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Thread: Mighty Gyuto

  1. #1

    Mighty Gyuto

    Hey all,

    I was wondering if folks with experience with a wider variety of makers and knives could talk a little bit about the strengths of the various 'mighty' gyutos out there that are recommended frequently.

    A few of the makers/knives that I'm wondering about include Heiji (Semi-stainless, iwasaki sweden steel), Yoshikane (SKD, Tamamoku), and Watanabe. I know that there are numerous other makers out there making knives that could definitely be thought of as mighty, and I'm not even sure that grouping these makers in a question makes much sense but I figure it could be a good starting off point.

    But I'd love to hear your thoughts about geometry, steel, finish, etc.

  2. #2
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    Between Heiji (no such thing as sweden semi stainless, btw) and Yoshikane, Heiji is CLEARLY easier to sharpen and sharpen to a super-fine edge. I love that steel enough that I have two Heijis now and I'm considering more. Yoshikane has a very similar grind and performance BUT the steel is not easy to get to an superfine edge. Both hold their edges very, very well, as far as I can tell. Then again, I consider an edge hopelessly dull when it doesn't fall through stuff. Some other "mighty" gyutos you might consider are Akifusa/Artisan (really nice knife, btw), Blazen (haven't tried it), Fujiwara Terayasu (awesome in similar ways to the Heiji but stainless clad white #1 carbon core). If you are considering Watanabe, you should also consider Zakuri (good reviews but I haven't tried them). I have inspected them closely and I'd say there is not reason not to expect them to perform very well, judging by their grind and geometry.

  3. #3
    What about a Mac Mighty? It even has "mighty" right there in the name! Actually, they are wafer thin and quite flexible. Not mighty at all.

    Shigefusas are pretty beefy and my Artisugu A-Type ain't no lightweight either.
    "God sends meat and the devil sends cooks." - Thomas Deloney

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by tk59 View Post
    Between Heiji (no such thing as sweden semi stainless, btw) and Yoshikane, Heiji is CLEARLY easier to sharpen and sharpen to a super-fine edge. I love that steel enough that I have two Heijis now and I'm considering more. Yoshikane has a very similar grind and performance BUT the steel is not easy to get to an superfine edge. Both hold their edges very, very well, as far as I can tell. Then again, I consider an edge hopelessly dull when it doesn't fall through stuff. Some other "mighty" gyutos you might consider are Akifusa/Artisan (really nice knife, btw), Blazen (haven't tried it), Fujiwara Terayasu (awesome in similar ways to the Heiji but stainless clad white #1 carbon core). If you are considering Watanabe, you should also consider Zakuri (good reviews but I haven't tried them). I have inspected them closely and I'd say there is not reason not to expect them to perform very well, judging by their grind and geometry.
    Thanks for the reply TK! Sorry, I wasn't super clear in my listing of knives... I was trying to say that I was interested in both the Heiji Semi-Stainless (which I believe is made of SKD?) line and the Heiji Swedish Steel line. Are your heijis in semi-stainless?

    I have had a chance to check out the Zakuris a little bit, I actually have one of their 210mm sujis. I don't have any experience with Watanabes - you think they are fairly similar in general?

    Again, thanks for the tips!

  5. #5
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    My Heijis are semi-stainless. The swedish line is very similar. It is hard to say because each knife is handmade and so there is variation from knife to knife. I just got a couple of Carter twins and they vary substantially, as well. Even DTITK or KonHD, etc vary by some amount between individual knives. The Heiji swedish is the same steel as Shigefusa and they trained with the same guy so I would expect the steel is similar (and awesome). I'm a little confused at the moment about Heiji semistainless and Yoshikane steel. I was under the impression they were both SKD11 and although the reactivity of the metal is similar, the difference in the edges they take and how easily they take them is very surprising to me. Regardless, I would say they are both outstanding but if you want superfine cutting, I'd give the nod to Heiji. I do not have experience with Watanabe nor have I inspected one in person, sorry.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Seb's Avatar
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    Sakai Ichimonji-Kichikuni
    : Stainless cladded White#2 240mm Wa-gyuto. I am takin' a serious long look at this'n.

  7. #7
    Canada's Sharpest Lefty Lefty's Avatar
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    The 'Mac Mighty' is a SOLID, thin knife. I'm actually a big fan of it. You can kick the crap out of those knives! But, you're right, they aren't mighty like a Heiji or a Watanabe.
    As for the Heiji/Yoshikane difference, I'm sure some of resident knife makers might weigh in, but the same steel DOES NOT mean the same wear resistance, edge keenness, etc. However, tk, I know you know that, so I'm just hitting on that point, an not trying to teach you anything. You know your stuff!
    09/06

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  8. #8
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    I think the Yoshikane probably has an advantage over the Heiji in terms of wear resistance and possibly toughness. I haven't seen any significant edge damage with the naked eye on the Yoshikane and it stays pretty aggressive for what seems like an eternity.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by tk59 View Post
    I think the Yoshikane probably has an advantage over the Heiji in terms of wear resistance and possibly toughness. I haven't seen any significant edge damage with the naked eye on the Yoshikane and it stays pretty aggressive for what seems like an eternity.
    Heiji and Yoshikane use the same semistainless steel, the heat threat would be similar I would think because Heiji learned from Yoshikane.

  10. #10
    Heiji's son trained under yoshikane...heiji did not. The steel may be the same, but the heat treatment IS different. So much so that most people don't believe the steels are the same.

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