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Hezhen Nakiri Knife Review (Master Series)

The Hezhen Nakiri comes with Damascus layers, which adds to the aesthetic. The Sycamore wooden handle is nicely polished and goes seamlessly through the bolster. At the but of the handle, they have added a mosaic rivet. 

Hezhen Master Series Sycamore Handle with Mosaic Rivet
Hezhen Master Series Sycamore Handle with Mosaic Rivet

Hezhen Nakiri 10Cr15CoMoV Core Material

The Hezhen Nakiri comes with a 10Cr15CoMoV core material with a claimed Rockwell hardness of around 60 to 62. The core material sits between a Japanese VG10 and AUS10 in terms of sharpness and durability. 

Hezhen 10cr15comov
Hezhen 10Cr15CoMoV

Edge durability & sharpened angle

The knife is sharpened at a 15-degree angle per side. This angle gives the knife extra durability without sacrificing its sharpness. You should be aware that you should not cut through hard things like bones or frozen food since that will significantly increase the chances of chipping the edge. 

Hezhen Nakiri Choil
Hezhen Nakiri Choil

Edge Retention

With a Rockwell of 60 to 62, the knife can hold the edge for around 5 to 7 months with regular honing sessions before needing whetstone maintenance. 

Hezhen Nakiri Front

Weight and Spine tapering 

The knife has no distal spine tapering, which is typical for a Nakiri. The thickness across the spine is 2mm with a weight of 228grams. 

2.0mm thick and 228gramsj

Hezhen Nakiri Flex

The Nakiri from Hezhen is pretty stiff, and there is no noticeable flex during use. 

No Flex during use pretty stiff

Knife handle

Because of the handle design, the most comfortable grip is a pinch grip at the handle. You can still hold it in the bolster area, but you won’t benefit from the handle design.  

Sycamore Wooden Handle

Knife balance point

The balance point of this knife is at the front. If you pinch the grip at the bolster or the handle, the knife will be front-heavy.

Front Heavy balance point
Front Heavy balance point

Blade profile

The blade has a gently curved belly in the middle. It is not too pronounced. You are still able to rock on herbs or mince on other types of food. 

Gently curved blade profile

Knuckle Clearance

With the pinch grip at the handle or bolster, you still have enough knuckle clearance. However, you will lose the clearance with a thump grip. 

Enough knuckle clearance
Enough knuckle clearance

Fit and Finish

The fit and finish were great, the packaging was good, and there is no sharp edges or protrusions. 

Good fit and finish

Final Conclusion and My Recommendation

After testing this knife, I can say that Hezhen is one of the select few that does a good job with the 10Cr15CoMoV core material. What you should consider before buying the master series is the handle design. If you are a pinch gripper at the blade or bolster, the handle design from the master series would not be your ideal choice. While it is still possible, I think that other handle designs would fit you better. If you already use a pinch grip at the handle, then the master series from Hezehn is something you can consider buying. 

Hanlde designed for a handle grip
Hanlde designed for a handle grip

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  1. Thanks for the great article.

    I am considering buying the Kiritsuke from Hezhen as my first high end knife.

    I like the Kiritsuke shape, but a Kiritsuke in Damascus from most other brands cost so much higher. Is this a knife you would recommend at this price point? Cheers

    1. It is very hard for me to recommend a knife I did not try, I do have my eyes on that knife but did not pull the trigger to order yet.
      Since there are 2 things in mind, the price range is going towards a Japanese-made knife, however, I want to see how far the Chinese-made knives have come.
      They keep improving their knives to a point where I need to go past the judgment of Japanese-made vs Chinese-made knives but just have to compare the craftsmanship.

      They have improved one of the main things that I encountered in the past and that was the inconsistency and weird choices in terms of profile and thickness and the fancy-looking handles.

      And it makes it more interesting that Xinzuo/Hezhen is one of the knife brands that is coming out with a higher-priced premium looking knife a brand that I could recommend based on their mid-range knives

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