

    Any help would be much appreciated.



  2. #2

    ecchef's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    In the Village.
    Need better pics.....
    Though I could not caution all I still might warn a few; Don't raise your hand to raise no flag atop no ship of fools. - Robert Hunter

  3. #3
    Senior Member Crothcipt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    wyoming, closer to nowhere than somewhere.
    lol maybe the pics are huge but the knife being so small is keeping the pics small.

    (I hope that makes sense.)
    Chewie's the man.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by ecchef View Post
    Need better pics.....
    Yes, I know the tiny pictures suck, but for some reason - I assume as an anti-spam measure - I can't attach pictures, and using the in-line URL reference limits them to a very small size.

    Sent a note to the site admins requesting edit & attachment rights - hopefully the post will look better soon.



  5. #5
    Senior Member Lucretia's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Isle of Lucy
    You need to deselect the box that says "Retrieve remote file and reference locally". Otherwise your pictures will be tiny.
    Now is not the time to bother me. And it's always now. Wiley Miller

  6. #6

  7. #7
    Hmmm - I may have borked my Picassa albums, so back to photobucket and try these:

    Rght side of Deba:

    Left side of Deba:

    Spine of Deba:

    There - these should be a <bit> better, and JBroida was kind enough to download the full-sized version of the Knife's signature in his post - thanks JB...

    This was stupidly difficult, but now there should be enough detail for someone to offer an identification.



  8. #8
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    The pinned tang is supposed to be a traditional feature of wa handled knives. My Tadatsuna gyuto has a pinned handle, but I don't recall seeing it on any other production knives (and to be fair, I don't see, collect or handle traditional J-knife shapes, so my scope is pretty limited)

    Quote Originally Posted by Dr_Jim View Post
    One unusual feature on all four knives is the inset bolster and pinned tang - which I've not seen on any recent knives....

  9. #9

    Join Date
    May 2012
    Right, I can tell you this: the kanji is 正宗二十三代 總廣作 and it would be read as 'seisounijyuusanndai soukousaku'. I think the first bit, 正宗二十三代, can mean that it's been produced for 23 generations.

    Are you sure it's only around 50 years old? Hehe..

  10. #10
    much more awesomer
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    That's a pretty robust-looking deba. Nice shape, if you ask me! [I know nothing]

    Picasaweb defaults to 144 pixels; you just have to use the dropdown to choose a different size in the link, or right-click on the picture itself and copy the URL directly.
    Unskilled flunky

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