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Bummer about the shipping. Very happy to see this Seki City Hiro knife- committed at 99. This is what Blades should be about. When available this knife sells for about 150 to 170. It's an honest Japanese interpretation of a pukko (sp) knife. Highly collectible and useful bushcraft knife that should be very well made. Great steel, full tang, warm wood handles, and hollow pins. If it's even close to the other Seki City knives in my collection it's a winner.
" The Seki-City, Gifu-Prefecture is a small town located in the middle of Japan, and is famous worldwide for its production of fine knives like Solingen in Germany.
The history (about 780 years) of Seki cutlery industry dates back to the 13th century, when master swordsmith, Motoshige moved from Kyushu district to Seki and began making his swords here. He chose Seki for its rich natural as well as material conditions. Seki offered, at the top of the list, good quality iron sand, charcoal and water.
During the Muromachi Era (1338-1573), which began just a century later, there were over 300 swordsmiths working in Seki. Kanemoto Magoroku and Saburo Shizu were two of the most famous. The superior quality of Seki swords and the name of Seki were quickly recognized throughout Japan and its solid reputation as a swordmaking center was established.
The techniques and skills and the ancient attitudes of traditional Japanese swordmaking has been passed down across the centuries and are still alive in today's modern cutlery industry. And Seki City remains a vibrant center of Japanese cutlery manufacture."