PDA

View Full Version : Buying advice: 240mm wa-gyuto for a push-cutter



perneto
10-03-2012, 07:36 PM
Hi, first post here and I already ask for help :) Thanks in advance!

Following the questions in the sticky post:


What type of knife(s) do you think you want?
240mm wa-gyuto

Why is it being purchased? What, if anything, are you replacing?
Replacing a Tojiro DP 210mm.

What do you like and dislike about these qualities of your knives already?
Aesthetics- ok, but I prefer wa handles now, and I dislike the printed lettering (hammer-stamped kanji look much better)
Edge Quality/Retention- chips a bit easily, not amazingly sharp but this is probably mostly my fault (shaves, but not smoothly)
Ease of Use- ok
Comfort- ok after rounding the spine, not amazing

What grip do you use? pinch grip

What kind of cutting motion do you use? mostly push-cutting, sometimes pull, rarely rocking and walking.

Where do you store them? drawer with wooden knife support, but I'm changing to magnetic wall mounts soon.

Have you ever oiled a handle? no, doesn't sound too daunting though.

What kind of cutting board(s) do you use? currently bamboo, getting a mahogany end-grain boardsmith. Will keep using the bamboo for protein.

For edge maintenance, do you use a strop, honing rod, pull through/other, or nothing? At the moment I have a smooth steeling rod (Victorinox), but I only see an effect on the few softer knives I have. I might get a strop. I started stropping on newsprint on top of my cutting board after sharpening, and noticed a clear improvement.

Have they ever been sharpened? Yes, on an Edge Pro with Chosera stones. I'm still learning the technique but I get a (just) shaving edge.

What is your budget? ~250 USD

What do you cook and how often? Daily, a lot of vegetables especially onion, shallot, garlic, ginger, spring onion; and some meat and fish.

Special requests(Country of origin/type of wood/etc)?
I think I'd like a sharp tip for precise work like fine dicing onion/garlic.
I also think I'd prefer some stiffness - flexible sounds like it would make it harder to use the tip. I'm happy with the Tojiro DP stiffness (but not with the tip geometry).



I've done some research already, came up with the following list of knives that I thought more or less fit my needs, casting a wide net here!

- Moritaka KS 250mm san-mai Blue Super (I'm aware of the grind issues, but I like the profile, steel, and price point...)
- Masamoto KS 250mm solid White #2
- ******** Ultimatum 250mm, 52100 carbon or 19c27 stainless (M390 out of stock)
- Konosuke HD (a bit confused about the old and new profiles)
- ******** Laser, solid AEL-B
- Kanehiro san-mai Aogami Super
- Takeda Sasanoha Large Blue Super
- Tanaka Damascus san-mai Blue #2 http://www.ebay.com/itm/Japanese-Damascus-Blue-steel-2-knife-WA-Gyutou-240mm-/261105971967
- Yoshihiro solid kasumi Blue #2 http://www.ebay.com/itm/Hagane-Wa-Gyuto-24cm-Shitan-handle-YOSHIHIRO-Japanese-sushi-chef-knife-/230834291570
- Yoshihiro san-mai kurouchi Blue #2: http://www.amazon.com/YOSHIHIRO-Japanese-steel-knife-Gyuto/dp/B006TT1LCM/
- Sakai Yusuke san-mai White #2 http://www.ebay.com/itm/Japanese-Sakai-White-Steel-Wa-Gyuto-Knife-240mm-Ichii-/380438268745
- Sakai Ichimonji-Kichikuni kurouchi san-mai White #2 http://www.ebay.com/itm/Japanese-SAKAI-White-Steel-Wa-Gyuto-Knife-Black-240mm-/380427703221
- JCK Fu-Rin-Ka-Zan san-mai White #1 http://japanesechefsknife.com/FurinkazanW1Series.html
- JCK Kagayagi Blue Super (profile doesn't seem quite right, but I like the steel and look...) http://japanesechefsknife.com/KAGAYAKIAogamiSuperSeries.html
- Monzaburo Blue http://yhst-27988581933240.stores.yahoo.net/monzaburo-wagyuto-aoko-240mm-blade-kn240.html
- Sadayasu Yellow #2 http://yhst-27988581933240.stores.yahoo.net/sadayasu-wagyuto-240mm-yasugi-kigami-steel-blade-kn240.html
- Aritsugu A-Style http://yhst-27988581933240.stores.yahoo.net/aritsugu-astyle-240mm-blade-wa-gy240.html
- Azuma Minamoto No Masahisa Wagyuto White #2 http://yhst-27988581933240.stores.yahoo.net/azuma-minamoto-no-masahisa-wagyuto-240mm-yasugi-steel-blade-kn240.html
- Azuma Minamoto No Masahisa Tokushu steel (?) http://yhst-27988581933240.stores.yahoo.net/azuma-minamoto-no-masahisa-wagyuto-240mm-yasugi240.html


Cheers,
Olivier

sachem allison
10-03-2012, 07:48 PM
welcome!

chinacats
10-03-2012, 07:53 PM
Welcome! I would also look at the Kochi knives from JKI, they are super thin behind the edge and not flexible...I really like the V2 steel.

stevenStefano
10-04-2012, 07:21 AM
I think quite a lot of the knives you mention are quite thin so might not be what you're looking for. Zakuris are another option perhaps, you can get a Blue #1 240 for $180 which is very cheap. In your budget quite a lot of knives seem to be pretty thin.

Justin0505
10-04-2012, 12:53 PM
Have you ever considered a cleaver?
http://www.kitchenknifeforums.com/showthread.php/5319-Discourse-on-why-I-love-Chinese-Cleavers-re-post

NOTHING push-cuts like a cleaver, and nothing can achieve thinness over so much of the blade while also maintaining good rigidity.
I've got a few thousand bucks worth of high quality steel from some of the best knife makers in the world hanging around, and the simple truth is that when it comes down to pure push-cut, fall-though-food laserness, nothing beats my $40 CCK that I polished the bevel on.
If you think that it's too radical a change, then a 180mm nakiri might be a half-way point between gyuto and a full-on "killer license plalte." However, you can find a good quality, entry-level cleaver for less than a nakiri.

A lot of people get hung up on not having a pointy tip, but what really matters for garlic or other fine dicing is the THINNESS and flatness of the tip. My cleavers and nakiri are my favorite garlic and shallot knives and, IMO, the safest to work out near the tip with b/c all that height gives your knuckles a nice safe place to rest.

I understand that some people just can't ever get to the state of mind where they think that square is beautiful, but it there's chance that you can, then you should give it a try. I think it would meet your needs well.
http://youtu.be/mQhMxsRsWUY

Mike9
10-04-2012, 01:00 PM
Have you considered a Kiritsuke? They seem to have less belly than a Gyuto.

bikehunter
10-04-2012, 01:39 PM
Welcome.

perneto
10-04-2012, 08:42 PM
I think quite a lot of the knives you mention are quite thin so might not be what you're looking for. Zakuris are another option perhaps, you can get a Blue #1 240 for $180 which is very cheap. In your budget quite a lot of knives seem to be pretty thin.

I'm not against thin per se - I just worry a bit about flexibility. But really I have no experience of very thin gyutos, so I'm open to trying one if you guys think I'd be fine.

perneto
10-04-2012, 09:06 PM
Have you ever considered a cleaver?
http://www.kitchenknifeforums.com/showthread.php/5319-Discourse-on-why-I-love-Chinese-Cleavers-re-post

NOTHING push-cuts like a cleaver, and nothing can achieve thinness over so much of the blade while also maintaining good rigidity.
I've got a few thousand bucks worth of high quality steel from some of the best knife makers in the world hanging around, and the simple truth is that when it comes down to pure push-cut, fall-though-food laserness, nothing beats my $40 CCK that I polished the bevel on.
If you think that it's too radical a change, then a 180mm nakiri might be a half-way point between gyuto and a full-on "killer license plalte." However, you can find a good quality, entry-level cleaver for less than a nakiri.

A lot of people get hung up on not having a pointy tip, but what really matters for garlic or other fine dicing is the THINNESS and flatness of the tip. My cleavers and nakiri are my favorite garlic and shallot knives and, IMO, the safest to work out near the tip with b/c all that height gives your knuckles a nice safe place to rest.

I understand that some people just can't ever get to the state of mind where they think that square is beautiful, but it there's chance that you can, then you should give it a try. I think it would meet your needs well.
http://youtu.be/mQhMxsRsWUY

Actually, I was incomplete in answering the standard questions. I use a cleaver already! It's a cheap, fairly large carbon steel number I got from my local Chinese grocery store (it's the same as in this post: http://www.kitchenknifeforums.com/showthread.php/2874-New-knife-help-identify-please). It works well and is quite thin behind the edge; fit and finish is inexistent obviously, and it's not quite flat enough. But I'm having fun using it all the same. I use a two-finger grip with it.

I'm sure I'll get a nicer cleaver eventually :)

However, for now I was planning to get a gyuto, as there are things I still prefer doing with a thinner and longer knife. Cutting across larger vegetables, slicing things, and precise tip work come to mind (despite what you say, I find the cleaver blocks my view of the right side of the product a bit too much for tip work).

perneto
10-04-2012, 09:08 PM
Have you considered a Kiritsuke? They seem to have less belly than a Gyuto.

Yes, I noticed... But I'd like to keep the rocking option; as I said above, I also use a cleaver for pure push-cutting.

Mike9
10-04-2012, 11:29 PM
My bad - I was going by this part -

What kind of cutting motion do you use? mostly push-cutting, sometimes pull, rarely rocking and walking.

James
10-04-2012, 11:43 PM
I'd look at the gesshin kagero. The knife has a nice French profile and the steel is really sweet. You'll have to wait until John gets back.

labor of love
10-04-2012, 11:48 PM
those konosuke "funayuki" gyutos that are patterened after carters are nice. in your price range to.

perneto
10-05-2012, 04:34 AM
those konosuke "funayuki" gyutos that are patterened after carters are nice. in your price range to.

Interesting. How tall do they feel? They seem quite a bit taller than the KS profile. And how flexible are they?

labor of love
10-05-2012, 11:41 AM
i had a 240mm when they first came out. it didnt really feel tall or short, just like actual carters. anyway, like all konosukes they run short. so i sold mine and ive been waiting for a 270 quite some time. theres no more flex in them than what is normal for konosukes, but being lasers they do have some flex.

labor of love
10-05-2012, 12:17 PM
just to clarify, by run short i mean the actual edge length on the 240mm is more like 231mm.

Taz575
10-05-2012, 01:45 PM
I have the 240mm Tanaka Sekiso Blue Damascus gyuto. It is a touch thicker than some other 240mm's I have tried, but it's got a beautiful convex grind and very thin behind the edge. Cuts very well! It is all carbon, so it will react/patina. Push cutting it does well, but the blade is a bit thicker near the spine, so that may cause some foods to snap when cut, like carrots. It is my favorite knife currently.

wenus2
10-05-2012, 02:07 PM
I'd look at the gesshin kagero. The knife has a nice French profile and the steel is really sweet. You'll have to wait until John gets back.

That's a good call, not wa, but otherwise fits very well.
I've had the pleasure of handling a few, they are very natural in the hand.
Currently on my short list.

mhlee
10-05-2012, 03:46 PM
I would take a look at the Gesshin Ginga. I've handled several and they are very nice knives. It's a knife I hope to own very soon.

tk59
10-05-2012, 09:00 PM
As long as the curvature near the heel is subtle, push-cutting will be fine. I mostly push-cut, myself. I also like pointier tips. Your problem right now is there are too many options. It would help to get pickier so we can narrow things down for you. Do you want stainless, semi or carbon? What is your preferred price range? If you are going to use an edge pro, you ought to get something that does not have a secondary bevel and is thin so your bevels will look less messed up and you won't have to worry about thinning behind the edge for some time. How important is food release to you? Do you have a preferred weight? Would you want the blade to feel heavier or lighter (balance), etc. I would second a Gesshin Ginga stainless. The gyutos aren't flexible so that you notice it during normal use. Don't pry things open with it, basically. I have several of thin knives like this. Once you learn to freehand, or if you want to get a second knife, you can go with carbon or a more beastly knife with a secondary bevel. Just my two cents.

The Gesshin Ginga is a great balance in terms of steel characteristics, too. It gets very sharp easily, stainless, fairly tough and very good edge holding.

K-Fed
10-05-2012, 11:14 PM
The masahiro virgin carbon might be a good option if western handles aren't an issue. I passed my masahiro to a co worker as a house warming gift and had the pleasure of sharpening it for him today. Takes a great edge and has a flatter profile.

labor of love
10-06-2012, 12:10 PM
The masahiro virgin carbon might be a good option if western handles aren't an issue. I passed my masahiro to a co worker as a house warming gift and had the pleasure of sharpening it for him today. Takes a great edge and has a flatter profile.

would a misono swedish be similar to this knife? if so i would go w/the misono just because of the dragon!

K-Fed
10-06-2012, 01:13 PM
the masahiro is a bit less "pointy" and has a bit flatter edge profile. Here's a picture of mine when I used to own it.http://i98.photobucket.com/albums/l267/LetsKillKevy/DSC00581.jpg
http://i98.photobucket.com/albums/l267/LetsKillKevy/DSC00582.jpg

Benuser
10-06-2012, 09:05 PM
would a misono swedish be similar to this knife? if so i would go w/the misono just because of the dragon!
The Misono Swedish has no flat section at all, sharpens very easily, but edge retention is just average. Comes with an excellent but very convexed edge, they just forgot to ease the shoulders.

labor of love
10-06-2012, 11:28 PM
thanks for clearing that up benuser. even though the misono swed isnt flat, i assume its very light belly would still make it a suitable candidate for push cutting right? its one of those knives ill check out eventually, probably from BST.

Benuser
10-07-2012, 10:41 AM
You're right, it has a very light belly, and would make a great push cutter due to its geometry.

perneto
10-07-2012, 12:00 PM
I have the 240mm Tanaka Sekiso Blue Damascus gyuto. It is a touch thicker than some other 240mm's I have tried, but it's got a beautiful convex grind and very thin behind the edge. Cuts very well! It is all carbon, so it will react/patina. Push cutting it does well, but the blade is a bit thicker near the spine, so that may cause some foods to snap when cut, like carrots. It is my favorite knife currently.

That does look like a nice profile; what do you think of the handle? I think I've seen negative comments on the handle somewhere else online.

perneto
10-07-2012, 12:13 PM
As long as the curvature near the heel is subtle, push-cutting will be fine. I mostly push-cut, myself. I also like pointier tips. Your problem right now is there are too many options. It would help to get pickier so we can narrow things down for you. Do you want stainless, semi or carbon? What is your preferred price range? If you are going to use an edge pro, you ought to get something that does not have a secondary bevel and is thin so your bevels will look less messed up and you won't have to worry about thinning behind the edge for some time. How important is food release to you? Do you have a preferred weight? Would you want the blade to feel heavier or lighter (balance), etc. I would second a Gesshin Ginga stainless. The gyutos aren't flexible so that you notice it during normal use. Don't pry things open with it, basically. I have several of thin knives like this. Once you learn to freehand, or if you want to get a second knife, you can go with carbon or a more beastly knife with a secondary bevel. Just my two cents.

The Gesshin Ginga is a great balance in terms of steel characteristics, too. It gets very sharp easily, stainless, fairly tough and very good edge holding.

Ok, you're right, I should tell you more.

- I'd prefer a carbon or semi-stainless; it would be my second after my cheap Chinese cleaver.
- My preferred price range would be ~200-250 I guess.
- Food release is moderately important to me, but the absence of wedging is quite important.
- Don't worry too much about my Edge Pro; I think there are bench stones in my near future (maybe a Naniwa green brick) as I find the Edge Pro a bit too long to setup, and I also realized it would be a pain with asymmetric knives.
- Regarding weight, I'm comfortable with my Tojiro's (204g) but would also be fine with something a bit lighter I think. And given that I'm moving from 210 to 240mm, that means rather light knives. One of the reasons I want a wa handle is for the balance point; I think I'd like something a bit more forwards-balanced.

I see what you mean about flexibility; it seems like I don't need to worry about it too much.

The Gesshin Ginga seems to not have much of a flat spot at the heel?

chinacats
10-07-2012, 12:21 PM
- Don't worry too much about my Edge Pro; I think there are bench stones in my near future (maybe a Naniwa green brick) as I find the Edge Pro a bit too long to setup, and I also realized it would be a pain with asymmetric knives.


Agreed that you will want some bench stones, but may want to stay away from the Naniwa green brick (assuming the 2k stone you are referring to here)...fine for French/German blades, but I have found it to be somewhat lacking on J-blades...there are much better stones available for the money. Bester 1200 or maybe a Gesshin (1 or 2k) might fill in this stone range better, or maybe get some input from others, but again I wouldn't spend the $ for the green brick, the feel and finish are rather strange.

keithsaltydog
10-09-2012, 04:44 AM
Perneto,you already have the Tojiro DP & a Cleaver.nothing wrong thin lazors,wt. the right edge they just glide through food.The Sakai white steel 2.2 at the spine is a good blade.Keiichi ships fr. Japan at a very reasonable rate.

perneto
10-09-2012, 04:59 AM
Thanks, I kind of came to the same conclusions myself. I'm hesitating between a Konosuke HD with the new, pointier profile, and the Sakai Yusuke white steel.
Which one has a longer flat spot? How do people like the Yusuke's tip?

keithsaltydog
10-09-2012, 06:33 AM
The older style Kono & the Yusuke have similar profiles,I have both in white steel,thin sisters.My guess would be that the new profile Kono HD have the longer flat spot.

eaglerock
10-09-2012, 08:57 AM
I have the yusuke 240mm white. Been using it in a pro kitchen for 2 years now. it gets super sharp and stays sharp.

I love how thin it is when cutting vegetables, but sometimes i wish it was more thicker, like when cutting Butternut squash.

It is covered with deep natural patina so it can stays wet for sometimes with no problem.

The tip is very pointy i guess, but looking at the Kono they almost look the same to me.

I read that the F&F of the yusuke are better than Kono from some people.

Von blewitt
10-09-2012, 09:01 AM
Did you see the new yusuke with the KS profile? It's semi stainless check out the Gisele thread by mpukas

keithsaltydog
10-09-2012, 03:44 PM
I have the yusuke 240mm white. Been using it in a pro kitchen for 2 years now. it gets super sharp and stays sharp.

I love how thin it is when cutting vegetables, but sometimes i wish it was more thicker, like when cutting Butternut squash.

It is covered with deep natural patina so it can stays wet for sometimes with no problem.



The tip is very pointy i guess, but looking at the Kono they almost look the same to me.

I read that the F&F of the yusuke are better than Kono from some people.

I agree thin carbons are excellent for most cutting in a pro kitchen,including peeling lots of pineapples.I would draw the line on Kabocha pumpkins & Butternut.Those thin edges do not like hard objects,use a cleaver.

The Sakai is a fine tool at a fair price

perneto
10-10-2012, 01:24 AM
Did you see the new yusuke with the KS profile? It's semi stainless check out the Gisele thread by mpukas

Thanks for this, I think I found my gyuto :)