Takefu knives?

Kitchen Knife Forums

Help Support Kitchen Knife Forums:

ChefShramrock

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 7, 2019
Messages
168
Reaction score
202
Location
Tennessee
Most of mine are from Takefu. I love the gyuto profile. Nice long flat spot & thin drop tip. Plus, the aesthetics are really varied & nice.

 

ojisan

Senior Member
Joined
May 22, 2019
Messages
303
Reaction score
248
Location
SF Bay Area
Thanks! I'm new to this world and know It's history only on papers. That's great to know this kind of observation by others.

Or should I say, it used to be. I heard The Japanese Government put money on Takefu Knife Village for popular Destination For tourism. Right now, I think they are getting more popular than how they used to be.


Yes, but the Takefu AS have less carbon than Hitachi counterparts and I think HRC number for Japanese knife should be take with grain of salt. Maybe they could make it harder but they know how the market will use their knife.
 

Dan P.

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 30, 2012
Messages
456
Reaction score
62
Another thing with Takefu is they use their Steel from Takefu Steel, not Hitachi. That’s why their HRC is slightly different. SG2 and VG10 is their main selling point, that’s why most of the blacksmith use those. Their AS is V-Toku 1 and their Blue 2 is V-Toku 2. Chromax or V Silver 1 or SKD12 is also use by Yoshikane, Takamura and Masashi
The Aogami Super products I've had from Takefu used Hitachi AS. To my knowledge Takefu Special Steel Co. are producers of laminates and stockholders rather than steel producers, per se.
 

zizirex

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 19, 2018
Messages
423
Reaction score
221
The Aogami Super products I've had from Takefu used Hitachi AS. To my knowledge Takefu Special Steel Co. are producers of laminates and stockholders rather than steel producers, per se.
They do laminates, but like VG series and SG2 are proprietary from Takefu, then I ask Kevin of Knifewear who always go to Takefu and hang around with the blacksmiths, he said that they use the most similar steel of Hitachi that is made from Takefu Steel. I also ask one of the vendor here he said that, not only Takefu knives. The slightly cheaper AS knife are usually not made using Hitachi stuff due to availability or minimum order.
 

Dan P.

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 30, 2012
Messages
456
Reaction score
62
They do laminates, but like VG series and SG2 are proprietary from Takefu, then I ask Kevin of Knifewear who always go to Takefu and hang around with the blacksmiths, he said that they use the most similar steel of Hitachi that is made from Takefu Steel. I also ask one of the vendor here he said that, not only Takefu knives. The slightly cheaper AS knife are usually not made using Hitachi stuff due to availability or minimum order.
Well, unless it is information coming directly from Takefu Special Steel Co., I guess it is hearsay.
Buuuut.... My version of hearsay comes directly and explicitly from the distributor of Takefu steel in my country, and that is that the vtoku is a proprietary steel very similar to the Hitachi Aogami range that Takefu have made by steel producers, except for the AS, which they get direct from Hitachi.
It's normal that a company like Takefu would source different steels from different primary producers.
 

M1k3

Senior Member
Joined
Jul 28, 2018
Messages
3,112
Reaction score
2,893
They do laminates, but like VG series and SG2 are proprietary from Takefu, then I ask Kevin of Knifewear who always go to Takefu and hang around with the blacksmiths, he said that they use the most similar steel of Hitachi that is made from Takefu Steel. I also ask one of the vendor here he said that, not only Takefu knives. The slightly cheaper AS knife are usually not made using Hitachi stuff due to availability or minimum order.
Why would a Smith or retailer sell a knife as being made from AS if it's not? Why not what it is? Or 'nihonku' or whatever generic label?
 

ACHiPo

Supporting Member
Joined
May 21, 2014
Messages
404
Reaction score
117
Location
E. Bay, CA, US
I was told the knife they gave me after my sharpening class at Takefu was Hitachi carbon steel sandwiched in stainless. It was made from a blank, not forged on site.
 

Dan P.

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 30, 2012
Messages
456
Reaction score
62
Why would a Smith or retailer sell a knife as being made from AS if it's not? Why not what it is? Or 'nihonku' or whatever generic label?
I think there is some confusing of Takefu the municipality with Takefu Knife Village (whether there are knives made in Takefu the town that are not coming out of the Knife Village I don't know) with Takefu Special Steel Co.
There seems to be further confusion in the understanding of generic and proprietary specifications and how steel is sorted amongst those various categories.

Not that that answers your question, but I think the answer is probably that there was a misunderstanding somewhere, i.e. no case to answer.
 

ojisan

Senior Member
Joined
May 22, 2019
Messages
303
Reaction score
248
Location
SF Bay Area
I once heard some rumors that some of cheap knives sold with names like "aoko" 青鋼 or "shiroko" 白鋼 are actually made of those similar (and cheaper) steels from Takefu steel. Aogami and Shirigsmi are registered trademark of Hitachi so they cannot use these names for knives made of different steels. As most people only know Aogami and Shirogami, and Takefu steels are much much minor, using names sound like Hitachi steels could be a trick to give good impression.

However I have no clue to confirm this rumor and there are surely good resellers who use those terms even when Hitachi steels are used. I just remember this rumor...
 

ojisan

Senior Member
Joined
May 22, 2019
Messages
303
Reaction score
248
Location
SF Bay Area
They do laminates, but like VG series and SG2 are proprietary from Takefu, then I ask Kevin of Knifewear who always go to Takefu and hang around with the blacksmiths, he said that they use the most similar steel of Hitachi that is made from Takefu Steel. I also ask one of the vendor here he said that, not only Takefu knives. The slightly cheaper AS knife are usually not made using Hitachi stuff due to availability or minimum order.
SG2 is R2 from kobelco with lamination?
 

zizirex

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 19, 2018
Messages
423
Reaction score
221
SG2 is R2 from kobelco with lamination?
Maybe, it's just R2 is Kobelco trademark name and SG2 is Takefu's name... maybe same steel/composition.

Well, unless it is information coming directly from Takefu Special Steel Co., I guess it is hearsay.
Buuuut.... My version of hearsay comes directly and explicitly from the distributor of Takefu steel in my country, and that is that the vtoku is a proprietary steel very similar to the Hitachi Aogami range that Takefu have made by steel producers, except for the AS, which they get direct from Hitachi.
It's normal that a company like Takefu would source different steels from different primary producers.
True, I also think Takefu steel also made lamination of SRS15/13 and GinSanko...which is made by other makers.
 

Dan P.

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 30, 2012
Messages
456
Reaction score
62
Sorry this is about carbon steels. VG series have presence of course.
Okay, but in what way are Takefu Steel's carbons much much minor?
I mean, not just minor, but much much minor?
 

M1k3

Senior Member
Joined
Jul 28, 2018
Messages
3,112
Reaction score
2,893
Okay, but in what way are Takefu Steel's carbons much much minor?
I mean, not just minor, but much much minor?
I think they meant not as popular? Not a major player in the steel world like Hitachi? ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
 

ojisan

Senior Member
Joined
May 22, 2019
Messages
303
Reaction score
248
Location
SF Bay Area
Okay, but in what way are Takefu Steel's carbons much much minor?
I mean, not just minor, but much much minor?
I’d say yes for consumers. It’s hard to find knives soled as made of the V or V-Toku steel even in Japanese market, while there are ton of Aogami/Shirogami knives out there. It’s too minor so sellers even use “Nihonkou” instead. However, this doesn’t mean it’s not “popular” for makers, of course. I don’t know the actual ratio of Hitachi vs Takefu carbon steels in the market.


I once wrote about this in another thread:

https://www.kitchenknifeforums.com/...masahiro-sakai-kikumori-or.41945/#post-618484

I think they meant not as popular? Not a major player in the steel world like Hitachi? ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
You probably don’t want to compare Hitachi Steel and Takefu Steel in the steel industry (not in the knife industry) by the way. Hitachi is too big ($10B revenue/30k employees) and Takefu is too small ($15M revenue/50 employees). I heard a rumor that Hitachi is too big to keep Yasuki Steels (R) on their product list, as those steels like Shirogami/Aogami are not enough profitable for them due to the small market size of knives, and Hitachi has been wanting to get rid of them, and they actually did some price ups. Another interesting fact is that the total production of kitchen knives in Fukui pref. (Takefu is part of Fukui) is around $6M. So, Takefu Steel alone is bigger than the entire Takefu knife industry. Takefu Steel has 60% share of prelaminated steels for knives/blades, while Fukui has only 3% share of kitchen knives in Japan.
 

HRC_64

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 9, 2017
Messages
2,714
Reaction score
561
Same V2 used in the Kochi?
Gesshin/JKI are one of the few off the top of my head. Yoshikane used to offer it but no longer does.
Maxim had Itinomonn v2 was discontinued as well ....All those knives seem to have alot of good comments.

(correct me if I'm wrong of course)
 

HRC_64

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 9, 2017
Messages
2,714
Reaction score
561
I see some Yoshikane and Kumagoro (?) with V2 steel on EE
https://www.epicedge.com/shopdisplayproducts.asp?id=1252&cat=Carbon+Steel+-+V2

It looks like the Kaeru KU nakiri and santoku are in V2 as well http://www.japanesenaturalstones.com/kaeru-kurouchi-nakiri-165mm/
Kumagaroo hammered have gyuto for sale in 210 and 240. Assuming thats still in production ... looks like a legit line of v2-core knives.

Those EE yoshikanes are the ones I was talking about above...Maxim also used to sell them but they are NLA and just ods and ends available.

The Kaeru I think is not the mainline Kaeru which is SLD/D2 core (with stainless cladding). That nakiri is all carbon/iron/v2 kind of odd duck.
http://www.japanesenaturalstones.com/kaeru/
 

captaincaed

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 29, 2017
Messages
1,059
Reaction score
722
Location
Pacific Northwest
Gesshin/JKI are one of the few off the top of my head. Yoshikane used to offer it but no longer does.
Maxim had Itinomonn v2 was discontinued as well ....All those knives seem to have alot of good comments.

(correct me if I'm wrong of course)
I like my V2 kochi a lot. I really like how the steel responds to stones. Get any kind of edge I want without breaking a sweat. Definitely want another.
 

Dan P.

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 30, 2012
Messages
456
Reaction score
62
I’d say yes for consumers. It’s hard to find knives soled as made of the V or V-Toku steel even in Japanese market, while there are ton of Aogami/Shirogami knives out there. It’s too minor so sellers even use “Nihonkou” instead. However, this doesn’t mean it’s not “popular” for makers, of course. I don’t know the actual ratio of Hitachi vs Takefu carbon steels in the market.


I once wrote about this in another thread:

https://www.kitchenknifeforums.com/...masahiro-sakai-kikumori-or.41945/#post-618484



You probably don’t want to compare Hitachi Steel and Takefu Steel in the steel industry (not in the knife industry) by the way. Hitachi is too big ($10B revenue/30k employees) and Takefu is too small ($15M revenue/50 employees). I heard a rumor that Hitachi is too big to keep Yasuki Steels (R) on their product list, as those steels like Shirogami/Aogami are not enough profitable for them due to the small market size of knives, and Hitachi has been wanting to get rid of them, and they actually did some price ups. Another interesting fact is that the total production of kitchen knives in Fukui pref. (Takefu is part of Fukui) is around $6M. So, Takefu Steel alone is bigger than the entire Takefu knife industry. Takefu Steel has 60% share of prelaminated steels for knives/blades, while Fukui has only 3% share of kitchen knives in Japan.
Thank you for your reply, very informative!
 

inferno

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 11, 2018
Messages
2,435
Reaction score
952
SG2 is R2 from kobelco with lamination?
I have heard the base powder steel is kobelco (kobe steel) r2, and when takefu laminates it with either soft SS or "damascus" the product changes name to sg2. Fällkniven also calls this steel 3G.

Its also quite similar to srs-15 in chemistry.
 

Barclid

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 19, 2017
Messages
488
Reaction score
613
I have heard the base powder steel is kobelco (kobe steel) r2, and when takefu laminates it with either soft SS or "damascus" the product changes name to sg2. Fällkniven also calls this steel 3G.

Its also quite similar to srs-15 in chemistry.
There's the addition of Tungsten to SRS-15 that isn't found in R2.
 

inferno

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 11, 2018
Messages
2,435
Reaction score
952
As far as i understand takefu special steel is not actually a steel producer like hitachi/sandvik/uddeholm/crucible that works with pig iron/cast iron/pure iron and whatever they do, and then actually melt the alloys they want and produce bars/sheet out of it.

Takefu seems to make products out of steel bars/sheet/rod that they buy and then turn into laminates or thin sheet. They also seem to do some different hybrid laminated for heat exchangers/radiators and such.

It looks to me like they specialise in "sheet" products. like SSAB with their hardox steels. But i think SSAB actually do their own melts.
 

inferno

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 11, 2018
Messages
2,435
Reaction score
952
There's the addition of Tungsten to SRS-15 that isn't found in R2.
yeah but in general its very similar imo. I have several knives in both steels. and there is no practical difference at all. tungsten is just another carbide former. just like V. and they do pretty much the same thing. V carbides are harder and smaller though i think. they are also both grain refiners.

they used to make V steel where V was abundant in the crust and W steel where W was abundant in the crust.
 
Top