Quality Kurouchi finishes

Discussion in 'The Kitchen Knife' started by MrHiggins, Jun 23, 2019.

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  1. Jun 23, 2019 #1

    MrHiggins

    MrHiggins

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    I had two Kochi V2 KUs that I bought from JKI in 2016. I sold one and gave the other away. I miss them. I bought a Kochi 225 gyuto about 6 months ago, but it had a different KU finish. The old ones had more texture and had some large flakes. The newer one was smoother, more uniform. I sold the 225.

    Anyway, I preferred the old Kochi KU. My question is, who is doing the best KU finishes right now (at reasonable price points - I'm taking to you, people, who are going to say that Kato does a nice KU, and for only $2500)? I'm tempted to pick up a Mazaki KU from Knifewear: those look good.
     
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2019
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  2. Jun 23, 2019 #2

    HRC_64

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    Mazaki had the flaked KU, I believe maybe also this was available from Hinoura.
    Keep in mind not evey line sold by a maker will have the same KU finishes,
    so it pays to ask around.
     
  3. Jun 23, 2019 #3

    labor of love

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    ive never owned a hinoura but they look pretty bullet proof to me. Heiji KU is quite thick. If this just a question of style points the Ginrei hammer/KU is the fave of all the stuff ive used.
     
  4. Jun 23, 2019 #4

    Gregmega

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    That sweet 225 is still here hanging out if you miss it, my man. I made a friction fit shou sugi ban saya for it as well . It’s such a great knife. Lmk. I have so many damn knives that she doesn’t get as much attention as she deserves.....
    camphoto_1903590565.jpg
     
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2019
  5. Jun 23, 2019 #5

    CiderBear

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    That's a sweet looking saya! I've signed up for the stock alert of pretty much every Kochi there is lol. If MrHiggins doesn't need the knife back, ;););)
     
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2019
  6. Jun 23, 2019 #6

    Gregmega

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    Also:

    IMG_1561257779.180521.jpg camphoto_1290326580.jpg

    These Tsukasa I picked up have the best ku I can really remember.
     
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  7. Jun 23, 2019 #7

    MrHiggins

    MrHiggins

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    Mi casa es tsukasa, buddy!
     
  8. Jun 23, 2019 #8

    Gregmega

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    Hooo hhhhhhaaaaaahahahahaha that is too good man
     
  9. Jun 23, 2019 #9
    Munetoshi has really nice KU as does Hinoura in white 2 from cleancut (they have 2 different KU finishes, one smooth and one gritty)
     
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  10. Jun 23, 2019 #10

    rickbern

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    Thought I'd show a picture of my Kochi (v2) 240 with my Munetoshi petty.

    I think the Kochi finish (mine is maybe a year and a half old) is much more refined.

    Rick kochiMunetoshi.jpg

    ps-click the picture for full size/more detail
     
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2019
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  11. Jun 23, 2019 #11

    CiderBear

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    I read that kurouchi finish would wear off eventually. Does anyone have a picture of a completely worn off finish? Are there more resilient KU finish than others?
     
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  12. Jun 23, 2019 #12

    Ochazuke

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    I’ve got one! I’ll post it when I get home from work today!
     
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  13. Jun 23, 2019 #13
    Any kurouchi finish will wear off if you rub the knife with a scitchbrite. Some hold worse (Takeda), others better, but all will come off eventually. In home use and gentle hand washing a good ku will last years. I sold my Kochi (Mine was from about 3 or 4 years back) to a pro chef - pretty much intact after less than a year of use. 2 weeks later ku was gone :)
     
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  14. Jun 23, 2019 #14

    CiderBear

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    The finish wearing off so fast is ptobably the main reason why I'll never consider getting a Takeda. All the pictures of used Takedas I've seen are kind of gross :confused:

    Do tsuchime patterns help a kurouchi finish hold longer?
     
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  15. Jun 23, 2019 #15

    Gregmega

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    Through heavy use it’ll eventually lighten up, but I’ve gotta say- anyone using a scotch pad to clean their knives is not someone you want advice from. It’s basically like washing your knife with low grit sand paper every time you use it. I wouldn’t use a scotch pad on any knife, ever. The best way to preserve the finish (especially with ku, and seconding Matus) is to just run the knife under HOT water when you’re cleaning up and gently rub the problem areas with your fingers, then towel dry. All my ku are essentially still intact, and I work in pretty demanding pro settings.

    That being said- if you don’t have the new ku nash Maz from KW, you’re missing out, I think it’s pretty stellar. IMG_0220.jpg
     
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  16. Jun 23, 2019 #16

    rickbern

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    Greg, putting aside all the mi casa/tsu casa jokes, those are some beautiful knives from a couple of posts up.
     
  17. Jun 23, 2019 #17

    Gregmega

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    Thanks man, they’re quite unique. Tsukasa Hinoura is still the king in my book.
     
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  18. Jun 23, 2019 #18
    It's not unusual for users to intentionally remove the ku finish. (Don't know why)

    Like has been said some KU will wear faster than others. I've have / had Wats, Heiji and Mune that were very stable and briefly had a Zakuri that it seemed some KU would flake off every time under running water.

    And then there's Yoshikane (and others) who's KU is almost an art in and of itself - but I don't think it's the traditional scaling.
     
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  19. Jun 23, 2019 #19

    Carl Kotte

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    IMG_2026.jpg

    Here is a picture of (before I started working on it) an über rusty thin deba with KU finish I restored. No finish left here... instead it ended up looking a bit dirty and uneven, at least at this halfway through stage.
     
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2019
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  20. Jun 23, 2019 #20

    CoteRotie

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    I've had a Hinoura white #2 KU nikiri for a couple of years and the KU finish still looks great.
     
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  21. Jun 23, 2019 #21

    CiderBear

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    So a worn off KU finish is kind of like a nashiji finish?

    Sort of unrelated: when you guys say Hinoura, do you usually mean the father or son?
     
  22. Jun 23, 2019 #22

    CoteRotie

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    Just checked my notes and my Hinoura is actually White #1- And it only makes reference to "Hinoura family" so could be either. Probably the son?
     
  23. Jun 23, 2019 #23

    Xenif

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    I believe they work out of the same shop, and since Matsumi (son) is taught by Tsukasa (father) I assume that the KU application on their knives are very similar if not the same. Anyone with both their works care to input?
     
  24. Jun 23, 2019 #24

    Xenif

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    A look at different Kurouchi finishes, all of these have seen use.
    Left to right: Munetoshi (x2), Shigeki Tanaka, Shigefusa, Mazaki (JNS, flat non textured), Hinoura Hamono (JCK, flat on stainless), Yu Kurosaki (flat, on stainless) _20190623_144337.jpeg
     
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  25. Jun 23, 2019 #25

    ian

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    Now *that* is one thick-looking KU finish. Right to the edge, too. ;)

    Yea, sometimes I miss my old Kochi too. Best ku I’ve ever had, but I haven’t owned most of the knives mentioned in this thread.
     
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  26. Jun 23, 2019 #26

    Gregmega

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    It depends on the line. All the ajikitaya are listed as Mutsumi, and have the hand chiseled kanji. The ones with the stamped kanji are specifically Tsukasa line (as the ones I showed above) and that kanji is also featured on a few other lines like his rainbow damascus. Now the river jump series is a whole other thing specific to Tsukasa of course. But at the level that they work, who really cares whose name is on it, it comes from one of the best forges in the world imeho. I recall hearing Jon say something to this effect in previous threads, but I’m also a bit less worried about those details than most. So I may be off a bit.
     
  27. Jun 23, 2019 #27

    slickmamba

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    munetoshi and shig have been very stable for me. Anryu has been horrible. I've heard that takeda is also a little weak, but I haven't had the pleasure yet
     
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  28. Jun 23, 2019 #28

    Ochazuke

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    Following up from when I said earlier that I’d post a knife with the kurouchi mostly gone. My friends know I like knives that rust. One of them gave me this cheapo knife once she got tired of trying to care for it. The kurouchi was mostly gone when I got it.

    Also, just for the record, the grind on this was absolute garbage. High and low spots everywhere. It’s sitting in my project bin at the moment. One day I’ll thin it out and fix all the grind issues.
     

    Attached Files:

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  29. Jun 23, 2019 #29

    CiderBear

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    Thanks for the update Ochazuke!
     
  30. Jun 23, 2019 #30

    MrHiggins

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    Okay, so which should I buy: Ajikitaya or Mazaki?
     
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