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View Full Version : Are Takedas still worth the price?



JKerr
07-20-2012, 11:28 PM
So it's almost tax time so I'm looking at treating myself to a new cleaver. Looking at spending a decent sum so I have a few options floating about in my head. The majority seem to love Takeda's offerings and I know Andy gave it top marks when he did his line up over on KF a few years back, but back then I think they were in the 300-400 range. For those who have used one of his cleavers, would you still pay $550 for it?

Other options I was considering were the Sugimoto OMS 6 ($527), Saji damascus ($650, though seems to have sold out sometime over night), or potentially looking at a custom; not sure about who I would consider there? DT, Yoshikane, Geshin Hide perhaps?

Cheers,
Josh

Mitbud
07-20-2012, 11:53 PM
I know I'm biased, but mine have never let me down.

Tim

labor of love
07-21-2012, 12:06 AM
if i was considering a cleaver with a $550 budget i would look into custom stuff. I bet you could get something really nice at that price.

Eamon Burke
07-21-2012, 12:14 AM
I dunno--few custom makers will get down on the idea of doing a full size cleaver for $550.

labor of love
07-21-2012, 12:31 AM
youre right. I guess what i meant to say was if i was prepared to spend $550 on a cleaver, why not go the extra mile and go custom?

brainsausage
07-21-2012, 12:40 AM
youre right. I guess what i meant to say was if i was prepared to spend $550 on a cleaver, why not go the extra mile and go custom?

I don't think you'd get anything significantly better for the same price, in fact it would probably cost a bit more, depending on your specifications.

Eamon Burke
07-21-2012, 12:45 AM
Compared to the others you mentioned, I would not want a cleaver(or anything, really) in VG10. I am just tired of it, and don't like it. The Sugimoto VS the Takeda--I'd say that, provided you like a KU finish and don't mind a Wa handle, it is a better value than the Sugimoto #6.

brainsausage
07-21-2012, 12:47 AM
Compared to the others you mentioned, I would not want a cleaver(or anything, really) in VG10. I am just tired of it, and don't like it. The Sugimoto VS the Takeda--I'd say that, provided you like a KU finish and don't mind a Wa handle, it is a better value than the Sugimoto #6.

I agree. In both regards.

labor of love
07-21-2012, 01:20 AM
You can get aeb-l/swedish steel cleavers from gesshin ginga,konosuke and mizuno for $250-210 less. i dont think the upgrade to blue steel is worth the $$$. ofcourse there is other things to consider but i dunno...im pretty thrifty:razz:

brainsausage
07-21-2012, 02:55 AM
Kono makes a chuka? And under $300. And it's something other than W2? I find this hard to believe... But I'm out of the loop maybe... mizunos and gingas always appear too thick IMO honestly. Chukas have to be stupid thin. It's why the CCK's are so successful. If they had quality steel, improved F/F, better handles.... Oh wait-! That's a Takeda chuka!

It's just ten times the price of a CCK... Dammit!!!

labor of love
07-21-2012, 03:21 AM
im referring to #6 chinese cleavers. konosuke makes one actually for $290 that you can get through their vendor. swedish stainless.

Timthebeaver
07-21-2012, 03:32 AM
Ashi white steel #6 is $265 at blueway. 420g, looks to have a very nice taper. Think Keiichi can get customs as well

schanop
07-21-2012, 04:59 AM
I handled Konosuke white #2 Cleaver #6 at Chef's armoury the other day. It feels quite good in hand, and has decent finish. From appearance, it seems to have core steel all the way up to the spine where you can see three layers of steel there.

It is, at 480g, a little a bit heavier than sugimoto #6, but seems to be thinner at the spine. The extra weight is probably due to steel in the handle. I still prefer the feeling of sugimoto #6 myself, and now really wonder how #7 would feel in hand.

keithsaltydog
07-21-2012, 05:05 AM
If you have some money to burn,get the Takeda:D

bkdc
07-21-2012, 06:29 AM
You can't go wrong with a Takeda, but for a chukabocho, there are a lot of options because the geometry won't be all that different (bevel, and then thin and flat all the way up to the spine). You can get the same AS steel in a Moritaka for less cost, but it doesn't have the badass Takeda kurouchi finish. Takeda excels in the gyuto (if you like the wide blade) because there's really nothing out there that has the same geometry as a Takeda gyuto.

If you're welling to shell out the extra money for the Sugimoto OMS version, then I guess money isn't the issue.. I'm particular to Aogami Super steel because it is still the king of edge retention when it comes to carbon steels, so among those choices I'd pick the Takeda. I'm biased, as I own five Takedas and six Moritakas.

Even more important is how the cleaver feels when you wield it because I doubt there will be a bad performer in the group.

jaybett
07-21-2012, 04:14 PM
The appeal of Takeda was getting a high performance knife at a low price. The trade off being rough fit and finish. As prices have gone up, it gets harder to justify the issues. If I paid $550 for my Takeda, more then likely I would have sent it back.

For the money, I'd pick up a Mizuno Swedish steel cleaver and get it re-handled. The cleaver handle design that Fish and Andy came up with, is close to perfect. Andy has continued to refine the design. The last time I talked with Andy, he was really busy, but he might be willing to share some tips on what makes a good cleaver handle.

Another idea Andy is always working on a project. He sells his old knives to get money for new projects. With his collection you might be able to score a kick ass cleaver.

Jay

EdipisReks
07-21-2012, 04:17 PM
i have two of Takeda's gyutos (both nominally 240mm, but both are very different in profile and size and weight) and i adore both. i use them most of the time instead of my Kochi and Shigefusa, both of which (especially the Shig; i need to thin my Kochi out) cut very well. i don't think they are value knives at all, and i think they have good handles and F&F (one has a Keller handle, which is of course great, but the stock handle on the other is very nice), with the parts that need to be rounded being rounded, and the parts that don't need to be rounded being left alone. they cut like the Dickens and feel great doing it. easy sharpening, as well. hard to beat.

berko
07-21-2012, 07:38 PM
i own a ashi hamono ginga cleaver special order, full size but 400g only, and have to say it shouldnt be thinner! i often think about that a 450g chuka would be better and if i was to buy another one, id go for 450g. still im very satisfied with it. the white #2 is way easier to sharpen than every other "high end" steel ive tried. after 4 weeks of daily use it had formed a nice natural patina and didnt have any problems with rust since then. id recommend this knife to anybody interested in chukas, and dont think the takeda could do any better other then 2-3 hrc.

JKerr
07-21-2012, 09:16 PM
Cheers for the input so far everyonbe. Much appreciated.

I probably should have added a but more info in the OP. The knife won't be used at work, pretty much just for when I'm cooking at home so I was after something that would basically be fun to use (and maybe to look at :D). As such, I'm not specifically after a certain type of cleaver (laser, bone-in-meats etc) which is why I was considering the takeda, sugimoto oms and the saji, all of which are pretty damn different. And my preference would be for carbon, though if the right thing comes up I am open; already have one of the N2T mid tech cleavers on order.

Anyone know if Tadatsuna are still making chuckabocho?

Cheers,
Josh

SpikeC
07-21-2012, 09:30 PM
Not that it's relevant, butt I would get the Takeda. I love those suckers!

Marko Tsourkan
07-21-2012, 10:04 PM
Didn't liked any I have seen (I made sayas for a few of those, including chuka). To me, they weren't worth the price then, and even more now.


M

brainsausage
07-21-2012, 10:11 PM
Didn't liked any I have seen (I made sayas for a few of those, including chuka). To me, they weren't worth the price then, and even more now.


M

Are you speaking strictly aesthetics Marko? Or F/F? Perceived performance based on geometry? I'm very curious, as I'm fairly close to pulling the trigger on a used one myself...

schanop
07-22-2012, 12:33 AM
Saji ones are pretty heavy, 600g+ and 800g+ from chef's armoury store.

brainsausage
07-22-2012, 01:25 AM
Saji ones are pretty heavy, 600g+ and 800g+ from chef's armoury store.

Ouch. That's pushing it. I think 5-550 is the top end myself.

JKerr
07-22-2012, 01:39 AM
Saji ones are pretty heavy, 600g+ and 800g+ from chef's armoury store.

Yeah, I seen that. But like I said, it's not gonna be used at work for hours and hours of vege prep so potential fatigue isn't really a concern. I was taken by Saji's cleaver as I think it's a stunning piece and I was very impressed by the gyuto of his I just recently sold. I know a lot of people don't care much for VG-10, but I for one am a fan and he knows who to squeeze a lot out of that steel.

Cheers,
Josh

jaybett
07-22-2012, 01:58 AM
Cheers for the input so far everyonbe. Much appreciated.

I probably should have added a but more info in the OP. The knife won't be used at work, pretty much just for when I'm cooking at home so I was after something that would basically be fun to use (and maybe to look at :D). As such, I'm not specifically after a certain type of cleaver (laser, bone-in-meats etc) which is why I was considering the takeda, sugimoto oms and the saji, all of which are pretty damn different. And my preference would be for carbon, though if the right thing comes up I am open; already have one of the N2T mid tech cleavers on order.

Anyone know if Tadatsuna are still making chuckabocho?

Cheers,
Josh
Before Tadatsunas English website went down they were selling a inox cleaver. The white steel version was discontinued when the craftsman retired.

Jay

sw2geeks
07-22-2012, 03:50 AM
I brought my two Moritaka cleavers to the DFW meetup. The last one I had made a year ago and was $550. It was very highly customized.

mikemac
07-23-2012, 10:34 AM
I seem to have had a funky mojo with Takeda, but that was more with the transaction than the knife...that said, I feel that there are two seperate, but equal truths about Takeda blades....1) They cut like a mother****, you just can't deny that; and 2) when the craftsman threw the rejects into the trash pile, Takeda blades always seem to land a few mm's short.
To call them unrefined, rustic, or crude really doesn't do them justice.
And they cut like a mother. And most owners love them.
When we get to a chuka for $550, we get a whole different set of issues. FWIW, the chuka was my second Takeda, I paid $250 for it, and Ithink that was only 6 - 7 years ago. The two things that I would look out for in a chuka - first, every Takeda I've had (6?) was wavy...looking at the blade from both handle to tip and spine to edge, the blade went left and right. My chuka had the least amount of this, but all of them had it. Next - the takeda is a 'sandwich' construction.Seems like you're paying an awfully large price for a really small piece of AS shoved up the butt crack of cheap iron. Are Takedas worth the price? thats your call. But it sure seems like a lot of steps taken in putting these knives together are done on the cheap.

Eamon Burke
07-23-2012, 10:59 AM
I brought my two Moritaka cleavers to the DFW meetup. The last one I had made a year ago and was $550. It was very highly customized.

Yeah it was. I was pretty impressed.

JKerr
07-23-2012, 09:26 PM
What sort of custom options did you go for on the Moritaka? I didn't think they would make anything as expensive as that, aside from their damascus.

Cheers,
Josh

sw2geeks
07-23-2012, 10:33 PM
What sort of custom options did you go for on the Moritaka? I didn't think they would make anything as expensive as that, aside from their damascus.

Cheers,
Josh

It was this one here. It is in a lot of my cooking pics.

http://media.dfw.com/smedia/2012/03/20/11/54/BrFPx.St.117.jpg

Here is the specs I asked for:

Style: Chukabocho (Chinese cleaver).
Size: 22x11cm
Steel: Aogami Super Steel / Hammer-patterned Kurouchi / Damascus
Blade: Very thin and light, for vegetable slicing only.
Octagonal handle
Please make the edge slightly curved.

I would also like the blade polished about a third up from the edge before
going into the hammer pattern.

Here is a picture of them putting on the hammer pattern.

http://media.star-telegram.com/smedia/2012/06/06/09/07/uMBGq.St.58.jpeg

bieniek
07-24-2012, 02:18 PM
I really really wonder how is the grind on that thing

Eamon Burke
07-24-2012, 02:51 PM
It's rock solid. I was very impressed. Honestly, I assumed it was not a Moritaka because it was so "together".

sw2geeks
07-24-2012, 05:11 PM
I have around 10 Chinese cleavers, but had this one made to be my dream cleaver.
Aogami Super Steel and Damascus, but with the black finish going 2/3 up in homage to the traditional Chinese Cleavers.

JJ Lui
10-20-2013, 06:08 PM
Bought a Takeda 240 ish Gyuto after reading many positive reviews, however when it arrived it had the new profile, which is really thick down the edge. Currently it is back in the box; due to it keeps digging in and gripping the chopping board each time I use it.

It is also extremely high which people do mention, however this should not be overlooked as someone’s personal preference or a style which you can easily adjust too. If this is your first knife or you have not been cooking for long it may suit; however if like me you have been around for a few years it will take some getting use too and disrupt your usual cutting style drastically.

In all it is a slower knife to use than a traditional shaped “chefs” knife, which does slow production down in a professional kitchen environment. However for the home cook, foodie, hobbyist they are great talking points.

I think now unfortunately Takeda may be a case of fashion over professional practicality.

turbochef422
10-20-2013, 10:20 PM
I love using my takeda in a pro kitchen. Not on the line but as a prep monster. And I usually use knives with less hight (masamoto, mizuno,fowler) but find the takeda quite enjoyable and a nice change of pace that can really cut anything.

Brad Gibson
10-21-2013, 02:43 AM
ill take that thing from you if you dont want it anymore jj :wink:

keithsaltydog
10-21-2013, 04:53 AM
I have around 10 Chinese cleavers, but had this one made to be my dream cleaver.
Aogami Super Steel and Damascus, but with the black finish going 2/3 up in homage to the traditional Chinese Cleavers.

Nice cleaver,most of mine have been barrel handle chinese carbons.A cleaver I use at home is the Suien Virgin Carbon,takes a sharp edge & holds it well,I don't mind a larger blade wt. a little weight.Works well as spatula putting food in the skillet.

Gravy Power
10-21-2013, 06:21 AM
In all it is a slower knife to use than a traditional shaped “chefs” knife, which does slow production down in a professional kitchen environment. However for the home cook, foodie, hobbyist they are great talking points.


Not many J-knives take the shape of a "traditional chef's knife". The Takeda's I've seen do have some belly, allowing for some rock chopping, but many professionals here prefer a flat profile.

quantumcloud509
10-21-2013, 06:28 AM
I love using my 240 Takeda old skool in a pro kitchen. Prep and on the line. (Silver spacer one turbochef)

panda
10-30-2013, 05:42 PM
can takedas be fully custom ordered? say if i were to want a thicker one that doesn't flex and not quite as tall with way less belly. if you have gone through such a process, what was the wait time?

jbl
10-30-2013, 06:12 PM
pretty sure Mr.Magnus has done just that…

but if you change the knife that much, is it possible that you don’t want a Takeda?

panda
10-30-2013, 07:09 PM
I just know I want full carbon AS knife. Not too many options especially ones that meet my criteria.

Lefty
10-30-2013, 07:49 PM
I think Magnus only waited a couple months. Another option might be Watanabe.

panda
10-30-2013, 08:22 PM
Already have a Watanabe, it's blue #2 not AS.

Lefty
10-31-2013, 08:34 PM
Touché. :)

EdipisReks
10-31-2013, 08:59 PM
I wouldn't buy a Takeda these days. Too may other options that you'll know perform.

panda
11-18-2013, 04:04 AM
got a chance to try out mhenry's custom 270 and i'm so floored by it that i decided to order my own. i didn't think i would like it because it's so thin and light, but it performs more like a beefy knife yet with the agility of a whimpy one.

brainsausage
11-18-2013, 04:47 AM
got a chance to try out mhenry's custom 270 and i'm so floored by it that i decided to order my own. i didn't think i would like it because it's so thin and light, but it performs more like a beefy knife yet with the agility of a whimpy one.

Pics or no truthiness

panda
11-18-2013, 04:51 AM
haha, all i needed was one day to know (for sure) i want this knife. i've already sharpened real nice and packaged it up to send back to mike. i'll post pics when mine arrives. i'll even let you take it for a spin josh, but craig is first in line.

it is a flat profile exactly 270 length and 56mm height with a low sitting nose per mike's concept, apparently he sent takeda a drawing and it came out just as he envisioned it. pretty much exactly what i want, except i want 57mm height :D and perhaps 265 length and slightly thicker spine if possible.

i was also considering a masakage koishi, but i get the suspicion it's more of a drawer queen type if that makes any sense. takeda is supremely easy to sharpen which is great, i'm really not a fan of stainless cladding due to its annoying behavior on stones.

mkriggen
11-18-2013, 02:41 PM
haha, all i needed was one day to know (for sure) i want this knife. i've already sharpened real nice and packaged it up to send back to mike. i'll post pics when mine arrives. i'll even let you take it for a spin josh, but craig is first in line.

it is a flat profile exactly 270 length and 56mm height with a low sitting nose per mike's concept, apparently he sent takeda a drawing and it came out just as he envisioned it. pretty much exactly what i want, except i want 57mm height :D and perhaps 265 length and slightly thicker spine if possible.

i was also considering a masakage koishi, but i get the suspicion it's more of a drawer queen type if that makes any sense. takeda is supremely easy to sharpen which is great, i'm really not a fan of stainless cladding due to its annoying behavior on stones.

Uh...isn't Takeda using SS cladding now?

quantumcloud509
11-18-2013, 03:09 PM
If you work with Takeda personally he will make you whatever you want.

quantumcloud509
11-18-2013, 03:10 PM
Or post in the bst that you want an old skool Takeda.

Noodle Soup
11-18-2013, 03:10 PM
Hope to take a closer look at those new stainless clad versions at the New York Custom Knife show in New Jersey :) next weekend! He is listed has having a table again.

labor of love
11-18-2013, 03:11 PM
Or post in the bst that you want an old skool Takeda.

i keep telling panda this.

panda
11-19-2013, 12:41 AM
normally i would look in bst, but i am looking for specific attributes so custom is the only way, i like the 'new style' grind, wedging doesnt bother me as that can be worked out, stuff sticking to the side of the blade drives me nuts however.