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Thread: First santoku recommendations?

  1. #1
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2012

    First santoku recommendations?

    Hi all, I am looking at getting a santoku to supplement my feather-weight CCK cleaver, heavy-weight 240mm gyuto from China, and a petty knife from Walmart. I have been looking on different websites, but a lot of knives on This Site Not Allowed fits the budget quite well.

    What country are you in?

    What type of knife are you interested in (e.g., chef’s knife, slicer, boning knife, utility knife, bread knife, paring knife, cleaver)?

    Are you right or left handed?

    Are you interested in a Western handle (e.g., classic Wusthof handle) or Japanese handle?

    What length of knife (blade) are you interested in (in inches or millimeters)?
    170mm or less please.

    Do you require a stainless knife? (Yes or no)
    No stainless please

    What is your absolute maximum budget for your knife?
    $150 new or used.

    Do you primarily intend to use this knife at home or a professional environment?
    At home

    What are the main tasks you primarily intend to use the knife for (e.g., slicing vegetables, chopping vegetables, mincing vegetables, slicing meats, cutting down poultry, breaking poultry bones, filleting fish, trimming meats, etc.)? (Please identify as many tasks as you would like.)
    Cutting veggies and boneless meat

    What knife, if any, are you replacing?

    Do you have a particular grip that you primarily use? (Please click on this LINK for the common types of grips.)

    What cutting motions do you primarily use? (Please click on this LINK for types of cutting motions and identify the two or three most common cutting motions, in order of most used to least used.)

    What improvements do you want from your current knife? If you are not replacing a knife, please identify as many characteristics identified below in parentheses that you would like this knife to have.)
    My current 240mm gyuto is too heavy and too long, and the cleaver is too big for cutting small things. I want something light and shorter than 240mm.

    Better aesthetics (e.g., a certain type of finish; layered/Damascus or other pattern of steel; different handle color/pattern/shape/wood; better scratch resistance; better stain resistance)?
    I don't know the name, but I want the one that's dark charcoal colored on top, and steel colored on the bottom.

    Comfort (e.g., lighter/heavier knife; better handle material; better handle shape; rounded spine/choil of the knife; improved balance)?
    The lighter the better.

    Ease of Use (e.g., ability to use the knife right out of the box; smoother rock chopping, push cutting, or slicing motion; less wedging; better food release; less reactivity with food; easier to sharpen)?
    I do not mind sharpening my own if the steel is soft.

    Edge Retention (i.e., length of time you want the edge to last without sharpening)?
    No preference

    Do you use a bamboo, wood, rubber, or synthetic cutting board? (Yes or no.)
    Wood cutting board

    Do you sharpen your own knives? (Yes or no.)


    Basically looking for a santoku, the lighter the better, the cheaper the better. Any and all recommendations welcome!

  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Wales, UK
    If you can handle stainless cladding, this is a no-brainer.


  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    What's stainless cladding mean? Does it mean that the core carbon steel is covered in a stainless steel layer protection outside?

  4. #4
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Wales, UK

    The core of this knife is "semi-stainless" - it will take a patina like carbon, though not as rapidly. It's a great steel in my book - tough, with very good edge retention (stays usefully sharp for a long time), and is easy to sharpen/responds well to touch ups.

  5. #5
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    I have nothing against santokus but I wouldn't go with anything under 180 mm. A 165 is just a small utility knife, a 180 is more all round.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Benuser's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Amstelveen, The Netherlands
    If you don't mind about a yo-handle, consider the Hiromoto 190,

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