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View Full Version : Perfect custom cheese knife - Challange to knife makers



welshstar
12-03-2011, 12:56 PM
One of the most common tasks for me is cheese slicing.

I have tried all manner of super sharp knives and none of them seem much good at cheese slicing because the cheese just sticks to the blade. The normal cheese knife you see has some weird set of holes etc to stop cheese sticking, the other alternative is a cheese wire, thats not a good option because it takes up to much space.

So I want to reinvent the cheese knife, what concepts can we come up with ?

My initial thought's are a very rigid but sharp very shallow blade, almost like a rigid boning/filliet knife, another idea would be dest described as a cheese junior hacksaw to give a very thin shallow blade ridigity.

Thoughts or ideas for discussion ?

At the end of the day if we can come up with something uinique and effective I would like to commission the knife and try it for real.

Alan

kalaeb
12-03-2011, 01:03 PM
Are we talking commercial blocks or residential? For commercial I use a wire.

If its residential I like the one I use, great for soft cheese: The holes reduce the drag:

2796

welshstar
12-03-2011, 01:12 PM
Home use only

Thats a pretty knife, is that a factory blade with custom handle ?

kalaeb
12-03-2011, 01:24 PM
Yes, factory blade with custom handle. I think the blade is only 150 mm.

El Pescador
12-03-2011, 01:35 PM
Get a cheese wire.

Lefty
12-03-2011, 01:42 PM
Yup, heavy weight fishing wire tied around a slingshot shape works amazingly well.

Andrew H
12-03-2011, 01:45 PM
Guitar string.

99Limited
12-03-2011, 01:48 PM
The best hard cheese cutting knife I have ever used is my Henckels 5.5" Twin Cuisine santoku with the grantons. For such a small knife it's pretty heavy and it's the only time that it seems that the grantons actually help with the cutting.

memorael
12-03-2011, 02:32 PM
+1 on the cheese wire, best cheese cutter ever.

welshstar
12-03-2011, 03:13 PM
I understand there are various wires etc out there now that work reasonably well

Im looking for something new and different

Lefty
12-03-2011, 03:17 PM
Laser beam cheese cutter?

kalaeb
12-03-2011, 03:40 PM
Really, all you guys use wires at your home? For multiple slices from a 1/2# brick? Guess I am the odd one out.

Lefty
12-03-2011, 03:41 PM
I tend to use my Fujiwara petty, but a wire does work a lot nicer.

tk59
12-03-2011, 04:33 PM
Less drag is better for sure. I use pretty much any knife for most cheeses. When it gets to softer cheese, nothing comes remotely close to using a wire.

Eamon Burke
12-03-2011, 04:36 PM
Well, I've never needed a square pad of brie, so I don't worry about soft cheese. But then again, I doubt that $7 cheese knife needs 5 mosaic pins, so it's probably not about need, is it?

kalaeb
12-03-2011, 04:56 PM
They are small pins.

Eamon Burke
12-03-2011, 05:06 PM
:yap:

WildBoar
12-03-2011, 05:12 PM
Yup, heavy weight fishing wire tied around a slingshot shape works amazingly well.I think we're on to something now. A feather damascus arch with a nice burled wood handle, and the ends of the arch receive easily-replaceable fishing line or wire :cool2: Sounds like a good project for Del or Randy!

tk59
12-03-2011, 05:19 PM
Some might think it's a little long but I bet this would do a pretty good job. Check out post #28 http://www.kitchenknifeforums.com/showthread.php?3238-New-knife-pics.

Eamon Burke
12-03-2011, 05:25 PM
http://fototime.com/83CA9595B51EAA2/standard.jpg

Oh yeah, best choice for the job.

tk59
12-03-2011, 05:26 PM
http://fototime.com/83CA9595B51EAA2/standard.jpg

Oh yeah, best choice for the job.Thanks for the assist. :)

welshstar
12-03-2011, 07:56 PM
I would be happy to assist and try that at home !!!

jmforge
12-03-2011, 08:31 PM
When I was a wee lad back in Kentucky, my grandfather had a pretty cool cheese slicing setup. It was a narrow wood cutting board with a pivoting wire cutter setup like a guillotine paper shear. It worked on the big blocks of bulk American cheese like the government now gives away. Think a standard slice of American being the "short dimensions" something like that would handle almost anything you could throw at it. Not sure if he boughtit or made it. He was a tinkerer, so he may have assembled it from parts.

add
12-03-2011, 10:23 PM
http://fototime.com/83CA9595B51EAA2/standard.jpg



And that, is the loooooongest blood groove I have ever seen on a knife... :laugh:

Don Nguyen
12-03-2011, 11:28 PM
Could you grind a regular chef's knife like that to prevent sticking?

Just curious...........

Eamon Burke
12-03-2011, 11:52 PM
Glestain tries. I've never used one though.

stevenStefano
12-04-2011, 12:43 PM
An usuba is an awesome knife for cheese

JohnnyChance
12-04-2011, 03:42 PM
Thanks for the assist. :)

You can also click on the post number and then copy the url in your browser. It will then point right to the post you want to talk about.

Like so. (http://www.kitchenknifeforums.com/showthread.php?3238-New-knife-pics&p=55194&viewfull=1#post55194)

tk59
12-04-2011, 04:50 PM
You can also click on the post number and then copy the url in your browser. It will then point right to the post you want to talk about.

Like so. (http://www.kitchenknifeforums.com/showthread.php?3238-New-knife-pics&p=55194&viewfull=1#post55194)So THAT's how ya do it! Thanks.
Glestain: I only have a gyuto and it's okay for softer cheese but still not great.

Bill Burke
12-04-2011, 11:14 PM
In my experiance nearly any knife will cut cheese very well "IF IS VERY DULL" I keep a chicago cutlery petite santoku aroung that you could ride across country and not get hurt. try it before you guys make fun of me.

Lucretia
12-05-2011, 10:53 AM
When I was a wee lad back in Kentucky, my grandfather had a pretty cool cheese slicing setup. It was a narrow wood cutting board with a pivoting wire cutter setup like a guillotine paper shear. It worked on the big blocks of bulk American cheese like the government now gives away. Think a standard slice of American being the "short dimensions" something like that would handle almost anything you could throw at it. Not sure if he boughtit or made it. He was a tinkerer, so he may have assembled it from parts.

We had one of those! I'd forgotten all about it. It almost seems as though there was a groove in the board that the wire went into so that it would pass below the surface of the board and make a complete cut. A royal pain to clean the groove, if I remember correctly.

Andrew H
12-05-2011, 10:58 AM
Yup, lots of places carry things like that: http://www.amazon.com/Prodyne-805B-Thick-Cheese-Slicer/dp/B00004S1DU/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1323101611&sr=8-3

ajhuff
12-05-2011, 10:59 AM
Like this???: http://www.wellpromo.com/upload/upimg30/Bamboo-Cheese-Slicer-26130.jpg

I have one on marble instead of wood. Not that hard to find.

-AJ

jmforge
12-05-2011, 11:29 AM
And they work. Not elegant or "high speed, low drag", but effective. The bad part is having to replace the wire if you break it. Amazon has a marble version listed for $10.49.

Eamon Burke
12-05-2011, 02:26 PM
Alton Brown makes one in this episode of Good Eats:

Starts at 8:14


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NxzYaIiqnS0&feature=related

SpikeC
12-05-2011, 04:10 PM
So what is the ideal size of wire for a cheese board? I suspect that my stainless safety wire might be a bit too thick........

apicius9
12-05-2011, 06:44 PM
David, are you reading this? Will we see cheese boards with wires in the near future? :) I think cheese and walnut go very well together :D

Stefan

WildBoar
12-05-2011, 07:18 PM
It almost seems as though there was a groove in the board that the wire went into so that it would pass below the surface of the board and make a complete cut. A royal pain to clean the groove, if I remember correctly.


David, are you reading this? Will we see cheese boards with wires in the near future? :) I think cheese and walnut go very well together :D

Stefan

So maybe make the board in 2 pieces, and put a hinge at one end and a latch at the other. and make the board a bit thicker, too. That way the wire could go below the board surface, and still clear the tops of the hinge and latch. At cleaning time, unlatch and swing the short end away from the longer end, and clean the ends of the board.

Delbert can make the metal arm assembly, hinges and latches (mokume, of course!) and Boadsmith can fabricate the cutting board pieces. Final assembly by Dave M.

Order now, and open on christmas morning! :hungry:

Hermes7792
12-05-2011, 07:46 PM
So maybe make the board in 2 pieces, and put a hinge at one end and a latch at the other. and make the board a bit thicker, too. That way the wire could go below the board surface, and still clear the tops of the hinge and latch. At cleaning time, unlatch and swing the short end away from the longer end, and clean the ends of the board.

Delbert can make the metal arm assembly, hinges and latches (mokume, of course!) and Boadsmith can fabricate the cutting board pieces. Final assembly by Dave M.

Order now, and open on christmas morning! :hungry:


Seems like this would be a little pricey!

WildBoar
12-05-2011, 08:02 PM
Seems like this would be a little pricey!Oh, sorry about that -- I thought this forum was full of people who have spent $500+ on a single kitchen knife :dontknow:


Actually, it would be easy enough to buy one of the ones shown in order to pull off the cutting assembly, and insert that in a 2-piece board like I envisioned. Would be a lot less expensive (although not nearly as cool as having a the cutting assembly made from mokume :()

WildBoar
12-05-2011, 08:08 PM
Too funny -- there is a web site for everything! http://www.cheeseslicersonline.com/

They even have a end grain model :biggrin:

Delbert Ealy
12-05-2011, 08:31 PM
One handle or two? I ask because it makes a difference. Also how long a blade are you thinking, same reason.
Del

I read the first page when I wrote this, are we still interested in a knife or am I making some mokume wire frames?

WildBoar
12-05-2011, 08:50 PM
Del -- why not both? :knight:

SpikeC
12-05-2011, 09:36 PM
we need feather damascus arms for the cutter.

Mike Davis
12-05-2011, 09:37 PM
You guys kill me! But...i will think of this when i am out in the shop and try to make a good cheese knife....Dammit....there goes my A.D.D. flaring up again....

kalaeb
12-05-2011, 10:36 PM
Dammit....there goes my A.D.D. flaring up again....

I think they have a cream for that....don't worry, it has Camelia oil in it.

WildBoar
12-05-2011, 11:07 PM
You guys kill me! But...i will think of this when i am out in the shop and try to make a good cheese knife....Dammit....there goes myA.D.D. flaring up again....Ah, success! Trying to get the creative juices flowing in some of you makers :angel2:

geezr
12-06-2011, 12:13 AM
Ah, success! Trying to get the creative juices flowing in some of you makers :angel2:

maybe time to say :bye: to koto strings

PhunkyPhilibuster
03-19-2012, 11:53 PM
I know this thread is a bit old, but I thought I would weigh in as I manage the Specialty Foods section (Cheese, Beer, Wine, Olives, Coffee) at a local health-food/gourmet store. We cut tons of different cheeses...everyday.

The only cheese I can think of that we never try to tackle with the wire cutter is Parmigiano Reggiano (due to its massive size and crazy-thick rind.) There's just no way to break through that rind with a wire cutter. We take a trio of medieval torture-looking tools to score it all the way around and literally crack it open and break it down from there into appropriate sizes.

Anyway, we rotate between a pair of wire cutters 99% of the time and occasionally use some dedicated "cheese knives" like the ones pictured earlier in the thread with the gaping holes in the middle. There's also an interesting knife I've used a handful of times that is both extremely thin and short, but with a normal sized handle. These dedicated cheese knives really are only good when cutting soft cheese (soft-ripened, creamy, chèvre, etc) but the cheese wire works better most of the time.

We use a 10" German-styled chef's knife a good bit for trimming pieces (mold removal) for repackaging and for sampling of any cheese that isn't super soft. It really depends on the particular cheese you're working with and how thin you're trying to cut it as to what the best tool is, but again, you normally can't go wrong with the wire unless you're just doing something crazy. Some cheese is just impossible to slice very thin by nature.

My point is, if you were to make the perfect custom cheese knife, I don't think it would be a knife, but instead some variation on the cheese wire cutter. My 2 cents.

Below is a photo of the cheese cutter we use. Next picture is the thin and short-bladed knife I referred to, and below that is someone knee deep in cracking a wheel of Parm open!

http://www.allsopandpitts.co.uk/custom/images/products/cheesecutter.jpg

http://culturecheesemag.com/sites/default/files/gearpix/skinnyoffset.jpg

http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4122/4805020673_4ae8dba1e6.jpg

Johnny.B.Good
03-19-2012, 11:58 PM
Interesting Philibuster. Thanks for posting, and welcome to the forum!

Tristan
03-20-2012, 02:10 AM
Welcome buddy! Hmm... in that last pic, the knife might be wedging a bit... :)

FinkPloyd
03-20-2012, 07:20 PM
I don't know... would this (http://www.ebay.com/itm/Amazing-Vegetable-Peelers-Set-of-2-Large-Small-/170683695545?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item27bd8a81b9) qualify?

http://i.ebayimg.com/t/Amazing-Vegetable-Peelers-Set-2-Large-Small-/00/$(KGrHqF,!jUE4nhEioOFBOTGq+5KeQ~~48_12.JPG

GLE1952
03-22-2012, 12:45 AM
Philibuster,
What is the brand name of your cheese wire?

Glen

PhunkyPhilibuster
03-22-2012, 12:51 AM
Philibuster,
What is the brand name of your cheese wire?

Glen

http://www.handee.co.uk/products.htm

Handee Cheese Cutter