|Review by David Kirtley||posted 05-26-2010 07:35 AM||7470 views||0 times favorited||17 comments|
(Sorry for the picture, it is Grizzly’s picture of these chisels. I would have taken my own but it’s late and I didn’t realize that a review required a picture to post. Mine look just like the ones in the picture.)
Well, I have been debating a long time and finally went ahead and ordered the 10 piece Japanese chisel set from Grizzly. I had read other reviews from elsewhere and I figured that I would like to try them out. I have always wanted to try out some Japanese Chisels.
This is not a bad thing, but the first thing I though when I opened the box was:
Wow. They are a lot smaller chisel than I always thought they looked in the pictures. Just to give a little perspective, most of my other chisels are old socket chisels ranging from big up to slick range so these are going to fill a different niche. They are about the same size as a western bench chisel. Comparable to an old Stanley 750 socket chisel. About 5 in long blade with a 4 inch handle so about 9 inches overall length.
They came fairly ready, but need sharpening before use. That was expected. As delivered, the edges were nice and square to the length.They look like they are sharpened to about 400 grit range. They clearly spent the effort to flatten the back and the grinding is done quite well. A couple minutes each on a water stone will have them ready to go.
Some people have complained that the hoops were not set traditionally. No biggie. They will set well enough in use. As is, it looks like they were stuck on while the lacquer on the handles was wet but they are well sized for the handles.
Overall, I would rate them as an excellent value. They appear to be a lot higher quality than anything near them in their price range. A huge step above the big box home improvement fare. Definitely not something relegated to opening paint cans. They will be very nice for paring and seem to be hefty enough that I wouldn’t hesitate to take a mallet to them for some heavier chopping. I would probably reach for something else if I were chopping and prying out big deep mortises. Besides, if I were chopping out a mortise, I would not go for something with beveled edges anyway.
The only reasons I did not give them a 5 star rating:
The sizes of them are a bit odd. Not metric odd, English odd. They were pretty obviously shooting for English sizing. The 1/8 and 1/4 were right on. The rest were consistently about 1/32 undersized except for the largest which was about 1/16 under sized.
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