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Dave Martell
05-07-2011, 10:07 PM
I'm not a fan of these knives but lots of people seem to love them so I figured why not share this....

http://search.borderless.rakuten.com/borderless/search.action?sid=moritakahamono&l=en

Looks like some good prices with international shipping options. I guess it's worth checking out if you're looking at these knives.

Lefty
05-07-2011, 10:49 PM
I'm curious...what don't you like about them? People seem to love Moritakas!

Dave Martell
05-07-2011, 11:36 PM
They do some really bad bevel grinding which makes holes in the edge (not contacting the cutting board). The problem with this is that it often doesn't become a clear problem until after the first sharpening which by then is too late for the poor customer to return it. I think the reason why these knives have been so popular is because most people can't see the problems and they're cheap. I have recently seen a few good ones (new stock) so I'm hoping that there's a swing in the positive direction because as it's been it's been 7 out of 10 are bad.

heirkb
05-07-2011, 11:53 PM
You mean the edge of the knife (not the flat of the bevel, but the edge that touches the board) is wavy? I believe you when you say you've found it, I'm just curious about why one can't tell before first sharpening it. Does grinding the bevel when you first sharpen it make the inconsistency show up in some way?

Lefty
05-07-2011, 11:55 PM
Wow! That's some useful (and diplomatic) info Dave.
I had no idea....

Dave Martell
05-08-2011, 12:04 AM
You mean the edge of the knife (not the flat of the bevel, but the edge that touches the board) is wavy? I believe you when you say you've found it, I'm just curious about why one can't tell before first sharpening it. Does grinding the bevel when you first sharpen it make the inconsistency show up in some way?


What happens is the maker grinds the bevels from the blade face down towards the cutting edge and stops just before he breaks into the edge. If he spends too much time grinding, or is heavy handed, in one section this is an overgrind on the side of the knife that extends down to the edge but because he stops short of blowing through into the edge it isn't seen. Now along comes the knife owner who removes metal at the edge through sharpening and he breaks through into the overgrind and the hole appears and does nothing but grow bigger from this point forward.

shankster
05-08-2011, 12:23 AM
I own 3 Moritaka's and I haven't noticed any waves or holes in the edge of the blade.What I have noticed,on the gyuto and santoku,is that the heel of the blade is lower than the rest of the blade(I can see light coming through when I place the blade on a flat surface).It hasn't really affected the performance of my knives when chopping,slicing or chiffonade(no ribboning) Is there anything i can do to correct the problem with the lower heel?

Eamon Burke
05-08-2011, 12:36 AM
Is there anything i can do to correct the problem with the lower heel?

Grind it down! Just take it to a DMT or other rough stone and work it, making sure to be spend as much time on both sides of the blade. This is really a minor issue, though it shouldn't leave a factory like that.

Personally, I'm stunned that they sell this prison shank for $125.
http://thumbnail.image.rakuten.co.jp/@0_mall/moritakahamono/cabinet/01792147/img58597469.jpg

heirkb
05-08-2011, 12:40 AM
Thanks for the explanation, Dave. I think I'd get it better if I saw such a knife, but I get the gist of what you're saying. It's too bad, because these knives look really nice (like the Takedas but with better profiles).

Lefty
05-08-2011, 12:49 AM
Moritakas can be VERY good knives, especially for the price according to quite a few people I trust very much.
However, Dave has seen a lot of knives and I bet a lot of Moritakas. I'm guessing when they're good, they're great, but if it's a bad one, you might not know until it's too late.
Hopefuly they are turning it around, as Dave eluded to.

shankster
05-08-2011, 12:55 AM
Grind it down! Just take it to a DMT or other rough stone and work it, making sure to be spend as much time on both sides of the blade. This is really a minor issue, though it shouldn't leave a factory like that.

Personally, I'm stunned that they sell this prison shank for $125.
http://thumbnail.image.rakuten.co.jp/@0_mall/moritakahamono/cabinet/01792147/img58597469.jpg

I totally agree that these knives should never have left the shop like this,but thanks to Dave I now know what to look for next time I purchase a knife.

Yes but you don't see many prison shanks with a kiroutchi finish :-D. I think Takeda sells one for double the price.
Thanks for the advice johndoughy.Would a 1000 grt stone do the job? I do have a XXc diamond if not.

Lefty
05-08-2011, 01:03 AM
One thing to keep in mind is to blend the new bevel back into the original. This visual might help you make it even. I'd also draw a line where you want the edge to end up.

Dave Martell
05-08-2011, 01:15 AM
I own 3 Moritaka's and I haven't noticed any waves or holes in the edge of the blade.What I have noticed,on the gyuto and santoku,is that the heel of the blade is lower than the rest of the blade(I can see light coming through when I place the blade on a flat surface).It hasn't really affected the performance of my knives when chopping,slicing or chiffonade(no ribboning) Is there anything i can do to correct the problem with the lower heel?


That's it - you have a hole. Typical Moritaka shows the low hanging heal which is actually pointing out an overgrind in front of the heal. The problem is that too much steel has been removed from the side of the blade in that one spot. The only correction to remove it evenly along the rest of the blade without touching this overground section.....impossible.

shankster
05-08-2011, 02:12 AM
That's it - you have a hole. Typical Moritaka shows the low hanging heal which is actually pointing out an overgrind in front of the heal. The problem is that too much steel has been removed from the side of the blade in that one spot. The only correction to remove it evenly along the rest of the blade without touching this overground section.....impossible.

Damn! Oh well,live and learn.I still love my Moritaka's.Great performers and I still think great bang for the buck despite this flaw.
Thanks again for the advise and info.Much appreciated.

KnightSaysKnif
05-08-2011, 03:31 AM
Damn! Oh well,live and learn.I still love my Moritaka's.Great performers and I still think great bang for the buck despite this flaw.
Thanks again for the advise and info.Much appreciated.

When did you buy your Moritakas? I'd hoped that they had fixed this issue.

mainaman
05-08-2011, 08:20 AM
Grind it down! Just take it to a DMT or other rough stone and work it, making sure to be spend as much time on both sides of the blade. This is really a minor issue, though it shouldn't leave a factory like that.

Personally, I'm stunned that they sell this prison shank for $125.
http://thumbnail.image.rakuten.co.jp/@0_mall/moritakahamono/cabinet/01792147/img58597469.jpgI have seen many that are in that price range, and Iwasaki made ones can get in the $1k range.

As far as Moritaka mine came with a bit of a bird peak and also the equvalent on the heel, it was not hard to correct but definitely a bit annoying.

mainaman
05-08-2011, 08:22 AM
Dave have you noticed the same problem with all Moritaka or just the KU ones?

shankster
05-08-2011, 08:41 AM
When did you buy your Moritakas? I'd hoped that they had fixed this issue.

I purchased all 3 within the last 8-9 months.No problem at all with the honesuki,just the gyuto and santoku had this issue.

shankster
05-08-2011, 09:44 AM
I just noticed this on the slip of paper the comes with the knives under the sub-title Maintenance "Please note that the blade may have a slightly wavy appearance.This is not a defect! The blade is leveled off to the point where there is no problem for practical use and the slight wave has no effect on performance" Well at least they've acknowledge the "wavy appearance" on their blades and I agree that it hasn't affected the performance of the knives. It just would have been nice to know the situation before the purchase.
No regrets....

Dave Martell
05-08-2011, 12:31 PM
Dave have you noticed the same problem with all Moritaka or just the KU ones?


Now that I think about it I'd have to say it's the KU ones but then that's mostly what I see.

Eamon Burke
05-08-2011, 03:26 PM
That's it - you have a hole. Typical Moritaka shows the low hanging heal which is actually pointing out an overgrind in front of the heal. The problem is that too much steel has been removed from the side of the blade in that one spot. The only correction to remove it evenly along the rest of the blade without touching this overground section.....impossible.

Couldn't this be done with a jig? It would certainly shorten the blade height, and you'd basically be grinding a brand new profile, kind of making your own knife. But it seems more than do-able. I mean, a slight overgrind at the factory doesn't mean it's immediately sent to the trash heap!

BTW, the manufacturer saying that it will "in no way affect performance" is never reassuring to me.

JBroida
05-08-2011, 03:30 PM
Couldn't this be done with a jig? It would certainly shorten the blade height, and you'd basically be grinding a brand new profile, kind of making your own knife. But it seems more than do-able. I mean, a slight overgrind at the factory doesn't mean it's immediately sent to the trash heap!

BTW, the manufacturer saying that it will "in no way affect performance" is never reassuring to me.

actually, i've found jigs to exacerbate the problem... i get the best results by taking it slow and adjusting dynamically as i go. Even still, i can get a flat edge, but the size of the bevel will vary a bit.

Eamon Burke
05-08-2011, 03:33 PM
Not jigs like an Edge Pro, but I mean a jig setup made from wood, for a belt sander. You'd have to make it, but it would be a fun project for a day off.

JBroida
05-08-2011, 03:35 PM
are you thinking in terms of thinning behind the edge to remove high and low spots?

rancho
05-08-2011, 07:23 PM
wow that site is seriously cheap. typical though, i bought a 240 gyuto and a 150 petty from cktg a couple of months ago which worked out about $335AU delivered. would have saved myself heaps because that petty is half the price! my gyuto does have a nice octagonal handle though.

KnightSaysKnif
05-08-2011, 07:56 PM
wow that site is seriously cheap. typical though, i bought a 240 gyuto and a 150 petty from cktg a couple of months ago which worked out about $335AU delivered. would have saved myself heaps because that petty is half the price! my gyuto does have a nice octagonal handle though.

Were yours from the Aogami Super series or were they from the Blue#2 series?

The AS series which CKTG sells is generally $50 more expensive than the Blue#2 series whether you buy it from them or directly from Moritaka; getting an octagon handle adds another $20 above the standard D-shaped handle.

sudsy9977
05-08-2011, 08:07 PM
just be careful of reputable dealers who say they will "hand pick" a "good one" for you......doesn't work cause they don't *** they're lookin for.....moritakas are a bad deal fellas.....ryan

shankster
05-08-2011, 08:15 PM
Couldn't this be done with a jig? It would certainly shorten the blade height, and you'd basically be grinding a brand new profile, kind of making your own knife. But it seems more than do-able. I mean, a slight overgrind at the factory doesn't mean it's immediately sent to the trash heap!


BTW, the manufacturer saying that it will "in no way affect performance" is never reassuring to me.

I've been using these knives at work and home for the past 6-9 months,so I can attest to their performance first hand.No problems whatsoever.I just thought it was interesting that they would acknowledge this "defect" on their enclosed literature.They must have had some negative feedback from customers or purveyors. I know how well these knives perform,I don't need any reassurance from them.

rancho
05-08-2011, 09:04 PM
Were yours from the Aogami Super series or were they from the Blue#2 series?

The AS series which CKTG sells is generally $50 more expensive than the Blue#2 series whether you buy it from them or directly from Moritaka; getting an octagon handle adds another $20 above the standard D-shaped handle.

ah, thanks for pointing that out i didn't realise they were #2 as that site is rather hard to navigate. certainly explains the large price difference! and yep, i happily paid the extra $20 for the octagonal handle, too hard to pass up a great handle for $20 :D

mikemac
05-09-2011, 01:33 PM
....I just thought it was interesting that they would acknowledge this "defect" on their enclosed literature.They must have had some negative feedback from customers .....

SHANKSTER: I don't think the wavy-ness referred to by Moritakas' packaging note is the same thing Dave is referring to, and I really don't think Moritaka is acknowledging a defect....if we were able to go back in time and review the 'conversation', Dave pointed out an apparent flaw on behalf of a customer, and Moritaka's response was more or less..."you're wrong - it's perfect"...and from there the whole Moritaka conversation went seriously south.

I'm actually suprised that Dave posted the link because of his past comments & concerns about the overgirnd issue and the relatively high defect rate. What is interesting to me though is that of the 4 different makers who represent this genre of knife maker (i.e. - the village blacksmith, Moritaka, Takeda, Watanabe and early Carter) this type of flaw is only mentioned in Moritaka's work

Salty dog
05-09-2011, 01:40 PM
What gets me is the way the tang is welded to the blade.

mpukas
05-09-2011, 02:32 PM
What happens is the maker grinds the bevels from the blade face down towards the cutting edge and stops just before he breaks into the edge. If he spends too much time grinding, or is heavy handed, in one section this is an overgrind on the side of the knife that extends down to the edge but because he stops short of blowing through into the edge it isn't seen. Now along comes the knife owner who removes metal at the edge through sharpening and he breaks through into the overgrind and the hole appears and does nothing but grow bigger from this point forward.

WOW - thanks for pointing this out Dave!

I've got a 270 kirit-gyuto that I've ground the bevels a lot on trying to flatten them, and I've developed a hole in the edge just in front of the heel - and it's quite long. I noticed it quite a while ago when slicing things like scallions, chilis or basil very very thinly - I was getting the accordion thing where the knife wasn't cutting all the way through to the board. I thought I wasn't sharpening properly; at first I thought my knife was dull, then I noticed the high spot, or hole as you call it. So I set about trying to fix the hole and flatten the edge. The heel is the low point, so I started there, and tried to isolate the hole on either side. I got it a little better, but I can still see a bit of light coming through when the edge is flat on the board and it stills accordion's a little.

For the price of these knives, I'm not too disappointed though. There are not many knives out there that use AS steel, and to get a knife hardened to that level (64-65) you typically have to pay considerably more. What bugs me more about them is how insanely reactive the cladding is - the kuro finish has nearly worn completely off mine, and if I let that blade sit for a minute w/ a little wetness on it from anything, it'll start to rust. And it stinks bad when cutting some foods, especially cabbage and onions. I have no problems on the cutting edge, just the cladding. I've tried to force a patina on it, but haven't had much luck yet.

mpukas
05-09-2011, 02:33 PM
What gets me is the way the tang is welded to the blade.

Why don't you like that? I thought it was a clever detail to weld a stainless tang to the blade.

shankster
05-09-2011, 02:50 PM
That 'conversation'/thread Dave had about Moritaka's on the other forum(2009?) was the reason I took a closer look at my knives,and he was 100% correct.But it's too late for me to do anything about it except try and correct the problem.I might take the knives back to the shop where I purchased them and see if he can do anything for me.

shankster
05-09-2011, 02:53 PM
I was just about to ask the same question.Is it the aesthetics of it or should I be worried about it snapping off somewhere down the road? :(

Salty dog
05-09-2011, 03:01 PM
For me it aesthetics. I haven't heard complaints about them breaking or anything. Just looks kinda weird.

shankster
05-09-2011, 03:45 PM
For me it aesthetics.
I haven't heard complaints about them breaking or anything. Just looks kinda weird.

Well that's good to hear.I personally don't mind the look of it,but to each their own..

mikemac
05-09-2011, 06:09 PM
That 'conversation'/thread Dave had about Moritaka's on the other forum(2009?) ....

I think it may have been earlier...'07 - '08 maybe? I cannot access the other forum from work. but one of my thoughts about fixing these...One method of making these knives is to insert a small piece of AS steel into a slot in the iron (Moritaka shows this on his site), and then continue forging and flattening the billet (?) You'ld end up with more of a "taco' construction, and less of a 'sandwich'. My concern would be how much AS is there in the lower protion of the blade to grind away while you're trying to fix the hole

Dave Martell
05-09-2011, 08:01 PM
One method of making these knives is to insert a small piece of AS steel into a slot in the iron (Moritaka shows this on his site), and then continue forging and flattening the billet (?) You'ld end up with more of a "taco' construction, and less of a 'sandwich'. My concern would be how much AS is there in the lower protion of the blade to grind away while you're trying to fix the hole


I once did a thinning job for Fish on his Moritaka kiritsuke and I found out how little the AS core extended up into the blade when the core separated from the cladding. I believe there was about 1/2" of core.

EdipisReks
05-09-2011, 08:04 PM
I once did a thinning job for Fish on his Moritaka kiritsuke and I found out how little the AS core extended up into the blade when the core separated from the cladding. I believe there was about 1/2" of core.

damn.

shankster
05-09-2011, 08:15 PM
I once did a thinning job for Fish on his Moritaka kiritsuke and I found out how little the AS core extended up into the blade when the core separated from the cladding. I believe there was about 1/2" of core.

Sorry Dave but I'm a newbie to all this so I have to ask.Does this mean that there's no way to fix the hole or is it not worth the hassle?

Lefty
05-09-2011, 08:17 PM
This would be very drastic, but if the hole is really close to the heel, couldn't the owner regrind a new choil and extend the neck a bit? This would shorten the useable edge, but at least they wouldn't have the constant reminder of a very good knife going bad.

Dave Martell
05-09-2011, 09:08 PM
Sorry Dave but I'm a newbie to all this so I have to ask.Does this mean that there's no way to fix the hole or is it not worth the hassle?


There's plenty of ways to mask it but no way to really fix it.

If you want to see how bad it's overground lay a straight edge (not a ruler - they're not straight) along the bevel just above the edge and look for light. You can usually see it this way very clearly, this is what has been removed from the knife which can't be put back on.

Dave Martell
05-09-2011, 09:10 PM
This would be very drastic, but if the hole is really close to the heel, couldn't the owner regrind a new choil and extend the neck a bit? This would shorten the useable edge, but at least they wouldn't have the constant reminder of a very good knife going bad.


It's never that small of an area, it's usually a 2"-4" long problem.

Lefty
05-09-2011, 09:11 PM
Turn it into a petty? Haha

Dave Martell
05-09-2011, 09:12 PM
BTW, Moritaka isn't exclusive to doing this, many makers do it - just at a lesser extent. Keep your eyes open when you get a new knife, you might be surprised what you see when you look closer.

shankster
05-09-2011, 09:28 PM
There's plenty of ways to mask it but no way to really fix it.

If you want to see how bad it's overground lay a straight edge (not a ruler - they're not straight) along the bevel just above the edge and look for light. You can usually see it this way very clearly, this is what has been removed from the knife which can't be put back on.

Thanks for the honest feedback Dave,I appreciate it.

mpukas
05-10-2011, 01:31 AM
BTW, Moritaka isn't exclusive to doing this, many makers do it - just at a lesser extent. Keep your eyes open when you get a new knife, you might be surprised what you see when you look closer.

Are Takeda's and better than Moritaka's? Takeda's knives seem to be about $130 more, or 60%, for a 270 gyuto - are they worth the extra price?

Dave Martell
05-10-2011, 03:47 AM
Are Takeda's and better than Moritaka's? Takeda's knives seem to be about $130 more, or 60%, for a 270 gyuto - are they worth the extra price?


I won't say that Takedas are without problems but in regards to overgrinds they have no issues.

KnightSaysKnif
05-10-2011, 06:25 AM
Try Yamawaku. Far as I know there are no issues. I have one and it seems like a really well-made knife, if you can get past that plastic ferrule/collar. You can even order a custom in whatever length you want.

Btw, I have a Moritaka but it hasn't been sharpened extensively because it just hasn't needed it so if mine has issues, I am none the wiser so far. But I did ask them to take extra, extra care with the grind and make sure I got a straight edge and Akiko promised - so I'm hoping they came through for me. But then mine was a custom order (260mm in Blue #2 w octagonal handle). And boy it cuts like a bastid!

PS: this might not be widely known but another famous maker who accepts custom orders is Ashi Hamono. And it has to be emphasised that Ashi-san is reknowned for turning out flawless blades as a matter of pride and reputation. I have a made-to-order Ashi Hamono Ginga chuka bocho (225mm x 110mm x 2.5mm) in White#2 and it's fan-freaking-tastic. I am thinking of ordering a chuka 205mm x 95mm x 1.8-2.0mm in Swedish AEB-L hardened to 59-61.

PPS: this is Seb, btw.

mikemac
05-10-2011, 11:34 AM
Are Takeda's and better ....

Personally, I've always felt that Takeda delivers an incredible edge, surrounded by a marginal knife pushing the boundries of 'rustic'. Of the 4 or 5 I've owned, everyone had warping from heel to tip and spine to edge...looking down the knife you could see the blade veer both left and right. Suprisingly, the worst was a nakiri, and the least effected was a chuka.
Doesn't make sense condsidering the amount of steel in each.

In fairness, I had 'issues' with Takeda which really started when I purchased a TomoeNata, so to avoid any continuing bad mojo, I've sold all my Takedas...except the stupid Tomoe Nata (anybody want to buy one?)

echerub
05-10-2011, 12:56 PM
It's always surprising to hear about the issues a number of folks have had with Takeda's knives. Perhaps I've just been very fortunate, since all of mine have been a-ok.

jaybett
05-10-2011, 05:38 PM
The normal cycle of an "It" knife. The discovery is made. Takeda was discovered approximately six years ago. They were an excellent knife at a great price. Andy picked up his cleaver for around $200.00, a similar cleaver today is pushing $500.00. More and more people purchase them. Then comes the issues. In Takeda's case it was handles not aligned correctly with the knife, oddly shaped knives, globs of epoxy, on the tang, and toothy edge. The maker's bubble is popped, and the search begins for the next "It", maker

Mizuno - grinding issues on the choil.

Moritaka - over grinding issues.

Aritsugu - edge grinding issues.

Carter - self promotional newsletter with political\religious views.

Wattanbe - very reactive iron cladding. Lack of flexibility in customizing knives.

Tadatsuna - They were the definition of laser. I never heard of any issues, but people have moved on.


A common thread in the issues phase, is customer service. There seems to be a disconnect, between east and west. Knives that are unacceptable to western users, are acceptable in the east. Western buyers are put off by the lack of apologies from the eastern makers, for their time and trouble. It's hard to apologize when you don't feel that you have done anything wrong. I also think that the concept of apology is different in the east, then in the west.

There is enough difference between east and west, that I'll go through a middle man, who understands what westerners want and how to obtain it form the east. Also if there is a problem, I know it will be resolved.

Jay

EdipisReks
05-10-2011, 05:39 PM
the choil on my Mizuno is immaculate.

mainaman
05-10-2011, 05:42 PM
the choil on my Mizuno is immaculate.
now yes before not so much

shankster
05-10-2011, 05:46 PM
The normal cycle of an "It" knife. The discovery is made. Takeda was discovered approximately six years ago. They were an excellent knife at a great price. Andy picked up his cleaver for around $200.00, a similar cleaver today is pushing $500.00. More and more people purchase them. Then comes the issues. In Takeda's case it was handles not aligned correctly with the knife, oddly shaped knives, globs of epoxy, on the tang, and toothy edge. The maker's bubble is popped, and the search begins for the next "It", maker

Mizuno - grinding issues on the choil.

Moritaka - over grinding issues.

Aritsugu - edge grinding issues.

Carter - self promotional newsletter with political\religious views.

Wattanbe - very reactive iron cladding. Lack of flexibility in customizing knives.

Tadatsuna - They were the definition of laser. I never heard of any issues, but people have moved on.


A common thread in the issues phase, is customer service. There seems to be a disconnect, between east and west. Knives that are unacceptable to western users, are acceptable in the east. Western buyers are put off by the lack of apologies from the eastern makers, for their time and trouble. It's hard to apologize when you don't feel that you have done anything wrong. I also think that the concept of apology is different in the east, then in the west.

There is enough difference between east and west, that I'll go through a middle man, who understands what westerners want and how to obtain it form the east. Also if there is a problem, I know it will be resolved.

Jay

So the more they pump out,the sloppier they get.Lack of Q.C....

Rottman
05-10-2011, 06:14 PM
Tadatsuna - They were the definition of laser. I never heard of any issues, but people have moved on.


Gator had bad luck with his two traditional Tads IIRC.

jaybett
05-10-2011, 07:51 PM
So the more they pump out,the sloppier they get.Lack of Q.C....

Takeda existed as a company, long before they were discovered by members of ITK. The early members of ITK, such as Fish, Lee, C-Dawg, Andy, etc..., had some serious cajones. They'd surf the internet, find a maker, and if they liked what they saw send an international postal money order and then wait months for the knife to be shipped.

The dynamics on ITK with an "it", maker, was post after post filled with hyperbole. My knife is so sharp, that it cuts molecules. Food jumps out of its way. Imagine a person new to Japanese knives, buys a knife from an "it" maker. The knife arrives, and it has problems. They are going to wonder if the problem is them or the knife? When somebody finally bursts the hyperbole, their is a slew of complaints.

My sense, in other words speculation is that at the end of the day, Japanese knife makers, sort their knives by quality. There is a market for people who want a good piece of steel, that quickly go through knives, so they don't want to pay a lot. They are willing to deal with problems that comes with inexpensive knives, such as poor fit and finish, and grinding issues.

The window for what is considered acceptable is much smaller in the west, then it is in Japan. Typically the problems have occurred, when people ordered directly from the maker. Koki with JCK, has mentioned in e-mails, that delays in shipping are due to troubles acquiring a good knife from the maker.

One buyer was told that Koki had to send back a knife three times, before he got a good one. The buyer eventually had a fire sale and I picked up this knife. Fit and finish were average.

My experiences, plus what I have read, just reinforces, that I will gladly go through a middle man. They know what people in the west want, and can take care of problems.

Jay

rockbox
05-10-2011, 08:00 PM
Personally, I've always felt that Takeda delivers an incredible edge, surrounded by a marginal knife pushing the boundries of 'rustic'. Of the 4 or 5 I've owned, everyone had warping from heel to tip and spine to edge...looking down the knife you could see the blade veer both left and right. Suprisingly, the worst was a nakiri, and the least effected was a chuka.
Doesn't make sense condsidering the amount of steel in each.

In fairness, I had 'issues' with Takeda which really started when I purchased a TomoeNata, so to avoid any continuing bad mojo, I've sold all my Takedas...except the stupid Tomoe Nata (anybody want to buy one?)

I woudn't worry about warping issues with Takedas since they are so malleable, you can just bend back with your fingers.

Salty dog
05-10-2011, 08:18 PM
tru nuf

shankster
05-10-2011, 08:54 PM
Takeda existed as a company, long before they were discovered by members of ITK. The early members of ITK, such as Fish, Lee, C-Dawg, Andy, etc..., had some serious cajones. They'd surf the internet, find a maker, and if they liked what they saw send an international postal money order and then wait months for the knife to be shipped.

The dynamics on ITK with an "it", maker, was post after post filled with hyperbole. My knife is so sharp, that it cuts molecules. Food jumps out of its way. Imagine a person new to Japanese knives, buys a knife from an "it" maker. The knife arrives, and it has problems. They are going to wonder if the problem is them or the knife? When somebody finally bursts the hyperbole, their is a slew of complaints.

My sense, in other words speculation is that at the end of the day, Japanese knife makers, sort their knives by quality. There is a market for people who want a good piece of steel, that quickly go through knives, so they don't want to pay a lot. They are willing to deal with problems that comes with inexpensive knives, such as poor fit and finish, and grinding issues.

The window for what is considered acceptable is much smaller in the west, then it is in Japan. Typically the problems have occurred, when people ordered directly from the maker. Koki with JCK, has mentioned in e-mails, that delays in shipping are due to troubles acquiring a good knife from the maker.

One buyer was told that Koki had to send back a knife three times, before he got a good one. The buyer eventually had a fire sale and I picked up this knife. Fit and finish were average.

My experiences, plus what I have read, just reinforces, that I will gladly go through a middle man. They know what people in the west want, and can take care of problems.

Jay

Makes me wish there were more brick&morter shops(like Korin) where one could inspect merchandise first hand and establish a good relationship with the purveyor, now that I kind of know what to look for. I do have one shop up here in Toronto where I purchased my Moritaka's,but his selection is limited.He's a great guy to deal with so I think I'm gonna bring my knives in for him to check out.I don't expect any sort of refund(too late for that) but I can at least make him aware of the problem,if he doesn't already know.

echerub
05-11-2011, 09:36 AM
I woudn't worry about warping issues with Takedas since they are so malleable, you can just bend back with your fingers.

Again on this one, I must be pretty fortunate.

It *is* interesting about the lifecycle of an "it" knife, though. It's an interesting reflection of how community opinions arise and evolve :)

mikemac
05-11-2011, 10:24 AM
I woudn't worry about warping issues with Takedas since they are so malleable, you can just bend back with your fingers.

Maybe...if it only goes in one direction. Like what a yanagi might do over time. But these seemed more like a forging issue...my nakiri, which IIRC was 180mm, had a wave pattern that went L & R from heel to tip and from spine to edge.

Dave Martell
05-11-2011, 10:38 AM
I've seen Takedas with all sorts of issues, some soft spined that take a set, some bent and not bendable back straight, some a little too thick at the edge bevel, and some wavy. These issues have mostly been seen in the last few years, the early knives we saw were much better overall.

Lefty
05-11-2011, 10:45 AM
This might sound dumb, but can't you re-HT your knife and get it a bit harder, yourself?
I think I remember reading about a DIY blade straightening that involved this.

mikemac
05-11-2011, 11:01 AM
Takeda ....before they were discovered by members of ITK. ...

I wanted to jump on the oral history bandwagon for a second - it's always fun telling story.

Takeda (who I feel certain became the 'new black' earlier than '06) took over the title of "IT" maker in large part because he didn't charge extra for the rosewood handle upgrade. It was $15 for the upgrade at either Watanabe or MC.

The next "IT" knife had to be the Tojiro DP...something stupid like $65 or $70 for the 210 & 240 gyutos. I hink half the people who stumbled onto KF looking for the answer to "Henkels vs. Wustoff" ended up with a DP.

And then we went upscale....the Tojiro PM (or was it PS?), their entry level, insanely affordable powdered steel knife.

I always though it funny that for all the love 'we' had for the Tojiro's back then, nobody really ever jumped on their steel handle knives which is what they were/are supposedly famous for. Andy picked up a clever finally, and had high praise for it, but that was about it.

MadMel
05-11-2011, 11:15 AM
Hmm so what's gonna be the next IT knife I wonder. JCK CN or Hiro AS?

rockbox
05-11-2011, 11:35 AM
I've seen Takedas with all sorts of issues, some soft spined that take a set, some bent and not bendable back straight, some a little too thick at the edge bevel, and some wavy. These issues have mostly been seen in the last few years, the early knives we saw were much better overall.

That is so weird because I was under the assumption that iron could not be hardened so all of them should be malleable. I think Takeda uses a forge to heat treat which can cause all kinds of variations in the heat treat if you aren't a master bladesmith especially when the steel is only on the edge. I could never do it because I'm color blind.

Pensacola Tiger
05-11-2011, 11:36 AM
Hmm so what's gonna be the next IT knife I wonder. JCK CN or Hiro AS?

The Hiromoto AS has been around too long to be "it", so my bet is the CarboNext.

rockbox
05-11-2011, 11:40 AM
Hmm so what's gonna be the next IT knife I wonder. JCK CN or Hiro AS?

I think both have were the "it" knife for a while. At least the TKC version was. I think the current "it" knife is the DT ITK, but its a little different because it is still fairly exclusive since Hoss never made that many of them. He is currently is concentrating on his customs, so I doubt they will ever be readily available.

StephanFowler
05-11-2011, 12:51 PM
This might sound dumb, but can't you re-HT your knife and get it a bit harder, yourself?
I think I remember reading about a DIY blade straightening that involved this.

not exactly,

it's not hard to lower the hardness a point or two by removing the handle and putting the blade in the oven at 300+ degrees

but to raise the hardness is a much more precise project, requiring a heat source capable of 1500+F and an appropriate quench medium

Andrew H
05-11-2011, 12:53 PM
I think both have were the "it" knife for a while. At least the TKC version was. I think the current "it" knife is the DT ITK, but its a little different because it is still fairly exclusive since Hoss never made that many of them. He is currently is concentrating on his customs, so I doubt they will ever be readily available.

I think they will be at some point, just not for awhile.

mikemac
05-11-2011, 01:19 PM
The Hiromoto AS has been around too long to be "it", so my bet is the CarboNext.

Agreed...the AS seemed to have a run of a few years (still a great bang for the $$), and i don't think it would be fair to label a 'knock off' as the new 'IT'
About the only thing that held the Ichi TKC back was they are not set up to sell retail to the USA, but in '09 (?) the forum facilitation garnered orders for about 30 knives in less than a month

Dave Martell
05-11-2011, 03:08 PM
That is so weird because I was under the assumption that iron could not be hardened so all of them should be malleable. I think Takeda uses a forge to heat treat which can cause all kinds of variations in the heat treat if you aren't a master bladesmith especially when the steel is only on the edge. I could never do it because I'm color blind.


The early knives were springy which made me think that he had core steel running all the way through to the spine.

mhlee
05-11-2011, 03:19 PM
Try Yamawaku. Far as I know there are no issues. I have one and it seems like a really well-made knife, if you can get past that plastic ferrule/collar. You can even order a custom in whatever length you want.

Btw, I have a Moritaka but it hasn't been sharpened extensively because it just hasn't needed it so if mine has issues, I am none the wiser so far. But I did ask them to take extra, extra care with the grind and make sure I got a straight edge and Akiko promised - so I'm hoping they came through for me. But then mine was a custom order (260mm in Blue #2 w octagonal handle). And boy it cuts like a bastid!

PS: this might not be widely known but another famous maker who accepts custom orders is Ashi Hamono. And it has to be emphasised that Ashi-san is reknowned for turning out flawless blades as a matter of pride and reputation. I have a made-to-order Ashi Hamono Ginga chuka bocho (225mm x 110mm x 2.5mm) in White#2 and it's fan-freaking-tastic. I am thinking of ordering a chuka 205mm x 95mm x 1.8-2.0mm in Swedish AEB-L hardened to 59-61.

PPS: this is Seb, btw.

Seb -

Who did you go through to order that Ginga Chinese Cleaver?

And as the rule goes, "Pictures! Or it never happened!" :angry1:

rockbox
05-11-2011, 03:46 PM
I think they will be at some point, just not for awhile.

I think Hoss's backlog for customs is over a year now and that's not including is core business of damascus making, so it will probably be a long time before the ITKs become readily available. I'm sure glad I got one of the first ones. At the original price, it was the bargain of the decade.

Seb
05-12-2011, 10:02 PM
My Moritaka (custom 260mm in Blue#2 w octagonal rosewood handle):

http://i64.photobucket.com/albums/h190/aurochs_2006/Carbonone005.jpg
http://i64.photobucket.com/albums/h190/aurochs_2006/Carbonone003.jpg
http://i64.photobucket.com/albums/h190/aurochs_2006/Carbonone006.jpg
http://i64.photobucket.com/albums/h190/aurochs_2006/Carbonone002.jpg


My Ashi Hamono Ginga chuka bocho (225x110x2.5mm):

http://i64.photobucket.com/albums/h190/aurochs_2006/NewMisono001-1.jpg
http://i64.photobucket.com/albums/h190/aurochs_2006/NewMisono021.jpg
http://i64.photobucket.com/albums/h190/aurochs_2006/NewMisono002.jpg
http://i64.photobucket.com/albums/h190/aurochs_2006/NewMisono009.jpg
http://i64.photobucket.com/albums/h190/aurochs_2006/NewMisono003-1.jpg
http://i64.photobucket.com/albums/h190/aurochs_2006/NewMisono020.jpg
http://i64.photobucket.com/albums/h190/aurochs_2006/NewMisono016.jpg

Potato42
05-12-2011, 10:27 PM
The normal cycle of an "It" knife. The discovery is made. Takeda was discovered approximately six years ago. They were an excellent knife at a great price. Andy picked up his cleaver for around $200.00, a similar cleaver today is pushing $500.00. More and more people purchase them. Then comes the issues. In Takeda's case it was handles not aligned correctly with the knife, oddly shaped knives, globs of epoxy, on the tang, and toothy edge. The maker's bubble is popped, and the search begins for the next "It", maker

Mizuno - grinding issues on the choil.

Moritaka - over grinding issues.

Aritsugu - edge grinding issues.

Carter - self promotional newsletter with political\religious views.

Wattanbe - very reactive iron cladding. Lack of flexibility in customizing knives.

Tadatsuna - They were the definition of laser. I never heard of any issues, but people have moved on.

Jay

That's a great post Jay. I've been out of it for a little while, any idea how you would fit Konosuke in there? A few people had them, then it seemed like there was an explosion for the big group buy. What's the verdict now? I'm still in love with my custom white #2 Chuckabocho

NO ChoP!
05-12-2011, 10:58 PM
Great, now my beloved 300mm AS Moritaka yanagi will always leave me suspicious of its quality....

I checked out the grind, and couldn't find any issues myself; but, I really don't know what to look for in the first place.

rancho
05-12-2011, 11:06 PM
Great, now my beloved 300mm AS Moritaka yanagi will always leave me suspicious of its quality....

I checked out the grind, and couldn't find any issues myself; but, I really don't know what to look for in the first place.

even if you noticed a 'fault' would it make a difference? would you fall out of love with it even though it's performed so well for you? dave mentioned issues with moritakas via an email chat when i ordered them and when they arrived i had a quick look but couldnt see any major issues. after sharpening, another quick look and no issues. they perform fantastically so i see no reason to go looking for problems. im a photography enthusiast too (and work in the photo business) and it's a similar thing, there'll be a lens that everyone absolutely loves for the price and it performs brilliantly, but then there'll be a thread on a forum pointing out an issue and suddenly just about every single person's copy of the lens has the fault and they all hate it.

if it works, it works :thumbsup2:

shankster
05-12-2011, 11:28 PM
even if you noticed a 'fault' would it make a difference? would you fall out of love with it even though it's performed so well for you? dave mentioned issues with moritakas via an email chat when i ordered them and when they arrived i had a quick look but couldnt see any major issues. after sharpening, another quick look and no issues. they perform fantastically so i see no reason to go looking for problems. im a photography enthusiast too (and work in the photo business) and it's a similar thing, there'll be a lens that everyone absolutely loves for the price and it performs brilliantly, but then there'll be a thread on a forum pointing out an issue and suddenly just about every single person's copy of the lens has the fault and they all hate it.

if it works, it works :thumbsup2:

I have noticed a slight over grind issue on my Moritakas,and it did bother me for a while.It seems to have gotten better after some time on the stones.Performance is still fantastic so I have no regrets whatsoever.But thanks to Dave(and this forum) I know what to look for in the future.
No love lost for Moritaka.

jaybett
05-13-2011, 04:55 AM
That's a great post Jay. I've been out of it for a little while, any idea how you would fit Konosuke in there? A few people had them, then it seemed like there was an explosion for the big group buy. What's the verdict now? I'm still in love with my custom white #2 Chuckabocho

My impression is that the Konosuke group buy, which you did a very good job on, created a demand. Owners were posting glowing reviews. The high cost of shipping was discouraging people from placing orders.

CKTG and JKI, both picked up Konosuke. Mr. Broida created some buzz with the HD line.

The ITK was probably the next IT knife. Hoss couldn't make them fast enough. The scarcity of the knife, plus it not being a laser, appeared to take some of the luster off. I'm sure Mark could still sell as many as Hoss could produce. It sounds like Hoss has his plate full with custom orders, plus forging Damascus steel.

The semi-stainless steel that is in the Konosuke HD and JCK Carbonext are getting attention. An argument could be made that Konosuke is the brand of choice at the moment.

There is some interesting stuff, that could change how we look at knives in the next several years. The first is this web site. Dave has gathered some of the top knife makers in the country on one forum. I'm sure they are well aware of each others work, but we are getting to see it. Hopefully the sharing of information between makers and users will lead to some kick ass knives.

Mr. Broida with JKI, is another new factor. A knife vendor who is a knife nut, who knows what western cooks want, and can find those knives in Japan at a very good price. He can work with the customer, and have custom made knife that fits their needs. The Gesshin line appears to be promising.

Jay

mr drinky
05-13-2011, 10:28 AM
What happens is the maker grinds the bevels from the blade face down towards the cutting edge and stops just before he breaks into the edge. If he spends too much time grinding, or is heavy handed, in one section this is an overgrind on the side of the knife that extends down to the edge but because he stops short of blowing through into the edge it isn't seen. Now along comes the knife owner who removes metal at the edge through sharpening and he breaks through into the overgrind and the hole appears and does nothing but grow bigger from this point forward.

Just out of my stupid curiosity. If 'holes' can occur, I imagine the opposite can also happen where there is a raised area that was not ground down enough. Does that happen a lot and create problems? I guess it is easier to fix as you still have metal to take away.

k.

Dave Martell
05-13-2011, 12:35 PM
No actually, not that I've seen.

EdipisReks
05-13-2011, 01:35 PM
No actually, not that I've seen.

that doesn't surprise me, as i imagine it would be a lot easier to not notice that you've overground something than it would be the other way around.

bob
05-13-2011, 02:16 PM
This thread is a fascinating read. I recently bought an it knife - a Konosuke HD. We shall see if it falls out of favor in a few years.

Before this I bought a commonly recommended 'budget' knife, a fujiwara carbon,which i still think is an excellent deal. The only issue, which isn't that big of an issue to me, is that the steel on this knife is very reactive. Because of this i decide to force a patina using darkhoek's method which has solved the problem.

I am quite impressed with the fit and finish on that knife, especially at the low price point.