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jaybett
06-05-2013, 04:04 PM
Is there any task that a workhorse gyuto is able to perform, that would be difficult or impossible for a laser?

Jay

Mucho Bocho
06-05-2013, 04:10 PM
Jay, If I may, Could we also get some numbers/measurements around what people consider "workhorse" or "Laser" Gyuto?

TamanegiKin
06-05-2013, 04:22 PM
Biggest thing I notice is that a thinner knife wedges a lot more in things like potatoes.
On the flip side if I'm cutting something super hard like kabocha or butternut my thinner knives go through with much less resistance.

ThEoRy
06-05-2013, 04:32 PM
Thinner knives can not have as much of a convexed or "s" ground face since there isn't as much material to work with. This can create more stiction to the blade face especially on taller blades. Certain cuts "walking the board" make me cringe while using a laser as well.

EdipisReks
06-05-2013, 04:57 PM
Biggest thing I notice is that a thinner knife wedges a lot more in things like potatoes.
On the flip side if I'm cutting something super hard like kabocha or butternut my thinner knives go through with much less resistance.

thinner knives, by definition, can't "wedge" as much as thicker knives, and your second sentence contradicts your first. what you are describing is sticktion, which is typically greater for the reasons ThEoRy gave.

TamanegiKin
06-05-2013, 05:09 PM
thinner knives, by definition, can't "wedge" as much as thicker knives, and your second sentence contradicts your first. what you are describing is sticktion, which is typically greater for the reasons ThEoRy gave.

That is exactly what I was attempting to describe, thanks.

EdipisReks
06-05-2013, 05:20 PM
No prob. I love the Heiji geometry for things like potatoes, but I usually switch over to my Singatirin honyaki for rutabagas and hard squash, as you just can't get around the physics. well, that's not really true, i just use the Heijis and push harder, because I usually use one knife for an entire meal prep, but you know what I mean. :)

jaybett
06-05-2013, 06:39 PM
Would it be fair to say that a laser can perform the same tasks as a work horse? That is not to say there are differences in how the knives do their tasks. Some caution would have to be used, with the laser.

Often times, when a search is being made for a knife, desirable qualities listed are: lightness and thinness, in other words a laser. After experiencing a laser, a number of users have posted their preference for a heavier knife. Why? What advantage is the added weight?

Jay

EdipisReks
06-05-2013, 06:44 PM
I've owned a bunch of very thin knives. The only very thin knife I still own is a Konosuke White #2 300mm suji. It's very thin, and it's awesome for slicing roasts, and when I was in Florida in May, I found out that it's awesome for trimming scallops (made a ripert dish that blew my in-laws heads off). For general tasks, I'd rather have a heavier knife that has less stiction than a lighter, thinner knife. That's why I've bought three Heijis.

labor of love
06-05-2013, 07:20 PM
For anything that involves repetitive chopping motions, liking mincing or guillotine cuts I like a more robust knife. It feels like a thicker blade will absorb the force more. Thinner lasers for just about everything else. But that's just me. I'm sure plenty will disagree.

stevenStefano
06-05-2013, 07:40 PM
Sometimes a heavier knife is advantageous. I think cutting spring onions is one. You can have a very sharp knife but a little weight really helps cut cleanly. For heavier knives you can also often cut with a vertical up and down motion with no need to move forward and back as well because the weight of the knife takes away the need. They both have their advantages and disadvantages

labor of love
06-05-2013, 07:57 PM
It's also really difficult to decide what a laser is based on weight because the handle could account for a lot of the overall weight of the knife. Even spine thickness isn't necessarily a determining factor, because you have to consider how quickly the blade tapers from spine to heel. I've used knives before with 2.4-2.6mm spines that felt thicker, not laser like.

keithsaltydog
06-05-2013, 08:00 PM
For anything that involves repetitive chopping motions, liking mincing or guillotine cuts I like a more robust knife. It feels like a thicker blade will absorb the force more. Thinner lasers for just about everything else. But that's just me. I'm sure plenty will disagree.

I agree for many jobs in Gardemanger from slicing tomato's,lemon wedges,peeling fruits,to cutting Sushi I prefer a Lazor.Even slicing meats wt. out bone.

mhlee
06-05-2013, 08:20 PM
I'm not a pro, but I went from a workhorse (Mario knife) to a laser (White #2 Gesshin Ginga). I love the ease of cutting, lightness, balance of the Ginga. I also prefer the feedback of monosteel carbon steel vs. stainless and the handle. I don't baby it at all and I don't feel that I have to. (I also use a Japanese synthetic board that I feel takes really good care of edges.)

I also felt less fatigue using this knife than other heavier knives (which as I use more knives, I think is result of better balance, not necessarily weight). But, that's just me.

The one thing I wish it did have was better food release. But, it's a laser - you're likely not going to get great food release from a laser.

labor of love
06-05-2013, 08:45 PM
Mhlee, just carve some glestain dimples into the side of your ginga and it should be fine:scared4:

VanIsleSteve
06-05-2013, 08:59 PM
So at what point does a "Laser" become a "Workhorse"? Is there something in between? Or does it go from Laser to Workhorse?

Sorry for the questions, as you can see by my posts, kinda new here

stereo.pete
06-05-2013, 09:16 PM
I prefer the feel of my Devin ITK, Shig and Yoshikane compared to my Konosuke gyuto (laser). I can't quite explain it but I feel as if the knife is more solid and I have more confidence in using it. Granted I still enjoy the hell out of my Konosuke every time I use it. For me I guess it comes down to aesthetics.

When I was much younger my Dad gave me his old set of Ping Zing 2 golf clubs. This was a serious set of irons for someone at the age of 12 and I used them for about 3 years before I purchased my first set of irons, Titleist DCI 981's. I immediately preferred the new irons based on the look of the club head, it seemed more natural to me and that gave me more confidence when standing over the ball. Golf is 80% mental for me, if I am not confident looking down at the club face and ball then chances are I will not swing true.

Weird I know, but for me, looks have a big part of how something can perform for me. Don't get me wrong, the grind has to right otherwise a workhorse is just a big slab of steel.

tk59
06-05-2013, 09:58 PM
For me, the softer the object being cut, the more advantageous it is to use a thicker knife with more convexity. My Zakuri is almost like a double beveled yanagiba. Slices of meat or whatever just fall away from it. The other time a thicker knife is nice is for highly repetitive tasks where some downward force needs to be applied for whatever reason. It's more comfortable to apply that force on a nice wide (and appropriately eased) spine. What I think is odd is when people think their lasers are more delicate than their "workhorses" even though the reality of it is a Gengetsu is thinner near the edge than a Konosuke, etc. If there is a part of your blade that is going to get munched, it's the area right by the edge, unless you're using it like a crowbar.

mhlee
06-05-2013, 10:24 PM
Mhlee, just carve some glestain dimples into the side of your ginga and it should be fine:scared4:

Kind of like recommending I further thin my Ginga, right? :sad0:

Scary thing is, some people actually have recommended thinning a laser like a Sakai Yusuke or Ginga without ever having done such a thing.

http://www.kitchenknifeforums.com/showthread.php/10458-Looking-to-replace-my-Hiro-AS/page4

tk59
06-05-2013, 11:14 PM
...or you could drill out some holes along the length of the blade. :)

labor of love
06-05-2013, 11:42 PM
So at what point does a "Laser" become a "Workhorse"? Is there something in between? Or does it go from Laser to Workhorse?

Sorry for the questions, as you can see by my posts, kinda new here
i guess when a knife is so thin that you barely ever get wedging but also there isnt much convexing in the blade either due to its thinness thus causing the stiction instead. thats pretty much what a laser is. i dunno, i consider laser to be almost a slang term. but i think most here would agree those are the characteristics of a laser. as far as an example of a good in between knife is concerned, the misono swed is the best example of an in between IMO in my limited experience. Its thin but no laser.

tk59
06-05-2013, 11:54 PM
Laser: 2 mm or less spine thickness over the heel for a 240 mm gyuto.

EdipisReks
06-06-2013, 12:01 AM
Laser: 2 mm or less spine thickness over the heel for a 240 mm gyuto.

well, assuming a good reduction towards the edge. 2mm at the spine and 1mm at the edge wouldn't be so great. ;)

tk59
06-06-2013, 12:08 AM
well, assuming a good reduction towards the edge. 2mm at the spine and 1mm at the edge wouldn't be so great. ;)I disagree. Thin knives are still lasers even if they suck. Historically, the term is used to describe knives made from steel sheets: Tadatsuna, Yusuke and Suisin Inox Honyaki western style knives. Now, we have Konosuke, Gesshin, etc. as well. The term has also been applied to some other thin knives from cheap to very expensive forged blades that were/are in actuality, terrible and not worth using, IMO.

EdipisReks
06-06-2013, 12:10 AM
i defer to greater knowledge.

panda
06-06-2013, 03:04 AM
not a fan of lasers. prepped 3 x 400 pans worth of root veggies tonight with a tanaka fattie gyuto and no wedging. i'd have been pretty miserable had i had to use a laser for that task.

jaybett
06-06-2013, 11:52 AM
When it comes to chopping large amount of veggies, I wonder if people prefer longer or thicker knives, because the extra weight helps with the cut? I use the heaviest knife I own, when chopping large amounts of veggies.

Jay

Salty dog
06-06-2013, 12:03 PM
Lasers were a fad.

Marko Tsourkan
06-06-2013, 12:30 PM
+1

It's funny how everything comes to balance over time and tried-and-true stuff just keeps coming back.

To me lasers were never an area of interest. I have a Japanese knife that is 1.5mm at the spine, flat ground, then 90/10 beveled. It flexes at the handle, and while thin enough to get through most things with ease, on dense stuff it gets stuck. I attribute it less to wedging and more to sticking, but most annoying trait of lasers that many flex at the spine while you cutting through a squash or similarly dense vegetable. For that reason alone, I would never make a knife that is less than 2.5mm thick at the handle.

There are geometries one can explore to thin the edge and area above the edge, while leaving spine at full thickness. For me this is the approach if I were to look for a knife that offers a precise cutting ability. A good example of such a knife is a thin Shigefusa.

A

labor of love
06-06-2013, 02:10 PM
Lasers were a fad.

I dunno. Ask mark how many konosukes he moves each year, this fad is here to stay.

keithsaltydog
06-06-2013, 04:34 PM
I got my first carbon Masamoto in the early 1980's.I still have what is left of it.2mm at the heel & less than 1mm toward the tip.I liked that blade so much,the steel was excellent & performance wise percision cuts,slicing & dicing my favorite blade.Later Masa's were not as good as my original.

eaglerock
06-06-2013, 05:12 PM
I think that it is a personal preference, someone likes a laser, someone likes a heavy knife, someone like flat,......

My sakai yusuke works hard every day, i think it is a true work horse. Food sticking have never been a real big issue with the knife for me.

It is not very comfortable to hold a heavy knife 8 hours a days cutting stuff.

But as Marko pointed "everything comes to balance over time" that is why i want to buy a ks :)

stevenStefano
06-06-2013, 05:27 PM
Something to also consider is if you are left or right-handed. I think if you are a lefty lasers are good because they are thinner so there's less steel to be biased

Marko Tsourkan
06-06-2013, 05:28 PM
...

But as Marko pointed "everything comes to balance over time" that is why i want to buy a ks :)

How do you know that KS is not a fad?

mhlee
06-06-2013, 05:38 PM
How do you know that KS is not a fad?

That's funny. I was thinking of the same thing.

Marko Tsourkan
06-06-2013, 05:47 PM
That's funny. I was thinking of the same thing.

KS is a decent knife. 3mm over the heel, 2mm half way, about 1.7mm 50mm from the tip by no means a laser, but also not a thick knife. Ground partially flat, partially convex, convexing at about 1/3 of the blade. Edge thickness is .016", quite thick for a performance knife, so to get most of it, you need to thin it (until factory bevel is gone). That will get the edge to about .005, on par with recent DT.

KS edge retention is OK.


M

Benuser
06-06-2013, 06:49 PM
Edge thickness is .016", quite thick for a performance knife, so to get most of it, you need to thin it (until factory bevel is gone). That will get the edge to about .005, on par with recent DT.
Marko, excuse my ignorance, and not trying to hijack the discussion, but where and how do you measure edge thickness? With a micrometer I can only measure thickness at some distance from the very edge.

eaglerock
06-06-2013, 06:57 PM
sorry i should have explained more, i just meant my opinion when picking up knives have changes over the years from lasers to more balanced knives.

I don't really care if it is a fad or not as long as i enjoy using it :)

I also should have said yusuke ks profile is what i'm going for.

My dream knife would be one of yours Marko as i think it is one of the best balanced knives i have seen. would love to try it one day :)

ChiliPepper
06-07-2013, 07:17 AM
Very interesting discussion, I believe this is a topic that should have been discussed in depth a long time ago as it explores two "categories" of knives that have been object of a lot of hype, especially the "laser".
It's kind of a Mythbuster topic that, I believe, would benefit a lot from pros real life experience. Pros as well as experienced hobbyists, that is, and this forum doesn't lack in these categories.
So, is the laser knife a fad or does it have the numbers to survive as a species?
For what it's worth (as an amateur) I've only bought and experienced lasers in the shape of a suji, exclusively for slicing tasks and I'm happy with my thin Yusuke but hell, it flexes a lot and I'm not sure I'd buy a do-it-all gyuto with a similar thickness (or lack thereof)

Mucho Bocho
06-07-2013, 09:21 AM
I'd like to add one distinction between Laser and so called Workhorse knives that is where they are being used. I'm a home Chef so I can take my time using my knives but in a production environment, I thing that something thicker on the spine but still thin behind the edge would be more appropriate.

I'm a huge fan of thin knives. I have the special thin 240 Yusuke in white #2 is its my go to knife for most prep chores. Unless I'm going a lot of repetitive tasks: Vegetables--Nakiri, meat butchery--takeda Bunno, poultry/fish--deba.

that being said, I do have on order 210, 240, 270 2.8mm Keiichi/Mpukas profiled gyutos with flatter profile, 61hr in Swedish.

Cause sometimes you feel like a nut, and sometimes you donít!

Chefdog
06-07-2013, 10:00 AM
I think "workhorse" depends more on the person wielding the gyuto than the specific dimensions of the knife. For me a gyuto that I can pick up in the morning and use for 95% of what I need to cut (aside from butchery) is a workhorse. For some, that might be a "mighty" gyuto while others rely on a "laser" as their workhorse, depending on thier technique. For me there's a point at which thinner (behind the edge) becomes more of an impediment than a benefit and starts to slow me down.
So i favor the Kate Upton style knives over the Kate Moss's of the gyuto world. :)

Chefdog
06-07-2013, 10:03 AM
Oops

Marko Tsourkan
06-07-2013, 11:26 AM
Marko, excuse my ignorance, and not trying to hijack the discussion, but where and how do you measure edge thickness? With a micrometer I can only measure thickness at some distance from the very edge.

You measure the thickness of the edge right at the edge. Digital calipers and a magnifying visor are tools needed to get an idea how thin the edge is.

I typically make following measurements at the blade to assess geometry.

1. At the edge - edge thickness
2. 10mm up the edge - from heel to tip
3. 27mm up the edge on taller knives (end of jaws on my calipers) - from heel to about 2/3 of the blade forward
4. Spine measurement at the handle, over the heel, 50mm from the tip, 10mm from the tip
5. Straight edge against the side of the knife to gauge geometry (grind)

For my own knives, I have target numbers depending on type I grind.

For me a workhorse knife should have some weight. What that weight is, would vary from maker to a maker. A 255mm workhorse that I would make would be about 3.15-3.25mm over the heel, 2.25mm half way, 1.75mm 50mm from the spine, and weigh about 225-240g with the the handle.

A thinner version would be .25 thinner up to 50mm from the tip.

Benuser
06-07-2013, 11:58 AM
Thanks Marko, it's very helpful!

zitangy
06-07-2013, 12:11 PM
I also prefer a heavier knife with a convex grind. Preferred weight around 200 to 220 grams.

Came across a Tojiro DP series of that weight category and grind but alas it is their version of their Western Deba... which is all right with me But their 210mm weighs about 340 grams and the 180mm clocks in at 220grams. Strangely, their version of their Western Debas (WD) blade height is about the same with their gyutos.

THus the thought of getting the 210mm Westren Deba and grinding it to my satisfaction ( just to shed some metal and at the same time maintain the shape and geometry) hopefully ; may be a fun project

rgds
d

Matus
02-28-2014, 05:02 PM
This seems to be a proper thread to ask the following question: Is my 210mm Tanaka R2 gyuto a laser? Its numbers are:
- Blade height at the heel: 49mm
- Weight 131g
- Wa-handle
- Blade width at the spine:
-- at the handle: 2.7mm
-- at the heel: 2.6mm
-- 1/2 way towards the tip: 1.8mm
-- 1cm from the tip: 0.6mm

thanks :)

Mateyhv
03-01-2014, 06:57 AM
I am quite a newbie but from your measures it sounds like a laser.