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I have a $400 Credit at Sur La Table

post #1 of 23
Thread Starter 

I have a $400 Credit at Sur La Table.

I need knives.  


I currently own a Shun Classic Chef, an old Wusthoff Chef.  All other knives don't deserve to be named.

I have considered:

Shun serrated, Shun vegetable pairing (I've been apprehensive to use my Classic Chef on any hard vegetable cuttings.  I don't want chipping.)  I would still have money available.


Other option:  buy a Kramer.

post #2 of 23
Hi Texascooking, what gaps in your cutting/prepping tasks are you trying to fill?
post #3 of 23
Lucky kid!
post #4 of 23
Thread Starter 
I don't cut bones. Peeling isn't a big deal. We eat lots of veggies and a good amount of protein. Carrots, squashes (all kinds), really all veggies.

Thought about a Boos board. Concerned with a super heavy board though. I use a rubber style one currently.
post #5 of 23
Thread Starter 
I use my chef a ton. Maybe add another chef.
post #6 of 23
Bread knife?. Carving knife and fork?
post #7 of 23
Bigger chef knife?
post #8 of 23
Thread Starter 
Bread knife is absolutely being considered. A larger chef is an interesting suggestion. My Shun and Wusthoff are 8". Honestly I hadn't thought larger. Interesting.
post #9 of 23

My default chef's knife size is between 9-10.5 inches with a more flattened profile than the typical German or Shun chef's has. I find the flatter-than-German profile helps, not being like 6ft tall or anything and prepping on a standard kitchen counter height. Makes for a lot of useable length and agile feel. Looking at SLT online, seems like the only lines that have a more French or Japanese profile chef knife are the Miyabis. Might be interesting to try one of those to see if it lends to a more intuitive cutting motion.


My suggested approach for harder veg is that if it can be cut with a chef's knife and does not need to be whacked/hacked through with something like a cleaver, then go with a thinner knife and be attentive and cautious while cutting to not slam into the board or force or torque the cut. Chipping can at least partially be mitigated with a more conservative edge angle


Seems like paring knife is not a big need.


On the bread knife go bigger if you are ever needing to cut larger loaves, crustier loaves. 9+ inches if possible


Just to give an example of board size+weight, my end grain 24x18x2 inch board was around 20 pounds before all the mineral oil. It gets wiped clean and babied but not washed in the sink (too big). Meats go on another (smaller) board for greater ease of totally sanitizing. So definitely something to keep into consideration with regards to boards


How are you sharpening your current knives?

post #10 of 23
Thread Starter 
Thank you for your response. i really like the idea of trying a thinner blade. 24x18 is my current thought process for a board. A separate board for meat is a good idea.

I'm going to read your response a hundred times. Thank you.
post #11 of 23

The 9-9.5" Miyabi Birchwood and Artisan would seem the likely choices for you.


It doesn't seem you really care about a slicer, or do you?  Anyway if I used my chefs "a ton" then I certainly would want to replace your current chefs first.


3 possible reasons you might pick the Kramer over those 2, consider if they really mean anything to you: 1) You absolutely just had to have the look; 2) You wanted a carbon knife (Kramer Maji is of course stainless); 3) You want a chefs knife that doubles as a spatula, more so than most chefs.


You can use your shun for hard veggies, it has a fairly thick edge and so long as you have a conservative angle on the edge and your technique isn't horrible you'll be fine.


How do your knives get sharpened?

post #12 of 23
Thread Starter 
I can use my Shun for hard veggies? I've been afraid.

Sharpen? BUSTED! I've honed my older not worthy knives. I'm new to the knife love. I haven't sharpened.

Please teach me the sharpening ways. I was reading about stones earlier. I don't have any.
post #13 of 23

I've only got a minute right now but just to set you thinking clearly on the matter, sharpening really isn't much more than dragging your knife edge over a stone.  I'm sure more details will come before I have a chance to get back to this.

post #14 of 23
Just try to avoid forcing through hard veggies too much, and come down on the board cleanly with the blade (try not to twist/torque)
Do you have any budget for sharpening supplies in mind? The few things I saw on the SLT looked heavily overpriced

Sharpening makes a world of difference smile.gif
post #15 of 23
Thread Starter 

I don't really have a budget for sharpening.  Would $100 suffice?  

post #16 of 23
100 is a good start. It can depend on how many stones you get (which depends on the knives you have/want to get and their condition).
As a quick example, I just went to toolsfromjapan and put together a solid 3 stone set (coarse, medium, fine) plus diamond flattening plate for around $160 including international shipping. Sad the conversion rate is poor this year because this time last year it could have been like 20% less.
Stones last a long long time if you're a home cook and just doing your own knives
post #17 of 23
Originally Posted by Texascooking View Post

I don't really have a budget for sharpening.  Would $100 suffice?  

Jon at JKI has the king 1000/6000 combo stone for $65 and the gesshin 1000/6000 for $135, gives an idea of the range.
Something like one of these would be all you really need, at some stage a means for flattening, diamond plate or some other.

My view is don't go too cheap on the sharpening supplies, get a decent one, it will last for a very long time, so only a one off purchase.

Looks like you can get the king 1000/6000 for $30 on amazon, so maybe the way to go.
post #18 of 23

I know with the King stones they do make smaller sizes, maybe meant to be the 'home version'. With beginner sharpeners I wouldn't feel comfortable with going for the smaller version and having to deal with narrow stones in addition to just learning how to hold a consistent angle and everything else.


Here was my theoretical set for around $160 after international shipping with the separate stones option and the discounted add-on of the 'half cut' Cerax 320 grit which is really about the thickness of most normal stones iWood flattening plate, 150 grit, to keep the stones even on the surface. 


I own 2/3 of the stones in that theoretical set - they have great feel and nice muddiness which is more forgiving of beginner's technique, cut fast enough to do the job on most of your typical steels (I largely don't own the knives made from 'supersteels') 

post #19 of 23

As far as the "supersteels" go SG-2 is easy to sharpen, and very easy to deburr.  Sure spend a few more bucks and get the larger Kingstone, more luxiurious to have the bigger stone.  But you don't really need to go overboard here, unless you think you'd really be into it.


If you think you'd have a care you could add Jon's Big Pink Brick (220 grit) and do some thinning on your old knives, if their not too bad to bother with.





post #20 of 23

Here's the thing: the king combo $30 is all you *need*.  It will get the job done.  If you just care about keeping your knives sharp that's enough.


For more money you can have better features like

-stone doesn't dish as fast

-splash and go

-bigger 8x3" instead of 7x2", covers more of knife at once so it's faster

-accessories to take out scratches


$100 could get you two shapton kuromaku stones off amazon.  Get a mid grit 1k and a finishing 5k or 6k.


i.e. things that matter to someone like me.   However I sharpen dozens of knives multiple times a year.  If you are sharpening 1-3 knives twice a year at most, these features do not save you so much time anyway.  And about scratches on the side of the blade face... on my own knives i don't even take them off most of the time.  Sharpening for $ I will tape up the sides so they cant get scratches.  Not worth my time to sand, polish, take out scratches.  This is why I would charge a lot of $ for thinning.

post #21 of 23
I do have a nasty habit of going cheap every now and again and pretty much always regret it.

Foody and millions make very good points about the stone size. 8x3 may not sound much bigger than 7x2, but when you have them side by side you'd be suprised. It's easier to hold the knife flat on the bigger stone, as well as being quicker.
The king that JKI stocked looked a decent size, I didn't check the size on Amazon, you get what you pay for.

Definitely recommend going for the bigger size.
Personally I like splash and go. I can basically set up and sharpen 2-3 knives in the time normally used to soak a stone. Unless you keep it in water.

The guys have good advice.
Enjoy the shop :-)
post #22 of 23

SLT carries the 8x2 for $30, hard to beat if the OP has trouble accounting for the entire $400 credit..

post #23 of 23

Good catch Rick, I missed that they had a King stone. 2 inches width probably not ideal for a beginner IMO (I myself don't do as well with under 6cm width), but not a big problem, particularly with shorter knives.

Also looked like they had a Kramer rebranded Shapton Glass Stone (?) 400 grit for $40 bucks, not bad

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