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Looking for a new line knife, what do you use on the line?

post #1 of 20
Thread Starter 

I currently have a fairly nice collection that I am happy with, but I'm always looking to pick up some new tools, so I'm planning on getting a some new knives in the coming months.

 

First, I'm looking for a knife to use while on the line during service.  What do you pros prefer to use?  I'm leaning towards a short suji/long petty.  I hear they are pretty common to use on the line, and it makes a lot of sense.  Currently, I mostly use a 270mm suji or sometimes a 150mm petty.  They are both good knives, and they work, but sometimes the suji feels a bit too long, while the petty is too short.  Ideally, I'd like to split the difference with a 210mm suji/petty.

 

So, the qualities I am looking for include:

Stainless/stain-resistain/I want to cut limes with it Steel

Thin and light

Fairly hard steel that can be maintain on a rod (smooth/ceramic) and not too chippy

$100 max, less if possible.

It's going to take abuse and get sharpened a tone, so I don't want anything like a $200 Gesshin.

 

It seems pretty hard to find this particular size/shape, but the two I've been looking at are:

Hiromoto G3 at JCK for $105

Tojiro DP at CktG on sale for $70

 

The Tojiro is vg10 core, so since it's clad, I'm assuming it's a bit thicker/heavier than the Hiro.  I'm leaning towards the Hiro for these reasons.  Does anyone have any experience with either of these?  Or any other suggestions would be great, as I've said, I've been having a tough time finding these.

 

Also, I've recently started butchering, mostly chicken, duck, and maybe lamb shank.  I originally purchased my petty (a Misono 440) thinking I would use it for butchering as well, but it's so thin, light, and expensive, I'd hate to ruin it and would rather save it for veg, citrus, and delicate work.

 

When I finally started butchering, I got myself a Fibrox 6" strait stiff boning knife.  It works fine, and the shape is fine for the job, but it is tough to sharpen, and I clearly see why many people use a petty.  So, I'm in the market for another 150mm petty.  I don't have many requirement for it, so long as it's cheap.  Other than that, steel on the softer side and stainless or carbon, just not a smelly carbon like the Fujiwara FKH.  So, right now the best option seems to be the Fujiwara FKM for $45.  I don't see why it wouldn't work, and the FKM seems to have a good rep among the cheaper knives.  Any suggestions or input would be appreciated.

 

Thank you in advance.

post #2 of 20

I now own 6 knives from CKTG - Richmond Artifex line.

 

I have promised a review here (overdue) but I haven't gotten around to posting it due to time constraints.

 

If  you want a straight up knife for line work ... ie not fancy... nothing to look at... great performance and priced right.

 

I highly suggest them - they do have the occasional 'imperfection' or blemish... but you really have to work hard to see them.

 

One knife had the spine rounded - but not quite evenly balanced in the rounding when you checked.  Another had some clamp marks near the heel probably from initial shaping and thinning.  The polish isn't fantastic and the grain of the steel is quite evident.   The handles are durable and functional but basic.  Most pros use a pinch grip so it's not really applicable.

 

The knives are absolute workhorses the steel holds it'd edge very well - is mostly-stainless and won't chip.

 

Get the 165mm Honesuke (70$) or the 150mm Utility (50$) (maybe both?) Depending on your preferences.

 

Won't break the bank but will get things done.

----

 


"Plus, this method makes you look like a complete lunatic. If you care about that sort of thing".  - Dave Arnold

 

Reply

----

 


"Plus, this method makes you look like a complete lunatic. If you care about that sort of thing".  - Dave Arnold

 

Reply
post #3 of 20

I was thinking about getting a 210mm petty/suji too. I'd love it if they made a 210mm FKM petty. I'd buy one in a heartbeat. So, far I haven't seen a knife like that, that is in my price range, that looks interesting. LMK if you find one!

post #4 of 20

hiromoto ginsanko 210mm petty on JCK would fit pretty good. =D

post #5 of 20

First the petty/boning knife:

  • FKM is a nice, serviceable knife. 
  • The Richmond Artifex is not as pretty, but is made from a better alloy and will take a better edge if you have the skills to put it there. 

 

Now the short suji:

  • What's your budget?
  • Do you dare to go wa? 
  • Would you consider a narrow gyuto?

 

Hiro and DP:

  • Hiromoto G3 is a decent blade, excellent alloy for the buck, but Hiromoto handles are narrow at the best of times, and are pretty darn cramped on their shorter knives.
  • Tojiro DP is another decent blade, if you don't mind VG-10 san mai.  Hate it myself, but that's neither here nor there.  Tojiro handles are on the other end of the spectrum from the Hiros.  They're wide and boxy. 

 

Got bullet points?

 

Rat-a-tat-tat,

BDL

post #6 of 20
Thread Starter 

I gave my brother a 210 Artifex Gyuto as a gift a few months ago, and although I haven't used it much, I was very happy with it and kinda wish I had got one for myself, haha.  It was pretty thin and light, came fairly sharp out of the box and took a nice edge the one time I did sharpen it.  They are definitely great work knives, kinda like a higher-end Forschner.

 

For the Petty:

I hadn't realized that the Artifex is only a few more dollars than the FKM.  Being that it will be used as a boning knife and will run into bones, is one more prone to chipping than the other, or is one better suited for this particular task?  With my experience with the Artifex, it was a very solid knife and I hear good things about AEB-L , so I will probably choose that over the FKM.

 

Suji:

  • Budget is ~$100 or under
  • I prefer yo, but I would consider wa if it opened up some more/better options.
  • I'm really looking for more of a suji/petty shape, but I would think about a narrow gyuto if it is a very narrow gyuto and well suited for it's purposes.
  • Basically, I want this knife to, obviously, take a good edge, but also be somewhat tough because sometimes I may have to use it for tasks I wouldn't normally use one of my better knifes for (like cracking lobsters, trimming meat of bones, and whatever random tasks needed to get me out of the weeds).
  • Also, preferably stainless
  • I want a nice knife and I will take care of it, but not something I have to baby too much.

 

Between the Hiro and the DP:

  • Which is less prone to chipping? (I think G3 and VG-10 are very similar, and I've heard they do chip)
  • Which is thinner/lighter?
  • Easier to sharpen/edge retention?
  • Whats the point of cladding VG-10?  Isn't it stainless?  And unless there's some design like damascus, do you really need to clad a stainless core?
  • I usually prefer a smaller handle, and I don't really like the larger, box-like handles.

 

Thanks again for all of you help!

post #7 of 20
Thread Starter 

So Korin's 15% off sale started today, which brings some more knives into the mix.  Unfortunately I do not see any 210 petty/suji's, but there are several 150mm petties that may be a good choice.

 

So, altogether, my choices for a petty for boning include:

  • Fujiwara FKM $44
  • Richmond Artifex $50

And from Korin:

  • Misono Moly $59
  • Suisin High Carbon $53
  • Togiharu Moly $53

 

Considering how much I like my Misono 440, and that the Moly is the same exact knife but a different, slightly softer alloy, it may be my top choice, along with the Artifex.  How do these knives compare?  I know the Artifex is a bit harder, but would it be better to have a softer steel for butchering?  Is the Artifex as thin/light as the Misono?

 

Just under those two is the Suisin.  I don't really know anything about this knife, but I do like carbon knives, as long as it is made from a good carbon.  Does anyone know what alloy Suisin uses?  Is it going to stink up my food or make it turn a funny color?

 

Thanks again!

post #8 of 20

I would consider the Fujiwara FKH as well. 

 

of the choices you listed I'd go for the Misono Moly.

 

=D

post #9 of 20
Thread Starter 

Yeah, I thought about the FKH, but I've read that it's a pretty poor carbon steel.  Takes a while to develop a good patina, and until then it stinks and makes food smelly and discolored, so I'm trying to stay away from that and similar steels.  I've read about the Suisin, and it seems to be a pretty poor choice as well, so thats out.

 

As far as other carbon choices, I've thought about getting a 6" carbon K-Sab slicer, but I'm really hesitant to get a knife with a bolster, especially one that will be sharpened a lot.

 

The Moly might be top choice, but seeing how it's also the only knife on my list which I have actually handled, I'd like some info on how the others compare to it.

post #10 of 20

I don't really consider it a poor carbon steel. do consider that any steel, if done right it can and will perform better than a badly heat treated good steel. 

 

japanese heat treat is among the best heat treat in the world, so the FKH is still a pretty darn good knife for the price. i've read people who have had fkh knives and haven't heard anything negative from them.

 

anyways, good luck.

 

also if i were to get a knife, i would also consider really the hiromoto ginsanko. fantastic steel, fantastic performance.

post #11 of 20

Fujiwara FKH is made from SK4 -- which isn't necessarily a bad thing.  However, whether it's a property of the alloy in general or something peculiar to Fujiwara, the FKH stains food and transfers a rotten-egg aroma until a patina is forced (or forms "naturally"); and even after the blade is stabilized, it will transfer stink and stain (although less so) every time it's sharpened.

 

Yes, lots of people, including people who know a great deal about knives, like them.  Good for them.

 

Personally, I see the FKH has a good choice for someone looking to get into a Japanese made carbon at a very low price -- in other words, people who are more about knives and alloys than about cooking.  For those who are more about the food, I think it's more trouble than its worth.  That's just an opinion.  You're free to draw your own conclusions.  

 

BDL

post #12 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by boar_d_laze View Post

Fujiwara FKH is made from SK4 -- which isn't necessarily a bad thing.  However, whether it's a property of the alloy in general or something peculiar to Fujiwara, the FKH stains food and transfers a rotten-egg aroma until a patina is forced (or forms "naturally"); and even after the blade is stabilized, it will transfer stink and stain (although less so) every time it's sharpened.

 

Yes, lots of people, including people who know a great deal about knives, like them.  Good for them.

 

Personally, I see the FKH has a good choice for someone looking to get into a Japanese made carbon at a very low price -- in other words, people who are more about knives and alloys than about cooking.  For those who are more about the food, I think it's more trouble than its worth.  That's just an opinion.  You're free to draw your own conclusions.  

 

BDL

Yeah, the FKH is pretty stinky for awhile until a patina sets in anyway. :) They're fun to practice sharpening on though. I sold mine about a month ago. The only negative I have to say is the smell (which does go away eventually) and the grind makes cutting potatoes infuriating (super vacuum seal.....).

post #13 of 20
The smell issue can easily be responded with a forced patina. From that moment on, the sulfur smell will entirely disappear. I can't confirm BDL experience with reappearing sulfur smell after sharpening. Even after thinning, the smell isn't different to that of other carbon steels.
It isn't the finest grained steel, but does offer a lot of bite. For those who are looking for a basic, no nonsense carbon blade, it's IMHO a great choice.
post #14 of 20

the recurring smell after thinning has happened to me with my suisin high carbon gyuto. especially when using it on onions and garlic. 

post #15 of 20
Was that a sulfur smell?? All carbons smell more or less after sharpening, and, a fortiori, after thinning. The question here is to know whether the specific sulfur smell that characterizes the brand new Fujiwara remains or not once the steel calmed down.
post #16 of 20

If I'm not mistaken the Suisun "High-Grade" is also called the "High Carbon," and "Carbon Elite," and am fairly sure it uses the same alloy as the FKH, SK4.  SK4 is supposedly the top of the SK series, but as Fujiwara and Suisun source it, it's a notorious stinker and stainer.  Perhaps it's the foundry.   

 

My knife drawers currently have a bunch of carbon knives made from several different carbon alloys, including whatever used to be in Sabatiers, whatever's in Sabatiers now, 51200, and 1095.  All of the knives are regularly cleaned with baking soda, none of them have a dark patina -- forced or otherwise -- none of them stink after sharpening, nor do they stain food.  In addition, I've had a bunch of other carbon or carbon-core knives which also didn't stink or stain; including AS, V2, White #2 and O1 alloys.  Maybe it's because I always clean my carbon knives with baking soda as part of my sharpening regimen, but my experience differs from Ben's; at least with the carbon alloys I've named, not all of which are high-end, advanced, super-pure, and/or expensive. 

 

On the other hand, I've had some experience with other folks' FKHs, and they've always stunk and stained off the stones -- particularly with onions -- which is why I recommend against them. 

 

Incidentally, I've got no problem with other people having experiences different than mine.  Although sometimes I have questions, I don't discount them because they're different, and don't believe anyone should either.  Cooking tools are not religion, there's no single great source of truth about any of them.   

 

BDL


Edited by boar_d_laze - 7/10/13 at 6:58am
post #17 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by boar_d_laze View Post

If I'm not mistaken the Suisun "High-Grade" is also called the "High Carbon," and "Carbon Elite," and am fairly sure it uses the same alloy as the FKH, SK4.  SK4 is supposedly the top of the SK series, but as Fujiwara and Suisun source it, it's a notorious stinker and stainer.  Perhaps it's the foundry.   

 

My knife drawers currently have a bunch of carbon knives made from several different carbon alloys, including whatever used to be in Sabatiers, whatever's in Sabatiers now, 51200, and 1095.  All of the knives are regularly cleaned with baking soda, none of them have a dark patina -- forced or otherwise -- none of them stink after sharpening, nor do they stain food.  In addition, I've had a bunch of other carbon or carbon-core knives which also didn't stink or stain; including AS, V2, White #2 and O1 alloys.  Maybe it's because I always clean my carbon knives with baking soda as part of my sharpening regimen, but my experience differs from Ben's; at least with the carbon alloys I've named, not all of which are high-end, advanced, super-pure, and/or expensive. 

 

On the other hand, I've had some experience with other folks' FKHs, and they've always stunk and stained off the stones -- particularly with onions -- which is why I recommend against them. 

 

Incidentally, I've got no problem with other people having experiences different than mine.  Although sometimes I have questions, I don't discount them because they're different, and don't believe anyone should either.  Cooking tools are not religion, there's no single great source of truth about any of them.   

 

BDL

 

 

I had a different experience. After I forced a patina on the FKH with phosphoric acid, I didn't notice any smell from cutting onions or sharpening (I did still clean FKH quite often with baking soda). There's a lot of variables though like my sense of smell, knife batch and what not. With the knife I had I didn't have an issue with the sulfur after forcing the patina. I've only had one FKH so it not representative of all the FKHs out there. It was however quite stinky when I got it, but I knew this before hand so I wasn't surprised or anything. 

 

The only other carbon steel I have is  white #1 (not stinky when I got it). There is an odor from cutting acidic foods, but it doesn't stain the food (also the odor is not as strong as when it was brand new). I haven't forced a patina on it yet (just letting it go on its on, still clean with baking soda though.)

post #18 of 20

GreenGuy,

 

Have you thought about a honesuki instead of a petty for the chicken/boning option? Works great for all things small bird related, particularly if you're jointing and boning a lot, because they're quite hard to chip compared to a petty, and the shape/stiffness is good. I've had mine (a 150mm Sakai Takayuki Grand Cheff) a couple of years and love using it.

post #19 of 20
Thread Starter 

I did look at those a bit, along with Hankotsu's, but I thought a petty may be more versatile, as well as there being more, and cheaper options with a petty. But having better chip resistance is a big plus.  I've never handled one before, and I don't know anyone who currently uses one that I could try.  Since I already have a nice petty, I wouldn't mind trying a new style of knife, as long as it works well for its intended purpose.  What other advantages/uses do the Japanese style boning knives have over a petty?  And which Japanese style is most practical and useful for multiple applications?  Thanks!

post #20 of 20

I think it works extremely well for this purpose. Key advantages over a petty for this kind of work are: significantly lower chip-ability; stiff and pointy end, which is good for getting into and breaking joints; ability to go through bones/cartilage without sweating; better angle at the tip for boning purposes. You can also use it as a general purpose utility knife: the edge angle is not as acute as a petty, so you wouldn't use this for fine work, but for rough prep, this is totally fine; also useful for situations where you might worry about chipping  petty, e.g. frozen food. A japanese yakitori joint will basically use this knife for everything, veg prep included. Bottom line is that this is just another sharp edge, you need to try it to see if you like it - the only reason you might not like it is if you prefer a more flexible boning knife (and e.g. a regular boning knife is better for frenching racks etc.). My opinion is that it's definitely worth a try, mine sees very regular use.

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