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Help Centre / FAQ

Payments and Purchasing

Yes, we accept payments via PayPal.

We also have the option of a PayPal Express Checkout to make the process as fast and easy as possible.

Yes, we offer Afterpay as a payment option during checkout.

Afterpay allows you to pay for your woodworking tool, kitchen knife or whetstone over 4 equal payments, allowing you to have the product faster and pay it off over time.

You get the tool, knife or whetstone straight away and pay in 4 fortnightly repayments, all with no interest or fees charged to you. So what's the catch...

Firstly, we pay a percentage to Afterpay, so we are paying to provide this service, this cost isn't passed on to you, we gladly do so to provide an extra service to our valued clients. The only risk of charge to you is if a scheduled payment is missed, if so a service charge is applied ($10 from what we understand but check with Afterpay for more detail).

Short Answer: Add an email address to you checkout details and try again.

Long Answer: ProTooling, as many other stores, allows you to checkout without entering an email address, allowing a phone number to be used as a convenience for some clients. This option does however conflict with the Afterpay system as they require an email address to process their payments.

If you do not have an email address entered and choose Afterpay as your payment method the page will attempt to link to the external Afterpay website(as normal), then automatically loop back to our site when it does not see the correct data.

This is a known conflict that is experienced with many online stores, all that's required to fix this is to add your email address.

Yes, we stand by the products we sell.

Just return the product(s) as you received them and we will organize an exchange. Contact us for more detail but we do need the product and original packaging in new condition.



Shipping and Handling

We are proud to offer same-day dispatch on all of our products.

Our same-day shipping is available for all orders received before 3.00pm Monday - Friday (excluding public holidays).

Orders received after these times will still be attempted to send same-day, otherwise they will leave first thing on the next business day.

Yes, we guarantee you will receive your products in new condition (unless otherwise stated).

Please contact us as soon as possible if you have not received your item or if they have been damaged during transport.

We pack all of our items to handle the rigors of courier transport and provide tracking detail on all of our shipments.

We are an online-only store and do not currently provide a collection service.

In an effort to provide the best possible price, on the best quality products we do not provide a collection facility. We are set-up as lean as is possible, focusing on providing the best quality woodworking tools, Japanese knives and whetstones for the best price possible. In most instances, shipping is free of charge and products are shipped same-day.

Within Australia, we primarily use Australia Post. All shipments come with tracking, and all are guaranteed to arrive in new condition (unless otherwise stated).

For larger items or faster delivery times we use DHL and FedEx courier companies, this also applies for international shipments.

Yes, we do ship internationally on most items.

International shipping prices are generally given at check-out or within the cart shipping calculator. Please contact us if your country is not listed or you would like a personalised quotation.



Japanese Hand Tools

We certainly can't give a blanket statement that Japanese hand saws are better than all western style saws, but overall they do perform better, especially when comparing the price.

Japanese hand saws are extremely accurate, beautiful saws to use. They represent great value for money and are widely considered to be one of the best value upgrades you can make to your woodworking.

View our range of Japanese Pull-Saws here...

The primary models of Japanese hand saws (Nokogiri) are...

Ryoba Saw - this is a doubled side hand saw, with different teeth configurations on either side of the saw blade. If you don't buy one of our kits (which are great value by the way, cough, just saying), then a Ryoba saw is a great first buy. Double sided for wider applications, this is the most usable Japanese hand saw and one of the best starting points into the world of Japanese hand tools.

Kataba Saw - this is probably the closest hand saw to what we see outside of Japan. Obviously your woodworking applications may be different but I would rate this as the next useful saw after the Ryoba. Made for deep cutting and ripping applications, the 2 main types of Kataba saw are the Universal and the Cross-Cut. The cross-cut saw is made for cutting across the grain of timber, while the universal hand saw is used for cutting both with and across the grain. Universal saws are also know as Hybrid Saws, just to make it more complicated. We tend to recommend the universal variant of Kataba saw as this is the most flexible in application for someone starting out.

Dozuki Saw - even though all Japanese saws are very precise, this is next level precision. If you need something for ultra fine joinery, start here. You cannot go as deep with these hand saws due to the wide spine on the back of the saw blade, but this strengthening element makes the saw ultra precise, great for dovetail joints and the like.

Flush-Cut Saw - sometimes called a Kugihiki saw (although rare locally) this is a really useful hand saw. I'm always surprised by how many times these saws have been extremely useful. As it says on the tin, cuts flush against another surface thanks to it's ultra flexible blade.

View our range of Japanese Pull-Saws here...

Yes! All of our Japanese woodworking tools and kitchen knives are made in Japan.

Most of the woodworking tools and knives we stock are hand made, hand forged and hand assembled by skilled, specialised craftsman within Japan.

Japanese Chisels (or "Nomi" in Japan) do require some set-up (also known as "tuning") before use to their full potential.

Depending on the chisel, usually fitment of the rear iron hoop is required, along with flattening the back of the blade and sharpening the bevel. We recommend watching one of the many online video tutorials available showing this process. Please contact us if you would like specific links.

Japanese Chisels are bespoke woodworking tools that are usually made by multiple specialist craftsmen in a tradition that dates back hundreds of years. A specialist blacksmith will forge the steel blades and then pass the tool to a second specialist who will then craft and fit a timber handle for the chisel. As timber can change over time and in different climates (such as here in Australia), the specialist will leave some leeway for fine tuning and fitment when fianally employed for use.

View our range of Japanese Chisels here...

As is the case with Japanese Chisels, Japanese Woodworking Planes (known as "Kanna" in Japan) do require some set-up or "tuning" before use.

Like Japanese chisels, their woodworking planes will require the blade to be flattened and sharpened. Along with this process, the blade will need to be tuned to fit the body along with the base being flattened.

Japanese Woodworking planes are deliberately manufactured for the body to be too tight for the blade. This is to account for any shift that may occur with the timber body during time or climate changes. We recommend watching one of the many online video tutorials available showing this process. Please contact us if you would like specific links.

View our range of Japanese Woodworking Planes here...



Japanese Kitchen Knives

Japanese kitchen knives are generally sharper and lighter than their western kitchen knife counterparts, with different variations to the shape, size and edge geometry specific to ingredients or kitchen tasks. Japanese kitchen knives broadly use harder, more refined steels and narrower grinds that can retain much sharper edges, along with overall being thinner and lighter than German or western knife variants.

The blanket statements of old are becoming blurred, many high end blacksmiths in the west are now employing traditional Japanese techniques and materials in their knife making. Conversely, some Japanese kitchen knives are now made in the shape of western knives. When comparing high end kitchen knives at this level, we normally find that Japanese kitchen knives are better value for the performance levels achieved.

As the steels used in most Japanese knives are harder, they should be more difficult to sharpen, but the thickness difference means they are actually easier to sharpen than most western knife counterparts.

As is the case with all of the products we source from Japan, the craftsmanship, attention to detail and quality control is much higher than kitchen knives or tools produced elsewhere.

Generally we recommend a "Santoku" or "Gyuto" knife as your first Japanese kitchen knife, both of these knives are of similar shape to western "chef knives" and are great all-round performers for all tasks within the kitchen.

Another consideration is which type of steel to choose. Generally we recommend a stainless steel kitchen knife as your first experience before stepping up to carbon steel knives at a later point. To give a single example of a great starting knife, it would be this Gyuto... Morihei Hisamoto Inox 210mm Gyuto... or for a smaller, less imposing start, this Santoku... Kiyotsuna Jyou Saku 165mm Santoku...

We have a dedicated page for the care and maintenance of Japanese kitchen knives... view the page here

Damascus Steel is a traditional method of layering and folding different steels to achieve certain physical characteristics. With ancient legend of Damascus steel swords cutting through the barrel of a gun, it has been the choice for use in high end kitchen knives for hundreds of years. Modern steel production can now out perform damascus steel, and as with all products, the quality and performance comes down to the individual craftsmen, what techniques are employed and to which type of steels are within each kitchen knife. We meticulously select and specify all steel types used within the knives we stock, specialising in high quality artisan products.

There are examples of fake Damascus steel kitchen knives, with the wave like pattern being etched onto the knife blade to give the appearance of Damascus Steel. All of our Damascus steel knives are sourced from premium manufacturers who in turn select only high quality materials.

View our range of Japanese Damascus Knives here...

Short Answer... no, it is not recommended.

Oil stones & diamond plates are generally too coarse and too aggressive for use on high HRC (hardness) steel like that used in most Japanese kitchen knives.

Honing steels, or sharpening steels do come in many variants with a small number being suitable to a point. Fine ceramic hones are sometimes recommended for Japanese knives but we generally advise against their use.

We recommend Japanese Whetstones for all aspects of sharpening, including daily honing where a few passes on a high grit stone is enough to maintain a very sharp edge. Whetstones can be quite inexpensive and are not as difficult to use as many would have you believe.

View our range of Japanese Whetstones here...

Generally, people do prefer the balance of Japanese kitchen knives. This is a personal choice, and there are many examples of good and bad knives on both sides of the coin, however, Japanese kitchen knives are usually lighter than their German or western counterparts with a more neutral balance that is easier to hold with a light grip and for longer periods of use.



Japanese Whetstones (Sharpening Stones)

Generally a medium sized stone with a grit level between 800 and 3,000 is a great starting point.

These are great as they come with a base and flattening stone.

Or these are a nice forgiving stone when starting out.

If you can stretch the budget slightly, one of our dual-stone whetstones is even better, giving 2 levels of grit to be able to refine a very dull edge or take out chips with a lower grit and then obtain a sharper, more polished edge with the higher.

These dual whetstones are some of our favourites...

Short Answer... no, it is not recommended.

Oil stones & diamond plates are generally too coarse and too aggressive for use on high HRC (hardness) steel like that used in most Japanese kitchen knives.

Honing steels, or sharpening steels do come in many variants with a small number being suitable to a point. Fine ceramic hones are sometime recommended for Japanese kitchen knives but we generally advise against their use.

We recommend Japanese Whetstones for all aspects of sharpening, including daily honing where a few passes on a high grit stone is enough to maintain a very sharp edge. Whetstones can be quite inexpensive and are not as difficult to use as many would have you believe.

View our range of Japanese Whetstones here...

Most whetstones available on the market today are synthetic, or man-made. Some synthetic whetstones, like our Morihei Karasu are made using natural stone powder (which we really like to use), but mainly whetstones from all over the globe (not just Japan) are man-made using various synthetic compounds.

Natural Whetstones are as they sound, they are naturally occurring stone that is literally mined from the earth. These stones are what has traditionally been used for thousands of years to sharpen tools and knives but are becoming more rare and hard to source.

The composition of a natural whetstone has varying grit level throughout, it is said that this contrast imparts microscopic variation to a sharpened edge which results in slightly different wear rates and longer edge retention. There is something very special about sharpening knives or tools on a natural, mined stone.

View our range of natural Japanese whetstones here...

On the flip side, synthetic whetstones are made with exacting standards and repeatable results, they can last longer than natural stones and are more predicable in use. Synthetic stones are recommended as your first purchase, with the view to add some "flavour" with natural sharpening stones at a later point. These whetstones are more forgiving in use, cheaper to purchase and available in wider range of grit levels, sizes and shapes for use in different applications.

Finger stones are very thin natural whetstones used for polishing. Traditionally used for sword polishing in Japan, finger stones are now often used to polish woodworking tools and kitchen knives.

Finger stones are very rare, all of our stones are one off products, once sold they are extremely hard to source replacements for. There are many resources online showing the use of these special stones.

View our range of Japanese Finger Stones here...