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Thread: Japanese chisel lands: a simple mod?

  1. #16
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Cupertino, California
    In case anyone is interested. Here is a Japanese retailer that sells a modified chisel in a manner similar to Derekís. Teshiba-San understands some English, and accepts overseas orders. I donít know if he is able to ship to the USA right now.

  2. #17
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Quote Originally Posted by Derek Cohen View Post
    Hi Curt

    It is an interesting question. I am very fortunate to own a few sets of really excellent chisels, such as the Veritas PM-V11 and Blue Spruce. So why does one need more than one set? After all, a chisel is a chisel is a chisel ... If I was a professional and watching my overheads, or just starting out in woodworking and watching my overheads, then I would have just one set .. or even less than that. That was me when I began woodworking a good time back. I still have a few of the original yellow handled Stanleys for rough work around the house.

    Are Japanese chisels better than, different from, Western chisels, such as Veritas? I think that the Veritas are the best allrounders available today: chopping, paring, detail work, dovetailing. Excellent steel. Who needs more than this?

    Japanese chisels are not all rounders. Oire Nomi are for chopping. Slicks are for paring. Ideally, you need two sets of chisels. This is not a good feature compared with Western chisels.

    The allure of Japanese chisels is partly that they are the best steel around. Better than PM-V11 for sharpness and edge holding. Easier to sharpen. But it goes beyond this. The blades are beautiful. Perhaps it is the mystique and history surrounding them, perhaps it is knowing that each I have is handmade by a master craftsman .. They beg that the rituals are followed, such as in sharpening, and that one respects the reverence that it part of the mental approach. I really like and appreciate the craft and design that went into Veritas and Blue Spruce - as mentioned, these are all one would need, and feel blessed to have them - but the Japanese chisels seem to connect to history as well.

    Regards from Perth

    Thank you Derek for that excellent answer.

    In other words, Japanese chisels are for the connoisseur. Just as with rare wines or small batch whiskeys, one must have worked their way up the "ladder" to appreciate the peak. Unless circumstances change, I am going to fall off the slope with the Veritas PM-V11 chisels and irons. They do what I want and I am well past the point where most folks are consolidating their tool hordes.

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