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Revised D-Shape Handle Design

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Marko Tsourkan

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I made some changes to an earlier design as suggested by tk59, JC, Bao (many thanks to you!).

Length and width of the tapers on both sides will vary from a handle to a handle. I also plan to introduce a similar modification to an octagonal shape handle.

Some of the horn I have (picture at the top) has these amazing brown lines, looking more like wood. That was a very pleasant discovery.


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Opinions and criticism are welcome. :)

M
 

ejd53

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Looks great, can't wait to get mine.
 

tk59

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Very nice and clean-looking, as usual, Marko! How does it feel?
 

Marko Tsourkan

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Thanks guys!

It seems to feel pretty comfortable, but I should know more after I hear from the owner. Tapering should work very well with oval handle design.

M
 

kalaeb

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Nothing wrong with the d shaped handles, but your octogon handles are so amazing I have a hard time picturing more of your knives with anything but.
 
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tk59

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Nothing wrong with the d shaped handles, but your octogon handles are so amazing I have a hard time picturing your more of your knives with anything but.
+1
 

barramonday

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Looks really nice Marko , I've always preferred D handles , your mods to the stock J handles look well thought-out.

I hope to give one a work out in my kitchen one day.

Rowan...
 

Iceman91

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Looks awesome, I actually prefer D-shape to octagonal.
 

Marko Tsourkan

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Nothing wrong with the d shaped handles, but your octogon handles are so amazing I have a hard time picturing more of your knives with anything but.
I don't intend stop making octagonal, just in addition to a classic octagonal shape, I am going to offer some modifications - rounded bottom and top sides, tapered ferrule, etc. Some of these ideas came from customers' requests, some from what's out there.

I like the D-shape on smaller knives, and octagonal on larger knives. A D-handle for one of my 180mm gyuto felt like the best handle to hold in my hand. Speaking of which, Steve, I need dimensions of that handle. :)

M
 

apicius9

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Very nice, Marko. I really like how you developed your own style over time. I happen to like oval handles but always interpreted the D-shaped ones more as a variation of a round one. Your handle here seems like the perfect fusion of the oval and the classical D-shape with the 'ridge' a bit less pronounced and the taper making it look even more elegant. I agree, I would associate it more with smaller knives, but it looks great on this one here - a great gyuto length anyway IMHO. You are raising the bar again, now I have to work harder to keep up ;) I am just having too much fun playing around with materials and colors to develop such a distinctive style, but I admire yours. Oh, and your photography is first rate also, that lighting really puts the materials in the spotlight.

Stefan
 

Johnny.B.Good

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When I first saw Marko branching out from his classic design (octagonal shape, dark wood, nickel silver spacer/s, black horn) I thought it might be a mistake, but not anymore. I love the new D-shape and some of the lighter wood and marble horn combinations so much I no longer know my own preference. All of the shapes and materials are elegant and understated. While the classic design remains Marko's "signature" look for me, it's more about the impeccable fit and finish than anything else. Very impressive.
 

mhlee

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Excellent thoughts and work Marko. You continue to impress with the thoughtfulness of your designs and your work is, as always, awesome.
 

Marko Tsourkan

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Thanks, Stefan and others -

Classic octagonal is here to stay, no question about it, but a little tweak here and there upon request won't hurt it. That's the idea.

Classic D-shape, albeit comfortable, has a too-utilitarian look on most handles we see, so my version is an attempt to spice it up a little bit, as it is a great shape and on smaller knives easily more preferable to octagonal in my opinion.

I hope I am not jumping over my head by announcing that there is yet another wa handle in works - an oval, Coca-Cola bottle shaped handle - drawing on elements from Japanese and Western tradition. Please note, a lot of these designs are out there, this is just my own interpretation of it.

M
 

SpikeC

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I love the shaping that you're doing on the front of these, it really makes sense from both an aesthetic and an ergonomic standpoint.
 

RRLOVER

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That looks fantastic!!! I want one!!! How much taper does the handle have?
 

kalaeb

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I hope I am not jumping over my head by announcing that there is yet another wa handle in works - an oval, Coca-Cola bottle shaped handle - drawing on elements from Japanese and Western tradition. Please note, a lot of these designs are out there, this is just my own interpretation of it.

M
The Coca-Cola shaped handle is surprisingly difficult to do. I have tried unsuccesfully a handful of times, one of these days I will get one I like.

I would love to see what you come up with.
 

Marko Tsourkan

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Mario -
The taper extends to about 1.5" on the right side and 1.25 on the left (right side has the ridge, so the taper is a little longer). I don't have calipers here, but I would say it is about 1/4 (or slightly more) narrower at the tip, than where the tapering starts. This was kind of an experiment, so I didn't take detailed measurements. Just kept grinding till it looked about right.

M
 

Marko Tsourkan

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The Coca-Cola shaped handle is surprisingly difficult to do. I have tried unsuccesfully a handful of times, one of these days I will get one I like.

I would love to see what you come up with.
You need a wheel or platen for that. Doing it by hand is difficult.

M
 

chazmtb

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Looks great M. Very nice handle for those who use a pinch grip. Very good for those larger gyutos where the d handle makes it a little uncomfortable to use the pinch grip.
 

ejd53

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I have 2 D-handles coming, can't wait to see them (or better yet, hold them).
 

Burl Source

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Dang Marko!
This has to be the most beautiful D-Shape Handle I have ever seen.
 

Marko Tsourkan

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Dang Marko!
This has to be the most beautiful D-Shape Handle I have ever seen.
Thank you. You guys give me way more credit than I deserve.

Mark, the block that this handle is made of is one of your "imperfect" redwood burl blocks that you sold a short while ago.

M
 

Cipcich

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All kidding aside, Marko sent me the 180 mm W2 knife so I could consider the modified-D handle as an alternative to the octagonal handles he's famous for. He also said that, if I liked, I could keep the knife; an obvious no-brainer.
I've had the knife for quite some time, and use it almost exclusively; ostensibly for testing, but really because I like it.
I think of it not as a "practice knife", but rather as a "pacifier knife". Marko should probably consider sending one to all of his customers so they don't exhibit signs of anxiety (Mr. Drinky?).
After careful consideration, I've concluded that the mod-D is very comfy, but I'm still in the camp of those who see his octagonal handles as a classic design. They are simply beautiful.
So, I sent Marko the measurements, but I'm still hanging onto the knife . . .
 

Marko Tsourkan

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The Marko Meji!
Not quite. I can't say I haven't been influenced by Kramer's Meiji (double negative, I know), but there are some subtle but important differences.
Size - my D is smaller, similar in size to Japanese D, so balance on the blade is forward. Taper - Meiji has a flat taper on one side, my revised D has flat taper on both sides of the ferrule (Fish/Andy influence). Meiji has an angled butt, my D will not (this feature doesn't appeal to me on wa handles). Machi height - Meiji look in part depends on machi height, I use regular machi height, so the triangle at the ferrule is narrower and looks slightly different.

Call the both souped up variations of a D. :)

M
 
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