Thanks @KenHash. I found a thread about this knife back from 2012. People loved or hated it. It was always on sale at EE. I picked it up off eBay for $100. Skd11 steel. If it ain’t the greatest. I’ll just fix it up and get it to someone as their starter knife.With Kanji there can be multiple ways of reading. White Plum 白梅 is "normally" read "Hakubai". But how it is read is entirely up to the writer/maker, so in this case they chose the "ShiraUme" reading. Which, oddly, is apparent only if you read their English website. lol
Don't know much about the Sakon lines but they do offer a Powder Steel SRS15 series Ryuga 龍雅 which has always interested me. But never came across anyone with experience using them.
SKD and sld are quite different. I much prefer SKD feel on the stones as opposed to sld. SKD equivalent would be A2.Sounds like a nice buy. Never tried SKD11 but I have been told it's the same as SLD which is equivalent to D2. A steel I only have on a Benchmade folder, so no real direct experience.
SKD11 = SLD = D2 and SKD12 = A2 as far as I remember. I have a similar knife from sakon; feels a bit softer than my yoshikane damascus SLD on the stones. The sakon stains much more readily. Can't say much about edge retention since I'm a home cook.SKD and sld are quite different. I much prefer SKD feel on the stones as opposed to sld. SKD equivalent would be A2.