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Overthinking knives for our anniversery

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
1. Are you right handed? Wife is left handed
2. What type of knife are you interested in? Gyuto, sujihiki, petty or utility
3. What size knife are you looking for? 8-9.5" gyuto, 8-9" sujihiki, 3.5" and 5" petty or utility
4. Do you prefer reactive carbon or stainless steel? Stainless steel
5. Do you prefer a western handle or a Japanese handle? Western
6. How much did you want to spend? $600.00
7. Do you know how to sharpen? No, I plan to purchase Apex pro sharpener
8. Are you a home cook or pro cook? Home
9. If you are a pro, are you doing a lot of prep or is this a line knife or something else?
10. What kind of cutting board are you using? Synthetic rubber

Our anniversary is next week and I want to purchase a nice set of knives for my wife. My wife also retired early this week, so she needs a great set of knives for home cooking. I looked at Mac, masamoto, takamura, and misono knives. The more I research, the more confused I get. I am over thinking this decision way too much! Please help me! rolleyes.gif

post #2 of 10

Are you okay with mixing and matching styles/brands?


Is the $600 budget knives only or also including the Apex pro?


I'll start this out 







The Takamura gyuto would probably be a good choice too. Nothing wrong with Mac and Masamoto, but the price range they currently occupy is more competitive than it used to be, especially if you have any inkling to branch out in knife preferences (wa-handles, carbon core steels). Same for the Misono 440 and UX-10


What kind of cooking do y'all do?

Edited by foody518 - 5/9/16 at 9:57pm
post #3 of 10
post #4 of 10
Thread Starter 
My $600.00 budget does not include the edge pro apex. Also, is the hattori fh you recommended carbon steel and not stainless?
I am ok with mixing and matching styles/brands.
My wife just retired, she does a lot of home cooking, nothing exotic. I would like the gyuto to be a great performance knife with great looks. She wants to be able to use this knife for every type of cooking without worrying if the knife will chip or break. She will not be hacking through bones or anything like that, but she does not want this knife to be limited to just preparing vegetables.
post #5 of 10

Okay $600 shun was a joke


Here are some good beginner stainless options, western handle, not too thick or thin, and not chippy




With japanese knives the edge out of the box is usually pretty rough.  It is expected the user will put their own edge on.   Both these vendors will sharpen before shipping if you request it.

post #6 of 10

FWIW edge pro apex was never meant for longer knives.  It is a system for little pocket knives.   Using it on 9+ " kitchen knives has always been insane in my book.  Does it work?  Kind of.  You can't thin your knife and you have to adjust it a lot to get all the angles you need during sharpening.  Ex.  the tip of a knife needs to be sharpened at a different angle.  It creates very crisp bevels but often on kitchen knives i want to knock the shoulders off and convex it.  It's more hassle than it is worth and more expensive than a stone setup.  The same money will buy you a top of the line stone set.

post #7 of 10
The FH is made of solid VG-10 steel, stainless. Neat handle choices too, I've got my eyes of the coccobolo smile.gif

Honestly the only chipping I've gotten in the past almost year is accidentally dinging a knife tip against a cabinet or the wall of a stainless steel sink (klutz) and losing under a mm of a very thin tip, and being dumb and using a thin edged chefs knife to cut a hard multigrained loaf (went and got a bread knife). In both cases I just sharpened out the damage. Nothing from cutting primarily veg and fruit and a little meat.
I'd just be careful around bones and fruits with pits, and use something thicker and more durable for like going through corn cobs and coconut and the like (what makes sense for knife usage)
post #8 of 10
There's something you should be aware of when looking for one and the same knife being used by both right- and left-handers. It's sub-optimal for both.
Most knives -- either European, American or Japanese -- have been optimised for right-handers. Right face more or less convexed to allow easy food separation, left face much flatter to ease thin slicing.
Japanese makers go even a bit further by moving the edge a bit to the left, thus making it almost unusable for left-handers. No big deal as those tended to be ignored, at the best.
The asymmetric geometry will lead to asymmetric edges as well, if done correctly. Otherwise, expect serious steering and wedging problems after a few sharpenings. This is why neutralised edges are a poor solution.
With very thin blades -- i.e. lasers -- these issues won't appear because their geometry is almost symmetric and have a poor food separation for any user.
A solution would be a blade with an inverted geometry for the left-hander, with the left face convexed and the right one kept flat. I know about Misono and Masahiro offering them, both with japanesechefsknife.com
Edited by Benuser - 5/11/16 at 12:26pm
post #9 of 10

I've managed to mostly get J-Knives that aren't biased enough to matter (yet). The Misono would be the one that might cause issues down the line.


@Benuser Your recommendation caused me to look up Dan Prendergast and contact him about getting a knife! :D Trading emails with him, it seems his intent is to make a symmetrical grind knife (he is a lefty).

Goodbye money...:peace:

post #10 of 10
Believe me, after a few sharpenings it will matter, I'm afraid. When you're used to sharpen your own knives you may easily correct. No good idea for a novice sharpener who should stay with an existing geometry, unless there are good reasons to change it.
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