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The dreaded "wich knife to buy" Question...

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 

 

Hi guys...

 

Here I am asking one of the most frequently asked question in a forum: "WICH....ITEM SHOULD I BUY?" Before reading this and another forums, I tought that the Shun's were the greatest knives on earth, but the more I read the more I see that I was happily living in ignorance and being a victim of marketing, I'm not saying that I don't like anymore the Shuns (Actually I'm still in love with them, but getting open to more suggestions because I see that there is a whole world of better knives and so many others that offers the same quality or maybe a bit more for the same price, or even cheaper)

 

I've been reading a lot trough this forum and I already got some very interesting ideas and Chris gave me some new imput.

 

Here's a bit of background on who I am, what I want and what I need, I'm coping/pasting this from my post "VG10 VS SG2 Steel" that was kindly replied by Chris.

 

I own some chef's knives, and I want to try something totally different, I have a wusthof, a Henckels, a Victorinox, Tor-rey, Tramontina, (these last two are latin battlehorses comparable to Dexters and Victorinox in quality) a KAI, a Dexter, an Ojeda (A locally made knife from a little town named Sayula, and is great, but so beautifull and with a mirror like shine, that I prefer not to use it rolleyes.gif, but it cuts like an scalpel http://www.ojedacuchillos.com/en/productos/mango-tradicional-sencillo.html) ,a chinese cleaver that I bought while working in china in a flea market for something like 50 US cents that cuts like a razor blade but it gets  rusty on a dayly basis, so bad that I consider it a health hazzard to use crazy.gif,and a Global too... This last one is the guilty of turning me into Japanese style knives.

 

As you can see, I started thinking only in Shuns, the regular VG10 or the Elite class, made with SG2, but I'm getting more opened and looking for something else within the same kind of budget $200 +/- 10% and ready to spend 60-80 USD on a new stone.

 

For sharpening I own a minosharp whetstone 1000 grit, and a ceramic whustoff rod and I'm open to suggestions on what to add according to the knife that I buy.

 

I want a japanese one, with some "uniqueness factor", and so far this are the ones that I have in my list because they are different to everything else that I own, but since my experience is zero with any of them, I'll like to have the imput of people like you that have much more experience than me on the subject. I have nearly 20 years working in the kitchen and I'm the guy that sharpens always with the same technique, that I learned by myself on trial and error and that doesn't do a very bad job, but to be honest, I can't get a knife razor sharp consistantly, they are always very sharp for the regular use in the kitchen, but I want to become a "Knife and sharpening aficionado" (On a budget at first) , ok, here I go with my wish list:

 

Tojiro hammered.jpgTojiro hammered

 

 

 

Tojiro Damascus

Tojiro DP damascus.jpg

 

Shun premier.pngShun premier

 

 

Miyabi 7000 Damascus.jpgMiyaby 7000 damascus

 

 

Kasumi damascus.jpgKasumi Damascus

 

 

Kanetsune hammered.jpgKanetsune Hammered

 

 

mac mighty.jpgAnd the Mac, that to be honest, I don't like it, but I hear only great things about this one, and so good that I have to get on my list, the reason that makes me dislike this one, is because it reminds me a German on the looks department and I don't see any uniqueness in the looks... Wich I hate to accept... But it matters a lot to me.

 

And this one is the guilty of my curiosity on the SG2 steel, and also a contender if you guys consider that it worths it's price

 

Shun elite.jpeg

 

 

I've learned that looks are not the most important... And the hard way... I've owned a 1200 GS BMW brand new motorcycle that was stunning, people stopped me to ask me on it...But It was very high maintenance, too heavy for urban use and now I ride a 150 CC that looks like a toy compared to the beemer, but is a joy to ride and conmute.

I had the stunning hot girlfriend, model like, but pretty much like the beemer... High maintenance, drama queen, bossy and troublemaker.... Now I date a cute and a bit chuby girl (God forbid if she ever reads this post! and sees that I said "chuby"eek.gif) whom always have a joke, an interesting conversation and a very outgoing attitude, she's a keeper.

 

I'm a hunter too and I can tell you same thing about my rifles, shotguns and bows, I'm a dancer and I can tell you the exact same story on the dancing shoes, a 60 bucks pair perform and look pretty much like the 260 USD Pair (I'm still a lousy dancer no matter how fancy my shoes are wink.gif) ... That has been the story of my life, always learning the hard way , wasting money, time and effort and based on the looks, now I want to be a bit more mature and ask before messing it big time.

 

 

I don't want to own a 200+ knife and after a few days later (or hours) go back to my old cheaper battle horses.rolleyes.gif

 

Okydoky guys, seems like I did a bit too much on the talking department, now I want your opinions, feel free to give any advice based on experience or even to bash me a bit wink.gif

 

Luis J.

post #2 of 16
Thread Starter 

Seems like the pics were not uploaded as I expected, but I'm listing the models, and that way you get the idea. And also I forgot to mention, all are 8" blades, chef knives because that's the one that I'm more used to and my usual battlehorse. chef.gif

post #3 of 16

Yes, this site runs on different forum software so the pics don'twork on the IMG tag. You insert them through a sort of wizard interface.On the formatting bar, click the button to the left of the film strip icon and you can re insert them or I can fix them tomorrow when I've got more time.

post #4 of 16
Thread Starter 

Thanks a lot Phatch!!! I wasn't used to this way of uploading images, I just edited the original post and the images can be seen now, and actually I find it nicer than the usual method of using an image hosting site like photobucket... One more cool thing about this place, uploading images directly from my own computer !!thumb.gif

 

Luis J

post #5 of 16

I responded to your post in the other thread. 

 

Be aware that the differences between the knives you posted are primarily cosmetic -- even the tsuchime (hammered) pattern doesn't mean much in terms of performance.  They're all well made knives. 

 

Even though the MAC Pro has a western (yo) handle, it's nothing like a German knife, and very much like a French carbon -- but made from stainless of course.  Like other Japanese knives of its class, it's thin, light, and takes a great edge.  It's also comparatively stiff as Japanese knives go -- which is the primary reason I recommend it over other, similar Japanese knives. 

 

I don't know the price offhand, but Tojiro usually represents a lot of value for the money.  My first inclination would be to limit the list to that and the MAC, then figure out if you want a Japanese handled knife or not.  Of course, there are quite a few nice yo-gyuto in the price range -- but why open that particular can of worms?

 

The better able you are to describe what you want from a knife the better I can target my feedback.  If what you want most are visuals -- you know your own taste and there isn't much to add.

 

Hope this helps,

BDL

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post #6 of 16
Thread Starter 

Hi BDL...

 

I was doing some more research, and seems like for the first time in my life I'm going to (Actually I did it already) act based on the experience of people with more experience than me instead of going based on the looks and marketing, a couple of hours ago I bought a Mac professional "mighty" chef's knife, an Idahone 12" fine honing rod (Does the choice rings a bell or gives you an idea of where I got the advice? wink.gif ) and for sharpening is where I'm not sure if what I did is the right thing, but I went a bit on my own and following certain "logics" (I already bought it but I'll like to have your toughts on my choice). A 1000 / 6000 grit "king" stone, a Nagura stone ,wich I have no idea on how that works, but it was suggested by the web store and not expensive, and if it was an important piece I was going to regret on not getting it, and if it's not necessary, I just wasted a very small ammount, a stone holder and an edge guard to protect the blade.

 

I know that you're not very fond of combination stones, but my budget didn't allowed me to buy 4 stones with a better progresion, but I'm open to suggestions, and maybe in a few weeks I'll get some extra bucks on my "sharpening budget".

 

And since we already stablished direct contact, I have one question on flattening the stones, you suggest drywall, wich helps a lot on my budget too, but how that works, what's the drywall/stone grit ratio? I mean, what kind of drywall grit should I get to flatten a 1000 grit water stone? The stone has to be finer or coarser than the drywall?

 

Thanks in advance man, your advice on other posts were very helpfull, and I saw that 99.9% of the people giving reviews on the stuff that you recommend agrees with you. I'm sure that once that I slice something with the Mac, I'll forget that the look wasn't my favourite and I know that I'm going to start liking it... by the way that it looks biggrin.gif

 

I'll let you and everybody else know on my experience with the gear as soon as I get it.

 

Best regards peace.gif

post #7 of 16

Thanks for the nice words Luis.  The MAC is great, the Idahone is great, and the King combi is a very good (but not great) stone.  Well... okay... it's a great starter stone.  FWIW, I do like combi stones -- just not combi Arkanasas stones. 

 

BDL

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post #8 of 16

I heard you have owned a Victorinox knife, how was it?

I have been looking into getting one of their $30 Chef Knives because it is right at the limit of my budget.

 

Those Japanese knives always make me drool.  When I saw a picture of a Shun that had the plain black

metal with the blade going all the way to the bottom,  eek.gif

I don't have much experience to give you any recommendations, but I would like to know about your experience with

Victorinox if it isn't to much trouble. 

I am a beginner in the world of cooking.  If you have any tips, feel free to send them my way.  Advice is always appreciated.

 
 
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I am a beginner in the world of cooking.  If you have any tips, feel free to send them my way.  Advice is always appreciated.

 
 
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post #9 of 16

OK OnePiece, I'm going to give you my "working chef's, I'm not in love w/ expensive knives, the most important thing for me is to get the job done properly" plain old ordinary opinion.

If this 247.jpgor this244.jpg is what you're talking about ..... then I'd say go for it. It's a solid, reputable, professional, journeyman's knife, for $30. Is it really pretty? NO. Are guys gonna look at you using it and say "OOOOOOOOOH ..... Cool"? NO. Now at the same time, it probably won't get stolen, and nobody eating whatever you make, as long as you're a quality professional, will ever know that you use a $30 knife.  I am not at all saying, in any way or fashion, that there is anything at all wrong with any other big named, high-quality, top-dollar knives. All I'm saying is that for $30, you would be getting a really good knife. 

 

 

 

 

HEY BDL, if you read this I'm repeating my request for some pics of Japanese "laser" knives. TIA again. 

"And those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music."

I'm not sayin', I'm just sayin'.

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"And those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music."

I'm not sayin', I'm just sayin'.

Reply
post #10 of 16
Thread Starter 

Hi OnePiece...

 

Actually I still own at least a dozen Victorinox and they are true battlehorses, they are not fancy at all but they perform the task very well, I'm just starting to be a real "knife aficionado" so, my toughts may not be as accurate or technical as the ones that may come from other members from this forum. But for many years my 12" Victorinox chef's knife was always there for me, I worked perfectly with it, it is capable of getting a sharp edge, that is good enough to fullfill your needs in the kitchen, I used to sharpen it with an stone that you can buy in home depot for 3 USD, and my "ultrafine" or "polishing" stone was a Minosharp water stone 1000 grit... And that was good enough to mebiggrin.gif. Maybe I was living in ignorance but my herbs never looked "smashed" (Like they look when you cut them with a dull blade) and they were cleanly cutted.

 

 

In my humble experience, the Victorinox really worths every cent that you spend on it... Nothing fancy... But it does the trick perfectly... And BTW... Let me tell you, 15 years ago for me that was not just a knife, it was "THE KNIFE". Get one, you'll not regret thumb.gif. I still use my Victorinox boning knife, bird beek, and pairing knives all the time along with my Global and Wusthoff.... And guess what?... Now that some finer knife and sharpening stuff is on the way... I'll learn to sharpen with the new stones using my good ol' Victorinox, and I know that it's going to get a great edge.

 

Best regards, and it will be nice if somebody with more technical knowledge than me can give some more feedback on those Victorinox!

post #11 of 16

 

Quote:
I'll learn to sharpen with the new stones using my good ol' Victorinox, and I know that it's going to get a great edge.

Luis it sounds like you have some of the basics of sharpening already so much as you will be entering a sort of new world of sharpening it should be more of a adventure than just another thing to do, and so many here have been helpful thus far and that does make it a bit easier.

 

Though your choice of the King combo was also my original choice that I ended up changing before ordering I kind of regret not getting it as that would have saved me more than the cost of the King, and allowed me to get my feet wet in whetstones before making decisions on higher priced ones etc.

 

So this way you get to practice on the King, and when your ready to add or upgrade etc you will have a much better idea what you will want for both your previous and new knives.

 

One thing I had found out real quick is that opinions on stones and sharpening are even more varied than on the knives themselves. So you get to feel the same way all over again when your ready for new stones :)

 

Enjoy your new toy!

 

"love my country" but "fear my government"  Something is just wrong with this

 

 

 

Looking for info on entry level J-knives? Need help on finding the most bang for your buck? Hope you enjoy learning from the info here, I know I did!

http://www.cheftalk.com/t/63213/tojiro-dp-f-809-240mm-g...

Reply

 

"love my country" but "fear my government"  Something is just wrong with this

 

 

 

Looking for info on entry level J-knives? Need help on finding the most bang for your buck? Hope you enjoy learning from the info here, I know I did!

http://www.cheftalk.com/t/63213/tojiro-dp-f-809-240mm-g...

Reply
post #12 of 16

Thanks for the replies.  I would rather have a $30 knife that doesn't look amazing, but cuts great, than a $30 knife that makes you drool, and then doesn't cut very good.

 

The knife on the left looks like the model I have been contemplating getting.  8" Chef's Knife which is listed as 47520 on Amazon. 

I am a beginner in the world of cooking.  If you have any tips, feel free to send them my way.  Advice is always appreciated.

 
 
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I am a beginner in the world of cooking.  If you have any tips, feel free to send them my way.  Advice is always appreciated.

 
 
Reply
post #13 of 16
Thread Starter 

Hi Lenny...

 

Just like you said, I already have some basic skills and a "feeling" for sharpening, but I haven't been able to make it an exact science, for me a knife was sharp or dull, Period ! But one day my meat purveyor saw me doing some basic butchery and he grabbed my knife, and he said... You need a sharper knife, and he left.

 

The next day he showed up with some sort of old briefcase where he had 4 different stones (I had no clue on what kind of stones were those, but now that I started reading, I remember that they looked almost like Arkansas stones) and he took my knife and started "caressing" it with the stones with an almost ridiculous kind of circular motion that I still haven't seen in any video, he spent a few minutes with each stone and the last one was so fine that I questioned him if that stone was abrasive, BC to me it felt like glass... Long story short... My knife was razor sharp, and I tried it on my arm, wich after a few passes was hairless and smoother than Megan Fox legs (I suppose... Unfortunatedly I haven't been able to proove my theory right wink.gif ).

 

Regretably, this fine gentleman passed away very soon after his demonstration, and I didn't have the chance of learning properly how to sharpen a knife like him, but that was the moment were I got bit by the bug of becoming a good sharpener... I'm just begining and seems like with your help and the help of this comunity I'm going to shorten the learning curve.

 

I own already a 1000 grit water stone, but once that I started reading I discovered that is so bad in shape, that is going to hurt the new knife, and when I flaten that old stone I'll loose half of it's weight, that's the reason for another stone with the same 1000 grit and combined with a 6000 stone. I'm not sure if the progression is too much, and if that's the case, I'll be here very soon on wich is the next stone!... But so far this hobby looks pretty interesting, and I concurr... The stones are a subject as rich, or maybe richer that the knives biggrin.gif

 

Best regards!

post #14 of 16

 

Quote:
My knife was razor sharp, and I tried it on my arm, wich after a few passes was hairless and smoother than Megan Fox legs (I suppose... Unfortunatedly I haven't been able to proove my theory right wink.gif ).

 

Maybe we should be working on proving your theory as that is a much finer can of worms to open bounce.gif

 

"love my country" but "fear my government"  Something is just wrong with this

 

 

 

Looking for info on entry level J-knives? Need help on finding the most bang for your buck? Hope you enjoy learning from the info here, I know I did!

http://www.cheftalk.com/t/63213/tojiro-dp-f-809-240mm-g...

Reply

 

"love my country" but "fear my government"  Something is just wrong with this

 

 

 

Looking for info on entry level J-knives? Need help on finding the most bang for your buck? Hope you enjoy learning from the info here, I know I did!

http://www.cheftalk.com/t/63213/tojiro-dp-f-809-240mm-g...

Reply
post #15 of 16

Ice Man, 

 

Any of the wa-handled western style blades by Konosuke, Sakai Yusuke, and Ikkanshi Tadatsunas qualify as "lasers."  So do the Inox Honyaki series from Suisun.  There are pictures all over the web  -- CKTG and Japanese Chef's Knives sell Konosuke;  Yusuke is sold by Blueway Japan on E-Bay;  Tadatsuna has its own website, as well as pix on CKTG; and Korin sells the Inox Honyakis.  In terms of getting a feel for the knife -- or at least as much as you can from a pic -- your best bet will be the so called "choil" shots taken from the back of the knife.  That way, you get some idea of how thin the knives are compared to other, more "normal" knives.

 

What with one thing and another, I haven't been spending as much time on the boards as I used to.  I'm not a moderator or anything. If you have specific questions you want me to answer, I'm more than glad to do it  But it's safer to send me a PM than assume I'm reading every post.

 

BDL

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post #16 of 16
Thread Starter 

LOL...I totally agree with you Lenny! rollsmile.gif

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