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School me on choosing old carbon chef knives
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    brianh's Avatar
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    School me on choosing old carbon chef knives

    I've been reading here about Forgecraft, Old Hickory, various Sabatiers, etc. but having never held such a knife, don't know much about them other than they look cool and their flat profiles are appealing. I'm looking to grow my small collection and add something a little sturdier, less delicate than my Japanese knives. I assume these old carbons fit? Something in the 8"-10" blade range. But again, I have no idea what to look for. Ebay has some cool knives ranging from frightening condition to allegedly unused. Take this for example, no rust, looks cool and usable?:

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/350896866255...ht_3259wt_1399

    Again, just looking for some tips. Looking for something cheap that I can bang around a bit and practice sharpening on.

    brian

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    You can get good deals on old carbons on E-Bay.What to look for is blade geometry(not too much sharpening over the years.)& pitting in the steel.The example you show is not too bad a little dip at the heel because of the full bolster,pitting is not bad stay away fr. knives with pitting on the blade road.

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    I noticed that at the heel and some others with this, as well. Doesn't this hinder performance quite a bit? It appears to extend down past the edge so near the heal the knife wouldn't make contact with the board. Thanks

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    Quote Originally Posted by brianh View Post
    I noticed that at the heel and some others with this, as well. Doesn't this hinder performance quite a bit? It appears to extend down past the edge so near the heal the knife wouldn't make contact with the board. Thanks
    Yes it does, but you will remove that protuberance after you get the knife. Just part of the rehabilitation of ODC (Old Dirty Carbon).
    “Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge.”

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    I'm still new to sharpening so maybe one that doesn't need much rework would be better. I also only have a few stones, lowest is 500, is that not coarse enough for rehab'ing ODC? I want to learn but I don't want to get in over my head.

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    Quote Originally Posted by brianh View Post
    I'm still new to sharpening so maybe one that doesn't need much rework would be better. I also only have a few stones, lowest is 500, is that not coarse enough for rehab'ing ODC? I want to learn but I don't want to get in over my head.
    Use the side of the 500 grit stone if that's all you have, but a diamond plate like the Atoma 140 will do the job quicker and easier. Tip the point of the knife up ant an angle do you can get at the protuberance without affecting the edge.

    “Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge.”

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    Interesting, thanks! It seems sabatiers go for more money than others, at least on ebay. Any reason for this?

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    Quote Originally Posted by brianh View Post
    Interesting, thanks! It seems sabatiers go for more money than others, at least on ebay. Any reason for this?
    Just the market. At one point you could get Forgecrafts for almost nothing, but they have become popular and the price has risen. Sabatiers appear to have done the same. A little more than a year ago I picked up an 8" Yatagan carving knife for $20. They have more than doubled since then.
    “Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge.”

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    Quote Originally Posted by brianh View Post
    Interesting, thanks! It seems sabatiers go for more money than others, at least on ebay. Any reason for this?
    someone told me that Julia Childs put the Sabatier carbons on the map..i cannot confirm this.

    man, i love mine. it is the most nimble knife i have. i can blaze thru veggies, and the very tip of my first knuckle skin. now i am strangly slower.

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    I put up a want ad on craigslist detailing that I did not want stainless or carving sets and someone contacted me and I got three very serviceable knives for ten buck each.

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