Musashi Hamono who are they?

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4rgedCarbon

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Has anyone heard of Musashi Hamono? Are they some sketch Chinese knockoff brand trying to pretend they are Japanese?


I found them on insta and they have been trying to sell me knives, but dont seem to tell me anything about the actually Blacksmiths they are working with???
 

KenHash

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No idea who they are but;
ーAddress is Musashi Hamono, 3-1-1 Negishi, Daitou-Ku, Tokyo 110-0003
- They have Japanese web presence,
- They look like they ship from Japan because domestic shipping time is pretty quick.
-Looked through their products all looked Made in Japan. Some of their KU knives looked like Tosa stuff.
- How they got those wild Higos from Kanekoma is a mystery, Had no idea they were making them in VG10.
Mine are like 30 years old and in SK5 and Aogami. Maybe I just haven't been keeping up with the times.
"Musashi" was/is a Miki brand name that competed with Kanekoma. But no idea if any connection to this.
 

4rgedCarbon

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They told me that they are working with Yamawaki san?? I thought this could be Yamawaki Cutlery Co from Sakai, but not sure. They said they would send me some samples and I dont think they are up to scratch I could send them back free of charge. So I might give them a go.
 
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Looks similar to ohishi or possibly tadafusa. As far as I know the smiths that make these knives sell them without stamps and they get labeled with some meaningless retailer name. Probably not bad, but not great either.
 

Reyem

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Hey, I just joined the forum because I ordered at Musashi Hamono and received two knives today. I actually don't know much about knives and these are the first Made in Japan ones I bought, so maybe you can tell me something about how good/bad they are from my photos. If you need a detail shot of something let me know.

I'm pretty happy with the kurouchi tsuchime one (1st), even if the spine looks a bit rough with the layers showing. It weighs 131g. Came pretty sharp, no issues on a newspaper test, and I can most probably get more out of it, but haven't tried yet.

The 2nd cheaper one has a gap/crack in the handle already and basically doesn't have an edge on it, so it will be my first knife for which I have to put an edge on from almost nothing. It's not blunt, but you can barely see the edge apart from the heel, and the tip is not really sharp either. Would be fine if it said that it comes like that I guess. I also don't have any coarse stones yet, so I hope it won't be a problem to sharpen on a 1000 grit.

Oh, and the handles both have a pretty unpleasant smell that transfers to your hands.

So here's the first ones photos (145€ with first-time-order discount):
SANTOKU STAINLESS CLAD AOGAMI-SUPER KUROUCHI TSUCHIME ROSEWOOD HANDLE 165MM

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And then the second one for 90€:
SANTOKU STAINLESS CLAD AOGAMI-SUPER WESTERN HANDLE 165MM
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Let me know what you think of those.
 

JayS20

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Did you have to pay tax and custom duties? Or did it just get through?
 

mpier

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I would agree with the others about the handle, return it. Also in my personal experience I’ve never bought a knife were the spine looks like that I would probably return both of them, but that’s just my opinion I don’t buy hammered knives so I really don’t know if that is normal.
 

Reyem

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Alright, I'll tell the seller I want to return the one with the cracked handle. Wishme luck because...

The handle crack isn't acceptable. I hope you've paid by PayPal. Ask the seller to send you another one.
...sadly I paid with credit card. I almost never buy things from places I don't know and didn't think about it. Next time 😅

Did you have to pay tax and custom duties? Or did it just get through?
It got through!
 

Reyem

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Update on the situation with the cracked handle: They told me that this is the first time they've had this issue and that they're sorry that I'm not happy with it. The company policy however doesn't allow returns for this and deemed it a minor issue (in Japan shops really do not have to take returns... but I guess most of you know that). After a bit of back-and-forth, however, they offered me a 95% discount on a similarly priced knife. I personally thought this was a very fair offer and I don't even have to return the knife. So now I'm actually receiving a 3rd knife from them. And they asked me to give them an update on the handle after a few months if it gets any worse.

I've experienced such a thing in Japan before though -- they struggle to find a solution if something deviates from normal procedure. But give them some time and they might figure something out.

I had a nice chat with them afterwards and they told me they have taken on e-commerce only a few months ago, due to Covid as they apparently also closed their local shop during the pandemic.
 

FishmanDE

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Update on the situation with the cracked handle: They told me that this is the first time they've had this issue and that they're sorry that I'm not happy with it. The company policy however doesn't allow returns for this and deemed it a minor issue (in Japan shops really do not have to take returns... but I guess most of you know that). After a bit of back-and-forth, however, they offered me a 95% discount on a similarly priced knife. I personally thought this was a very fair offer and I don't even have to return the knife. So now I'm actually receiving a 3rd knife from them. And they asked me to give them an update on the handle after a few months if it gets any worse.

I've experienced such a thing in Japan before though -- they struggle to find a solution if something deviates from normal procedure. But give them some time and they might figure something out.

I had a nice chat with them afterwards and they told me they have taken on e-commerce only a few months ago, due to Covid as they apparently also closed their local shop during the pandemic.

Has there been any update on this?
 

Reyem

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Has there been any update on this?
Yea, I've received their third knife within a week after I posted, this time through Japan Post/EMS. I have given the third knife (Santoku VG-10 Damascus Western Handle 170mm H) away as a present and didn't take photos, but regarding fit and finish out of the box it was the best of the 3. It was really sharp, even though you could barely see an edge, so they basically leave it up to you how you want to sharpen it. I sharpened it at a ~15° angle before I gave it away and actually didn't reach the sharpness it came out of the box, but probably it came sharpened a bit steeper, or my sharpening skills are still lacking... still got plenty sharp ;) The handle, while not full tang, also had a much nicer finish than the Tosa one with western style handle. The blade is also thinner. The spine of the VG-10 was already slightly rounded, but still fairly uncomfortable, so I rounded it some more.

The first two Aogami Super knives were both made in Tosa, while third VG-10 one I got was made in Echizen City in Fukui prefecture. The Tosa ones were as I said bit rougher regarding fit and finish.

I think they are, as Danzo guessed, not great, but still good. Since you can't really get any handmade knives under $100 I think their rougher fit & finish is acceptable for the price (the cracked handle obviously was not though). But since I don't have much experience with handmade knives I can't really compare them to others, so don't take my word for it.

I think you can give them a shot, but you should be willing to give them a little sandpaper treatment around choil/spine. Especially the ones made in Tosa.

PS: I also mirror-polished the one that came with the cracked handle to make it look a bit nicer. I actually kept some of the deep original grinding scratches on purpose because I liked the way it looked. The chisel engraving looks much better now, too, because it wasn't flat before.
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Hmm I’ve been looking at the Tosa blue steel sujihiki, I’m sure the grind isn’t the best at this price point but now I’m developing some skill at regrinding and also know a local knifemaker. And I do love Tosa forged blue steel. I haven’t spent that little on a knife in a bit but the last cheap knife I bought I actually was really happy with.
 

Xunzi

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Any more info on this company? Are they legit? Website is slick (if that's good or bad, not sure) but there's no info on brands/blacksmiths on their website...
 

JayS20

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Oh come one.
The video was ironic and the hair cutting was a nice touch/joke
 

Xunzi

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I think it's understood that the hair cutting is ironic but the entire thing feels a bit contrived. Either way, presentation apart, they have some interesting knives but not a lot of information about source. Would be good to hear any testimonials.
 
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