Identify These Pruning Shears
October 20, 2019 4:49 PM   Subscribe

My partner found these pruning shears at the MIT SwapFest and bought them because they were inexpensive for the quality. We're curious about when and where they might have been manufactured, but we can't read the markings. I suspect these are Chinese rather than Japanese, but I can't be entirely sure. Any info someone could get from the design of the shears of the maker's mark would be welcome!
posted by tobascodagama to Home & Garden (4 answers total)
Response by poster: Not sure how I mixed that up in the ask, but I meant to say that I suspect they're Japanese.
posted by tobascodagama at 6:30 PM on October 20, 2019

SO says they might be Okatsune brand.
posted by Seboshin at 10:51 PM on October 20, 2019 [1 favorite]

Best answer: In case it helps in the search, here are what the markings say:

登錄 - it means record or registration in both Traditional Chinese and Japanese. I presume it could denote something like a registered trademark or patent?

豊恒 - from the stylised nature of the mark, I suspect this is the actual brand or name of the maker. It reads Feng Heng in Traditional Chinese; in Japanese it might read Toyotsune. (A word in kanji may be pronounced in a wide range of ways and thus look very different romanised).

本打 - both words exist in Chinese and Japanese.
posted by hellopanda at 9:25 AM on October 22, 2019 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: That is very helpful, actually! I tried searching Google for the characters in the maker's mark, now that you've identified what they are, but the only hits are for a construction company (as in, civil engineering) in Nagasaki prefecture. They definitely use those two characters in their company name, which Google renders as "Yutakatsune" on Maps but "Toyoheng" when I translate their website. I suspect Maps is more accurate about which pronunciation goes with the kanji, at least in the case of the construction company...

So either they used to be toolmakers as well or -- probably more likely -- there used to be a toolmaking company with the same name that no longer exists, or at least isn't talked about on the internet. I did try "Feng Heng" to rule that out, but that only had hits for a Singaporean construction company. Just based on the search results for the characters themselves only turning up Japanese hits, I'm inclined to think that Japanese is the right language after all.

It doesn't sound like I'll get a complete confirmation, but that's something at least.
posted by tobascodagama at 11:53 AM on October 22, 2019

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