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Sabatier authenticity

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 

I purchased these knives in 1982 or 83 from a locally owned 'big box store" in Mass. called Lechmere. They were going out of business and had these reduced 75% or so they claimed.

 

Recently, when buying a carbon K-Sab parer from a local restaurant supply, I mentioned the set and the owner told me he remembered those knives from back then and they were knock-offs (read fakes).  The screened markings on the blades are long gone and I cannot remember what they said, aside from Sabatier.  There was definitely no "K" prefix.

 

As you can see, the finger guards and bolsters are cast aluminum with sloppy braises to the blades on some of them.  The tang is steel and goes to the end of the handle. The spines are square, not rounded.  I believe the handles to be a plastic composite of some sort and a couple of the handles have cracked through on one side or the other at the rivets....across the handle, not lengthwise.

 

Any idea whether he is correct or not?

 

FIMG_1460.JPGIMG_1463.JPGIMG_1467.JPGIMG_1468.JPGish Boy

post #2 of 8

I think you're looking at old "Lion" Sabatier, before they sold out and re-formed.  The knives themselves were probably wholesaled by "Cuisine de France," and probably originally marked with a standing lion, paws extended into what appeared to be a backwards "K," followed by "Sabatier."  Does that sound familiar?

 

The handles are POM.  Many Sabatier makers went to it early.

 

Cuisine de France imported lots of OEM Sabatiers, some of them made by K-Sab.  I've had a few of those, but yours don't look quite like them.  For one thing, I don't think the re-branded K-Sabs had a molded marque on the handle.

 

A square spine is common with carbon Sabatiers.  Round it over with sandpaper, or ease the edges on your stones, and the knife will be a lot more comfortable.

 

BDL

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post #3 of 8

Hi guys - apologies for resurrecting this old thread. I just bought a Sabatier chef's knife over Amazon, and I'm wondering if what I got is authentic. This is the knife that I bought:

 

http://www.amazon.com/Sabatier-Forged-Carbon-Steel-France/dp/B007NZQSD8/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1352572482&sr=8-3&keywords=k+sabatier+knife

 

The seller is actually a fairly old restaurant supply place in Boston. The picture on Amazon is exactly the same as the picture on K Sabatier's US website (http://www.sabatier-shop.com/kitchen-knives_15_au-carbone-vintage_cooking-knife-10-in__carbcui25pol.html ), and the price is very close as well.

 

In person the knife looks extremely close to the advertised picture, except that the pins are brass and the screened marking says "carbon" instead of "high carbon" ("high carbon" probably is the image for the stainless knife anyway). Nothing seems off or chintzy. Here are a few pictures:

 

 

 

 

Does anything indicate that this is a fake? I would greatly appreciate your expert advice.

post #4 of 8

Everything looks right.  The sales copy on Amazon is so specific that if the knife were not made by K-Sabatier the seller would be liable for false advertising. 

 

The difference in the screened marking "high carbon" and "carbon" probably indicates that the knives on Amazon are NOS, and were made and marked a few years ago, and have been sitting around in some warehouse for a long time.  FWIW, K-Sab has been using the same alloy for their "au carbone" series forever.  As in FOR EVER. 

 

More FWIW, "high carbon" usually means that the alloy contains a minimum of 0.50% carbon by weight.  German high carbon can be 0.45%, and I'm not sure if the lower standard obtains throughout in the EU or not.  IIRC, K-Sabs are made from 1065, which indicates 0.65% carbon; however they're relatively soft with a Rockwell C number of around 55.  Consequently they get dinged out of true very easily and need a lot of steeling, but don't need to go to the stones very often.

 

We've got two 10" K-Sab au carbone chef's knives, and a 12" as well.  The profiles are magic.  They take a great edge easily.  I love 'em to death.   

 

Enjoy yours in the best of health,

BDL

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post #5 of 8

BDL - thanks so much for your response, I really appreciate it. I'm looking forward to trying out the K-Sab - I have a 10" Nogent chef's knife that I absolutely love, and I'm expecting more of the same from this one.

post #6 of 8

I recently bought a set of these K Sabatiers - a 4" paring, and the 6,  8,  and 10 inch chef knives from the Amazon seller who imports them from the original Sabatier factory in Thiers, France which is Sabatier Aine & Perrier, I believe.

 

I'm really pleased with these knives. As I read on some reviews, they did need some sharpening, except that the 4 inch was quite sharp out of the "sleeve". They are a bit  less spendy from Amazon's seller out of Boston (China Fair) than offered out of K Sabatier's own website (and also without the $30 customs fees). I am delighted with the light weight and feel of these knives. They are fairly thin compared to some of the German knives. The 8 inch chef only weighs about 6.4 oz... And like someone mentioned, the spines have some hard 90 degree edges.  I sanded that down on one - with a little sand paper, but decided why bother on the others, at least for now. I also noticed a few odd grind marks, which tells me they are hand made, something I like in this day of robotic automation. I use a DMT 8" diamond block set to sharpen; they are scary fast.

 

Its a bit hard to find quality vintage carbon steel knives these days, but these are the real deal, nice POM handles with brass rivets. The handles are nicely sized, even in the small four inch. I think the six inch is my favorite, perhaps the eight, I can't really decide. But I  love looking at them on wall magnet and watching their patina grow. Anyhow, they are "well behaved", a real pleasure to own.


Edited by Betowess - 2/14/13 at 10:03pm
post #7 of 8

I'm glad this thread was resurrected; it's been a real eye-opener. I've been interested in the Sabatier profile for some time, but being a low-maintenance kinda guy didn't want to get into the whole carbon thing, so was considering getting a stainless Sab. I know the general consensus around here toward that particular version is negative. Consequently, I haven't made a move.

 

I don't know what it is in this thread that opened my eyes; gosh knows I've read enough of BDL's postings here and on his blog to figure out what's what, but something clicked. I remembered my friend has some old carbon kitchen knives that I've made a point of staying away from, but this time I pulled one out of the block and went to work with it; it's an Edgecraft carbon 8-inch chefs of indeterminate age. Gnarly patina, dried out wooden handle, weighs as much as a feather, looks and feels stamped. But what a great cutter! The edge on this thing is so much better than any of its stainless counterparts that there's just no comparison.

 

So, now what? Go to the Amazon site listed and hit the "Add to Cart" button. Be prepared to do a little more basic maintenance than before -- because it appears to be worth the effort.

 

Thanks to all.
 


Edited by rsp1202 - 2/14/13 at 7:06pm
post #8 of 8

Looks like the Amazon shop out of Boston is now sold out of the 10" carbon chef of the K Sab. It mentioned they don't know "when or if they will be getting more in". They still have the other three sizes available at least. I saw some pretty nice Japanese carbon knives for about the same price at chefsknifetogo.com the other day.
 

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