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  • - [Narrator] When it comes to Japanese metal work,

  • knives usually get all the glory.

  • But in the city of Sakai,

  • where blacksmithing goes back to the making

  • of samurai swords in the 14th century,

  • one craftsman has built a legacy

  • on something a little different.

  • Scissors to split paper, food, and, of course, Bonsai trees.

  • This is Yasuhiro Hirakawa, who works under the brand Sasuke.

  • - [Narrator] Hirakawa is a fifth generation scissor maker,

  • and he has been doing it for half a century.

  • He is the only traditional scissor craftsman

  • left in all of Japan.

  • - [Narrator] It takes Hirakawa a week or longer,

  • working 10 hours a day, to make a pair of scissors-

  • three to four times as long as making a knife;

  • and that effort is reflected in the price.

  • (hammering)

  • - [Narrator] But what are you gonna do

  • with scissors that expensive?

  • To answer that,

  • here's Masakazu Yoshikawa, a craftsman of Bonsai.

  • (cheerful orchestral music)

  • For a master like Yoshikawa,

  • a key in crafting perfect Bonsai,

  • is the perfect pair of scissors.

  • (hammering)

  • (snipping)

  • (hammering)

  • - [Narrator] And Yoshikawa still remembers

  • his first pair of Sasuke scissors.

  • (hammering)

  • - [Narrator] But for Hirakawa,

  • he's only just gotten started.

  • (hammering)

- [Narrator] When it comes to Japanese metal work,

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