Wood-carved gadgets a hit in Tokyo

Japanese wood crafts maker Hacoa goes all-out gadget with a new shop filled with Crave-able goods.

Good enough to eat? These USB keys from Japan's Hacoa come in maple and walnut--finishes, not flavors. Tim Hornyak/CNET

TOKYO--How important is the feel of your favorite tech toy? If you're sick of plastic, you won't be barking up the wrong tree with a visit to Japanese wood crafts producer Hacoa.

I'd wanted to see Hacoa's stuff ever since its crushworthy wooden keyboard from a few years back.

So when I heard that Hacoa had opened its first exclusive shop in Tokyo recently, I had to drop by and see what they'd brought back from the forest. Japan has few natural resources but lots of woodlands, as well as a rich tradition of woodcraft.

Hacoa, based in Fukui Prefecture and founded in 1962, had on display its Full Ki-Board, which adds a number pad to the earlier version.

The price: a mere 89,250 yen ($1,141). It does feel silky-smooth to the touch, though. See the promo vid below.

The new shop, located under the tracks near Tokyo's Akihabara electronics district, has a plethora of wooden gadget accessories and is a testament to the brand's growing popularity.

From custom-engraved iPhone cases to gorgeously lacquered USB keys, Hacoa's craftsmanship has even graced the desks of an APEC leaders' summit last year.

See more pics in our gallery, including wooden handguns from Nocra with an unexpected form of ammo.

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