Quantcast

TF "Izuhakou" steel?

Kitchen Knife Forums

Help Support Kitchen Knife Forums:

Durge

Member
Joined
Jun 25, 2019
Messages
12
Reaction score
5
Location
Santa Cruz, CA
Hi all. On TF's maboroshi line, it mentions that they use "Izuhakou" steel. Now I know that it's actually shirogami, but why do they refer to it by this name, and what exactly does it mean? Google shows absolutely nothing about it. I can only assume its a term to refer to the fact that the steel is laminated in-house (as far as I'm aware).
20200915_080611.jpg
 

ojisan

Senior Member
Joined
May 22, 2019
Messages
311
Reaction score
255
Location
SF Bay Area
I assume it's just marketing. In their web site they state "Izuhakou and Chigusakou are our trademarks".

Both of them were steels used for sword making since/around 16 century. Izuha steel was produced in Shimane (Yasuki is also in Shimane) and Chigusa steel was produced in Hyogo.

My understanding is that nobody produces Chigusa steel since early Meiji era, while Nittouho and Hitachi Yasuki still produce tamahagane in Shimane for sword making.

I guess they got some inspiration form those well known sword steels?
 

Corradobrit1

Senior Member
Joined
May 2, 2015
Messages
3,416
Reaction score
2,042
1.4%C is the spec for Shirogami 1A. Prob quite a bit of C loss/migration during firing since TF doesn't use a layer of nickel to limit it.
 

ModRQC

Kurouchi Down!
Supporting Member
Joined
Oct 16, 2019
Messages
1,012
Reaction score
904
Location
QC, CA
Wasn't it debunked in another thread recently, with answer from the maker, that they only used the prelaminated now, same as Nashiji? Sorry if I'm off the real track but it's what I retained and I'm getting confused as to if, or if not, Maboroshi steel is as good as it used to be. There was also the claim that using the prelaminated loses less carbon in HT and comes around to the same thing?
 

parbaked

Senior Member
Joined
May 10, 2017
Messages
1,747
Reaction score
1,770
Location
San Francisco
Wasn't it debunked in another thread recently, with answer from the maker, that they only used the prelaminated now, same as Nashiji?
I don't think so.
This is the actual quote from Gaku:

"Previously, there were two types of Sirogami #1 steel with slightly different carbon contents, and different core steels were used for Nashiji and Maboroshi.
But currently the material of Nashiji and Maboroshi are same. The difference between Nashiji and Maboroshi is numbers of production steps.
Maboroshi is hammered more than Nashiji, thereby it get more retention of sharpness.
The hammer marks of Maboroshi is result by this step. ..."


  1. He specifically mentions core steel, not the cladding or if either is pre-laminated.
  2. The only change he mentions is that Hitachi stopped making Shirogami 1a, so the core steel is now the same.
  3. He states that the Maboroshi goes through more production steps. These steps could include laminating the core steel and cladding.
Gaku is a great resource, but I don't think it is reliable to make assumptions based on his correspondence in English unless one asks very specific questions e.g. "Is the Maboroshi still clad in house?"
 

ModRQC

Kurouchi Down!
Supporting Member
Joined
Oct 16, 2019
Messages
1,012
Reaction score
904
Location
QC, CA
And, considering that the HT done is the same, and the steel entirely processed by TF, do we have to assume that the Shirogami now used starts with lesser carbon content, and could end up the likes, hence to some degree Maboroshi steel isn't exactly as good as it was?

Or a few decimals of Carbon less don't change anything much?

I don't really care, actually - the Mabs I have I find great in use. But I like to know what I'm buying into when I hear contradicting stuff.
 

parbaked

Senior Member
Joined
May 10, 2017
Messages
1,747
Reaction score
1,770
Location
San Francisco
All we know is that Hitachi determined that it was no longer worth it to produce two versions of Shirogami 1.
FWIW I spent some time with Gaku comparing Maboroshi and Nashiji gyutos.
The Maboroshi start with thicker stock and have more taper.
Could not have those deep hammer marks on the thinner Nashiji spine.
selection.jpg

At the time they still used Shirogami 1a and 1b.
I was told that Nashiji and Maboroshi have similar steel and different production method and that Denka and Maboroshi have different steel and similar production method.
Denka was so expensive because it was more difficult to forge, grind and sharpen the AS steel.
I bought a Mabo...it's such a good knife.
 
Last edited:

nakiriknaifuwaifu

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 28, 2020
Messages
174
Reaction score
206
Location
Atlanta
All we know is that Hitachi determined that it was no longer worth it to produce two versions of Shirogami 1.
FWIW I spent some time with Gaku comparing Maboroshi and Nashiji gyutos.
The Maboroshi start with thicker stock and have more taper.
Could not have those deep hammer marks on the thinner Nashiji spine.
View attachment 94842
At the time they still used Shirogami 1a and 1b.
I was told that Nashiji and Maboroshi have similar steel and different production method and that Denka and Maboroshi have different steel and similar production method.
Denka was so expensive because it was more difficult to forge, grind and sharpen the AS steel.
I bought a Mabo...it's such a good knife.
@parbaked What made you choose the mab over the nashiji?
 

parbaked

Senior Member
Joined
May 10, 2017
Messages
1,747
Reaction score
1,770
Location
San Francisco
@parbaked What made you choose the mab over the nashiji?
I went to buy a Denka but I didn't like the red handles and they had very few black ones to choose from, none perfect.
I picked what I thought was the best knife in the shop, a 180mm Maboroshi. It was ground right and felt best in hand.
All the wa handles I saw in the shop were crap and they wanted like week to upgrade a handle??
The fit and finish on the Nashiji was really bad, even for the price. I was going to get some as gifts but didn't...
 
Top