Nata come in various sizes and shapes, but most fit the description of a light brush hatchet or heavy camp knife. Common characteristics include thick spines and heavy blades, often with single beveled edges similar to Japanese wood chisels.
This type work well for medium duty camp tasks, carving hatchet work, roughing and shaping, green wood work, and bamboo splitting. Similar to boat builder’s or timber framer’s slicks, they can make controlled straight slices due to their mass and chisel-like bevel. Another common variation has double sided bevels, cord wrapped integral handles, and curved or hooked blades for working in the rice fields.
This large nata has a relatively straight blade and tip, was made from industrial paper cutting blade steel, and is mounted in traditional style with the addition of a hidden tang. The laminated tungsten alloy steel blade has forged texture and a slight reverse sori curve to direct force into the cut. Though the steel edge is quite tough, the hard temper of this steel will take some care given the amount of weight and force behind it. Right handed bevel.
A forged steel ferrule and steel rivets strengthen the tang/handle junction and the hand carved Green Ash wood handle is finished with a coat of natural tung oil.
The blade is just over 7″ long and about 2″ deep with a 3/8″ spine, overall length is around 17″. Accompanied by a Maple and Nootka Cypress storage scabbard.
長さ/刃長 Nagasa: 182mm (blade length)
元幅 Motohaba: 55mm (blade depth)
重ね/元重 Motokasane: 9.5mm (spine thickness)
中心/茎 Nakago: 90mm (tang length)
柄長 Tsuka: 254mm (handle length)
Materials: paper cutting blade steel, mild steel, steel pipe, Green Ash wood, Nootka Cypress, pure Tung oil
This piece is in a private collection in California.