Originally Posted by Justin0505
if it is not too much trouble,
have you figured out why it can cut to your satisfaction ( high level) adn yet "couldn't shave with it and touching the edge with my fingers was pretty unimpressive not scary" ?
what are the theoretical possibilities?
thanks and rgds
There are a few reasons that that knife was a change to sharpen: first I did not sharpen it from the beginning, but only worked it from 4k to finishing shone and then some stropping. So, the edge angle and was not my own. Also, hard / high temper steel is difficult to sharpen and wear resistant steel is difficult to sharpen, and this steel is both very hard and very wear resistant. On top of that it was pretty thick bte so the bevel was fairly wide which means the problem of it needing a lot of strokes to cut was compounded but the fact that more surface area (wider bevel) was coming into contact with the stone on each pass.
Originally Posted by zitangy
I believe Maxim and the others that say that the steel is capable of getting crazy sharp, but all that I was saying is that it's just not a knife that you can expect to master on your first attempt. Nor, do I think it would be nearly as easy to touch up and return to 99% of new sharpness like you can with minimal effort on many other carbon steels.
I think that bieniek brought up a very good point about adjusting to the tool, vs expecting the tool to adjust to you. The balance point is very far forward, so you use more effort on upstroke and less on downstroke, almost like with a cleaver. Theres' a fairly large dead flat space in the profile form the heel forward, which will produce a jarring "clunk" if all the edged comes into contact with the board that the same time, so you need to adjust your angle of attack. -There are lots of things about it which may require you to change your technique if you really want to master it.
As for cutting performance: it had to do with the thickness behind the edge and of the blade in general. Also, the blade is very asymmetrical with the front being fairly convex and doing most of the tapering from the spine to edge and the back is much flatter. Thus, it really cuts much like a single bevel: it does very well with making thin slices as the grind geometry just peels the slice away. However, if you are cutting thick enough slices of something dense and hard where the cut pieces are so thick that they cannot be bent or pushed by the sides of the blade, then it wedges.
It's a knife that I've thought quite a bit about and I'm still not sure how much I like it, but it's very interesting and I'd certainly like to spend more time with it. It's not a knife for beginners or people that have very strict or limited ideals when it comes to what they like, but for the jaded knife knut that has already "been there, done that" with most of the common/popular styles it's something that's sure different; love it or hate it or both, it will still entertain you and give you something to think about.
If I had to describe it in terms of another knife, I would use the Martell gyuto as an example of completely different designed philosophy. The Martell is all about being as good at as many tasks and usable by as many people as possible. It's one of f the most user friendly knives I've ever used. It's all about being "nice" to the user. It's kind of like what Ferrari has become: a super high performance machine that can still be driven and enjoyed and used with good results by non-pros / people without the best skills or knowledge.
The Kato is the exact opposite. It's like some crazy old 3ton muscle car that someone dropped a 1200hp race motor in, but neglected to change out the suspension: Yes, it's capable of really amazing performance but it takes serious skills just to drive it, and the whole time you get the sense that it hates you and would be happy to kill you.
Originally Posted by Justin0505
thanks for the very detailed insight as to your action plan. Learnt a few new things.
It can be a new challenge and stimulating as we keep on realizing/ learning new things.
IF it is my knife, I will put my own angle, adjust the bevel and at the same time respect the edge profile and in view of the hardness I wld definitely use a coarser stone.
Hardness measured by HRC. This alone is not a good indicator. The hardest VG10 ) all rated around 60 to 61 hrc)or that I have come across is the "Kasumi" brand. Many a times, my starting stone has to be 220 or 400grit. IF it is still sharp, a few light strokes is still necessary. IF I just start on say a 1,000 grit, the end result is not up to satisfaction eventhough I spend much time on the 1K grit stone and polish it afterwords. which makes it more time consuming as I need to go back to the rough stone.
This led me to believe that on some steels.. you just have to use a course stone. May be it is the "freshness " of the edge.
other VG10s is a piece of cake.. literally.
Again, much obliged adn thanks for sharing the detailed insight
Have a nice week-end..
Shun SG2 is the same formulation as VG10 AFAIK, its just a PM verson. It was the first "difficult" steel that I learned to sharpen: very, very hard and pretty glass-like and brittle the way that Shun HT's it. Much more difficult to sharpen than vg10. I noticed exactly what you mentioned though: it is very difficult / next to impossible get get back to screaming, 100% sharp with just finishing stones alone and the edge can get over polished and "slippery" without being particularly sharp or aggressive. Taking a quick step down to a lower grit to add in some "teeth" and expose fresh steel on the entire edge bevel really helps.
However, the steel on that Kato that I played with makes shun's SG2 look like white #1 in terms of sharpening difficulty.
But this is the old trade off between a steel that is very hard and wear resistant and one that is less so. The difficult to sharpen steel will typically last longer, but will take more work to revive once it starts to get dull. The easier to sharpen steel will get dull faster, but will be much easier to touch up. There's no "free lunch" if you want a crazy sharp edge on your knife at all times, you're gonna have to put the work in somewhere.
You mean that my observation is right? that's good to know..... Sometimes we rationalize and that can be dangerous as we believe what we want to. We are all prisoners of our mind/ beliefs.
Totally agreed.. The age old hardness versus ease of sharpening, frequency in between sharpening etc there is always a price to pay. I dread when I have to use a low grit on my mirror polished honyaki. Strike a balance and be happy. Being a home user.. sharpening is one of the very few things that I do with my hands and has wired me up differently..
IF the problem/ issue can be overcome or circumvented ot necessarily in the most elegant way, then it is no longer a problem as it can be managed..
long time no post for me but as a nikiri whore, I'll chime in.
I have Watanabe 180mm kuro stainless clad nikiri which I'm fond of. First, it's really tall. It's a bit thick, but the very wide primary bevel make it effectively thin. Just awesome geometry by Watanabe. But one of the reason's I don't grab it as much as I should it because of it's custom handle. The Stefan handle is beautiful, but feels a bit large for my fat fingers.
I also have a Shigafusa kuro nakiri. Don't like this one as much. (Need to sell it, but too lazy) First off, it's shorter at 165mm. I put my pitch grip farther along the blade for more control, but on a 165mm blade, makes it really short. The other thing is it thicker than the Watanabe, and the primary bevel is more obtuse. So cutting a but veggie like a potato requires a bit more force.
I have a Konosuke HD 180mm nakiri. Haven't used this very much, but very thin, but again not very tall.
I was hoping you wouldnt receive my posting as over -pushy.
Originally Posted by Justin0505
I wanted to hit this point, to really stress that there is some laws of physics that you cannot just disobey or skip [altough I dont have any clue what they are all about, guess stuff like the bee that theoretically shouldnt be able to fly but it laughs at physicians, theoretical fu*kers LOL]
As to the thickness above bevel - that is another thing about users of the blade. I thin my regularly and I made a comment that it is nearly impossible to keep nice finish on the blade if you are using it in pro setting. Im sharpening it like every week and thin every time.
Since then I learned a little more so Im thinning lengthwise on a diamond plate and a belt grinder if im lazy. That makes it easier to put a 'decent but not any good' finish every time in a hurry.
I agree with Maks and too think Shig is much easier to thin down and thus thinner knife above bevel makes better cutter. So if the Kato was too thick above bevel - theres no chance for no wedging. And there shouldnt be a lot.
And that all brings us to the main point, if you want a low-maintenance easy steel knife its not Kato.
But no pain no gain, as they say.