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How do Yakut knives

Yakut knife — a national treasure of the Sakha people on an equal basis with mammoths, diamonds and khomus. Traditional Yakut knife byhah whose design has not changed for centuries, are widely used today in all spheres of economic activity of the people. It is focused around the convenience of a long and painstaking work, and simply created to separate the meat from the bone, whittling frozen fish, repair broken sledges.

Blacksmiths Alexander Danilov and Alexander Protopopov agreed to show and tell, how is this legendary thing.

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With artists I met at an exhibition of achievements of professional skill of the Sakha Republic (Yakutia) «Pros Expo-2015» in Yakutsk


Nerezov few hours we have already begun the process of manufacture.

Alexander Danilov was interested in knives since childhood. At first began to cut the tree, then carried away yuvelirkoy that later turned into a job. Blades began to try to do just for yourself. I bought blades for planers and gave them the form of the knife. Then he began to forge.

Alexander Yakut manufactures knives for twenty years, eight of them dedicated to the revival of traditional syrorudnoy melting.

Blacksmith Alexander Danilov shows Critz made the traditional way from iron ore used to make Yakut knives in his workshop.

Since ancient times, the Yakuts had developed production and processing of iron ore, as well as the art of smithing. And according to the testimony of Russian Cossacks in the XVII century to enter into conflict with the Yakuts, the quality of the iron ore produced from Yakut blacksmiths, not inferior to the best foreign samples.

For the manufacture of the Yakut knife smiths used alloy tool steel of various grades.

Exclusive knives are made from the ore.

Even in ancient times people gathered valuable ore along the rivers and make it a weapon.

Preparation of such ore is very time consuming. It needs to be burned, to enrich, to crush and then only to melt metal. 20 kg. ore is usually required metal leaves 10-11.

Coal is also necessary to procure their own. It is much cheaper to smiths.

Usually, to manufacture a blade takes 2-3 days.

Knives can be gift and workers. Basically they take the workers — they are used in the kitchen, hunting, fishing and in everyday life. Gift made to order, usually decorated with engravings and other decorative elements.

Alexander continues to equate the blade. The first feature — the asymmetrical profile of the blade. He sharpened only on the left side (if you hold the handle toward you), unlike other knives with asymmetrical profile, which is usually produced by grinding the working hands, t. E. On the right side of the blade. Honed side Yakut knife blade a little convex.

These characteristics have an explanation. Yakutia main material for processing — this tree. The bulge on the blade facilitates the removal of chips, giving the right effort, master accurately and easily adjust the depth of planing. This knife is transformed into a kind of high-precision multi-planer. In addition, it simplifies the cutting of meat or fish (including ice cream), and butchering of animals, removal from animal skins and its dressing. This significantly simplifies the process of sharpening tools.

Further, the workpiece into the hands of another masteru- Alexander Protopopov

He grinds and zatachivat workpiece.

On this machine the workpiece is already taking shape traditional knife. Tochitsya Yakut knife with one hand, on the other hand only removed the burr. It is easy to grind materials at hand, such as river pebbles.

The right-hand side of the blade is equipped with a blunt dolomite, which is called the Yakuts Jos. This is another feature of the Yakut knife. According to one version of this exotic detail is present from the time when the knife wholly made of sawn along the bone, and Jos — not that other, as the channel of the bone marrow.

The flat side of a blunt blade on the right side called byhah haptahaya. This face has a special role: it makes a cross-section of the blade close to the quadrangular shape. This reinforces the effect of the breakdown, for example, to pierce the thick skin (eg when tailoring) or drilling shallow holes.

20 pieces.

Alexander Protopopov 30 years working Excavator, 45 went to retire and has since started to make knives. At first it was a hobby, then work.
— «I still have a teacher — Vinokourov Semyon Vasilyevich. I show him my work. I think that people have a lifetime to learn «- says Smith.

Masters also are manufactured knives of Damascus steel. This process is so complicated on that pass it a couple of sentences do not work.

— «The oil is cooled and hardened in an oven. The oil can be heated to harden therein. Okay, carbon steel quenched at 780-1000 degrees, the oil lights at such temperature.V oil cooled, it provides a rapid and uniform cooling, which is very important carbon steel so that it is not cracked quenched. » — Says technologist beegg 23.

Yakut knife handle working traditionally carved from a single piece of birch burl — a very strong wood with a rich texture. It is flat, devoid of any stops and long enough. With long handle more convenient to work in the cold wearing gloves and expense of an elongated arm rises rubkost knife. In the section of the handle resembles an egg. This form is chosen so that during some work was not turned the knife in his hand. An interesting way of mounting the blade into the handle. First, a wide central opening is done and pointed shank is driven into the handle. Then, on each side of the blade inserted wedges-Chopik softwood. They are bursting, and they clamp the blade into the handle. In order to protect from moisture wooden handle, it is impregnated with special oils.

Sheath in this Yakut knives are simple and functional. They are made of oxtail, shot stocking, and inserted in it the wooden insert. Knife in leather sheath recessed 1/3 stick and locks into place by friction. Blade hangs freely in the timber liner inside the sheath.

It gives an opportunity to invest and to take out a knife with a blade, which freezes the blood and fat during winter butchering game. By the way, you can extract the Yakut knife with one hand and pushing his thumb into the mouth of the scabbard. The scabbard worn on a belt, in a free suspension of the leather strap in the position of the inclined to the horizontal.

The blade knives Alexandra Danilova is a brand with an image of an ancient drawing of an eagle.

Grinding sheath


Decorative elements on the table from the master.



Sheath trimmed with leather

The skin makes in nearby Ulus


Now you need a good skin glue and stitch

While you can sharpen a knife
37 itself.

Firmware sheath



The handle is covered with stain



To quickly dried up :))
45 knife ready.

That blade of Damascus

And this is the exhibition of achievements of professional skill of the Sakha Republic (Yakutia) «Pros Expo-2015» in Yakutsk





Prices knives blacksmiths from 5 000 to 70 000 rubles. It depends on the materials and complexity.

Yakut knife — is a simple and intuitive tool for working with wood, hides, skins, and of course, he has no equal when working with meat and cooking stroganina. Compare and not to confuse it with anything. In order to understand the beauty and convenience of the Yakut knife, you just need to take it in hand.


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2 комментария

  1. max:

    Hallo! I am a fisherman and hunter from Canada collecting and using traditional knives from around the world. I am a very big admirer of the northern style kives like the sami puukko and found the Sakha Peoples Yakut knife recently! I want to buy a knife from one of the masters like shown at the local markets. There are some sellers on ebay, but I don´t trust the origin. I want to buy directly from a lokal blacksmith. is there a place for me to get in contact or a website where i can purchase one or more knives? I want the original work and craftsmanship, not a souvenir! I thank you so much for your great article! all th best and kind regards from Canada!

  2. Alex:

    Max, still looking to buy from a local blacksmith?

    If so, mail me: frstrm100[at]

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