Walnut Houchou

A reclaimed harrow tooth combined with walnut and hand hammered copper to create a utility knife with Japanese style mounting.

Island Blacksmith: Hand forged knives

One of a pair designed in collaboration with a Japanese collector, this piece has been forged and shaped from entirely reclaimed materials and is mounted in the traditional Japanese manner using only a single bamboo peg to hold the whole knife together. Part of the challenge of the collaboration was to construct the piece using elements of traditional Japanese design and craftsmanship. I enjoyed the challenge and intend to continue working in this vein to improve my craftsmanship.

This piece is a fusion of Japanese nihonto mounting and utility design style. A sheath and handle of walnut wood, red bamboo, and slightly aged copper finish the high carbon steel blade. The wood has been burnished smooth and buffed with beeswax.

The clay tempered blade was hand forged from a reclaimed harrow tooth and shaped mainly by hand using files and water stones. Blade construction is muku and the cross section is hira-zukuri. The copper fittings are forged, shaped, and finished by hand rather than cast, and the sheath and handle are carved with knives and chisels to accept the blade and tang. The blade is 4″ long and the overall length is about 8″.

Material: Reclaimed harrow tooth steel, reclaimed copper, reclaimed walnut, reclaimed red bamboo from Japan
This piece is in a private collection in Japan.

Island Blacksmith: Hand forged knives

Island Blacksmith: Hand forged knives

Island Blacksmith: Hand forged knives

Island Blacksmith: Hand forged knives

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