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Thread: Marko Tsourkan 52100 Gyuto (passaround)

  1. #11
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    Obviously, people are going to have somewhat varying opinions based on their technique and experience. In this case, I'm pretty sure Andrew's assessment is spot on. Marko makes a very nice knife these days.

  2. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by JohnyChai View Post
    Having read this am surprised that you found the Marko to have wedging???

    Currently using one of Marko's 240 Practice knives with a Marko D-handle. It is all around the most flawless knife that has come this way. Don't actually see how a knife could surpass this...with other knives definitely saw flaws. Including some of the most well respected.

    The edge retention, especially with a strop or high grit stone combo allows you to have a dead-on sharp knife every day in 1-2 minutes for 2 weeks(longest here was 3) to whenever depending on how much you use it. Could see home cooks not having to sharp forever, literally.

    It cuts everything well, period. It's a laser that has geometry instead of just a thin grind. Have used it to bang out prep or to make fine cuts, either way it can be tweaked to do both. Haven't had any serious sticking issues, that's a first.

    The handle is also spot on. Like HeirkB, prefer the basic Ho handles. Marko manages to match that feeling in a more deluxe form without sacrificing anything. Oiling it periodically has darkened the wood but kept the feel intact.


    The weight of the knife is the only thing that could see members(anyone) having a problem with. The one that is here is light but surely those of you with man hands could ask for a thicker grind or heavier spine, etc..

    When the knife first came, it was un-sharpened. Used it that way for days with no issue whatsoever. No chips to speak of, takes well to the stones-- natural and synthetic(Practice 52100,) not reactive once a basic gray patina forms.

    This sounds like an endorsement and it is! One that gladly paid for...Thanks Marko!
    Glad to hear you finally got to try one. Marko is making some of the best knives around in my opinion. Should have my custom in a few days to give a final review but through all the practice knives id have from him have been awesome and the best knives ive used period.

  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by jgraeff View Post
    Glad to hear you finally got to try one. Marko is making some of the best knives around in my opinion. Should have my custom in a few days to give a final review but through all the practice knives id have from him have been awesome and the best knives ive used period.
    +1

  4. #14
    Agree about his practice knives being excellent as mine is a serious cutter, but I too experience stiction on certain items such as potatoes and apples. Edge retention is better than I have seen on any carbon. Again, mine is a practice knife and I can't wait to get hold of his current blade (pass around) to see how this has improved. Mine is very thin and has a rather large convex to the face which makes me think that my custom will have to be thicker, longer and slightly more hefty--in addition to his current grind and h/t. I am pretty sure MT will be working it all out and I can't wait!
    one man gathers what another man spills...

  5. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by chinacats View Post
    Agree about his practice knives being excellent as mine is a serious cutter, but I too experience stiction on certain items such as potatoes and apples. Edge retention is better than I have seen on any carbon. Again, mine is a practice knife and I can't wait to get hold of his current blade (pass around) to see how this has improved. Mine is very thin and has a rather large convex to the face which makes me think that my custom will have to be thicker, longer and slightly more hefty--in addition to his current grind and h/t. I am pretty sure MT will be working it all out and I can't wait!
    I think that's the trade-off, as has been mentioned. I think the Tilman gyuto I sold cut very similarly and had a little less stiction than the Marko. I'm guessing that's because it was a bit asymmetrical and the Marko practice knife I have is not. I figure one could improve stiction, but you wouldn't have a knife that cuts as ridiculously well.

  6. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by heirkb View Post
    I think that's the trade-off, as has been mentioned. I think the Tilman gyuto I sold cut very similarly and had a little less stiction than the Marko. I'm guessing that's because it was a bit asymmetrical and the Marko practice knife I have is not. I figure one could improve stiction, but you wouldn't have a knife that cuts as ridiculously well.

    sticking on the outside of the blade is acceptable on almost all blades you will get some degree of sticking, however for me if the inside has sticking thats a deal breaker. I have a couple videos that shows how markos knives are with sticking and in my opinion i think its pretty decent a lot of foods slide right off, some like apples tend to stick but can be flung right off or if you keep chopping they push each other off and its never an issue.

    i just got my custom i will relay some input here in a few days.

  7. #17
    Senior Member brainsausage's Avatar
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    Sticktion bothers me waaaaayyyy less than wedging. If I'm prepping 8 quarts of mire poix, and the knife is wedging on all those carrots, it's far more fatigueing and generally annoying than having to sweep the blade occasionally. Obviously it's a bigger issue with potatoes, and large starches...

    Great review btw! Very excited to put this knife through its paces.
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  8. #18
    Senior Member ThEoRy's Avatar
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    Borrowed my laptop from work tonight so I could write down some thoughts while they are still fresh.

    Steel:
    Sharpening was a breeze. You can make a fine, even burr along the length of the blade with ease. The grain size must be really fine I figured since the stones got a bit clogged and felt glassy. Took the Atoma to them and got right back to it. Edge resilience was quite long lasting as well. I could use it for a few days of full shifts between simple stropping on felt with diamond. Speaking of stropping, it's quite incredible how doing so little results in so much for the steel. Which leads me to a unique point as well, with so little effort in sharpening it became obvious that since you barely ever remove much metal, the useful life of this knife will be quite long. A real plus for me.

    It takes on a nice patina quickly. I only had a problem with reactivity with an onion once. At the end of the shift the diced onion had turned black. It's to be expected of a carbon blade though. I figure with a more developed patina it shouldn't be a problem.

    Geometry/Grind/Shape:
    Food release was just fantastic on this blade. Even the usual suspects posed no threat. Potatoes, squash, whatever. I couldn't make much stick to the blade and what little that did, jumped off with a simple flick. I know that Andrew had said maybe the tip could use an adjustment since it seemed to wedge on onions during the initial horizontal cuts but this never bothered me for one reason, I don't cut onions like that. I use the middle of the blade to push cut towards the root after the radial/vertical cuts. So that doesn't affect me. I even tried to recreate the issue by cutting it like Andrew and to be honest it did feel wonky however, I attribute that to be from my inexperience with that technique and not the knife. It just felt unnatural to me so I may not be the greatest judge in that particular critique. Regardless, as I said it doesn't affect me so I don't care. If Marko can improve this however, I'll take it with the improvement.

    Wedging near the heel was not an issue either. No snapping carrots with this blade. Even with a straight downward chop using no directional motion. Clean cutter.

    Push cutting works really well. It's almost flat with a slight curve which I really like. I don't want it to be totally flat, then you can't rock without it feeling jarring. I want to be able to do both whenever necessary. Rocking works pretty well also. With just enough sweep towards the tip to keep things smooth. Marko has told me he may offer a nose with a bit more upsweep but I would have to have both in hand to decide which I like better. Which brings us to walking the board. Marko's knife is thin but I wouldn't say it's a super laser like Konosuke etc. Which is fine since I'm always wary of walking with that knife. I can just hear/feel the edge cricking and rolling and I hate using it like that. I didn't have that same fear while using this knife. I think Marko has hit the sweet spot between thinness and grind. Thin yet not anorexic at the spine but still thin behind the edge with enough meat behind that for some convexing. Not to mention the distal taper is great too. It gets thin enough towards the tip to do highly detailed dicing etc. with ease.

    Extras:
    Weight and balance were perfect for a pinch gripper like me. Didn't feel like a 260 at all. Very nimble in the hand, a perfect extension. Blade face was finished to a perfect even satin. Very nice. Spine and choil should be fully rounded I believe. The choil I found to be exceptionally bothersome. An easy fix though. The tapered D handle felt mostly comfortable. As a pinch gripper, the ferrule should be rounded smooth as well.

    Overall:
    Performance was fantastic. There wasn't anything I didn't enjoy cutting with this knife. For reference I used both the Tanaka and Konosuke HD 240 alongside this blade and time after time I preferred the performance of the Tsourkan. Those blades may be able to do most tasks really well but Marko's does all of them. Really impressed with all aspects of this blade, just a fantastic cutter. Which really sucks because now the wait for my own Tsourkan is even harder!!

    Great job on this blade Marko and a significant improvement over the last blade you sent me. At this point you've got it really dialed in now and we've begun splitting hairs between personal preference tweaks. Really makes me excited for the future!
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  9. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by ThEoRy View Post
    Borrowed my laptop from work tonight so I could write down some thoughts while they are still fresh.

    Steel:
    Sharpening was a breeze. You can make a fine, even burr along the length of the blade with ease. The grain size must be really fine I figured since the stones got a bit clogged and felt glassy. Took the Atoma to them and got right back to it. Edge resilience was quite long lasting as well. I could use it for a few days of full shifts between simple stropping on felt with diamond. Speaking of stropping, it's quite incredible how doing so little results in so much for the steel. Which leads me to a unique point as well, with so little effort in sharpening it became obvious that since you barely ever remove much metal, the useful life of this knife will be quite long. A real plus for me.

    It takes on a nice patina quickly. I only had a problem with reactivity with an onion once. At the end of the shift the diced onion had turned black. It's to be expected of a carbon blade though. I figure with a more developed patina it shouldn't be a problem.

    Geometry/Grind/Shape:
    Food release was just fantastic on this blade. Even the usual suspects posed no threat. Potatoes, squash, whatever. I couldn't make much stick to the blade and what little that did, jumped off with a simple flick. I know that Andrew had said maybe the tip could use an adjustment since it seemed to wedge on onions during the initial horizontal cuts but this never bothered me for one reason, I don't cut onions like that. I use the middle of the blade to push cut towards the root after the radial/vertical cuts. So that doesn't affect me. I even tried to recreate the issue by cutting it like Andrew and to be honest it did feel wonky however, I attribute that to be from my inexperience with that technique and not the knife. It just felt unnatural to me so I may not be the greatest judge in that particular critique. Regardless, as I said it doesn't affect me so I don't care. If Marko can improve this however, I'll take it with the improvement.

    Wedging near the heel was not an issue either. No snapping carrots with this blade. Even with a straight downward chop using no directional motion. Clean cutter.

    Push cutting works really well. It's almost flat with a slight curve which I really like. I don't want it to be totally flat, then you can't rock without it feeling jarring. I want to be able to do both whenever necessary. Rocking works pretty well also. With just enough sweep towards the tip to keep things smooth. Marko has told me he may offer a nose with a bit more upsweep but I would have to have both in hand to decide which I like better. Which brings us to walking the board. Marko's knife is thin but I wouldn't say it's a super laser like Konosuke etc. Which is fine since I'm always wary of walking with that knife. I can just hear/feel the edge cricking and rolling and I hate using it like that. I didn't have that same fear while using this knife. I think Marko has hit the sweet spot between thinness and grind. Thin yet not anorexic at the spine but still thin behind the edge with enough meat behind that for some convexing. Not to mention the distal taper is great too. It gets thin enough towards the tip to do highly detailed dicing etc. with ease.

    Extras:
    Weight and balance were perfect for a pinch gripper like me. Didn't feel like a 260 at all. Very nimble in the hand, a perfect extension. Blade face was finished to a perfect even satin. Very nice. Spine and choil should be fully rounded I believe. The choil I found to be exceptionally bothersome. An easy fix though. The tapered D handle felt mostly comfortable. As a pinch gripper, the ferrule should be rounded smooth as well.

    Overall:
    Performance was fantastic. There wasn't anything I didn't enjoy cutting with this knife. For reference I used both the Tanaka and Konosuke HD 240 alongside this blade and time after time I preferred the performance of the Tsourkan. Those blades may be able to do most tasks really well but Marko's does all of them. Really impressed with all aspects of this blade, just a fantastic cutter. Which really sucks because now the wait for my own Tsourkan is even harder!!

    Great job on this blade Marko and a significant improvement over the last blade you sent me. At this point you've got it really dialed in now and we've begun splitting hairs between personal preference tweaks. Really makes me excited for the future!
    Nice review. Rick!

  10. #20
    Senior Member brainsausage's Avatar
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    Great review Rick. Looking forward to my run with this knife.


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