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JanusInTheGarden
08-22-2012, 08:20 PM
Noticed an interesting thread in the B/S/T forum (http://www.kitchenknifeforums.com/showthread.php/7929-Looking-for-a-beater). You can feel free to read it, but the OP was asking for beater recommendations/sales and didn't receive the answers I expected him to receive. Thats probably because his was directed at learning to sharpen/spend more time on the stones but the question is still interesting in terms of having a beater for work. He was immediately told that VG10 is a PITA option and that white was a good route to go. Someone suggested white is a good route to go only if you don't mind getting spoiled with how easy it is to sharpen carbons. Recommendations continued.

So I figured this would be a good time for a little informal polling. What do you guys like to have most in a beater knife? Do you just go cheap and german or do you get a knife you actually like but didn't pay too much for? White steel? Just use a laser for everything? Is your beater your line knife? What do you like?

I've been using a 210 Tojiro VG10 and I kind of don't like using it all that much but I rationalize it by saying that its the purpose of a beater.

SameGuy
08-22-2012, 08:34 PM
Good thread idea, even for those of us who aren't "on the job"!

Without actually owning one (yet), I'll say "Sakai Yusuke shironiko suji," maybe 240 to 270.

Namaxy
08-22-2012, 08:56 PM
I hope this is the type of answer you are looking for. I have several categories of knives in my household. Some, which include Globals and Lamsons (Lamson and Goodnow), are knives that I simply dislike and don't use, so they get pulled out from time to time when you're gong to abuse a knife.

Others - and I think this is the type of knife you are asking about - are knives that I use, but I don't mind being rough on, and don't mind being a little crude with the sharpening. These are my old stainless Sabatiers. The profile is nice to cut with - much better than German - but the knives are kind of indestrucible. So you have a knife you can live with cutting, but one that is cheapish and resiliant, so you never baby it.

heirkb
08-22-2012, 08:59 PM
I go for tough (chip-resistant) and stainless, e.g. Yoshihiro/Gesshin Uraku.

K-Fed
08-22-2012, 09:04 PM
My beaters are still the two wusthoffs left in my bag. An 8 in chef and 6 in utility both with the old grand prix handles which are still one of my favorites handle wise.

Wagstaff
08-22-2012, 09:07 PM
And my Yoshihiro/GU is my prized knife... comes down to disposable cash I guess. My beater is an old Wusthof Classic. It's my ersatz chef de chef at least. Barely comes out pf a cupboard, though. Similar but totally different, a CCK small cleaver.

stevenStefano
08-22-2012, 09:09 PM
Globals or Victorinox

chinacats
08-22-2012, 09:14 PM
Carbon Sab's and stainless Henckels, both are pretty indestructible, though I prefer the Sab's.

Andrew H
08-22-2012, 09:29 PM
Victorinox.

JKerr
08-22-2012, 09:56 PM
Carbon Sabs here too. Use it for everything from cracking mud crabs to working the line.

Cheers,
Josh

MadMel
08-22-2012, 10:30 PM
Henkels for beaters. Or Wusthoffs

mhlee
08-22-2012, 10:30 PM
My Globals.

Customfan
08-22-2012, 10:59 PM
Globals, Shun, calphalon and Wustoffs that I got on sale... :plus1:

Lefty
08-22-2012, 11:10 PM
Global, Viking, Forschner

Chefdog
08-22-2012, 11:30 PM
When I hear "beater" i think of something to split lobsters with, or hack up duck bones. For me, that's an old Suisin 240 carbon yo-deba. It must weigh 16 pounds and has actually split a poly cutting board once in its past. If I'm lOaning a knife to someone, it's either an old henkel or mercer that I don't really mind getting broken or lost.

knyfeknerd
08-22-2012, 11:50 PM
A stainless Henckel or two. You can leave it wet/dirty, don't mind others using it and is still up to the task of decent cutting most of the time. I use mine every day. I'm only partial to the Henckels with the blade guard thingy 'cause you can pop open cans and metal olive oil containers with 'em.

sachem allison
08-23-2012, 12:51 AM
sabs and forgecraft

labor of love
08-23-2012, 01:06 AM
vintage carbon dexters. you can get dirt cheap off ebay.

Crothcipt
08-23-2012, 01:50 AM
my globals. They for some reason take a great beating, stay sharp for a decent amount of time. I just hate sharpening them.

JohnnyChance
08-23-2012, 02:00 AM
DT ITK 270mm AEB-L gyuto or Gengetsu 210mm semi stainless gyuto.

I have also been using my 180 mioroshi deba (unknown maker, eBay special) as a line knife lately. My station has to slice pork tenderloin and debone chix breast, works well for both, can take a beating and has knuckle clearance for any other odd jobs I'd needed (yeah Jon, I know it's not supposed to be used like a gyuto, but my 210mm yanagi was sustaining too much damage when used as a line knife).

Last time I had to split lobsters was at my aunts house. At work we get 1.25# softshells, so you can just use your hands, but she had seven 3#ers. Only knives I brought were a Tsourkan gyuto and my Rader scimy, so I used the Rader to split them. Worked well and no damage to the blade.

tk59
08-23-2012, 10:16 AM
The dirty work gets done in my house with either an 8" Henckels vier sterne chef, a heavy, stainless cleaver from the local chinese market or if I don't mind some discoloration, a 250 mm Fowler gyuto in W2.

Eamon Burke
08-23-2012, 01:26 PM
A beater should be tough, sharpen easily, sturdy construction, and inexpensive enough so you don't feel the need to treat it like a snowflake.

keithsaltydog
08-23-2012, 02:15 PM
vintage carbon dexters. you can get dirt cheap off ebay.

+1:viking:

tkern
08-23-2012, 02:19 PM
a Forgecraft and a Zakuri tosagata bocho.

Wagstaff
08-23-2012, 02:39 PM
JohnnyChance... are you having us on? Those are high end beaters!
I feel a little like I'm listening to Spinal Tap for the first time.

Lefty
08-23-2012, 07:44 PM
JohnnyChance... are you having us on? Those are high end beaters!
I feel a little like I'm listening to Spinal Tap for the first time.

You mean rocking a mullet, while stoned and wearing acid washed jeans?

Wagstaff
08-23-2012, 09:17 PM
Exactly. Or not exactly, but something sort of like that. Somewhat. Almost exactly. Like.

JohnnyChance
08-24-2012, 04:13 AM
JohnnyChance... are you having us on? Those are high end beaters!
I feel a little like I'm listening to Spinal Tap for the first time.

No, not a put on. You are right, they are not low end knives. But I did not buy them so they could watch me use house knives in their stead. They are stainless, have sturdy handles made out of durable materials, and have fairly thick spines. Plus they cut great and have great edge retention. I don't know what I could do to them that would ruin them, I have never damaged a knife that badly ever. So why not use em?

I think for the most part people are too dainty and nervous with their knives. I remember an old post on kf debating if you should use your good knives to take the pits out of avocados (using the bury the blade into the pit and twist method).

RRLOVER
08-24-2012, 06:03 AM
I do not own any beaters,I gifted them. I agree with john chance,if you have it you should use.

Wagstaff
08-24-2012, 06:39 AM
Well said. I guess it's a philosophical question about whether beating on a knife makes it a "beater"!
Now if you'll excuse me, my drummer spontaneously combusted.

Zwiefel
08-24-2012, 11:25 AM
seems like beater = work horse for a lot of the folks responding here. which makes sense, actually.

stevenStefano
08-24-2012, 11:39 AM
I take it to just mean knives for tasks I don't want to use my good ones on and also knives for others to use. For example sometimes I have to cut things on a metal grill, which I use my Victorinox boner for

chinacats
08-24-2012, 12:23 PM
I think for the most part people are too dainty and nervous with their knives. I remember an old post on kf debating if you should use your good knives to take the pits out of avocados (using the bury the blade into the pit and twist method).

The first time I used my Kochi to remove an avocado pit I was extremely nervous...since then I have much more confidence in just using the knife normally for my kitchen tasks. I still break out the Sab's though when bones are involved...maybe I should give that a try next. :scared4:

Lefty
08-25-2012, 12:44 AM
Johnnychance has made me rethink this. My work knife (huge beater), is a Global chef knife. The thing isntough as nails, and takes a good enough edge, holding longer than you'd expect.
My beater, at home, however is an Adam Marr 240 AEB-L gyuto. It tales a real pounding, and boy did Adam ever nail the HT. It gets crazy sharp, and is just a tough knife all around.
A beater is something you use hard, but for us, a beater can still easily be a $450 knife.

Crothcipt
08-25-2012, 02:46 AM
When I bought my Globals everyone thought that they were to expensive. (at work) now when someone comes looking for a knife I will lend them out. I will also let them try on of my newer ones too. But I usually am right there. My point is they still are "expensive" in their eyes. There is some things that they wont even ask me for a Global, that I wouldn't even think twice about.

Knives are tools they are ment to be used. Would I use a Shig on a grill? Hell no!! But a Global not a problem.

eshua
08-25-2012, 04:41 AM
Seems like this term is less relevant to gyuto, as most will be pretty versatile... Single bevels, at least mine, are a little harder, a little thinner, and without care, or a micro bevel... will chip way more than a spendy dt or carter gyuto.

If I'm loaning it out to dishwashers, (and frankly some of them I now trust more than the cooks so lets say new dishwashers) get the cheap tosa knives from http://www.japanwoodworker.com/dept.asp?s=JapanWoodworker&dept_id=13198 .

The grind is thick and uneven. The handles are utilitarian. On the other side...they resharpen a lot faster than a throw away shun. For me.. better to spend 2 min sharpening once a week, than to give away a global, shun, or German, and wait until it needs and hour of work to refurbish.

NO ChoP!
08-25-2012, 10:29 AM
My Mac's, and my hammered damascus gyuto and suji would be considered beaters these days. When it comes to splitting skulls, I have a Tojiro Flash damascus nakiri that I took a pea-sized chunk from, and in fixing it, it became much thicker behind the edge...

deanb
09-18-2012, 07:39 PM
Messermeisters. I saw this thread about the time I rediscovered my Messermeisters and thought about saying something then but never got around to it. You certainly don't have to baby these puppies. In comparison to Japanese knives they are inexpensive. They really excel at some tasks, e.g. Cutting heavily crusted beef, cutting through chicken bones, splitting lobster tails, etc. I love 'em.

panda
02-15-2014, 07:21 AM
any one else care to chime in on tosa? they're super cheap, might be worth a try.

Farrant
02-15-2014, 10:19 AM
my globals. They for some reason take a great beating, stay sharp for a decent amount of time. I just hate sharpening them.

Funnily enough, my globals are my easiest to sharpen knives yet don't keep the edge for that long.

My beater would be my Victorinox pastry knife. Cheap, sorta sharp and takes abuse well.

V1P
02-15-2014, 01:01 PM
My beater every day knife is a Sakai Yusuke "extra thick", "extra harden" and "extra flat" profile 240mm gyuto.

Love that knife but I am the only one using it at work, unless someone comes to my station and needed to use it to cut something quickly. After I give him permission, of course,

Ferry

icanhaschzbrgr
02-15-2014, 01:25 PM
I'm using IKEA Gnistra knife (http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/00149317/) as a beater. Frozen food and wood cutter for me.
http://www.taniutko.pl/5369-3092-thickbox/ikea-365-gnistra-noz.jpg
It cost around 10$ and takes a surprisingly good edge. It even holds it for some time. Actually I've yet to see another knife in this price range that could come close to this Gnistra.
Though the handle is not for everyone.

gic
02-15-2014, 01:25 PM
I would have said Victorinox but i just bought in Thailand for like 9 bucks a 270mm "kom kom" stainless (=german soft steel) = high end line of Kiwi whose profile is classic french, it's grind is really well done. Bought a bunch to give away. Insanely good quality for the money I thought.

I also like the Tramontina VG10 set but those are no longer available cheaply a the price on the bay is up by 50%

DTB57
02-15-2014, 01:27 PM
I have a 30 plus year old "Maxam Japan" 8 inch chef knife for the dirty work. Doesn't hold an edge well but takes it back quickly. It now doubles as one of my learning knives for hand sharpening. Soft steel is great for creating and feeling the burr.

tbott
02-15-2014, 02:48 PM
My line/beater knives are a Shun 8" and my Tojiro Honesuki. The Shun mostly because it was the first "real" knife I ever owned, and since graduating a bit (that is, gaining a particularly expensive knife habit), I don't really like having my carbon knives on the line. I know some people don't mind, but my carbons are for prep, service is simply too hectic to pay them any mind. It's sort of a co-incidence of my station too.....We do a squab dish on our tasting menu, which is not a all the time, so I have to break them down a la minute, so it's nice to have the Honesuki for breaking down/frenching. But that's made me realize how awesome it is to have the little knife for general utility anyways.

I keep my Kono HD slicer on line too, but If I could I'd get a much smaller version, like a 210 Suji...that plus the Honesuki would be I think a perfect line/beater setup.

T

turbochef422
02-15-2014, 06:20 PM
I think that beater knife is diff than line knife or at least can be. Your line knife doesnt have to be a beater and your beater doesnt have to cost $8. I dont think of a beater cutting frozen foods or wood. When i think of beater i think of a knife..a sab will work... that can handle heavy tasks without throwing away all other performance. I use my misono Dragon as a beater, crack lobsters ect. I think the best beaters are the ones not just used to beat on but you dont have to worry about if you do. For me at least a big meaty whustoff with unatractive steel, grind, profile and handle isnt a beater its a peice of .....

easy13
02-15-2014, 08:26 PM
Sakai Takayukis model of the classic OEM VG10 Hammered Damasus, Mahogany Western Handle Gyuto. The VG10 takes a nice edge, I have no problem giving it to even the greenest of prep cooks to knock out a couple of hours of work and I don't have to worry about it rusting from sitting wet/dirty on a cutting board. All that and I would have no problem using it for a shift myself.

Jordanp
02-16-2014, 01:00 AM
When I think of beaters for me its definitely my fujiwara fkm yo-deba doing things like cracking lobster/bone anything really that i wouldn't do with my nice knives since it can take quite a bit of abuse.

mhpr262
02-16-2014, 05:55 AM
I
It cost around 10$ and takes a surprisingly good edge. It even holds it for some time. Actually I've yet to see another knife in this price range that could come close to this Gnistra.
Though the handle is not for everyone.

Ah yes that handle .... I have fondled them a time or two and that thing has idiotic ergonomics. The groove is far too wide for one finger and much too narrow for two. It's like it was designed by somebody who had never designed a knife before and didn't bother testing his creation on a prototype or two.

I have the IKEA Slitbar gyuto and it is pretty decent a far as sharpness and edge retention are concerned. very thin at the edge, too.

jeff1
02-16-2014, 08:25 AM
For me there is a Bismark branded Chinese made German steel $30 dollar junk knife, or my Mrs furi set that I'll use to crack bones, tails etc otherwise its my Richmond laser that I learn to sharpen on, don't care if I ruin it and let her use.

tomsch
02-16-2014, 09:12 PM
Tough custom from Michael Kaiser made of 154CM. Used for the tough jobs and never seems to chip.


http://i922.photobucket.com/albums/ad70/tomsch63/knives/DSC_8890.jpg

chefjohnboyardee
02-17-2014, 06:27 AM
My work knife is either a 240 Richmond Laser in AEB-L or a 8" Sab with the 3 piece blade/bolster/tang. If I'm going to be going through bones I have a 9" Mercer Genesis from culinary school and could die in a fire for all I cared. I used it hard for seven years and the rubber handle is worn smooth, the bolster has been ground down so I can still use the whole knife (which was not a fun or easy job to clean up... such a worthless overly thick bolster,) and the edge wears down way too quick. Screw that knife.

I have a Tojiro ITK 240 and the white steel in ok and I can handle a carbon knife on the line (see the Sab) but unless I'm chopping parsley I reach for the Laser. It would sit at home in a drawer but I don't trust my roommate with carbon knives.

I don't see myself ever spending too much on a knife. I thought I was crazy buying the laser... It does great at work and the Sab I stole off ebay. The Mercer I hate and spent $30k on.