Scott, I considered it hefty, but with the balance point right at the front of the handle it was not as "wieldy" for me. My major dislikes were the thickness/weight of the scales, which if they had been thinned would have moved the weight forward just enough, and the dropped handle, which made it more difficult for straight up and down chopping. Aesthetically, I think it is very well done, great f and f. I'd love to try a Journeyman 240.
It is more of a welterweight, not a flyweight or heavyweight
Came across one for sale @ BF...
275mm and has a bit of old school appeal.
I want to read more feedback on this knife.
What's the status?
The geometry on these looks interesting but fragile. I'm not sure I'd like the handle with my hands and grip.
Alright Eamon- where's yer feedback already! I know yer busy with other stuff, but cmonnnn! I just saw your huge post on arts and crafts! If you've got time for that, you've got time to review this sucker!:poke1:
Originally Posted by BurkeCutlery
hey, I'm still waiting for a wip myself, I know the sanders fixed.
Lol the grinder ain't fixed, it's replaced. And now I have to find 6x48 grinding belts. It's on the agenda for this month, though.
I will review this thing, but right now, I'm detoxing from caffeine and I no think so good. I will say that I did like the knife though, I was surprised.
OK I'll take a moment and do this already. No pics. As with every review, for expediency's sake, I will be stating my opinions as fact.
With a very pointy looking tip, modern handle materials, and somewhat traditional Euro profile, it will get a range of opinions. My wife hated it. I thought it was ok. My friend thought it was awesome. My wife thought the handle looked cheap and the tip was pointy to the extent of being macho. I liked the F&F on it, it was comfortable and clean enough looking. I found some of the visual lines(in the spine and rear of the handle) to look wonky instead of classically gentle or confidently bold. My friend(a young guy...ok a hipster) thought it looked like a serious knife. He was immediately impressed by it. He thought the handle materials looked durable and the mosaic pin got some notice, probably because of the understated materials used in the handle. The pointy tip played into this too. The finish was obviously a painstaking hand-rubbed finish, and that is an oft-loved hallmark of handmade knives.
I didn't sharpen it before it left, but I did after 1 day. It's a middle-of-the-road high-end stainless. Basically not ultra hard wear resistant, and not soft and tough. A normal, reasonable balance, with good qualities as far as edge refreshing, etc, but still feels decidedly stainless. It did take a great edge, so no problems there. I can't comment on edge holding, because I only had it for a few days at home.
The grind is good, but not ingenious. Kind of feels like what I would consider a standard American-style grind. The great Euro knives are usually either flat ground, or convexed spine-to-edge, and the great Japanese knives are brilliant and carefully ground, with distinct areas. This was kind of in-between, without a strong Japanese influence. I'm sure he's played with other grinds, and settled on this one, because the grind was entirely consistent the whole way--ground totally on purpose, heel to tip. The thing cut pretty well. I actually found the tip placement to be convenient and it was stiff enough to not feel like a paring knife on a stick, as sometimes happens with ultra-pointy knives. Though it lacked the flatter profile lots of people want to see, I had no trouble at all cutting however with it. It was sticky, as others have mentioned, but I'm not sure this can be avoided. Behind the edge was deceptively thick. It seemed like it would be thin, because usually when you have a knife that is ground that well and with decidedly pointy heels and tips, they are thin where it counts. This thing was not, which is odd to me. It could lose some weight behind the edge, but doing so would make it either a laser-thin knife overall, or would require changing the grind entirely.
Ok I had to say something about this. It was a pretty neat design, very much like a Saya. But, I'm guessing for reasons of production, the poplar slabs aren't bookmatched, they are just made as parts and glued up. The pin only goes through one side, which is a pretty cool idea, and the sheath is made to fit the knife exactly, with the pin right up against the knife. This doesn't pay off in the long run, though, because by the time I got it, the knife had dinged up the pin from shifting enough that it needed to be turned and adjusted to hold up against the knife, and since it's all meant to friction fit together, if it wasn't up against the knife, it'd just fall out. Considering the rest of the knife looks very careful, it looked oddly like an afterthought. Also, it had green smeary stuff on it when it arrived(Marker? Chromium Oxide? No idea).
I liked it a lot more than I thought I would. I could use it and feel good about really putting it to work. I didn't feel a kind of blissful synchronization about it, and it doesn't give you that feeling that it's cutting by itself. But is it worth $600? That is the question I've wondered for about 2 years now. The answer, for me, is yes, if it suits your style. If I had one, about all I would change is the thickness behind the edge, and it'd be my ultra-modern looking racecar knife. It has the look of being made intentionally start to finish, and like it's been checked and checked again for every feature being just where Joel clearly thinks it should be. There is no right or wrong answer when it comes to design, only different ways of doing things. So it's all about whether the craftsman is doing what he is doing entirely because he chooses to do it that way, and not because he is incapable of doing other things. I get the feeling these knives are just the way Joel wants them, and he does them very well.
Well, that sure was a long time coming, but sure worth the wait! Really, really well done Eamon. Certainly on of the most concise, yet complete and insightful reviews I've ever read: masterfully done and exactly what I (and I think many others) have been waiting to see.
IIRC, this knife is a few years old, so I wonder if he's changed the grind or address the thinness behind the edge. Or, one possible reason that he'd leave it a little thicker is because of all of his mainstream exposure: I'm sure he gets a lot of clueless, non-knut people buying his knives and doing stupid things with them. I few fractions of a mm of extra steel pudge in the right places could make the difference between repairable damage and a totaled blade.