PDA

View Full Version : Replacing my knives



MadMel
04-23-2011, 07:49 AM
Hello, I'm Melvin currently residing in Singapore. I've graduated from chef's school awhile back and have been in the industry awhile now and feel like retiring my old set of knives. Would appreciate some help in getting new ones

Currently using :
Henckels 5* 14" chef's (which is toooo long)
Giesser Paring 8 cm
Giesser Boning 13 cm
Global bread knife 22 cm
Giesser bird's beak paring (almost straight now lol)
A chinese chopper I got from my stint in Taiwan

Looking to get:
Chef's 9.5" (240 mm)
Boning 5 or 6"
Blade guards

Usage:
Heavy, restaurant style mise-en-place.

Prefer the French/Japanese styles over the traditional German. NO BOLSTER as it makes the knife a chore to sharpen at the heel.
Looks are secondary. Edge retention and durability are the main factors.

I've browsed the web quite abit but can't seem to decide on a knife, friends have recommended Kasumi, Shun, Kai, Wusthof, Global etc. and the internet has thrown up Hattori, Akifusa(Ikeda), Sabatier,Misono, MAC and Tojiro..

With so many choices and so many websites claiming to have the best knives through 'comprehensive testing' I'm really at a lost on what to buy.. Would appreciate all help and suggestions
Cheers!

Citizen Snips
04-23-2011, 10:30 AM
all your friends suggestions are, IMO, not that great and dont get a lot of praise around here. the main reason is not that they are terrible knives or that they are bad makers...just that you can get so many higher quality knives for less money. because they are such mass produced and have advertising costs, etc, they have to charge more for knives that care and love were not put into while making.

the choices you found on the internet are all solid choices (although ive never seen a sabatier in person). if you decide on a MAC, make sure you get their top line as the others are not to impressive to me.

from what you are saying, i believe you are probably going to want to look for something stainless with a western handle. if you want to ease into japanese knives i would probably recommend the Tojiro DP (http://www.chefknivestogo.com/todpchkn24.html). it does come in a japanese wa-handle as well if you prefer that. the other option which i almost always recommend is the
Hiromoto AS (http://www.chefknivestogo.com/higykn24.html). its a great knife that gives you the best of both worlds in stainless cladding and aogami super steel carbon for the edge. just something to think about

for a boning knife i dont have too much input because i do not use them nor care for them. i prefer a 150mm petty as it does the same work and is easier to sharpen. as you mentioned the bolster in your old knives, most boning knives have the same problem. if you decide to go with Tojiro, they make an inexpensive petty knife (http://www.chefknivestogo.com/topakn12.html). i have also used a honesuki but i like the flex on the petty as im sure you do if you requested a traditional boning knife.

i hope this helps and im sure others will be along soon to give you more information. trust me there is no shortage of info around here and plenty of people to help you out. one last note, i would steer you against using blade guards. they can scratch your knives and more importantly, wear out your edge faster because of the constant application from your edge to plastic. you can make your own with newspaper, tape and 2 minutes of your time.

also, people will be along soon to inform you about sharpening stones...make sure you listen to them :D i would have but my post is getting long and i have to go off to work.

Josh
04-23-2011, 10:32 AM
Hi Mel - lots of detail in your post - it certainly helps - a couple of questions for you
For the Chef Knife / Gyuto
-do you prefer light knives or something with a little more weight?
-what kind of handle do you prefer?
-do you have a budget in mind?
-do you want to start feeling your way around different knives to understand what works with you, or do you want 1 knife that should generally make you happy (what's your level of OCD?)
-Do you plan on sharpening them yourself? If so have you sharpened before? (If you want to sharpen your own knives, I recommend you select an entry level knife, and move on to something a little more expensive after a few months)

For the boning knife
-do you prefer flexibility in the blade?
-do you have a budget in mind?


I'll recommend 4 for you to look at - these are knives I have, as I fell into the "want to figure out what I like, and fall into the hobby" category. All have good fit and finish, balance and will fill your needs...

Hiromoto Tenmi Jyuraku Aogami Super Series
- not a laser, but not the heaviest: best overall value, and what I'd recommend to you since you're a pro chef
-clad knife (won't rust on majority of blade, but you'll need a patina on the AS steel cutting edge)
-10g lighter than the Hattori
-Gyuto is ~$145USD.

Hattori HD series
-Very popular knife, gets and stays very sharp
-Western Handle
-VG-10 stainless knife, great looking Damascus (I know this isn't important, but it is nice!!)
-Best forged VG-10 around in my mind
-probably heaviest knife here
-~$225USD Gyuto

Konosuke HD Gyuto
-Lots of lasers out there to choose from, this is the one I picked.
-Wa handle
-lightest knife here, and can be sharpened on a level above others in the list
-Laser thin, one of the more popular knives out there right now
-Stainless knife, ~$245

Tojiro DP series
-my first Japanese knife. Great knife, and performance for the money. Might be better for home use than long-term kitchen work. ie - you'll buy another knife if you get this one first.
-Western Handle
-VG-10, easy to sharpen, fairly sharp out of the box.
-2nd lightest knife in this list
-$120USD

MadMel
04-23-2011, 11:11 AM
Hi guys!! thanks for the imput. On to answering your questions Josh :)

For the Chef Knife / Gyuto
-do you prefer light knives or something with a little more weight?

I would like something in between. The Henckels I'm using now is 220 gms and kinda handle heavy.

-what kind of handle do you prefer?

I would lean towards a western style handle.

-do you have a budget in mind?

Anywhere below USD200

-do you want to start feeling your way around different knives to understand what works with you, or do you want 1 knife that should generally make you happy (what's your level of OCD?)

OCD??
Probably wanna feel my way around. (An excuse to get more LOL)

-Do you plan on sharpening them yourself? If so have you sharpened before? (If you want to sharpen your own knives, I recommend you select an entry level knife, and move on to something a little more expensive after a few months)

Yes I've sharpened before though I'm using methods from the Chinese style of sharpening knives. I picked it up learning from the chef's there. I'm gonna sharpen myself unless something goes drastically wrong and I gotta send it to a professional knife sharpener.

For the boning knife
-do you prefer flexibility in the blade?

Yes some flexibility would be nice, and I would like a western style boning/fillet knife as i find the japanese Honesuke abit on the wide side.

-do you have a budget in mind?

Anywhere below USD100

Just to add on, I've been using a set of Globals at my workplace for awhile now so I'm kinda used to the japanese style of knives. If you are wondering, they belong to the Chef of the establishment and I kinda borrowed them lol, with permission of course!!. Just don't like the handles much..

After much browsing, which took up much of today, I kinda settled on a few brands. Let me Know what you think of them.

Chef's/Gyuto:

Akifusa(Ikeda)-- apparently only epicedge carries them
Hattori HD -- A little over my budget but probably can fit it in
Hiromoto AS -- 2 recommendations now, thinking seriously about it.
Fujiwara -- Budget buy lol
Misono UX10
Henckels Twin Cermax

Fillet:

Henckel's Twin Cermax
Forshner

That's all i could get. newayz if i get a *** style knife, do i have to get *** stones as well? I currently have a 5000 grit silicon carbide stone and a steel. And can some1 recommend a knife bag/roll?

Cheers and thanks :)

MadMel
04-23-2011, 12:12 PM
Would like to ask what you guys think of these knives.. had them recommended to me too..

http://www.japanesechefsknife.com/JCKOriginal.html

iceman01
04-23-2011, 01:37 PM
The VG-10 and CarboNext are a really good value. But the CarboNext is semi-stainless, so you get the characteristics of a carbon blade with decreased reactivity to acidic foods. I have some Kagayaki VG-10, decent knives, take a very sharp edge and keep it for a long time.

FryBoy
04-23-2011, 03:04 PM
The FH knives are outstanding -- but expensive.

Pensacola Tiger
04-23-2011, 03:45 PM
The FH knives are outstanding -- but expensive.

And as it's said, "...darn well worth it".

Josh
04-23-2011, 04:25 PM
I've heard lots of good things about the Carbo-next - I didn't recommend it because I haven't personally tried it - but there's a great mix of cost, weight and value there for sure. I noticed a used Hiromoto AS is up for sale - you might want to snag that before someone else does. I just visited one of the local shops and he mentioned he's had to fix many Hattori HD's as they are chippy - it's not my experience, but just a heads up on info I just picked up.

For boning, I have different preferences - non-flexible single bevel blade or use my Hiro Petty, so I won't be the best person to recommend this knife for you - I'm sure if you search the forum you'll find similar topics and recos.

For stones, you'll need whetstones... I'm no expert here, as I've only been sharpening for ~18 months - I'm not familiar with the stones you mentioned.... You'll end up spending as much (if not more)on stones as these 2 knives. I'm building a collection of Beston 500grit, and Chosera 1K, a 3K I forget the name of and a Arashiyama 6K. Lots of videos on this forum's many sponsor's websites to help you if you feel you need it.

Good luck with your purchase, let us know what you get!!

Cadillac J
04-23-2011, 06:02 PM
Here are the recommendations that I would go with if I were you and edge retention was very important--you really can't go wrong with any of these, just pick based on the other characteristics it has:

1) Akifusa 240 gyuto - if you prefer a flatter profile that is conducive for push cutting; cladded
2) JCK 240 CarboNext - if you want a bit more belly and a rounder profile, called semi-stainless but has been stainless so far for me; mono-steel
3) Hiromoto 240 AS - if you want to try carbon, it's the easiest transition with AS at the edge and stainless cladding. great all-arounder

Eamon Burke
04-23-2011, 11:17 PM
Yes I've sharpened before though I'm using methods from the Chinese style of sharpening knives. I picked it up learning from the chef's there. I'm gonna sharpen myself unless something goes drastically wrong and I gotta send it to a professional knife sharpener.



I'm curious. What is the Chinese style of sharpening?

MadMel
04-23-2011, 11:52 PM
Actually it's just sharpening done like how you would sharpen a cleaver, with soap as the lubricant. Very fast motions, high pressure style. Gets the knife sharp very quickly but eats alot of metal. I've been reading up on different sharpening techniques and would probably try those techniques out on my other knives first lol.

MadMel
04-24-2011, 12:21 AM
Ok, as of now, the choice has been narrowed down to Akifusa and JCK CarboNext. Its down to the pricing now lol. Do you guys know of anyone else that carries Akifusa besides epicedge?

kalaeb
04-24-2011, 02:18 AM
Go for the carbo next, easily the best value.

Lefty
04-24-2011, 09:40 AM
Are they that much better than Fujiwara?

MadMel
04-24-2011, 10:43 AM
seriously, I have no idea lol but based on the recommendations I've gotten here, they'r the better ones out there, within this price bracket.

Lefty
04-24-2011, 12:06 PM
Haha. Good point!
I'm basing it on a recommendation of a few, and a petty that I fell in love with, but I'd take a serious look at Fujiwara FKH.
The thing has outperformed almost all of the very nice knives I've used.
But, then again, I've heard great things about the Carbonext... :p

Pensacola Tiger
04-24-2011, 12:11 PM
Haha. Good point!
I'm basing it on a recommendation of a few, and a petty that I fell in love with, but I'd take a serious look at Fujiwara FKH.
The thing has outperformed almost all of the very nice knives I've used.
But, then again, I've heard great things about the Carbonext... :p

CarboNext knives, like the Ichimonji/Kikuichi TK series, are semi-stainless, so there's little reactivity, but also almost no patination. They take an edge quickly, just like the Fujiwara. The only downside is the price.

Lefty
04-24-2011, 12:43 PM
What do you know about Fujiwaras, P Tiger?! Haha. JK :P
Thanks for the Fujiwara, by the way :D

kalaeb
04-24-2011, 02:27 PM
Are they that much better than Fujiwara?

Yes, they are that much better than the Fujiwara. Not that the Fuji is bad, I love my FKM and FKH, the Carbo Next gets as sharp as the FKH, but holds the edge substiantially longer. The CN is not as easy to sharpen as the FKH, but I will sacrifice that for edge retention any day. Both of my Fujis have had relatively poor fit and finish, but my CN was really good.

Lefty
04-24-2011, 03:23 PM
I'm not arguing, especially since you like the FKH :), BUT I really like the geometry I've seen and I love how the steel cuts and feels on the stones with the FKH.
To me, not having quite as good edge retention isn't a big deal, since I'm not a professional. The reactivity is something that gets less and less severe (virtually imperceptible) over time.
But I would think not having to worry about the carbon issues, and having the plusses of carbon sounds pretty damn good!
If the price increase doesn't bug you, it sounds like a winner!

Cadillac J
04-24-2011, 04:07 PM
Lefty my man, you know I have love for the Fujis but the CN have very similar geometry and hold an edge marginally better as well. I personally don't think there is much of a difference in sharpening between any of these lines really either.

For me, the only 'weakness' of the CN is the profile (especially at the tip of the heel)...but a lot of people would actually prefer it.

My 270 FKM suji is now my travel knife, and I just brought it over to my ma's house today to help her cook for the family--it is perfect for use on a poly board to as the slightly softer steel isn't phased.

Lefty
04-24-2011, 04:21 PM
Restaurants ALWAYS had poly boards back when I did real work! Haha
Fuji gets another point haha.
I'm going to own a CN sometime, aren't I? Damn...my wife is gonna kill me!

Pensacola Tiger
04-24-2011, 06:09 PM
Restaurants ALWAYS had poly boards back when I did real work! Haha
Fuji gets another point haha.
I'm going to own a CN sometime, aren't I? Damn...my wife is gonna kill me!

No, no, she's not gonna kill you, she's just going to own a lot more shoes.

Lefty
04-24-2011, 06:30 PM
...and purses.

FryBoy
04-24-2011, 06:55 PM
... Damn...my wife is gonna kill me!
You young punks don't know ****! THIS is how it's handled: Deny, deny deny!


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MZmnXIN_Rb4&feature=related

Lefty
04-24-2011, 07:18 PM
Hahahaha.
I don't even know what to say to that! Haha

Pensacola Tiger
04-24-2011, 10:04 PM
"New knife? What new knife? I've had that old thing for ages."

Lefty
04-24-2011, 10:08 PM
That's the best part about buying from a guy who already broke it in for you in Florida, right? :D

Pensacola Tiger
04-24-2011, 10:22 PM
That's the best part about buying from a guy who already broke it in for you in Florida, right? :D

Next time I'll hand-carry them across the border.

Lefty
04-24-2011, 11:04 PM
Too bad we didn't think of that before! That and a 270mm gyuto....
I guess I know what I'll be hitting a certain knife maker up for next. On second thought, maybe a wa suji is the way to go on my next one.
D2, with a kiritsuke inspired tip...yeah, that sounds good!

MadMel
04-25-2011, 01:58 AM
Ok, after reading all your comments, I've decided to drop the Akifusa cause I can't seem to find to it. I'm going for Fujiwara FKM petty 150mm. I still can't decide on the gyuto tho... Carbonext (ES) for 140, Hiro AS for 145. Also can any1 give me an idea if I should get an Edge-Pro Apex, Ezesharp or one of those sharpening guides you slide onto you knives.. really appreciate it guys :)

kalaeb
04-25-2011, 08:26 AM
If you decide to go for the Carbonext, don't get the ES option, it is a waste of $10.00.

MadMel
04-26-2011, 04:29 AM
Thanks for all the help guys :) will post some pics of my knives soon.