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View Full Version : looking for an exceptional "work horse" knife



Jbone
04-16-2013, 09:55 PM
currently the two gyutos i use are a 210 mm konosuke hd2 and a 240 mm kikuichi, both being stainless/semi stainless steels and lasers/ laseresque knives.

i really want to get a carbon steel 240 mm gyuto with a relatively flat profile with good edge retention but can also achieve a very sharp edge in the $400 range or less.

wa or western handle is fine i have knives in both and i dont really have a preference

Pensacola Tiger
04-16-2013, 10:11 PM
Lamson/Rodrigue/McLean 24 cm gyuto:

http://www.kitchenknifeforums.com/showthread.php/11154-Lamson-Collaboration-Next-Step

K-Fed
04-16-2013, 10:11 PM
Hd and tkc kikuichi are both great workhorses. My 270 tkc gets a workout on a regular basis and I love it. There are a lot of great knives in the sub 400 range. Just find one that suits you really. If you have any particular knives in mind let us know as we will be able to share our experiences with the knives in question.

Jbone
04-16-2013, 10:17 PM
knives ive been looking at are the masamoto ks, konosuke fujiyama, takese sasanoha

keithsaltydog
04-16-2013, 10:57 PM
The two knives you have are good blades.Depends what you mean by workhorse.As you mention,flat,sharp,good edge reten.,All the knives you are looking at are good choices.A step up fr. what you have.They will fly thru food,but no bones.I think mono steel carbons make great workhorse knives used mostly Masamoto's.For a little less coin the Sakai Takayuki Blue Steel Guyto at Blueway Japan is another good carbon.

El Pescador
04-16-2013, 10:58 PM
Yoshikane San Mai v2

Chefdog
04-16-2013, 11:03 PM
If you want to try a sturdy carbon workhorse that offers great steel at a great steal (sorry, I know that was bad), take a look at Suien VC from JKI. You could get two at your budget.

Chuckles
04-17-2013, 01:53 AM
This looks interesting to me. Mizuno Hontanren Blue #2. Gyuto in 240 or 270 would be under budget. Anybody use one?

http://japanesechefsknife.com/HontanrenSeries.html#Hontanren

cclin
04-17-2013, 02:40 AM
for my own definition, workhorse gyuto should be hefty, sturdy with good edge retention carbon steel(blue/o1/w2...etc ) knife!! I can only think two right now- "Watanabe pro gyuto" & "Kato gyuto".

Justin0505
04-17-2013, 03:46 AM
This looks interesting to me. Mizuno Hontanren Blue #2. Gyuto in 240 or 270 would be under budget. Anybody use one?

http://japanesechefsknife.com/HontanrenSeries.html#Hontanren

I have a 180mm deba from that line (although mine may be blue super instead of 2) and it's very well made and a beast of a knife. If the gyuto is made with the same standards I'd expect it to be quite the draft horse.

bieniek
04-17-2013, 07:47 AM
Total workhorse with great steel ?

Kato is little over budget, but you can easily sell the other toys.

Chuckles
04-17-2013, 11:35 AM
I wouldn't spring for a Kato unless you've got strong skills with stones.

Also, "white steel" and "work horse" are mutually exclusive in my mind. Unless you love sharpening.

K-Fed
04-17-2013, 12:11 PM
I wouldn't spring for a Kato unless you've got strong skills with stones.

Also, "white steel" and "work horse" are mutually exclusive in my mind. Unless you love sharpening.

I'd have to second that I think. I used a white 2 gyuto as my main knife for a good while and it needed nearly daily trips to the stones. I'd have to say that my dt itk is the best work horse that I've got. Gets insanely sharp, fantastic edge retention, thick where it needs to be and thin where it needs to be and one of the best cutters in the kit.

labor of love
04-17-2013, 12:29 PM
K fed, what about that zakuri you used to have? Its a workhorse, no?

JohnnyChance
04-17-2013, 12:37 PM
The answer is a Gengetsu. In semi stainless.

labor of love
04-17-2013, 12:47 PM
Forget the zakuri comment. I didnt realize the budget was $400.

bieniek
04-17-2013, 12:57 PM
Youre saying from experience of from the magic steel numbers?

Could you tell the steel difference just by looking at the blade?

Makes me wonder cause I have this little gem called Gesshin Ittetsu made with white-two and the edge retention is not shy, and the damn abrasion resistance is frustrating [when you have to thin the bastard]

There is definitely cheaper choices, but which carbon keeps the edge "forever" like some of the "super-wear-resistant-stainless-magic-steels" ?

But I dont talk stainless, Im not familiar with it.

JohnnyChance
04-17-2013, 01:14 PM
Semi stainless Gengetsu: $390 USD. Kato: $760 USD. Not really the same budget ballpark.

K-Fed
04-17-2013, 01:30 PM
K fed, what about that zakuri you used to have? Its a workhorse, no?

Defineately. Was a great one. Kinda miss it.

WiscoNole
04-17-2013, 01:40 PM
This looks interesting to me. Mizuno Hontanren Blue #2. Gyuto in 240 or 270 would be under budget. Anybody use one?

http://japanesechefsknife.com/HontanrenSeries.html#Hontanren
I have a 240. Excellent knife. Beautifully made and great performance.

Miles
04-17-2013, 01:51 PM
I have one. Draft horse is a good metaphor. Steel is very good. Retention is what you'd expect. It's solid and you can be a bit rough with it without worrying about it. The iron sides are very reactive.

stevenStefano
04-17-2013, 01:56 PM
I agree about White #2 not being a great choice for a workhorse, that's why I don't use any knives with that steel any more, I wasn't impressed by the edge retention at all. I'd go for a Zakuri probably, they're great value and can take a beating, the edge retention is great with the AS anyways, haven't used the others

cclin
04-17-2013, 03:12 PM
The answer is a Gengetsu. In semi stainless.

I just brought 240mm semi stainless Gengetsu a week ago, I like it a lot....nice weight, thin behind the edge, no food reactive, easy to take care!! to me, Gengetsu is nice all-around gyuto!! However, if I want to cut 5 lbs. of hard root vegetablele. I'll reach my work-horse Watanabe pro gyuto not Gengetsu. Watanabe gyuto is more hefty/sturdy & blue steel hold the edge very well. IMO, Watanabe' extra weight/ sturdy blade has bette performance than Gengetsu when doing heavy/tough job!
top:Gengetsu, bottom:Watanabe
http://i1054.photobucket.com/albums/s482/54cclin/20130417_112518_zps60b652ab.jpg (http://s1054.photobucket.com/user/54cclin/media/20130417_112518_zps60b652ab.jpg.html)

bieniek
04-17-2013, 03:57 PM
Semi stainless Gengetsu: $390 USD. Kato: $760 USD. Not really the same budget ballpark.

Point taken. I would go Kochi then.

cclin
04-17-2013, 04:18 PM
Point taken. I would go Kochi then.

in this case, I agree with JohnnyChance....my vote goes to Semi-stainless Gengetsu. both Kochi & Gengetsu are great cutter; however, Semi-stainless Gengetsu has better edge retention than Kochi V2!!

labor of love
04-17-2013, 04:21 PM
So many good choices here. After looking at the watanabe prices on their website, they seem to fit the bill.

labor of love
04-17-2013, 04:23 PM
Well, dont forget about the blue steel kochis.better retention than v2. We never seem to hear too much about them.

Jbone
04-17-2013, 06:33 PM
dam i got too excited (received income tax money) and pulled the trigger on the masamoto ks bought it last night on JCK, i wish i waited one extra day to see the negatives of white #2 none the less i think i will still enjoy my purchase

if im not satisfied with this knife as my daily go- to at work i think the next one i will try will e a gengetsu or watanabe

schanop
04-17-2013, 08:04 PM
Semi stainless Gengetsu: $390 USD. Kato: $760 USD. Not really the same budget ballpark.

For 240mm Kato should be about 580, 600 top. 760 probably computed with 25% VAT added which is only applicable to EU.

If you are not happy with KS and want to get a new knife, consider a Heiji carbon. Buying direct is pretty reasonable at 26250 JPY for 240mm gyuto. Given current JPY weakness, it is well withthin your budget. But there is a wait time of about a couple of months at least. You can also get Heiji Semi Stainless for a similar price too.

Chuckles
04-17-2013, 09:31 PM
You will never have trouble moving a KS here.

JohnnyChance
04-17-2013, 09:42 PM
For 240mm Kato should be about 580, 600 top. 760 probably computed with 25% VAT added which is only applicable to EU.

If you are not happy with KS and want to get a new knife, consider a Heiji carbon. Buying direct is pretty reasonable at 26250 JPY for 240mm gyuto. Given current JPY weakness, it is well withthin your budget. But there is a wait time of about a couple of months at least. You can also get Heiji Semi Stainless for a similar price too.

You are right, I believe the 240 is about $608 without VAT. I thought Maxim's online store added VAT after you put your country in, but all prices in the store include it right off the bat.

keithsaltydog
04-17-2013, 10:45 PM
dam i got too excited (received income tax money) and pulled the trigger on the masamoto ks bought it last night on JCK, i wish i waited one extra day to see the negatives of white #2 none the less i think i will still enjoy my purchase

if im not satisfied with this knife as my daily go- to at work i think the next one i will try will e a gengetsu or watanabe

The Masamoto KS is a very good blade,flatter profile,easy to sharpen to a screamming edge,quality Heat treatment.Superb cutter.White 2 esp. in the Masamoto is not junk steel by a long shot.

panda
06-07-2013, 04:28 PM
ordered a 270 watanabe with the intent of being a workhorse which i currently use tanaka ginsanko 270 in that role. will compare when it arrives. that mizuno blue is interesting as well.

Duckfat
06-07-2013, 05:40 PM
dam i got too excited (received income tax money) and pulled the trigger on the masamoto ks bought it last night on JCK, i wish i waited one extra day to see the negatives of white #2 none the less i think i will still enjoy my purchase

I wouldn't spend any time worrying about that. The KS is an awesome knife and just because some one else finds a negative side to white #2 doesn't mean it wont work very well for you. You surely won't have any trouble unloading it if it doesn't work for you so a KS is as close to risk free as it gets.

Dave

easy13
06-07-2013, 07:51 PM
"for my own definition, workhorse gyuto should be hefty, sturdy with good edge retention carbon steel(blue/o1/w2...etc ) knife!! I can only think two right now"
-cclin

Agreed and in a decent price range my choice is the Hiromoto AS 240mm

Patatas Bravas
06-07-2013, 10:19 PM
Semi stainless Gengetsu: $390 USD. Kato: $760 USD. Not really the same budget ballpark.

Though it is not in stock, the 240mm works out to only $487 USD today. The price was adjusted downward due to the new exchange rates, which is why I got one. Just a few months ago it was around $600. ;)

Not sure if people remember but it's called the 'Workhorse' for a reason, and so would be a great choice I think, although it's also true as someone said above that you'll spend some time with it on the stones (thinning - and the steel is hard).

I don't usually encounter much talk about the Gesshin Hide gyuto. There's a 240mm in blue#2 with ebony handle (nice) but it's $575. I don't see it listed on the JKI site and maybe I'm just imagining things, but I'm pretty sure there used to be a ho wood verson of the same knife at $100 less. Special order now maybe? On the downside, the prices here seem to be the same as last year and so, unlike at JNS, haven't been adjusted downward to reflect the value of the Yen.

labor of love
06-07-2013, 11:09 PM
ordered a 270 watanabe with the intent of being a workhorse which i currently use tanaka ginsanko 270 in that role. will compare when it arrives. that mizuno blue is interesting as well.
I'd prefer the watanabe just because it appears to be a taller gyuto than the mizuno.

JBroida
06-08-2013, 12:11 AM
Though it is not in stock, the 240mm works out to only $487 USD today. The price was adjusted downward due to the new exchange rates, which is why I got one. Just a few months ago it was around $600. ;)

Not sure if people remember but it's called the 'Workhorse' for a reason, and so would be a great choice I think, although it's also true as someone said above that you'll spend some time with it on the stones (thinning - and the steel is hard).

I don't usually encounter much talk about the Gesshin Hide gyuto. There's a 240mm in blue#2 with ebony handle (nice) but it's $575. I don't see it listed on the JKI site and maybe I'm just imagining things, but I'm pretty sure there used to be a ho wood verson of the same knife at $100 less. Special order now maybe? On the downside, the prices here seem to be the same as last year and so, unlike at JNS, haven't been adjusted downward to reflect the value of the Yen.

i would greatly appreciate if, before making comments like this, people would consider the following-
1. we have not raised prices on a number of items over the last few YEARS, despite the change in the change in the exchange rate
2. many prices on newer stock have been lowered
3. not everything was bought under the new exchange rate, and thus will sometimes reflect older exchange rates
4. sometimes we suck it up when the yen is strong because we dont want to always raise prices, so when we dont lower prices right away, maybe there's a reason for it (like trying to recoup a bit after having really really low margins on some procucts)

tk59
06-08-2013, 01:54 AM
...I don't usually encounter much talk about the Gesshin Hide gyuto. There's a 240mm in blue#2 with ebony handle (nice) but it's $575. I don't see it listed on the JKI site and maybe I'm just imagining things, but I'm pretty sure there used to be a ho wood verson of the same knife at $100 less. Special order now maybe? On the downside, the prices here seem to be the same as last year and so, unlike at JNS, haven't been adjusted downward to reflect the value of the Yen.
I have a Gesshin Hide right here that I was just working on. It's an outstanding knife. It's one of those that cuts way better than you expect based on it's thickness at the spine.

Aphex
06-08-2013, 02:37 AM
I have a Gesshin Hide right here that I was just working on. It's an outstanding knife. It's one of those that cuts way better than you expect based on it's thickness at the spine.

Is this one of the new profile Hide's, or old?

I was thinking about treating myself with one of those beauties, or perhaps a Gengetsu, or maybe even a Heiji ss while the exchange rate is so good.

Patatas Bravas
06-08-2013, 05:22 AM
I have a Gesshin Hide right here that I was just working on. It's an outstanding knife. It's one of those that cuts way better than you expect based on it's thickness at the spine.

Yes. I like the one I tried too (the older style), no matter the price. A 240 is smaller in length - 240mm to the machi - but very nice grind, finish & feel, and blue#2 often seems like the high-end fav for steels for pro use in Japan.

maxim
06-08-2013, 06:55 AM
:plus1:
I did not change price on Kato right away only when i got new stock of them and all old stock was sold.


i would greatly appreciate if, before making comments like this, people would consider the following-
1. we have not raised prices on a number of items over the last few YEARS, despite the change in the change in the exchange rate
2. many prices on newer stock have been lowered
3. not everything was bought under the new exchange rate, and thus will sometimes reflect older exchange rates
4. sometimes we suck it up when the yen is strong because we dont want to always raise prices, so when we dont lower prices right away, maybe there's a reason for it (like trying to recoup a bit after having really really low margins on some procucts)

tk59
06-08-2013, 11:44 AM
Is this one of the new profile Hide's, or old?

I was thinking about treating myself with one of those beauties, or perhaps a Gengetsu, or maybe even a Heiji ss while the exchange rate is so good.Can't go wrong with any of those. As for the Hide, I think it's the old style. There's a bit more belly and the tip is higher than I prefer. Still a great knife.

Chef Doom
06-09-2013, 01:25 PM
I have a 240 Hide that is an older profile. Always happy when I use that knife. The new profiles are nice too and highly recommended.