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Shun classic vs. Wusthof Ikon

post #1 of 28
Thread Starter 
Hi everyone, I am new to cheftalk, but I think I'll feel at home here :chef:
(I love cooking and I'm serious about it)

Okay, so I am getting a second 8 inch chef's knife (I have a global). I have narrowed my choices down to a wusthof ikon and a shun classic, both of which have the same price. I tried them at William Sonoma; both of them were aesthetically pleasing, but the shun looked even nicer. The Ikon felt a tad bit better in my hand by just a small, small bit. However, the Shun felt more balanced. But I've heard that the Shuns are sharper and easier to maintain (less time between sharpenings) and the sharpening steel has the correct angle on the base. I am open to suggestions.

-Thank You
post #2 of 28
I'm not going to be able to make it easier for you to decide on which one as each have their flaws.

The biggest problem on me commenting on these knives is that I've not used or seen in person the Wusthof Ikon, the closest I've tried is the Classic and Grand Prix lines. Both very nice and overpriced (IMO) German knives. Something about the Classic that feels just right for a German knife, but the Ikon is a very different looking knife with a handle that's trying to be too smart for its own good.

As for the Shun Classic, it's a Germanised Japanese knife with a somewhat fat blade (for a Japanese knife) but makes up for it with a superior core steel. I don't have a problem with the shape of the handle as such, but more a problem with the balance of the knife. I've put a co-worker's 8" Shun Classic chefs through it's paces I felt that the knife was excessively handle/butt heavy. But that might be because I use a pinch grip on blades that shifted the 'pivot' point forward. It cut well for a stainless knife, but the balance in my hands is a bit off.

The biggest fault with my opinions are that I've not handled the Ikon before, but the handle just throws me looking at it. The Shun while I've used it, I feel that there are better value knives out there (or at least in my hands they are).

Are you open to trying high carbon steel?
(or at least stainless-clad carbon steel knives)
post #3 of 28

Have the Ikon

I really love the way it fits my hand, it handles really well and I am pretty happy with it. Have no issue with the edge.

Look for sales, deals, these are pricy, shop well before you buy.
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post #4 of 28
Jonowee, could you be more specific about what turns you off re: the Ikon handles.

I have several Classic Ikons (albiet not a chef's knife), and find them to be incredibly comfortable in the hand. I can work by grasping the handles or pinching the blades, as appropriate, and the f the knife remains balanced and easy to use. Plus I like what they look like.

On the other hand, I'm not particularly turned on by the Shuns. They strike me as an overpriced attempt to capitalize on the "Japanese" thing. I don't find them aesthetically pleasing nor comfortable in my hand. I know I'm in a minority about that, but what can you do.
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post #5 of 28
Shuns are decent knives, but not exceptional -- except as to looks. They're very fashionable right now, and at the top of the trend. Unless you know for sure your knife will never be handled by a lefty, don't get the Shun. Also, be aware that the Damascus pattern can be easily damaged with normal cleaning. At the end of the day, you'll find it very much like your Global. If you want to stay with Japanese versions of European chef's knives (gyuto), there are much better out there.

The Wusthof Ikon is an interesting choice. If you like a German style chef's knife with an ergonomic handle, and cut-down bolster, it's an excellent knife. There's plenty of contrast between it and your Global. Of course, that may or may not be a good thing. If you like contrast, there's more still with a Classic or Le Cordon Bleu. More so with the Classic, as it has a full bolster and all of the traditional German "heft." It's also got a more neutral balance (like your Global) than either the Shun or the Ikon -- both of which are slightly "balance forward."

FYI, there's not a lot of difference in steel quality between Wusthof's top line knives and Shun's VG-10. The edges are profiled differently, though. Are you aware that Shuns and Wusties should be sharpened at different angles? Shun at the same 15* as your Global, and Wusties at around 20*.

Speaking of contrast -- you might do better with a 10" (or at least 240mm). 8" is for people with very small hands, very small boards, or without the confidence for a full sized chef's. It's only confidence, once you get comfortable with a bigger knife, the world is your ersker.

I'm with jonowee. There are better choices at or near the money. Better values, better performers, better lookers, more interesting, and of course, "(e)," various combinations of the above. At least with the French shape. Of course, any knife has at least some drawbacks, too.

It's interesting that you're torn between the French shaped Shun and German shaped Wusthof blades. They perform the same tasks very differently, and most people strongly prefer one to the other. Perhaps some of your consideration should be based on how you use a knife.

Can you tell us something about your hand size? Board size?

Any reason in particular you want another 8" chef's? What don't you like about your Global?

What do you use to sharpen your knives? What to steel them?

Echoing jonowee -- would you be amenable to non-stainless knives? And/or knives that are stainless outside, but non-stainless at the edge?

Let us know,
BDL
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post #6 of 28
As I mentioned earlier having not used the Ikon as the biggest fault in commenting on them.

But on a personal level I really don't like knives that have over-'ergonomic' handles eg. Shun Ken Onion, Zwilling Five Star, Wusthof Gran Prix II, Global and the likes of them. The closest ergonomised handle I like are ErgoGrip handles on F Dick processing knives, other than that it's wooden classical riveted German (sans full bolster please) or traditional Japanese handles for me.

This Shun head to head with this Wusthof, only gets by with mainly with it's core steel (for a stainless) and slightly on blade geometry. Slightly.

Given the money for either that Wusthof or that Shun (or even any Wusthof or Shun), I'll actually easily be spending that money somewhere else.
Aogami Super carbon steel anyone?...
post #7 of 28
Thread Starter 

What to do

Hmmm... well my first choice was actually a Wusthof le cordon bleu. However, I could not find one in a store to try one and I never buy a knife without trying it. I do like my Global (it is very sharp), I just want a lower maintenance knife. Globals have a different bevel, so not all professional sharpeners can sharpen them, you need a ceramic steel, and it's not ergonomic (I do in fact have small hands). So I thought about the shuns because they seem like they have some german-made knife qualities to them (at least more than a global) and they seemed to be high quality (by the way, I do know that the blade has a different angle). But, I guess I was wrong. I would like a sharp and high quality knife that I can try in a WS or Sur La Table (or something along those lines). One thing I do not understand is that Wusthof says that the cordon bleus are the sharpest knife they have. Would those knives be sharper than their supposedly best knife (Ikon)?

Thanks for everyone's suggestions!
post #8 of 28
All of the up-market Wusties use the same steel. Their Ikon and Le Cordon Bleu use a 17 deg blade angle, while the Classic uses a 20. The difference is not that large, and I doubt most people could detect a performance difference -- especially after a couple of uses. I cannot attest to the their respective sharpness out of the factory, but would be surprised if their was much variation between lines.

You sharpen (one edge of the) Shun in the same way you sharpen the Global. The qualities of the steels are very similar and all of their chef's knives use a 15 deg edge angle. And when it comes to edge retention qualities, you'll have to move into some of the more exotic brands to better your Global. Shun is the same. The initial difference in "sharpness" you'll feel when the single angle Shun as opposed to the included angle Global lasts about one onion. After they've chopped down on the board a few times, they're the same.

All of these knives require the same level of maintenance. If you use your chef's for prepping a meal a day, I'd expect it would need daily steeling, a touch-up re-sharpening every 2 to 3 weeks and a more thorough sharpening every 2 to 3 months. FWIW, most professional knife sharpening services can handle Japanese angles without any problem. Several of the most popular lines are in commercial kitchens, representing the bulk of a service's business, are Japanese; MAC and Global, to name two. The story about them not being able to sharpen to 15 deg is no longer true, if it ever was.

The Global "ceramic steel," is not a great way to maintain an edge. Neither, for that matter, is the Global or Minosharp pull through sharpener. They're OK, but barely so. I get the feeling you're looking for a no BS but effective solution to the dull knife problem. That's why people usually look for replacements for high quality knives that aren't that old. It's a hunch, but the Global steel seems to be kicking your butt. Global makes a good knife. Although it's not one of my personal favorites I hate to see you walk away from it in order to re-experience the same problems. Your best bet is to get a really good edge on your Global before making a decision on a new knife.

Unless you can afford to buy a new $125 knife every couple of months, a Chef's Choice electric sharpener is probably the best choice for you. Chef's Choice makes two that are good for Asian knife bevels -- but if you only have one or two knives with the bevel, it seems like overkill. You probably don't want two machines. Maybe you're better off with European knives so you can start and stick to a good maintenance routine. Knives are all about sharp. Appearance, handles, balance, etc., come second. What types of other knives do you frequently use?

You complained about the Global handle in the same sentence as the ceramic steel. I'm not sure if you mean the knife or the steel. Which one? Globals are usually good knives for small hands -- indeed, small handed people are typically the ones most comfortable. AND the handle design IS ergonomic -- although it might not be right for you. The usual complaint with Globals is the narrow spine pressing into the index finger of a pinch grip. Is that what you mean? If it is, the fix is to "relieve" the edges of the spine with a stone, a grinder, or sand paper.

Another common complaint is the handle is unsuitable for anything other than a pinch grip. If your thumb is behind the heel of the blade (baseball grip) the handle is going to make your hand ache. If so, and assuming you don't want to learn to pinch grip, you'll probably be happiest with either a traditional or one of the "Euro" ergo grips. The Global, the "D" handled Shun as well as the traditional Shuns are very much pinch grip for chopping.

BDL
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post #9 of 28
Thread Starter 

global

Sorry about the confusion. The global's have to be honed with a ceramic steel, or at least he company says so. The spine does not bother me because I do use a pinch grip. I try to use all the proper knife practices. Well, I guess I will buy whichever feels better in my hand. I still love my Global and I make sure that it is in top shape. I will do the same with my next knife, whatever it is. Thanks for the help.
post #10 of 28
I have to say, with respect, that I have to disagree with some of your comments, "boar_d_laze" (btw, I love that name! Due to a speed reading class in HS I don't subvocalize very much, so I didn't notice the meaning for a couple weeks, but when I "got it" I laughed out loud!:lol:).

First off, I find a ceramic steel to be the finest maintenance tool for a good knife, bar none. I'll qualify that by saying I haven't yet purchased the new glass "steel" from JapaneseKnifeSharpening.com; it may be superior. But I can list more than a few professional sharpeners who extoll the virtues of a smooth ceramic. If you've properly sharpened your knife a ceramic should bring back the edge ten or more times before it needs to be re-sharpened. Unless the Global Ceramic is unusually coarse (which it could be, I don't know) then it should work well. But you can get a great ceramic from Idahone or DMT for much less.

And I've found the V-Gold 10 to be a great steel. IME it holds and edge better than any Global I've seen. ****, they may use very similar steel; maybe it's the unusual way Global grinds their bevel. But I certainly must disagree with the assertion that one onion will appreciably dull a Shun!:suprise::lol: I have a wide assortment of Japanese blades ranging in price from Hattori on the high end and Tojiro on the low end, price wise. I find the Shuns to be at least the equal of any of them (at least, the one's that don't use PM technology;)). Again, I treat all by blades with great respect but used properly, and straightened periodically on a smooth ceramic, they all retain a good edge for weeks at a time. In the interest of disclosure I'll admit I do keep a Wusthof for splitting lobsters- that would probably do in a Hattori pretty quickly!

Lastly I'm horrified at the notion of putting any decent Japanese thru any electric, especially a Chef's Choice cheapo. A sharpening nOOb would be far better served by a Spyderco Sharpmaker. I sharpen my Japanese blades on waterstones but I often do touchups on the Sharpmaker, and will keep them all sharp enough to treetop hair at a bare minimum. And it won't screw up the blade, leave grind marks or take off a lot of metal- all of which are common with the Chef's Choice.

To spencerhbl:
I greatly prefer the Shun, but if you like the Ikon then buy the Ikon! You're gonna be using it, not me! I think the Shun is a cut above, no pun intended, but German knives are getting better in response to being pwned by the Japanese.;):lol: The only thing I'd question is why you'd want a 2nd knife of the same exact size and pattern unless you already have a bunch of other blades. I'd consider choosing another size unless you're dissatisfied enough with the Global to ditch it. I can't imagine you'd use it enough to merit keeping it around if you like other one better. Luckily, Globals are very popular; you could probably resell it and get 70% of your money out of it.

Just my $.02.:smoking:
"Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit." - Aristotle
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post #11 of 28
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the insight, Phaedrus. I wasn't planning on getting the global ceramic steel; far too expensive for something that I could find for 20 bucks. I am buying a chef's knife of the same size because I am going to be working as an assistant chef this summer and wanted one knife for meat and one for the others. However, it does seem slightly nonsensical. Would you suggest a santoku? They seem like they would be awkward, considering it is not the same rocking motion. Oh, and as for the sharpening: I wouldn't put my knives through an automated machine like those chef choices. I can hone my knives at home and get them sharpened by a professional until I learn how to sharpen knives with a whetstone myself. Thanks again.
post #12 of 28
Shuns are 16*. I promise. :smoking:
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One day, long, long ago there was this Pilot who, surprisingly...........
was not full of crap....
But it was a long time ago.... And it was just one day. The End
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post #13 of 28
We disagree less than you might think. Perhaps I expressed myself poorly.

Agree that smooth and fine ceramic "steels" are good. Funny you should mention the borosilicate glass steel from Hand American sold by JKS. I just received mine a couple of days ago.

My point was not that the Global ceramic is an ineffective steel, but it’s a poor sharpener -- especially as an only sharpener and especially in the hands of someone without the angle - speed - rhythm skill set.

V-G is a nice steel. While not "world steel" from the bad old days of the eighties, it isn't exactly Hitachi Aogami Super or a Sandvik powder either. It's supposedly got good flexibility for its 58-60 HRC.

I didn't say one onion would appreciably dull a Shun. What I meant to say was that once a Shun got an onion's worth of mileage after sharpening, the "sharpness" difference between the Shun's single-bevel and a newly sharpened Global's double bevel became inappreciable. Perhaps a slight overstatement, but only slight. Also, perhaps I should have distinguished between "keenness" and "sharpness." At any rate, I was referring to the advantage conferred by edge geometry.

I've never owned a Shun, but tried out several -- including their left-handed model.

The distinctions between various premium knives tends to be pretty subtle. I’m not surprised you find the Shun on a par with the Hattori HD, even in a world where differences are slight, they are remarkably similar. They’re both VG Suminagashi Warikomi.

“. . . straightened on a smooth [steel] . . .” True for any good knife.

My primary chef de chef is a 12" Sabatier I bought at a flea market in Canada. My other persuader is a 2 lb Chicago Cutlery cleaver also bought used. I don’t use the cleaver too often though.

Nothing cheap about them.

The Spyderco is definitely one of the better V stick systems. And V sticks are pretty easy, and a good suggestion for people new to sharpening. A Sharp Maker is still a bit “hobbyist,” in that it can’t be left on the counter and requires the user to control the angle of the knife relative to the abrasive.

My understanding of the situation led me to keep my suggestions to what is easiest, effective and sold at Sur Le Table or Williams-Sonoma – since those seemed very important to Spencer.

Your discussion of the problems inherent to Chef’s Choice machines seems to be more of knife geek “conventional wisdom” than current reality. The up-level Chef’s Choice machines such as the 120, and 130 (Euro bevels), 317 and XV (Asian bevels), are actually free of the problems you describe – used with a minimal amount of care. Over the past four decades I’ve used a mix of man-made and Arkansas stones: Coarse and fine India, soft Arkansas, black Arkansas. But when my previous set of stones were stolen, I used a Chef’s Choice 110 for several years as my primary sharpener without any ill effects. At the end of the day it wasn’t as good as stones – so I bought a new set. Short of free-handing or a guide system like an Edge Pro, a Chef’s Choice is as good as anything else.

It’s true, German knife manufacturers are responding to the Japanese challenge with new lines and a new level of quality. From his description, and reading between the lines, it appears as though the Global has gone quite dull and using it is hurting his hand. Remember, the Global handle is quirky. Me too Me neither.

16* Stand corrected.

BDL
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post #14 of 28
I think Alton does a good job here:

Shun_Knives.mp4
post #15 of 28
I've got a slew of Shuns, and lots of other Japanese knives, too. And I use the crap out of 'em in a professional setting. My opinion is that most of the knock on Shun comes from people who don't like how popular they are and haven't used them. Give 'em a try, you'll be pleasantly surprised. Their sharpness isn't all that far from Super Aogami, and they hold an edge very well. FWIW I haven't compared them to the Hattori HD (they look nice but my Hattoris aren't HD's...;)).

Globals are very thin, and they grind the bevel a bit differently than most. IIRC they really don't have a bevel per se- they're sharpened right to the edge. Edge retention doesn't seem to be a Global strong suit, but I haven't used 'em enough to claim any expertise. I'm not sure what you're talking about re the "single bevel" Shuns- it's true they make a few, but nearly all their Classic line is 50/50 double bevel. Their Pro and Pro 2 are geared towards sushimi and are single bevel, but that's not Shuns main market. At any rate, many Japanese knives use V-Gold 10, and as usual it comes down to heat treating and implementation.

We'll have to agree to disagree about the electric sharpeners. The restaurant where I work has two 120s and they're junk. Perhaps you think I say that as a sharpening snob who uses waterstones, but that's not it. I can think of several manual sharpeners that require little or no skill that are far superior to the Chef's Choice. I'll grant that they're not as bad as the previous models, though- they were like dropping your blade into a garbage disposal!

The Japanese have forced the Germans to attempt to innovate, but the best "German" knives are still the ones they have the Japanese make and simply badge for them!;) That said, I think the Messermeisters of today are fine knives.

But overall we probaby do have more in common. Once you turn Japanese it's hard to go back!:roll:
"Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit." - Aristotle
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post #16 of 28


I strongly disagree with some of the claims made in your post. On Wusthof website, they have clearly mentioned that all their knives are made 1.) Using the same X50CrMoV15 material 2.) sharpened at 20 deg angle 3.) and Tempered to 58° Rockwell.  

 

In other words, the main difference between one series to another (high-end forged knives) are the 1.) thickness of the blade (Le Cordon Bleu collection are 30 % lighter), 2.) Shape & 3.) Material of the handle used.

 

Where as Shun uses different material. For e.g. the Classic uses VG-10 which is harder than X50CrMoV15 & Elite & Kaji uses SG-2 which is harder than VG-10. Now add the difference of angle to the mix from 15-16 deg of Shun to 20 deg of Wusthof. You don't have to be an expert to draw the conclusion. 
 

Please verify your facts before confidently mis-guiding the forum readers.

Quote:
Originally Posted by boar_d_laze View Post

All of the up-market Wusties use the same steel. Their Ikon and Le Cordon Bleu use a 17 deg blade angle, while the Classic uses a 20. The difference is not that large, and I doubt most people could detect a performance difference -- especially after a couple of uses. I cannot attest to the their respective sharpness out of the factory, but would be surprised if their was much variation between lines.

You sharpen (one edge of the) Shun in the same way you sharpen the Global. The qualities of the steels are very similar and all of their chef's knives use a 15 deg edge angle. And when it comes to edge retention qualities, you'll have to move into some of the more exotic brands to better your Global. Shun is the same. The initial difference in "sharpness" you'll feel when the single angle Shun as opposed to the included angle Global lasts about one onion. After they've chopped down on the board a few times, they're the same.

All of these knives require the same level of maintenance. If you use your chef's for prepping a meal a day, I'd expect it would need daily steeling, a touch-up re-sharpening every 2 to 3 weeks and a more thorough sharpening every 2 to 3 months. FWIW, most professional knife sharpening services can handle Japanese angles without any problem. Several of the most popular lines are in commercial kitchens, representing the bulk of a service's business, are Japanese; MAC and Global, to name two. The story about them not being able to sharpen to 15 deg is no longer true, if it ever was.

The Global "ceramic steel," is not a great way to maintain an edge. Neither, for that matter, is the Global or Minosharp pull through sharpener. They're OK, but barely so. I get the feeling you're looking for a no BS but effective solution to the dull knife problem. That's why people usually look for replacements for high quality knives that aren't that old. It's a hunch, but the Global steel seems to be kicking your butt. Global makes a good knife. Although it's not one of my personal favorites I hate to see you walk away from it in order to re-experience the same problems. Your best bet is to get a really good edge on your Global before making a decision on a new knife.

Unless you can afford to buy a new $125 knife every couple of months, a Chef's Choice electric sharpener is probably the best choice for you. Chef's Choice makes two that are good for Asian knife bevels -- but if you only have one or two knives with the bevel, it seems like overkill. You probably don't want two machines. Maybe you're better off with European knives so you can start and stick to a good maintenance routine. Knives are all about sharp. Appearance, handles, balance, etc., come second. What types of other knives do you frequently use?

You complained about the Global handle in the same sentence as the ceramic steel. I'm not sure if you mean the knife or the steel. Which one? Globals are usually good knives for small hands -- indeed, small handed people are typically the ones most comfortable. AND the handle design IS ergonomic -- although it might not be right for you. The usual complaint with Globals is the narrow spine pressing into the index finger of a pinch grip. Is that what you mean? If it is, the fix is to "relieve" the edges of the spine with a stone, a grinder, or sand paper.

Another common complaint is the handle is unsuitable for anything other than a pinch grip. If your thumb is behind the heel of the blade (baseball grip) the handle is going to make your hand ache. If so, and assuming you don't want to learn to pinch grip, you'll probably be happiest with either a traditional or one of the "Euro" ergo grips. The Global, the "D" handled Shun as well as the traditional Shuns are very much pinch grip for chopping.

BDL
post #17 of 28

Like you, I'm new to ChefTalk, but I recently had the opportunity to use the Shun Classic 8" knife when a friend and I did some cooking together. She brought her Shun knife.  I couldn't believe how sharp it was.  She cut through winter squash as if it was butter.  She is a professional, and she said it was the best knife she had ever had.  I was really impressed with the feel of it.  I did some looking on line and decided I should try out the Wusthof at about the same price point so went to Williams Sonoma.  I took an instant dislike to the Wusthof.  It felt clunky and heavy in my hand, and the grip was all wrong.  I'm a medium size woman with medium size hands, and the Shun felt so much better to me.  The difference in bevel angle was obvious to me just by looking at it.  It also seems obvious that a thinner blade would cut through things more easily.  I used mine for the first time tonight and loved it.  The clerk at Williams Sonoma told me I should buy the Shun steel and that the knife came with life-time sharpening through the distributor.  Luckily I only live about 12 miles away.  I certainly would never use a Chef knife sharpener.  Good luck with your decision, and I hope this helps.

PS:  I have no deep philosophical pretensions to offer.

post #18 of 28


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by HitsOfMisses View Post


I strongly disagree with some of the claims made in your post. On Wusthof website, they have clearly mentioned that all their knives are made 1.) Using the same X50CrMoV15 material 2.) sharpened at 20 deg angle 3.) and Tempered to 58° Rockwell.  

 

In other words, the main difference between one series to another (high-end forged knives) are the 1.) thickness of the blade (Le Cordon Bleu collection are 30 % lighter), 2.) Shape & 3.) Material of the handle used.

 

Where as Shun uses different material. For e.g. the Classic uses VG-10 which is harder than X50CrMoV15 & Elite & Kaji uses SG-2 which is harder than VG-10. Now add the difference of angle to the mix from 15-16 deg of Shun to 20 deg of Wusthof. You don't have to be an expert to draw the conclusion. 
 

Please verify your facts before confidently mis-guiding the forum readers.

 

My post was written two years ago and things have changed since then.  I'm sure your correction was well intentioned, but there was no reason to direct it to me personally by quoting a very long post in full .  Next time, please check your dates before responding. 

 

BDL

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post #19 of 28

Are you saying Wusthof, a 200 years old company, changed how they make their products in the last 2 years? lol.gif

 

I just quoted what you wrote. Should I apologize if your post was long? rolleyes.gif 

 

 

post #20 of 28

Wusthof sure as hell didnt, and their Rockwell is not 58 it's 55 to 57. Globals is 56\58 and Shuns is 61.

 

Now I have been working in a kitchen store for a few months now where we have all of these knives in store. Im not a professional chef but I live with professional chefs, talk to chefs and sell to chefs on a dayly basis, allso met up with 2 of the CEO's of Shun in Europe a few weeks ago when they visited my shop. Even though the OP has probably bought his knives allready im still gonna give it my five cents

 

Globals: Wierd handle which some like and some hate, gyoto formed blade (in short, gyoto is a japanese approach to the western chefs knife, a larger portion of the blade is flat and the curve starts all the way at the end, gives a larger contact area with the board) supporting both a european style knife technique aswell as chopping (larger contact area equals better for chopping), light weight and thin blades. Very easy to clean, rockwell 56-58. Somewhat flexible blades, japanese edge, 15 degree angle (15 on each side actual edge is 30)

 

Wusthof: Heavy, buildt like a tank, soft and thick blade. European style blade supporting a european style knife technique where the tip of the blade never leaves the board. Too thick to support any kind of flexibility. European edge, 20 degree angle (actual edge 40)

 

Shun: Medium weight, thin and hard blade. European style knife supporting a european style knife technique where the tip of the blade never leaves the board. But still the curve of the blade starts a little later then the Wusthof but still isent really a good knife for chopping style movements or mincing. Japanese edge, 16 degree angle (actual edge 32). And most importaintly in my oppinion, they have a D shaped handle which fills MY hand in a very good way. Perfect for a right handed user

 

Now all of these knives have subtle differences that means the edge retention is different in more then one way. The 20 degree angle of the Wusthofs is 33% thicker than a Globals, so even though the steel is softer it's going to retain it's edge for quite a while anyhow. Globals on the other hand are way sharper then a Wusthof in the first place, so if you keep them properly steeled theyre pretty much gonna be sharper then wusthofs regardless. Shuns on the other hand have a HRC of 61, and needs a different approach. Theyre edge retention is far better, but theyre significantly harder to sharpen correctly once they have dulled. A shun knife would allso benefit from more of a razor type edge that you would get from a 4000+ grit stone. While the Globals and Wusthofs are actually going to perform their best when sharpened on a 600 to 1000 stone. This is because the shuns have a harder steel which better supports the finer edge a 6000 or 12000 stone gives.

 

Now I personally HATE Wusthofs but one of my chef friends said that the next time he's gonna buy a new chefs knife he's gonna buy one. And he has allready had everything from Mac to Globals to Shuns and other brands. So really it's all about this and thats, tradeoffs and preferrences. Really, you can discuss this for the rest of your life and you wouldnt find an answer.

 

So my conclusion in the end, buy a Vulkanus Sharpener, dont worry, be happy! ;P Really, Vulkanus Professional is incredibly good, it decimates both Chefs Choice 120 and the others, same with Minosharp Sharpener, Wusthof Sharpener doesnt even begin to compare, nothing really does. It does shave some steel off your knives and you need to make a cut in something to get rid of the metal shavings after use (for instance a plastic pen) but damn that thing makes all those worries about sharp knives go away. Don't worry, be happy! ;) Sitting here with a 5 USD Scanapan knife in my hand (pic below) and after a goaround with the Vulkanus it's sharp enough that I can shave my arms with it... Absolute ridicilousness, i love it! :P

scanpan-spectrum-utility-knife-red-183276_348x348.jpg

post #21 of 28

I am considering the 9' Wusthof Ikon blackwood, does anybody own it....do you know the depth of teh knife, I need a deeper belly for rocking??

post #22 of 28

First:  Wusthof now advertises their knives as 58 Rockwell, and has for the last couple of years.  It's easy enough to check to see if I'm faking.  And yes, a 200 year old company doesn't make knives the same way every year.  There have been improvements.

 

Wusthof's latest and greatest is moving away from hand sharpening and to laser guided machine sharpening.  Their new edge is a straight "V," the old one was somewhat convexed.  The new edge supposedly comes sharper out of the box and lasts longer.  I don't know.  But, it doesn't really matter either because sooner or later you either replace the factory edge with your own, or are forever doomed to a dull knife.

 

Second:  An Ikon has more belly than most French but less than most German profiles.  I can't tell if you it will suit your action or not, but it feels heavy and graceless in my hands.  Comfortable handle, though.  In my opinion, it's an okay knife but there are better for the money.  That's not so much the ergonomics, but mostly the alloy.  50XCrMoV15 has all kinds of limitations when it comes to edge taking and edge holding; on the other hand, it's durable and can take a lot of abuse. 

 

Even with current yen/dollar trading levels, the Ikon retail price range is where Japanese knives start getting interesting.  I try to steer most people in that direction, but if you know you really want an Ikon... all in all it's a good knife and there aren't compelling reasons to tell you to run away from it.

 

BDL

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post #23 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gabs88 View Post

Wusthof sure as hell didnt, and their Rockwell is not 58 it's 55 to 57. Globals is 56\58 and Shuns is 61.

 

Now I have been working in a kitchen store for a few months now where we have all of these knives in store. Im not a professional chef but I live with professional chefs, talk to chefs and sell to chefs on a dayly basis, allso met up with 2 of the CEO's of Shun in Europe a few weeks ago when they visited my shop. Even though the OP has probably bought his knives allready im still gonna give it my five cents

 

Globals: Wierd handle which some like and some hate, gyoto formed blade (in short, gyoto is a japanese approach to the western chefs knife, a larger portion of the blade is flat and the curve starts all the way at the end, gives a larger contact area with the board) supporting both a european style knife technique aswell as chopping (larger contact area equals better for chopping), light weight and thin blades. Very easy to clean, rockwell 56-58. Somewhat flexible blades, japanese edge, 15 degree angle (15 on each side actual edge is 30)

 

Wusthof: Heavy, buildt like a tank, soft and thick blade. European style blade supporting a european style knife technique where the tip of the blade never leaves the board. Too thick to support any kind of flexibility. European edge, 20 degree angle (actual edge 40)

 

Shun: Medium weight, thin and hard blade. European style knife supporting a european style knife technique where the tip of the blade never leaves the board. But still the curve of the blade starts a little later then the Wusthof but still isent really a good knife for chopping style movements or mincing. Japanese edge, 16 degree angle (actual edge 32). And most importaintly in my oppinion, they have a D shaped handle which fills MY hand in a very good way. Perfect for a right handed user

 

Now all of these knives have subtle differences that means the edge retention is different in more then one way. The 20 degree angle of the Wusthofs is 33% thicker than a Globals, so even though the steel is softer it's going to retain it's edge for quite a while anyhow. Globals on the other hand are way sharper then a Wusthof in the first place, so if you keep them properly steeled theyre pretty much gonna be sharper then wusthofs regardless. Shuns on the other hand have a HRC of 61, and needs a different approach. Theyre edge retention is far better, but theyre significantly harder to sharpen correctly once they have dulled. A shun knife would allso benefit from more of a razor type edge that you would get from a 4000+ grit stone. While the Globals and Wusthofs are actually going to perform their best when sharpened on a 600 to 1000 stone. This is because the shuns have a harder steel which better supports the finer edge a 6000 or 12000 stone gives.

 

Now I personally HATE Wusthofs but one of my chef friends said that the next time he's gonna buy a new chefs knife he's gonna buy one. And he has allready had everything from Mac to Globals to Shuns and other brands. So really it's all about this and thats, tradeoffs and preferrences. Really, you can discuss this for the rest of your life and you wouldnt find an answer.

 

So my conclusion in the end, buy a Vulkanus Sharpener, dont worry, be happy! ;P Really, Vulkanus Professional is incredibly good, it decimates both Chefs Choice 120 and the others, same with Minosharp Sharpener, Wusthof Sharpener doesnt even begin to compare, nothing really does. It does shave some steel off your knives and you need to make a cut in something to get rid of the metal shavings after use (for instance a plastic pen) but damn that thing makes all those worries about sharp knives go away. Don't worry, be happy! ;) Sitting here with a 5 USD Scanapan knife in my hand (pic below) and after a goaround with the Vulkanus it's sharp enough that I can shave my arms with it... Absolute ridicilousness, i love it! :P

scanpan-spectrum-utility-knife-red-183276_348x348.jpg



Good point Gabs88, I'm behind you on this one.

I've tried many different varieties of knives, the one that kept its edge the longest, and the one I had to take so much more care of is the Japanese multi-layered forged knife by Hattori (I believe the HD range).

But these knives and others that I've used are high maintenance so I've resorted to just use the Scanpan range with a Smith's Diamond edge sharpener for pretty much everything. Yes, I colour-coordinate the knives =]

 

Thomas - Cooking classes

post #24 of 28

Hattori HD isn't a good choice for a working pro.  What or who led you to choose it? 

 

Regarding your current choices:  If you like your knives, and apparently you do, fantastic! 

 

But the advice to buy cheap knives and a coarse, destructive sharpener is defeatist.  If someone sharpens reasonably well (or is willing to learn to do so), and afford knives of reasonable quality, that someone can do a helluva lot better.

 

In my opinion.

 

BDL

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post #25 of 28

thanks Boar, that helped a lot!!

post #26 of 28

  I own Wustoff, Wustoff Ikon and Shun and Shun Elite.  I love the Shun Elite knives  and use them regularly.  The Shun steel does have any angle reference which is very useful.  I started using the Wustoff Ikon about a year ago.  I now prefer the Ikon for edge duration, ease of maintenance, balance, and beauty. I also have the Henckels Twin cermax M66 and really do not like it at all.  For the beginning cook,  the Wustoff classic line is great.  Easily maintained, very durable.  For the knife junkie (I am), the Shun Elite and the Ikon are both incredible tools.

post #27 of 28
I have both ikon chef 8in and 8in shun classic...love them both...I also have a chefs grand prix II...the edge seems harder to maintain on the grand prix so that just stays in my drawer..
post #28 of 28
The information on sharpening angle is wrong. Ikons sharpen at 14 degree angle, essentially the same angle as the Shun. Look at the official Wusthof site. The Wusthof Ikon santuko sharpens at an 11 degree angle.
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