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Adjusting gyuto heel to not hit the board

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Barmoley

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Some knives with tall, flat profiles hit the board with the heel and a clunk. Has anyone adjusted the heel on such knives slightly to prevent this from happening Or is it too much work and more than the heel needs to be adjusted? The heel will have to be thinned after, but what else?
 

MowgFace

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I’ve eased the heel on one knife. While sharpening, I made the burr larger towards the heel. All I really did was take the heel down .5mm or so. Not perfect, but I got rid of the thunk
 

Barmoley

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I’ve eased the heel on one knife. While sharpening, I made the burr larger towards the heel. All I really did was take the heel down .5mm or so. Not perfect, but I got rid of the thunk
That's not bad. Thanks.
 

Carl Kotte

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I’ve had the same experience with a few knives. I really dislike that clunk-feeling. I thought it was a matter of habit and that I would adjust after more time with those knives, but that never happened. I never modified any of them, but it Will be interesting to see what solutions people propose. Great topic, @Barmoley 👍🏻
 

Hamesjo

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I've run into that with a couple of knives. I'm a fan of biggish flat spots but when the profile doesn't ease into the flat spot nicely or the heel is just a bit too thunk-y I've done what @MowgFace described and basically sharpened at the heel more than the rest of the knife until it reduced enough to be curvy instead of obtrusive

I'm not sure if it helps much but instead of sharpening in a straight, forward backwards motion I kind of sweep at the heel when my goal is to adjust it. Kind of following a curve along the profile...say I start my pass at a 45 degree angle of knife to stone and I end up nearly 90 degrees by the heel.
 

Benuser

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When thinning go on until the entire original edge has gone. Use one continuous motion, edge trailing, starting from the tip. It eliminates any deadly flat spot. At the end, lift the tip very, very slightly. So, the widest point of the blade will slightly move forward — by 3/8" or so.
 

ian

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Yea, just do what others have said and sharpen more at the heel. Doesn’t take long. And if the knife becomes a little thick at the heel, who cares?
 

Matus

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@Barmoley - if the flat spot is hitting the board as you described, than the maker made a mistake (IMO). It is rare to find this on a JP knife, I have seen it once or twice on a knife made by western makers.
 

esoo

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@Barmoley - if the flat spot is hitting the board as you described, than the maker made a mistake (IMO). It is rare to find this on a JP knife, I have seen it once or twice on a knife made by western makers.
The Kono YS-M has this flat spot - noted in the CKTG vid and I see it on the knife I got.

Interestingly the knife I have with the least flat area - ZKramer Carbon 10" - also has the same problem.
 

DitmasPork

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Some knives with tall, flat profiles hit the board with the heel and a clunk. Has anyone adjusted the heel on such knives slightly to prevent this from happening Or is it too much work and more than the heel needs to be adjusted? The heel will have to be thinned after, but what else?
How flat is too flat for your preferences? I have some knives where I’ve encountered a similar issue, but I’ll usually adjust my cutting technique to compensate.
 

Barmoley

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@Barmoley - if the flat spot is hitting the board as you described, than the maker made a mistake (IMO). It is rare to find this on a JP knife, I have seen it once or twice on a knife made by western makers.
Yes, I agree it is a mistake, but sounds like it is easily correctable. I've also seen it on a few knives by western makers.
 

Barmoley

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How flat is too flat for your preferences? I have some knives where I’ve encountered a similar issue, but I’ll usually adjust my cutting technique to compensate.
I think the heel should not be part of the flat so to speak. I've checked a few knives with long flats and the ones where the heel is relieved, raised don't have this issue. I suspect very few people cut with the heel in general, I don't. I might use it to core something or use it on purpose for something hard to cut, but not in general cutting, so it doesn't really have to touch the board when the rest of the edge flat touches the board. I could probably adjust my technique, but it seems like too much trouble for one or two knives. Sounds like it is easier to just fix it one time.
 

applepieforbreakfast

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My Gihei 240 does this. I really, really like the knife, but it's a very abrupt stop. Kind of gives the knife a galloping feel, but not in a good way. It feels too different compared to my other knives, so I'll have to do something about it.
 

Matus

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When (however seldom that happens) I fine tune a profile on a knife I am making, one of the check is to make a rock motion from tip to the heel on a flat hard surface. I want this motion to feel smooth without any abruptness and if the heel causes an overly abrupt stop to this motion, I know I have some gentle correction to make.
 

DitmasPork

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I think the heel should not be part of the flat so to speak. I've checked a few knives with long flats and the ones where the heel is relieved, raised don't have this issue. I suspect very few people cut with the heel in general, I don't. I might use it to core something or use it on purpose for something hard to cut, but not in general cutting, so it doesn't really have to touch the board when the rest of the edge flat touches the board. I could probably adjust my technique, but it seems like too much trouble for one or two knives. Sounds like it is easier to just fix it one time.
Yeah, pretty much all my fave gyutos have a very slight curve quite early in the profile—just makes the knife more versatile. A longish, dead flat area maybe good for push cutters, but I prefer versatility in my knives.
 

Illyria

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I guess I'm alone with my preference towards a nice flat spot for getting perfect cuts.

A lot of cooks that I've worked with flatten their knives to give them that hard stop.
 

MowgFace

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Yea, just do what others have said and sharpen more at the heel. Doesn’t take long. And if the knife becomes a little thick at the heel, who cares?
Haha, obviously you can (should) thin the knife in response. For me it was the mental hurdle of understanding that i am "changing" the profile. Once the profile is where you want it, tweak the geometry to match.
 

Matus

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With my two Raquins, although a relatively flat profile, have a pretty constant curve throughout, they’re not dead flat.
Well, that's most likely because Bryan is one of the best makers out there and he knows what he is doing.
 
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