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Types of knives
Tojiro offers one of the widest selections of both Japanese and Western styles knives that include both standard and unconventional knives that borrow inspiration from Japanese culture as well as the modern world. These knives are categorized in different series based on their design and materials used to make them. Below are the top series from the brand.
The blades in this series are made of 63 layers consisting of VG10 steel cutting core and layers of Damascus steel which give the blades an elegant rippled pattern. The blades have double bevel edges and a hardness of HRC62, while the handles are made from Micarta with stainless steel inlays. Joint of handle and blade is smoothly curved and does comfortably support your finger. The available knives in the series include Paring, Peeling, Santoku, Utility, Nakiri, Debra, Carving, Boning, American Boning, and Bread. Peeling, Paring, and Deba knives have 37 layers only, not 63 layers like the rest in the series.
Shippu knives blades are made up of either 63 layers or 37 layers of Damascus steel (low and high carbon stainless steel) with a VG10 core steel. The double-edge blades have the Damascus-style rippled pattern and the handles are made from Japanese magnolia wood that provides a smooth surface and has good water resistance. The handles also feature a water buffalo horn collar/ferrule to prevent the blades from rattling and coming off. The available knives in the series are Chef, Santoku, Nakiri, Slicer, Paring, and Peeling.
Tojiro Shippu Black
This is a version of the Shippu series and it’s recognizable because of the striking black look of the blades and handles of its knives. The double-edged blades have the typical 63 layers of Damascus steel and VG-10 core steel. However, black iron oxide has been applied on the blades which greatly improve their long-term performance and corrosion resistance. The black iron oxide also improves the visual aspect of the blades and clearly brings forward the beautiful Damascus steel pattern. The handles are made of burnt (fire treated) Chestnut wood and have been secure using black polypropylene resin ferrule. The types of knives are just the same as those in the Shippu series.
The blade of Zen knives features three layers consisting of a VG10 steel core, clad by 13-chrome stainless steel. They are single-bevel blades designed for right-handed use only and have a hardness of HRC60. They have a relatively large tradition Japanese D-shaped handles made from light-weight oak wood with polypropylene resin ferrule. The handles are light, comfortable, and durable. The series offers different knife types like Chef, Paring, Slicer, Deba, Santoku, Nakiri, Peeling, Mini-Light Deba, and Yanagi-Sashimi.
Tojiro Zen Black
This is an improved version of the Zen series. The double-edged blades have the same 3 layers but have been further reinforced with black iron oxide to make them more resistant to corrosion and enhance their visual aspect. The handles are also different as they are made of fire-treated Chestnut wood with polypropylene resin collar. The series include Slicer, Chef, Santoku, Nakiri, Peeling, and Paring knives.
This is Tojiro’s flagship series. The blades are made of the same material as the Zen series (3 layers consisting of VG10 steel core that’s clad by 13-chrome stainless steel). These double-edged blades have a hardness of HRC60. The handle is made of durable black Micarta with three stainless steel rivets and metal bolster. It’s a closed bolster collar to allow for full sharpening of the blade. This is one of the largest Tojiro’s lines, offering different types of knives: Kiritsuke, Carving, Boning, Bread Slicer, Western Deba, Chef, Petty, Chicken Boning Knife, Slicer, Peeling, Pairing, Steak, Nakiri, and Santoku.
Tojiro DP Damascus
The DP Damascus blades have a thick VG10 steel core, clad by 37 layers of low and high carbon stainless steel with a beautiful Damascus pattern finishing that’s unique to each blade. The double-edged blades have a hardness of HRC60. The handle is black Micarta with three stainless steel rivets and a thick bolster that adds heft and balance. It’s equally a closed bolster collar to allow for full sharpening of the blade. The series isn’t quite large. It only features four types of knives; Nakiri, Chef, Santoku, and Petty.
This is similar to the Tojiro DP series. The blades are double-edged and have VG10 steel for the core that’s clad by 13-chrome stainless steel. The difference is in the handle design and material. The handles are made using reinforced/composite black wood and they don’t have bolsters. Like the DP Damascus series, the knife types are just four; Nakiri, Chef, Petty, and Santoku.
Tojiro Powdered High Speed Steel
Also known as the R-2 series, this look pretty similar to the DP series but the core of the blade is made using powdered high speed steel called R-2 or SG2. This is very hard steel with hardness of 63HRC. It’s a step up from the DP line – it is sharper, and provides excellent edge retention and wear resistance than VG10 or Molybdenum Vanadium. The core is still clad by 13-chrome stainless steel and the blades are double edged. They feature reinforced laminated handles that are secured with three stainless steel rivets and well-finished stainless steel bolsters. The series offers only three knife types; Petty, Chef, and Santoku.
The blades are double-edged with VG-10 steel core, clad by 13-chrome stainless steel. They have a hardness of HRC60. All the knives have 18/8 stainless steel handles, welded together with the blades to form a seamless construction with bolsters to add heft and balance. These handles don’t change their shape or come off the blade. They have a wave-like design called “tornado pattern/recesses” to provide a secure grip. They also do have a micro-coat to prevent the knife from slipping out of hand when it’s greasy or wet. The series has several different types of knives like Chef, Nakiri, Santoku, Carving, Slicer, Paring, Petty, Chicken, Bonning, Peeling, Chinese knife, Bread Slicer, and Western Deba.
Tojiro Pro Nickel Damascus
This is the crown jewel of Tojiro’s collection. The blades are made of special alloy steel and additional 63 layers of Nickel Damascus steel. The double-edged blades have a hardness of HRC62 and feature the beautiful Damascus wave pattern. The handle material (18/8 stainless steel) and design is the same as the Tojiro Pro series with “tornado pattern/recesses” for secure grip. The knife types include; Petty, Chef, and Santoku.
Tojiro Pro Japanese Style Series
This is another version of the Tojiro Pro series and it consists of only Japanese style knives that come in two blade designs. One group features blades with VG10 steel core, clad by 13-chrome stainless steel while the other group has blades made of Molybdenum Vanadium. The blades are all single bevel for left-handed persons and the handles are made of 18/8 stainless steel just like the Pro series. However, they are asymmetric D-shaped and have the tornado texture/recesses on one side to provide anti-slip grip. The knife types include; Deba, Mini Deba, Tako Sashimi, and Yanagi Sashimi.
Tojiro Pro Meister Japanese Style Series
This is similar to the Tojiro Pro Japanese Style series. It has the same two versions of blade and the handle is equally asymmetric D-shaped and made of 18/8 stainless steel with the same recesses on one side. The difference is that the back of the blades of the Pro Meister Japanese Style knives is hollow ground and also edged extremely sharp Hombazuke style. The knife types include; Deba, Yanagi-Sashimi, and Usuba.
The shape and build of the knives in this series is inspired by traditional Japanese Origami art. The blades are made using a single piece of high carbon stainless steel that has been carefully folded into a whole knife until the intended/required form is completed. No welding process is involved whatsoever. They have a flat profile near the handle, typically for chopping. The handles are made of the same high-carbon stainless steel and are rectangular-shaped with no ferrule or rivets. The knife types include; Petty, Santoku, and Chef.
Tojiro Origami Black
The design and material of the blades and handles are similar to the Origami series. The difference is that the blades have been coated in black oxide and polished, giving them a beautiful aesthetic aspect. It offers the same knife types as the Origami series.
The blades are double bevel and made from Molybdenum Vanadium steel. The handles are treated elastomer resin which is durable, non-slip, and easy to grip. The handles come in multiple colors; black, green, blue, yellow, red, and white. The knife types include; Chef, Petty, Nakiri, Santoku, Slicer, and Chicken Boning.
The blades in this series are made using premium Aogami carbon steel (known as Blue steel) and soft iron. The Aogami steel offers excellent sharpness and wear resistance as well as very good edge retention. The blades are single bevel for right-handed use but the left handed blades are available upon request. They have a hardness of HRC62. The handles are octagonal-shaped, made using Japanese magnolia wood and have a water buffalo horn ferrule. The knife types include; Deba, Tako-Sashimi, and Yanagi-Sashimi.
Tojiro Aogami Damascus
It’s similar to the Tojiro Aogami series but the Aogami carbon steel core is clad by soft iron Damascus steel which gives the blades a nice Damascus pattern. The edging of the blades and the design and material of the handles are the same as the Aogami series. It also offers the same knife types.
The core of the blades is made using Shirogami steel or white #2 steel, and it’s clad by a soft iron layer. Shirogami steel is a reactive carbon steel that develops a patina over time. It’s easy to re-sharpen and holds an edge well. However, it rusts easily if not kept dry. The blades are single-edged for right handed persons and have a rustic “Kurouchi” finish (dark, rough finish). The soft iron layer does lighten the blade a bit too. The handles are made of magnolia with a black resin ferrule. The knife types include; Salmon Deba, Usuba, Eel knife, Thin Bladed Deba, Yanagi-Sashimi, Tako Sashimi, Deba, Mini-light Deba, and Mini Deba.
Tojiro Shirogami Double-Bevel
It’s similar to the Shirogami series but the blades are double-edged and come in two versions, one having a rustic “Kurouchi” finish and another grinding finish (Santoku and Nakiri knives). The knife types include; Nakiri, Santoku, Petty, Chef, and Kiritsuke.
The blades are made from Molybdenum Vanadium steel and are single edged for right-handed persons. Handles are made of magnolia and have a black resin collar – they are traditional Japanese D-shaped handles. The Knife types include; Tako Sashimi, Deba, Yanagi Sashimi, and Mini-Light Deba.
Tojiro MV Forged Double-Bevel
It’s the same as the MV series but the blades are double-edged and made of two layers featuring a Molybdenum Vanadium stainless steel core, clad by a standard stainless steel that makes up the outer layer. The handle material and design are similar to that of MV series. The knife types include; Nakiri and Santoku.
The blades are double-edged and have a VG10 steel core that’s clad by 13 chrome stainless steel. The blades have a hammered Kurouchi finish that gives them a rustic look and prevents food from sticking on them. Clear coating is also applied on the blades surface to prevent them from rusting easily. The handles are made of magnolia with black plastic ferrule. The knife types include; Chef, Nakiri, Santoku, and Paring.
The knives feature double-edged blades made of VG10 steel core, covered on both sides by 13-chrome stainless steel. The handles are round shaped and made of linen mikarta with a steel bolster. They have black and white patterns. The knife types include; Bread, Chef, Santoku, Utility, and Petty.
Gai means “armor” in Japanese. It refers to the series durable and armor-like handles which are made of linen mikarta that’s fixed by three hex bolts/rivets. They have a uniquely designed rugged surface that sets them apart from the other Tojiro’s knife handles. The blades are made of VG410 steel core that’s clad by 37 layers of high and low carbon stainless steel. They are double-edged and have the beautiful Damascus steel pattern. The knife types include: Nakiri, Chef, Santoku, and Nakiri.
The blades are made of 63 layers consisting of VG10 core and outer layers of high and low carbon stainless steel. They are double-edged and have the ripple Damascus steel pattern with the blade face featuring a black-textured finish. The handles are made of black Micarta material and have a welded metal bolster. They are attached to the tang with three metal rivets. The knife types include; Nakiri, Santoku, Chef, and Petty.
Tojiro makes high-performing, quality knives at fair prices. The prices of their Santoku knives range from $30 to around $500. The most affordable options are Santoku knives with VG10 core, clad by 13 chrome stainless steel, which include the DP, VG10 Hammered, Zen, A-1, Pro, and OBORO series.
Their prices range from $30 to $150, with the A-1 series being the cheapest – the A-1 6.7-inch Santoku knife (2 rivets), for instance, goes for around $32 while the 3-rivets version of the same knife goes for $40. The main difference in the prices of these Santoku knives is generally due to the design of the handles.
The Tojiro Pro Nickel Damascus series stands out as the most expensive Tojiro’s series, with its 6.7-inch Santoku knife costing around $500. The other series that are priced slightly high are Atelier, Flash, and R-2 series. Their 6.7-inch Santoku knives go for roughly $362.20, $169.95, and $162.95 respectively.
The prices of Tojiro’s Nakiri knives are pretty fair too. They range from $30 to $400 and almost all the blades are 6.5-inch long. The Atelier and Flash series Nakiri knives come at a higher price than the rest ($362.2 and $169.95 respectively) because of their 63-layer blades which feature a VG10 steel core.
Like the Santoku knives though, the Nakiri knives from the DP, VG10 Hammered, and A-1 series come at affordable price due to their 3-layer blades, made of VG10 core, clad by 13 chrome stainless steel. The A-1 series Nakiri knives are the cheapest, going for $32 (2 rivets) and $40 (3 rivets). The Shirogami series Nakiri knives also come at a low price of around $47, despite their blades being made of Shirogami steel (White #2 steel).