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HSS Nomi Japanese Wood Chisels

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HSS Nomi Japanese Wood Chisels

Rutlands    Part No. JP1064
The ideal chisels for heavy duty cutting and hard rough work, these nomi have single piece Japanese high speed steel blades. Japanese high speed steel has a finer structure than the steel found in western chisels and because of this can be made much harder, around Rc-66 as opposed to Rc-61, and will hone to a far sharper, finer edge. As these chisels are built for heavy duty work, the blades are mounted on longer handles, increasing the reach of the chisel.

The handles are made from solid red oak and feature a forged steel reinforcing band at the top. A long tang and tapered ferrule ensure the blade is held securely in the handle and gives these chisels a solid feel in use. Japanese chisels differ greatly in construction and form to the more familiar Western style chisels common in workshops today.

Drawing on centuries of metal working knowledge and skill dating back to the very finest sword makers to the Samurai, many Japanese woodworking chisels are still hand made by the individual blacksmiths whose names they bear. Masters of their craft, which would take an apprentice approximately 10-15 years to learn, these blacksmiths produce chisels that are unparalleled in performance even by chisels made using today's state of the art technology.

Traditional Japanese chisels or "Nomi" feature bi-metallic blades. This is usually an extremely hard tool steel with a softer iron or steel forge welded over the top. This offers a distinct advantage over Western style single metal blades. The harder a steel is, the sharper an edge it is able to take. Unfortunately, the harder a steel is, the more brittle it becomes so, for single metal blades there is a maximum hardness that can be reached before a blade becomes too brittle to be used practically.

With the Japanese bi-metal blades, the softer top layer acts like a shock absorber to the harder metal cutting layer ensuring that the hammer blows that would damage or crack a single metal blade of the same hardness has little effect on the Japanese blade. Japanese chisels require a small amount of work on them before they are ready for use.

The steel reinforcing ring at the top of the handle must be fitted properly before the chisel is first used. To do this, remove the ring from the handle and gently file around the top of the handle to reduce the diameter slightly. This should allow the steel ring to sit further down the handle. When striking the chisel with a hammer, the hammer must not contact the ring but rather the wood above the ring. The wood above the ring will eventually spread over the top of it. This helps to protect both the hammer and the reinforcing ring when the chisel is used.
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  • Brand Rutlands
    Country of Origin Japan
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