Samurai-style swordsmithing techniques can be used to create a professional knife from just about anything.

It’s a widespread belief that Japanese knife makers are arguably the best in the world, drawing on centuries of tradition that include hand-sharpening and hammering techniques used by samurai swordsmiths more than 1,000 years ago.

For Japanese YouTuber Attoteki Fushinsha no Kiwami, these traditional methods are perfect for making knives out of just about anything, and it’s a point he’s set out to prove with a number of impressive knife-making tutorials, where he shows us how to create blades from surprising everyday materials like dried bonito fish pieces.

Now the resourceful craftsman is showing us all how to transform a simple roll of aluminium foil into a super sharp knife, and the results are so professional that it’s hard to tell the difference between the end product and a store-bought item.

Take a look at the video below:

The 11-minute long clip shows just how much elbow grease and determination is required to transform ordinary kitchen foil into a spectacular kitchen knife. So let’s take another look at the intriguing step-by-step process.

The first step requires flattening the roll of foil and then removing the cardboard roll from inside it. Then it’s time to hammer the metal sheets down to flatten them, and the rectangular piece of compacted foil begins to resemble hard metal already, even giving off a metallic sound when tapped, as shown at the 2-minute-45-second mark in the video.

After compacting the foil, it’s time to trace the outline of a knife onto the metallic surface, and then get to work with a handsaw to cut out the shape of the handle and blade, before sanding the rough edges down for smoothness.

The blade then receives its first of many grindings on its way towards a sharp edge, with the #150 Diamond whetstone, followed by some time over a low flame, which separates the two main pieces of compacted foil.

The forging process continues, with more hand-hammering to harden the utensil and create an even surface. Then there’s some sanding to smooth things out, and it’s back to the grindstone again, this time with the #150 Diamond whetstone followed by the #1,000 Diamond. In between, the craftsman takes a moment so we can all admire the water-pouring cows used to wet his whetstones, with different-sized spouts creating optimal water flows.

Then it’s time to whip out the whetstone #2,000, which begins the journey towards giving the blade its sharp edge, followed by some time on the 6,000, 8,000, 12,000 and then the 30,000 for more and more fine sharpening.

Every good blade deserves an equally good handle, so Attoteki Fushinsha no Kiwami spends some time crafting one by tracing the handle of a store-bought kitchen knife on some wood.  After attaching it to the aluminium foil blade with a couple of screws, everything is sanded down meticulously to achieve a professional finish.

The final step is “stropping”, which takes the edge from sharp to super sharp, and then the results are revealed towards the end of the video, where the blade can be seen slicing through cucumbers with ease.

The materials might be simple, but the time and skill involved in this magical transformation is truly impressive. After mastering the aluminium foil blade, anything is possible, and if you’re out of foil but have some spare pasta in your pantry, the good news is you can make a knife from that too!

Source: YouTube/kiwami japan via Gizmodo
Featured image: YouTube/kiwami japan