The British Bonsai Traders Association Fair

Looking at my Bonsai calendar for events in September, I see we have The British Bonsai Traders Association Fair at Don Valley Stadium, Sheffield on Sunday 23rd September.

It says in their promotional material, that it is the perfect opportunity to get your bonsai essentials. “Everything you need including trees, tools, wire, pots, composts, stands, tables and much more.  Where experienced bonsai artists and novices meet and greet to share the latest tips and secrets, giving the best advice for successful bonsai cultivation.”

Well as you might be aware, the city of Sheffield originally made its name as the Steel City, producing massive amounts of a top quality steel.

So this brings me to my dilemma:

I need to replace my rather old and well worn bonsai tools.  They were relatively inexpensive and have now seen better days.

Yes, I should have maintained them in better condition, but they have given me many years of loyal service and I have promised myself that the next set will be cleaned, lightly oiled,  and in essence, last me a lifetime.

You might see advertisements on the internet: CRAZY prices on Budget Bonsai Tools! or  REMEMBER you get what you pay for!

Do I really want to go down this route again?

… or should it be, as researched on the internet?

  • stainless steel (presumably, a misnomer, as they are neither steel nor completely stainless – although, improved corrosion resistance  with the correct amount of chromium in the composition of the stainless steel).  May not hold sharp edges well.
  • black finish carbon steel, presumably the best all round tools and will last longer, albeit expensive.
  • Japanese tools have better craftsmanship over Chinese tools?
  • another ‘budget set’ – look after them and have enough loose change for another tree or pot!

Now having done some very basic research, could this be any clearer to me?  I suppose it really depends on my mood and budget.

Well, I will wait until the 23rd and ask the numerous experts on hand, their advice – notepad and pen at the ready.

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