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rdpx
02-03-2013, 08:27 PM
Hi,

some of you may have seen my thread about my upcoming J-knife baptism, and may be interested to know I went into a Japanese Knife shop in London today to see if I could have a hands-on with feeling the difference between some 210mm and some 240mm gyutos.

Brief trip was a success I think, with the 240s just feeling way too big for me, like I had a sword in my hand, and the 210s felt just about right. Whether I would quickly get used to a 240 was hard to tell, but they did just feel too large so I am pretty sure that is a decision made. To be fair on the salesperson, he did suggest the 210 was the way to go and that unless I was working with it every day as a chef it would take me a long time to get used to the 240.

So while I was there I took some notes, and wondered if you might like to play "what's that knife" and a little round of "The Price is Right" while we are there.

First up two photographs - name the knives and guess the prices. After that, see if you can guess the prices of the Misono UX-10 Gyutos they were selling (210 &/or 240), and also the same from the Misono "handmade" Molybdenum Steel series.... feel free to guess in dollars I will convert prices.

Knife 1:
http://i.imgur.com/mT8CMow.jpg

Knife 2:
http://i.imgur.com/fTxlnxv.jpg

Good luck!

Robert

Chefdog
02-03-2013, 08:36 PM
First one is a kikuichi, either carbon elite or TKC. I don't know much about Mcusta, never seen one in person.
I'd bet they were asking $350+/- for a 240 UX-10...

rdpx
02-03-2013, 08:43 PM
First one is a kikuichi, either carbon elite or TKC. I don't know much about Mcusta, never seen one in person.
I'd bet they were asking $350+/- for a 240 UX-10...

The characters seem exactly the same as for the TKC. The man in the shop told me that it was carbon and therefore would rust quickly. I nodded and said something about how did he mean it would develop a patina, and he had no idea what I was talking about, like I was retarded or something. "A patina" I said. I said it about three times and even said something like "a reaction the steel will have after say cutting a tomato or a lemon". He nodded sagely and said "A pattern?"

Huge & very annoying irony here is that I am probably in the market for a Carbonext, which I understand is pretty much the same knife. If I had clocked that, I would have paid a lot more attention to it. As it was I was just thinking about how it felt to hold and use (YES THEY HAD A TOMATO THAT I WAS ALLOWED TO CUT!!) so didn't pay too close attention to much past that.

RE: the UX-10 price. HIGHER!!!! [Not even close]

cclin
02-03-2013, 09:24 PM
240mm ux10 should be about $330 retail price + tax charg=$425+/-......

rdpx
02-03-2013, 09:45 PM
240mm ux10 should be about $330 retail price + tax charg=$425+/-......

HIGHER, HIGHER!!! [still cold]

NO ChoP!
02-03-2013, 09:55 PM
I think you can see the line were the stainless bolster joins to the carbon blade on the kikuichi. I'm guessing carbon elite. The price should tell...closer to $125- carbon. TKC- much higher....

rdpx
02-03-2013, 09:57 PM
The price should tell...closer to $125

"LOL", as the kids say.

:tease:

cclin
02-03-2013, 10:10 PM
HIGHER, HIGHER!!! [still cold]
there is no way more than $525. ux10 is great knife but not that great!! they are rip you off...I rather go for Custom-made gyuto

mr drinky
02-03-2013, 10:28 PM
It doesn't look like TKC finish to me.

k.

Mike9
02-03-2013, 10:38 PM
Holy crap - you can get a 210 UX10 from Rakuten for $162 USD.

chinacats
02-03-2013, 11:08 PM
It doesn't look like TKC finish to me.

k.

Not familiar with the TKC, but the finish looks quite like my carbon elite...

franzb69
02-03-2013, 11:08 PM
sounds awesome mike9. now that is worth considering at that price. why is it an arm and a leg everywhere else?

TB_London
02-04-2013, 05:48 AM
Haha, that shop was one of the most disappointing places I've ever been. I'd guess around 400 for a 210 ux-10.
When I walked in I was told "we specialise in knives with patterns on the blade", and it was downhill from there. The selection of sharpening stones was also poor and the sink at the back had some of the most dished stones I'd seen.

rdpx
02-04-2013, 09:39 AM
Holy crap - you can get a 210 UX10 from Rakuten for $162 USD.

Wow I have only been looking at J-knives for the past few days, and even I know that is an astonishingly low price for a pretty universally acclaimed knife.

rdpx
02-04-2013, 10:12 AM
TB you have killed the game by guessing TOO HIGH! I didn't think it was possible.


So here is the reveal:


London Japanese Knife shop prices for Misuno Gyutos:

UX-10 210 = 300 = US$475 [kiko delivers for $251]
UX-10 240 = 375 = US$594 [kiko delivers for $337]

"Handmade" Moly 210 = 141 = $223 [kiko deleivers for $115]
"Handmade" Moly 240 = 209 = $330 [kiko deleivers for $168]


I am guessing that the Kikuichi knife actually is the Carbon one then (the guy in the shop said as much, though didn't seem to understand what it meant) That makes more sense as if it were indeed the TKC that would only have made it overpriced by about 30% which seems a little low for a fit with the shop's pricing M.O. Assuming it is therefore the Elite Carbon, here are their prices:


Kakuichi Elite Carbon Gyutos:

210mm= 149 = $235 [**** sells @ $124]
240mm= 169 = $268 [**** sells @ $152]

and lastly:

MCUSTA ZANAMI 210mm = 239 = $378 [found only at JB Prince for $197]


VERDICT: prices are usually marked-up by around 90% on usual RETAIL prices.

:no:

chinacats
02-04-2013, 10:59 AM
TB you have killed the game by guessing TOO HIGH! I didn't think it was possible.


So here is the reveal:


London Japanese Knife shop prices for Misuno Gyutos:

UX-10 210 = 300 = US$475 [kiko delivers for $251]
UX-10 240 = 375 = US$594 [kiko delivers for $337]

"Handmade" Moly 210 = 141 = $223 [kiko deleivers for $115]
"Handmade" Moly 240 = 209 = $330 [kiko deleivers for $168]


I am guessing that the Kikuichi knife actually is the Carbon one then (the guy in the shop said as much, though didn't seem to understand what it meant) That makes more sense as if it were indeed the TKC that would only have made it overpriced by about 30% which seems a little low for a fit with the shop's pricing M.O. Assuming it is therefore the Elite Carbon, here are their prices:


Kakuichi Elite Carbon Gyutos:

210mm= 149 = $235 [**** sells @ $124]
240mm= 169 = $268 [**** sells @ $152]

and lastly:

MCUSTA ZANAMI 210mm = 239 = $378 [found only at JB Prince for $197]


VERDICT: prices are usually marked-up by around 90% on usual RETAIL prices.

:no:

:bigeek:

bieniek
02-04-2013, 11:20 AM
London calling.

Fancy chefs needs fancy toys.

"Look at my new misono ux 10, it costs over 50 bucks mate"

stevenStefano
02-04-2013, 11:34 AM
Knife shops in the UK are absolute bandits. This doesn't surprise me at all. Pretty much any knife you can get in the UK, you could ship it from the States, pay all the taxes and everything, and still get it cheaper

rdpx
02-04-2013, 12:30 PM
Knife shops in the UK are absolute bandits. This doesn't surprise me at all. Pretty much any knife you can get in the UK, you could ship it from the States, pay all the taxes and everything, and still get it cheaper

Are you just talking about J-knives here? Wusthofs etc. all seem pretty fairly priced I think, thought I haven't really looked into it that hard.

As for J knives, I can't really find anywhere else apart from Japanese Knife Company that sells them seriously here. They have four shops in London though so there must be a market for it.

Anyone want to give me some advice on how to set up as a knife importer? It would seem I could buy them direct from Kiko, and clear 50% profit and still be 25% cheaper than these guys.... but there must be a better way to do it.

eaglerock
02-04-2013, 01:27 PM
A shun classic 8" will cost you 380$ in Finland :lol2:

mikemac
02-04-2013, 01:31 PM
How much of that can be attributed to the VAT?

rdpx
02-04-2013, 01:46 PM
For the UK knives I think the import/customs duty on kitchen knives is 28.5%

VAT at sale is 20%.

But remember these charges would apply to the wholesale prices. The JKC prices still seem very steep indeed.

playford
02-04-2013, 05:26 PM
any items I've got hit on are 20% vat plus 8 admin fee.

Then they have to make a profit say 20%, and then pay 20% tax on that sale.

No wonder its at least double what you'd pay from jck etc.

TB_London
02-04-2013, 06:07 PM
Assuming they're VAT registered they're adding 20% vat at point of sale, and wouldn't pay the 20% at import, it's a tax on buyers, not sellers. So buy at wholesale, pay import shipping, add mark up and then VAT on top. Mark up is so high to cover overheads of having 2 bricks and mortar stores in London, plus the lack of competition for places where you can try the knife and be told all about how great it is means pricing pressure is reduced. Their pricing makes sense for their business model, it is the business model I would argue that has scope for improvement.

rdpx
02-04-2013, 08:13 PM
Mark up is so high to cover overheads of having 2 bricks and mortar stores in London

They have four now.

I would also say mark-up is high because of lack of understanding and also aimed at rich customers with a lot of spare money (2 of their stores are located in Kensington and Notting Hill).

Thanks for clearing up the import thing though - I hadn't realised that duty did not apply to commercial importers, and I suppose that makes it even worse.

I have no problem with people selling expensive knives, but I do think their mark-up seems to be taking the piss. If you buy a pair of Prada shoes online, or at a Prada store or elsewhere, the price will be roughly the same. Don't give them the excuse of having to pay rent on their shops!! Business model would seem to be excellent though if it can support four shops! "Selling vastly overpriced knives to ignorant rich people who will never know any better and often come back for more"

I have made my friends promise me that they are not to go back to the shop unless it is to return their knife [They paid 119 for a paring knife that JCK were selling for $75].

ajhuff
02-04-2013, 09:13 PM
I assume whatever you are looking at you can buy and ship direct to you. But if not I would be happy to have it shipped to me and I will turn around and ship it to you. Just let me know.

-AJ

pumbaa
02-04-2013, 09:24 PM
order from japanesechefsknife.com they ship world wide for $7 and then turn around add 50% and profit and still be cheaper than the other guys.

rdpx
02-04-2013, 09:26 PM
I assume whatever you are looking at you can buy and ship direct to you. But if not I would be happy to have it shipped to me and I will turn around and ship it to you. Just let me know.

-AJ

Thanks AJ that is very kind. That shop was my first stop in my search for a J-knife, and I quickly found this forum where I was warned about the prices, which then led me to Kiko at JCK. I only went in to compare difference between a 210 and 240mm gyuto, which was very helpful (the 240 felt like a sword to me!). I started the thread because I thought you all might be interested - all I had heard was "they are overpriced" so in future if anyone asks they can be pointed here and see concrete examples of exactly how the pricing is.

I am having a Carbonext 210 shipped to me this week, so will be sure to bore you with my unboxing photos and pictures of me looking amazed whilst I cut a tomato, and then pictures of the knife after I have massacred it on my stones.

Robert

:biggrin:

turbochef422
02-04-2013, 10:47 PM
A shun classic 8" will cost you 380$ in Finland :lol2:

You should have them shipped over and open a little shop. Like bringing jeans to Jamaica

bathonuk
02-05-2013, 08:20 AM
As I said in other thread. UK customs and taxes are worst in the world. I bought Suisin Densyo from JKI(I don't remember the price) and I had to pay over 120 of taxes.

Places like JCK or JNS are the best for Europe.

Here is nice tax calculator for import knifes to UK:
http://ianatkinson.net/leather/links.htm

eaglerock
02-05-2013, 11:11 AM
I don't think it is worse than Finland !!

You have to pay tax for any package from outside the EU, even it is a gift.

I have to pay 23% import tax + 7% for bla bla.

so if the knife costs 180$ +20$ shipping then i have to pay 60$ :(

rdpx
02-05-2013, 08:26 PM
I don't think it is worse than Finland !!

You have to pay tax for any package from outside the EU, even it is a gift.

I have to pay 23% import tax + 7% for bla bla.

so if the knife costs 180$ +20$ shipping then i have to pay 60$ :(

Can't you just smuggle them in from Russia?

franzb69
02-05-2013, 11:22 PM
I don't think it is worse than Finland !!

You have to pay tax for any package from outside the EU, even it is a gift.

I have to pay 23% import tax + 7% for bla bla.

so if the knife costs 180$ +20$ shipping then i have to pay 60$

just about the same way they charge us and then some. they make other ficticious reasons to add onto more than that which forces us to wanna bribe the customs officer just to get us to bribe them for half the fake rate that they give us, which is way more than what it's supposed to be.

xxsmilerxx
02-06-2013, 12:57 AM
Pretty much the same knives!
Rip off Britain!

http://www.japaneseknifecompany.com/KNIVES/HANDMADE/SAJI129LAYERCOLLECTION.aspx
http://japanesechefsknife.com/SajiVG10CustomDamascusII.html

rdpx
02-06-2013, 05:57 AM
Pretty much the same knives!
Rip off Britain!

http://www.japaneseknifecompany.com/KNIVES/HANDMADE/SAJI129LAYERCOLLECTION.aspx
http://japanesechefsknife.com/SajiVG10CustomDamascusII.html

It's endlessly shocking - some friends of mine bought a tiny paring knife (find the GEKKO knife on this page for $75 (http://www.japanesechefsknife.com/specials.html) it is unquestionably the same knife) from them for 119 ($187!!!!) - look HERE. (http://www.japaneseknifecompany.com/KNIVES/HANDMADE/JKCTAKAYUKIDAMASCUS.aspx)

As I think I mentioned before, the tactic seems to be that most of their online knives are pretty hard to track down and compare prices using Google, due to differing names etc, or seemingly only being sold in Ukraine (which is the case with their cheapest range - the Zanmai ones with plastic handles "PRO" stainless).

In the shops however they have a lot of the usual suspects - Misono UX10s and Kikuichi blah blah blah. It would be kind of funny to go in and start checking all the prices in front of them on a smartphone and see if they can explain why their prices are DOUBLE everywhere else in the world. I am actually very tempted to call them up and do mock disbelief when they quote me prices:

"How much? Are you sure? No, no, You must be quoting me for the wrong size, I asked for the Paring knife, not the 270 Western Deba."