What Type Of Steel Are Kamikoto Knives Made From?

What Type Of Steel Are Kamikoto Knives Made From?

Knives are used worldwide in almost every place. It’s in your home as a member of your kitchen appliances or a part of collections for a Knife enthusiast or an important tool in a restaurant.

Today we will talk about Kamikoto Knives, which are traditional Japanese knives, handcrafted by experienced handicraftsmen.

They craft various knives, with Kanpeki being the most popular among them. But we are here to talk about the most important part of the knife, which is the blade.

What Type Of Steel Are Kamikoto Knives Made From?

What Type Of Steel Are Kamikoto Knives Made From?

Kamikoto Knives use high-carbon steel which is forged by hands by a painstaking and long process for sharpness and more. However, there is more to the knife than just the material. Allow me to explain.

As mentioned, Kamikoto uses steel for its production of knives which comes from the steel mills of Honshu Island that have made steel for over 800 years, prefectures of Niigata, Ibaraki, and Kanagawa in Japan.

From those steel mills come two types of blades for Kamikoto Knives. They are the 420J2 steel and the SLD steel.

420J2 Steel

420J2 Steel
  • The firm employs genten series 420J2 steel, which has an HRC of 53 (+/-2) and is extremely corrosion resistant.
  • This blade is both hardened and stainless steel, with an HRC of 53. When used with Kamikoto knives, the blade is very sharp, as previously indicated.
  • This steel is recommended who do not mind sharpening and tending the blade with a whetstone.

SLD Steel

SLD Steel
  • Kamikato also uses SLD steel of the ganjo series which makes a high hardened blade with HRC 62 (+/-2).
  • This blade, however, falls in between stainless and non-stainless steel, making it semi-stainless steel.
  • This is ideal for those who work using highly hardened steel.
  • Both these steel are durable and have excellent sharpness as well as edge retention, but when compared with each other, there are differences between them.

Similarities And Differences Between The Steels

Similarities And Differences Between The Steels
Steel Types

As aforementioned, 420J2J is stainless steel, whereas SLD steel is semi-stainless steel. That indicates that SLD steel will start to stain earlier than 420J2J steel.


After the steels are forged into Kamikoto knives, the sharpness might be surprisingly similar.

On the other hand, SLD steel has a higher sharpness than 420J2J steel when the material is raw or unforged since it has a higher HRC value.

Carbon Steel

Both 420J2J steel and SLD steel are carbon steel, but SLD steel is more high-end carbon steel compared to 420J2J steel, making it harder.


About the hardness between these two steel, SLD steel beats 420J2J steel as SLD steel has HRC 62 (+/- 2), whereas 420J2J steel has HRC 53 (+/- 2) as we have previously mentioned.

Corrosion Of Steels

When it comes to corrosion of steel, SLD steel will rust faster compared to 420J2J steel. So if you need your blade for a long time without rust, 420J2J is the option.


The durability of the steel depends on the hardness of the steel. So as previously mentioned, SLD steel is more durable when compared to 420J2J making the steel long-lasting.

What Is HRC?

You have seen HRC for a while, but you might not know what it means. It is an abbreviation of Rockwell Hardness measured on the C scale.

HRC quantifies how big of a dent point is created with a given quantity of weight. The steel is harder when the mark is smaller.

As the rating of steel is higher, the harder the steel is. This cuts the finer. The sharpness also retains longer when the HRC rating is higher, but the drawback is that the steel rusts faster when the HRC rating is high.

How HRC Ratings Are Given?

Steel HRC ratings are determined using a Rockwell Hardness Tester, which involves several procedures, calculations, and tests. As a minimum, a specimen with a thickness of 6.35 mm is used.

This test specimen must have a smooth surface with no burrs, sink marks, or other protrusions.

The test specimens are put on a steel anvil and are initially loaded with a small load of 10 kg. Furthermore, tests are carried out and categorized.

The steel used in Kamikoto Knives is branded HRB if it is of the ‘B’ category, and HRC if it is of the ‘C’ category.


In this article, we have talked about what type of steel are Kamikoto knives made from. Moreover, we talked about the steel used, which are 420J2J steel of the genten series and SLD steel of the ganjo series.

Furthermore, we have talked about the similarities and differences between these steels in terms of sharpness, hardness, durability, and much more. With this information, you can choose the blade which is perfect for your work!

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