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This Shigefusa was purchased from 4phantom in May. It was, of course, pristine when received. I have not sharpened it, only cleaned it after use and then carefully and with the grain. So where are these vertical scratches coning from?

And no, I’m not chopping up anything rougher than onions. I see these in other Japanese knives I own but not others.
 
How is it stored

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Maybe you are cutting things that are a bit scratchy? Like celery for example, with hard spots or even tiny stones embedded in them? Organic veggies are from the devil 😈
 
Looks like the top/bottom edge are exposed on the mag strip?

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The leather is raised above the wooden base. I don’t feel anything scratchy. Plus the scratches are on both sides and I always have the side with the insignia facing out.

I have 14 year old damascus and carbon Kramer’s that have some scratches from cleaning — I used to use green cleaning pads per the original care instructions— but that's a different scratch pattern. I do store those in a home made wooden knife holder.

The fact that the scratches are on the lower 1/3 of the knife is consistent with the suggestion it is from chopping/cutting vegetables.
 

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Soft cladding is really easy to scratch. Something like the root end of an onion which often contains dirt and is extremely woody can do this for sure. Garlic bulbs and even the ends of individual cloves are also extremely tough and hard and could do this. If you want to avoid this you can use a less sensitive knife to do the initial breakdown of veg and reserve this one for cleaned and ready product.

My first thought though was that someone in your household might be using your knife to open boxes.
 
Soft cladding is really easy to scratch. Something like the root end of an onion which often contains dirt and is extremely woody can do this for sure. Garlic bulbs and even the ends of individual cloves are also extremely tough and hard and could do this. If you want to avoid this you can use a less sensitive knife to do the initial breakdown of veg and reserve this one for cleaned and ready product.

My first thought though was that someone in your household might be using your knife to open boxes.
I think you and miggus have to be right, it’s just hard vegetables. As to box cutting, my wife and are live by ourselves and she yells at me if I use a cheap stainless knife to cut paper let alone a box. There’s no one at our house who would commit the crime against humanity you speak of, using a Shigefusa for that. C
 
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