Shinshu UchihamonoShinshu Forged Blades

At the time of Kawanakajima battle happened in the late 16th century, it is said to be opening that we go back and forth in this district, and people of village learned technique of ** from craftsman of the making of knife which we repaired of arms, swords.
In the early 19th century, craftsman who specialized in the making of sickle devised structure of "turf charge account" "fishing". At the same time, different craftsman improved double-edged blade sickle to thin knife of single edge. These two sickles become model of current Shinshu sickle.

The origins of forged blades in this area go back to the second half of the 16th century, to the time of the Kawanakajima battles. It was at this time that swordsmiths and others making and repairing weapons moved into the area and the local people learned forging skills.
During the first half of the 19th century, a skilled maker of sickles developed two new forms of this useful tool. At about the same time another smith improved the two edged sickle and made it into a singled bladed and lighter tool. The tools developed by these two men became the prototypes of tools with Shinshu Uchihamono that are still being made today.

The strength of these bladed tools stems from the fact that each one is beaten into shape after being forged. One of the particular features of the sickles is the width of the blade and the way that cut grass falls conveniently to hand, even when the handle is level, because of the way that the face of the blade is angled. A wide range of sickles, knives and straight-blades hatches are still being made to meet a nationwide demand.

  • Notification

    skills and techniques

    Heat shear steel in furnace, and molding stops by to hit mallet; beat and hit, and perform wide geosurukotoniyori.

    Assume sickle single edge.

    When it is to sickle, "the gutter" "is dated turf" and touch "gutter" to single edge hatchet by "fishing" when there is.

    You perform "mud coating", and quench quenching.

    "Blade charge account," "grind" and "finish" are things by manual labor.

    Raw materials

    Assume material to use iron and carbon steel.

    Pattern being made of wood.

  • Work scenery

    As for the thing called Shinshu Uchihamono, there are various kinds of sickle, kitchen knife, hatchets, but decide to see the production process about sickle this time.

    Process 1: jigiri

    After having done the making of steel and the making of ground iron, we join steel to ground iron. Thickness becomes lighter steel than ground iron. It varies according to kinds of knife, but forge welding assumes, for example, steel of 2 millimeters to 9 millimeters of ground iron.

    Process 2: We bend Komi

    We change part coming in in pattern.

    Process 3: Waist soup stock

    We open part which we bend Komi and did.

    Process 4: Spread

    We beat to predetermined form carefully and open.

    Process 5: Overcome

    We prepare the point of a sword and add dimensions.

    Process 6: The making of Komi

    We prepare part coming in in pattern.

    Process 7: First coating

    After having heated up to 700 degrees in furnace, we beat with hand mallet and hammer and equalize thickness of "Hiller". Mastery of skills is necessary to equalize thickness.

    Process 8: Wild polish

    We remove iron oxide and refuse attaching to the surface and clean.

    Process 9: We hit carved seal

    We hit carved seal of trademark and quality indication to surface predetermined position.

    Process 10: Small run-in

    After having heated up to 500 degrees in furnace, we beat with hand mallet and smooth off the surface and raise toughness. "Fishing" peculiar to sickle "turf charge account" is referred then.

    Process 11: We polish average

    We improve part of steel in whetstone of middle eyes.

    Process 12: Quenching

    We paint with mud and we put in the water tank after the heating maintenance to around 780 degrees uniformly and quench. Organization of steel changes and is tense, and it is said, "there is command to knife" by this process. Because it makes hardenablility better to paint with mud.

    Process 13: Drawing

    It is process to keep tenacity that is suitable for steel. We let we prevent nicked part of an edge by keeping tenacity, and the sharpness last.

    Process 14: Twist collecting

    Because coefficient of expansion of ground iron is different from steel, after the quenching, curve and curvature occur. It is work to cure curve and curve.

    Process 15: Laboratory of blade abrasion, polish

    We polish in Habu (bafu) and give luster more.

    Process 16: Rust prevention

    We paint with camellia oil or varnish and assume rust prevention.

    Process 17: We fix pattern

    We attach form-formed pattern.


  • Close-up

    Shinshu Uchihamono which becomes strong because it is beaten

    Shinshu Uchihamono with the history of 450 years. Sickle of particularly this production center is famous that it is convenient without being tough, and the sharpness declining forever. In addition, we can make various types of knives simply because it is hand-kneaded. We asked craftsman who forged every knife this time story.


    A series of trial and error

    As for Mitsuyoshi Hatayama of Master of Traditional Crafts in succession to technique of Shinshu Uchihamono, both birth and the breeding are Shinanomachi. Business of parent was dajimbutsu, too. As for the business, older brother succeeded, and Hatayama did different work for a while. We come back to Shinanomachi at the age of 21 years old and come to help family. However, we look back toward those days saying it is saying it "is said, and nothing told, "do it" suddenly". "Therefore it was a series of trial and error everything. Steel (steel.that how is that we wear down, and one is early for some reason of machine Anyway, we well studied what to do whether we should use hard metal) used for the point of a sword to prevent steel and the groundwork from coming off, Hatayama is independence at the age of 26 years old. Thereafter a Shinshu Uchihamono ray gave life.

    State of workshop. Naked bulb lighting up hand is impressive

    Impurities fall out by swatting

    Big difference between knife and Shinshu Uchihamono made in mechanized factory is "to swat" in part of blade at the time of production. We may use mechanical hammer, but basically, anyway, beat even it recently. Why do you swat? "Impurities fall out by swatting, and organization becomes small. Then knife comes to cut well, and Hatayama says, we do eisetsu re (the sharpness do not decline forever). On the other hand, knife sold generally is knife of "die cutting". We are sharpened without being swatted, and the point of a sword is attached. Hatayama says, "the sharpness is entirely different if we compare" with confidence.

    I am amazed to learn that stick of the right-side end gradually changes to knife

    We change steel by kind of knife

    We let you pat on two kinds of metal each other to make Shinshu Uchihamono and make. Briefly, it is metal becoming metal and the point of a sword becoming the groundwork. We say metal becoming ground iron, the point of a sword with metal becoming the groundwork with steel (we do not tear off). It is part of steel to greatly affect the sharpness of knife, but the steel has kind, and characteristic is different each. "It is strong to be missing because steel with a little carbon has tenacity. Therefore to thickness sickle and plane. Steel with much carbon adjusts to use of eisetsu reshiteii knife when we use for thin sickle and kitchen knife and uses steel properly.

    Proof of heavy labor. Place where thumb hits wears down

    We try to use by oneself by all means

    Hatayama says, "we can make any knife" and, from sickle, hatchet (machete), kitchen knife, kitchen knife to knife for bonsai, makes in total various knives for order. "We use by oneself by all means if we make and check sharpness condition of blade. Therefore it is said that we can cut tree of around 3 centimeters in diameter cutting grass of backyard with sickle of Hatayama when we made sickle even if we do not use saw. It is that there is simply because it is sickle which is strong, and cuts well.

    We want you to choose knife to how to use

    When quantity that Hatayama can make per day is sickle, it is 20-50. Seal of gourd is usually carved with to knife which we made. However, it is carved with "jukichisaku" when it becomes thing of special order. It is pride as craftsman and proof of responsibility both. "We want you to choose knife which fitted use. For example, that we change sickle by kind of grass. Though it turns out that we try, workability is different. Anyway, we want you to use. It is word to be able to say simply because we have confidence toward own work. Such a knife which understands the good point so as to use if we use is Shinshu Uchihamono.

    It is engraved into special order thing with responsibility proudly with "jukichisaku"

    Craftsman profile

    Mitsuyoshi Hatayama (Hatake mountain Jukichi)

    It was born in 1946.
    Master of Traditional Crafts which says, "we always think to make good thing today than yesterday."
    "We are particular about temperature of quenching in particular"


    Of knife brimfully

    What kind of painting do you describe if said, "please describe painting of kitchen knife?" Probably we describe flight of Nami Nami near the point of a sword after many people outlined and may add. In fact, this Nami Nami is ground iron and border of steel. There is almost thing of straight line depending on thing, but thinks that it is revealed as color is strange.
    This is because knife which it is sharp well to use two kinds of iron by putting tenacity of ground iron and hardness of steel together well, and lasts a long time is completed. We may say even crystal of human wisdom. All the knives using two kinds of iron for like Shinshu Uchihamono have this Nami Nami.
    On the other hand, how about kitchen knife without Nami Nami? It is not hand-kneaded. By the way, on seeing kitchen knife which it is used you for, everybody, we will confirm Nami Nami.

    • We see line to hand-kneaded knife "brimfully"



Industrial art object name Shinshu Uchihamono
Phonetic symbol shinsyuuchihamono
Classification of industrial art object Metalworking product
Main product Sickle, kitchen knife, machete
Main production area Nagano / Nagano-shi, Chikuma-shi, Shinano-machi, Kamiminochi-gun, Iizuna-machi
The designation date March 5, 1982

Contact information

■local production associations

Shinshu Uchihamono industry cooperative association
359-2, Furuma, Shinano-machi, Kamiminochi-gun, Nagano
TEL: 026-255-3421

■Associated exhibit space, facility


Each sickle, kitchen knife becomes tough knife after we were forged because we beat and are stretched out. Even if width of blade is wide, and sickle has handle by "turf charge account" "fishing" horizontally, the sickle body stands diagonally, and it features that harvested grass is put at hand

Shinshu hand scythes and knives derive their incredible strength from the fact that each one is hammered into shape one by one after the metal is forged. The blade of the hand scythe is wide, and thanks to the particular angle of the blade and handle, even if grass is cut while the blade is held level, the grass falls conveniently into the hand, which a unique characteristic of the Shinshu hand scythe.

How to make

Heat steel becoming knife in furnace, and stop to hit mallet (soil); hit, and stretch out, and hit, and make wide geoshite form. Sickle "catches" "turf charge account" with single edge, and machete touches slim groove called single edge nataniha gutter. We perform work called mud coating, and quenching quenches. We attach blade and perform work to polish, and to finish by hand.

The steel used for the blade is heated in a forge, and then hammered out to create the shape of the blade. During the hammering process a scythe blade is given a single edge, and the unique angle and curve which allows convenient cutting, and a hatchet blade is given a single edge and a long narrow groove. In the tempering step, the blade is coated in a special clay and then rapidly cooled. Finally, the edge is ground and the blade polished by hand to finish the process.

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