A Set Of Ornate Netsuki Style Carving Knives.

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Project by RusticJohn posted 03-31-2014 03:45 AM 13672 views 3 times favorited 12 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Every now and again one of the blades I make is better than the rest in the batch. I don’t know why as the process and materials are identical for the whole batch but it just happens. All my blades are very good but these ones are better than very good. I have taken to making an ornate handle for the special knives based on Netsuki. Each handle has a traditional Japanese craftsman holding a different woodworking tool. One has an adze, others have a saw, a plane, a hammer and a spokeshave. Each of the figures has an miniature Inro and a little Netsuki on his belt. There are Netsukis within Netsukis. The head of the main figure is about 20 mm high and the little head is about 5 or so millimetres high.

The woods used are Matai, Oak and NZ Kauri. The blades are made from either high speed steel or top quailty carbon steel depending on how I am feeling on the day. Both are as good as each other although the HSS tends to be brittle. Each of the faces has the full facial features including tiny eye lids, nostrils and eye brows.

I do have another 3 of these underway but each takes a long time and a lot of concentration to carve so I need to be unhurried, relaxed and calm to do them. Lots of fun but a bit tiring.

-- RusticJohn

12 comments so far

View woodchuckerNJ's profile


1607 posts in 3086 days

#1 posted 03-31-2014 03:51 AM

Holy cow those are fantastic. Reading about the details on the eyes, I wish you had a pic of that.

Nice very nice.

-- Jeff NJ

View jim65's profile


1021 posts in 3385 days

#2 posted 03-31-2014 04:26 AM

very nice, awesome work!

-- Jim, Marostica Italy

View AnonymousRequest's profile


861 posts in 3001 days

#3 posted 03-31-2014 06:48 AM

Excellent work, very well done!

View J123's profile


363 posts in 3792 days

#4 posted 03-31-2014 01:33 PM

I would love to have one in my collection. Do you sell?

View BTimmons's profile


2303 posts in 3937 days

#5 posted 03-31-2014 02:02 PM

Awesome looking set.

-- Brian Timmons -

View RusticJohn's profile


219 posts in 5043 days

#6 posted 03-31-2014 07:29 PM

Thank you for all the comments. They are great fun to make. Regrettably I don’t sell them as they take so long to make and it is impossible to get a realistic price for them.

-- RusticJohn

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

27687 posts in 4558 days

#7 posted 04-01-2014 02:27 AM

Very cool- carving carving knives!!

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

View Richard's profile


11310 posts in 4485 days

#8 posted 04-01-2014 07:32 PM

John: Beautiful Set Of Knives! Nice work indeed! Thanks for Posting.

Regards: Rick

PS: Couldn’t ask for More in the way of “Project Display Photos.” GOOD On You!

-- Richard (Ontario, CANADA)

View Mauricio's profile


7170 posts in 4604 days

#9 posted 04-07-2014 03:22 AM


-- Mauricio - Woodstock, GA - "Confusion is the Womb of Learning, with utter conviction being it's Tomb" Prof. T.O. Nitsch

View Fishinbo's profile


11362 posts in 3628 days

#10 posted 04-07-2014 02:10 PM

They look stunning and belong to a museum. Beautiful woods, awesome carving and great traditional style. Amazing work!

View helluvawreck's profile


32122 posts in 4319 days

#11 posted 04-07-2014 02:33 PM

This is beautiful work and a great set of knives. Congratulations.

helluvawreck aka Charles

-- helluvawreck aka Charles,

View RusticJohn's profile


219 posts in 5043 days

#12 posted 04-08-2014 04:21 AM

Thank you all for your encouraging words. The knives are fun to make.

-- RusticJohn

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