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Maruka ?

I keep seeing auctions for Nakayama Marukas that are all koppas. That can't be right, can it ?
 

David

Ask me which is more painful!
Moderator Emeritus
Maruka stamps mean very little these days. When the eBay stone slingers have 10 to 1 maruka stamped stones than the few legitimate sellers you know something is up.
 
I was thinking marukas are never koppa shaped though - I would never gamble on an expensive jnat on ebay anyway, just curious about the koppa aspect.
 
I believe they exist.
Maksim is a reliable vendor,

 
Maruka koppa does exist. Various reliable sellers have sold them but like stated above be very careful what you buy and bid on. I believe it comes down to looks, cut, be it skin if you believe in that etc. Then there are different variants of the stamp itself. You put all those things together, throw in some faith in the seller and you buy.
One thing to keep in mind, a lot of razor stones were cut smaller than full size. Here is a pic of a hatanaka stone, they usually come with the maruka stamp as well.

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I wouldn't trust those on fleabay to be genuine Maruka. The real ones command absolutely top dollar. The guy from japan-tool has some incredible examples of brick-sized Maruka stones. Ain't exactly giving them away either...
 
Maruka koppa does exist. Various reliable sellers have sold them but like stated above be very careful what you buy and bid on. I believe it comes down to looks, cut, be it skin if you believe in that etc. Then there are different variants of the stamp itself. You put all those things together, throw in some faith in the seller and you buy.
One thing to keep in mind, a lot of razor stones were cut smaller than full size. Here is a pic of a hatanaka stone, they usually come with the maruka stamp as well.

View attachment 1053506

That is one FIIINE looking stone! Love the Nashiji on green.
 
There is only one 'Maruka' stamp. It is owned by one vendor, Hatanaka. He, well - they - have several 'lines' or brands that are assigned a 'house stamp'. Hatahoshi is another one. The Maruka stamp has not been used in a very long time, any stone with a fresh looking Maruka ink stamp is going to, most likely, be a fake. Same for Hatahoshi stamps actually, although they were in use more recently than the Maruka stamp. There were stones of many different sizes and shapes bearing Hatanaka's company stamps, Koppa included. Those old stones, the real authentic ones, are mostly unobtanium now though.
 
I am at the point I consider any stamp suspect and either buy based on: a-a cheap dice roll, or b-I trust someone to be giving accurate characteristics.
 
I generally avoid stamped stones these days, many are fake, and you lose a lot of value lapping off stamps on the face. Another reason is the stamps don’t usually mean that the stone is suited for a particular use; IOW a stamped stone is no more likely to be a top-notch razor hone than an unstamped one.

There’s one exception, a vintage Kato-era maruka stamp. I have 3 of those and they’re all excellent razor finishers.
 
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