PDA

View Full Version : Show your knives! Charcuterie & Butchery



Luke.Snyder
10-25-2012, 12:28 PM
Hello all!

I am learning to butcher and process hogs, goats, and deer and there are few tasks where good knives are more important tools than whole-animal butchery. Knife quality here is the difference between a gross chore and precision and efficiency. I'd love to see your knives for these tasks and hear the ways they excel or their weaknesses, all the way from skinning to quartering to butchering. I'm most interested in carbon steel, but if you have a favorite stainless that's great too!

~LS

bieniek
10-25-2012, 06:34 PM
So I just am after processing 3 whole deers, the biggest one of 137 kilos. Butchering from whole animal down to vacuuming ready cleaned pieces of meat.
Great fun

I used two wictorinoxes, Im afraid Im boring when it comes to butchering knives. Im still looking for something decent but I dont think the honesuki/garasuki would work for me. I dont like the shape actualy have a masahiro garasuki I could use but just dont like the feeling.

So back to those knives I really dont like Wiktorinox, I dont. It could not even get through whole day sharp enough, but with honing rod it was in usable condition for like a good few hours.

Lefty
10-25-2012, 06:36 PM
Which blades did you use? Boning knife and...?

I think Pierre might be a great guy to chime in here, so hopefully he turns off his grinder long enough to respond ;)

Luke.Snyder
10-25-2012, 11:07 PM
Bieniek,

I too just put three deer in coolers for butchering this evening, quite a successful hunt! I really like 6-7 inch blades that are similar to a stiff fillet knife, but a little more spearpoint, particularly for silverskinning, though they work well for cutting steaks and trimming as well. I need to get a good hone for butchering that puts a fine toothy edge on, currently I just swipe a few times on a 1000 grit J-stone and strop very lightly for a durable toothy edge, which does petty well. I know a lot of pro butchers that swear by Victorionox butchering knives, mostly the Forschner. I tested one of the pro Forschner boning knives and it was around HRC 52-53. Designed to be sharpened quickly, often, and aggressively, they're used up in a matter of weeks in the pro shops. Lots of people swear by them though! The blades are a little too kicked-back to be comfortable to me, I prefer a very minor kick or even straight spine.

brainsausage
10-26-2012, 12:00 AM
I've done a couple whole pigs. Used a jig saw, hack saw, Takeda small Mioroshi, unknown medium meat cleaver(stainless), and a Konosuke single bevel 150 petty w2 for fine tuning. The Takeda is great. Sturdy yet agile.

brainsausage
10-26-2012, 12:04 AM
[QUOTE=Luke.Snyder;152259]Bieniek,

I too just put three deer in coolers for butchering this evening, quite a successful hunt! I really like 6-7 inch blades that are similar to a stiff fillet knife, but a little more spearpoint, particularly for silverskinning, though they work well for cutting steaks and trimming as well.

Precisely why I like the Konosuke. It's rigid, yet laser like.

PierreRodrigue
10-26-2012, 12:09 AM
I use 3 knives. A dedicated field dressing skinner, a boning knife, and suji or scimitar for portioning roasts or steaks. I do deer, moose, and elk.
I use stainless steel, between 60 and 61 hrc.

ajhuff
10-26-2012, 12:19 AM
No knife experience but the times I have been in the back of Patak Meats and Chamber's Slaughterhouse I noticed that they steel their knives what seemed like every five minutes. That indicated to me that their expectations in a knife are different than what we expect in a kitchen knife. Just an observation.

-AJ

bieniek
10-26-2012, 03:47 AM
Bieniek,

I too just put three deer in coolers for butchering this evening, quite a successful hunt! I really like 6-7 inch blades that are similar to a stiff fillet knife, but a little more spearpoint, particularly for silverskinning, though they work well for cutting steaks and trimming as well. I need to get a good hone for butchering that puts a fine toothy edge on, currently I just swipe a few times on a 1000 grit J-stone and strop very lightly for a durable toothy edge, which does petty well. I know a lot of pro butchers that swear by Victorionox butchering knives, mostly the Forschner. I tested one of the pro Forschner boning knives and it was around HRC 52-53. Designed to be sharpened quickly, often, and aggressively, they're used up in a matter of weeks in the pro shops. Lots of people swear by them though! The blades are a little too kicked-back to be comfortable to me, I prefer a very minor kick or even straight spine.

Wow good hunt and lots of good meat for yourself!! You have any special use for breast and belly and neck? We minced the two first and the latter is braised. Almost all meat from front leg is cut in cubes for stews, apart from one small piece, but theres plenty of quality meat in the back. Plus the loins of course.
Damn, I would love to have one whole home [hehe loin, not animal - that would use up all my living space]

If you want to go toothy, Sheffield is producing some crazy hard hones for butchers. We have one diamond-coated now, but I use just old, very used and very smooth rod.
For me the purpose is to straighten the edge, not sharpen in the same time.
I know Forschner is kind of "industry standard" and it works somehow. I want something a little better steelwise, yet in the same shape. The blades I used were these

http://www.amazon.com/Victorinox-Forschner-6-Boning-Knife/dp/B004U6MWHE

http://www.amazon.com/Victorinox-Cutlery-7-Inch-Fillet-Handle/dp/B0000CF8XV

Yeah 1K stone is the finishing stone on those thats for sure.

AJ, I think pros are using rod also to remove the fat that got stuck to the edge/blade. But yeah two swipes every 5-10 minutes or so and the knife could almost get through whole day.

Chuckles
10-26-2012, 09:21 AM
I butcher whole lambs and pigs. In fact there is a pig waiting for me as soon as I get to work today! I use Forschner. Not ideal but gets the job done without me having to worry if the edge torques a little in a joint or something. I have a cheap homemade denim on 2x4 strop loaded with a pretty coarse rouge that I use just for my butcher knives to keep the toothy edge humming. Any one have the tojiro boner that would care to comment?

Noodle Soup
10-26-2012, 09:42 AM
My primary butchering kit consists of a straight 6-inch F. Dick boning I have sharpened down to half its original width over the years, a 6-inch curved Victorninox, a 8-inch German made steaking knife (only an old importer name on it) and a 12-inch Dexter steaking. Added a wide curved 6-inch Sanelli boning this year I think I'm really going to like from the first deer I used it on.

Luke.Snyder
10-26-2012, 10:04 AM
Thanks all, it's great to hear what you're using. Noodle Soup, that 6 1/4" Sanelli looks like it's going to be a beaut. I used a 440C custom that was full-convexed, 5.5" long, drop point with wicked thin and long point and a waisted blade that was a real user. Made tunneling bones out a joy instead of a chore. Held an edge really well too, despite being sharpened at probably <15 degrees/side. The waist was really nice for slicing and trimming.

Lefty
10-26-2012, 10:15 AM
To be honest, when dealing with deer bones (which are insanely chip resistant and tough), a little less hardness in your blade isn't a bad thing. I'd take some steeling throughout the process over chipping my blade any day!