Balance point on a gyuto

Discussion in 'The Kitchen Knife' started by Barmoley, Aug 15, 2019.

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  1. Aug 15, 2019 #1

    Barmoley

    Barmoley

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    I am currious about general preference for the balance point on a gyuto. I prefer blade heavy knives, but it seems to me that most here and especially pros prefer more balanced feel where balance point is right under or very close to the pinch grip. With such balance the knife feels lighter, more controllable, but less powerful. So do most care or do you adjust to whatever
     
  2. Aug 15, 2019 #2

    panda

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    i prefer ever so slightly blade forward, but like just barely past pinch point. i would call it a gentle bias for power but still nimble enough for finesse? as long as it is reasonably close to balanced, it's not a big deal for me as i can adjust. it's when its too forward or backwards that it becomes a deal breaker.
     
  3. Aug 15, 2019 #3

    stringer

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    Balanced or forward. I can't stand handle heavy gyutos.
     
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  4. Aug 15, 2019 #4

    stringer

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    Feels like driving real wheel drive on ice if you are used to moving quickly.
     
  5. Aug 15, 2019 #5

    Barmoley

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    Thanks guys. I agree, I strongly dislike handle heavy. I am starting to think that maybe I should give more credit to balanced gyutos though. I see the benefits, blade heavy feels better in my hand, but maybe i should stop requesting every knife to be blade heavy. For some grinds and sizes it is just not simple to do.
     
  6. Aug 15, 2019 #6

    bahamaroot

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    I used to be a more blade forward guy but now I seem to gravitate more toward a neutral balance, just feels more natural and nimble. I like the balance right at the pinch. Cannot tolerate handle heavy though!
     
  7. Aug 15, 2019 #7

    YG420

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    Ive been on an integral kick lately, and imo nothing comes close to balance compared to integrals
     
  8. Aug 15, 2019 #8

    slickmamba

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    right at the pinch, or slightly blade heavy for some 'leverage'. I had a custom handle that was really heavy and sold the knife immediately. Couldn't do it
     
  9. Aug 15, 2019 #9

    M1k3

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    Balanced or blade heavy.
     
  10. Aug 15, 2019 #10

    Carl Kotte

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    At the pinch or handle heavy . It’s a matter of habit, I guess.
     
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  11. Aug 15, 2019 #11

    ian

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    Balanced. I like to be able to do a rapid up and down chop when necessary, and if it’s too blade heavy then that’s difficult to do. But I can’t deal with the level of handle heavy that you get with a western anymore—no tip control.
     
    Last edited: Aug 15, 2019
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  12. Aug 15, 2019 #12

    kayman67

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    As neutral as possible or I feels like I'm fighting the knife after some time, one way of the other.
     
  13. Aug 15, 2019 #13

    Kippington

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    I'm definitely a neutral-to-handle kinda guy. If the centre of mass is anywhere within the grip, I'm a happy camper.

    I can try to explain why. Grab a neutral balanced knife, hold it in the pinch grip with three fingers, but with the tip of the knife facing up to the sky and your arm parallel to the ground. Now shake it side to side like it owes you money....
    With the balance point within the pinch, the knife will go as fast as you want with no real loss of control.

    If you do the same thing with a knife that has a balance point towards the tip, things get a little wild if you try to go faster than the knife allows. The max speed is dictated by the knife's rhythm, rather than your own, and this feeling is very noticeable over the board during push-cutting.

    With balance toward the handle, so long as it's still within the grip of my hand it doesn't bother me much. I can simply tighten the grip with my pinky and ring fingers. I enjoy using handle-heavy petty/paring knives, as they're often used with a different grip that makes more use of the palm.
     
  14. Aug 15, 2019 #14

    HRC_64

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    I prefer 'neutral' as well, although I will caveat that a properly designed knife generally allows you move your grip around.

    So if you want tip forward, you should be able to grip to get this, and if you want 'near' neutral, you should be able to alter your grip to get this. If you are lucky to pick up a knife that acts like this you can tell right away. IMHO thats a sign of knife design that has been well thought out.A balance point roughly close to the pinch is fine, a finger forward is generally fine, etc.

    The handle and emoto design starts to come into play at this stage.

    I often wonder if these aspects of knife design are often overlooked and underappreciated.
     
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  15. Aug 15, 2019 #15

    ian

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    I don’t find myself altering the *location* of my grip much at all. I’ll use a pointer grip when I need more weight on the blade (mostly when using petty knives, though), I’ll clock my grip when making certain sideways cuts, and I’ll probably grip the handle more tightly from time to time like Kip suggests, but the forward/back position and the majority of the finger locations are always the same.

    Similar for the rest of y’all?
     
  16. Aug 15, 2019 #16

    Barmoley

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    This makes a whole lot of sense as Kip's explanations usually do:D This also explains why pros like more neutral or slightly forward balance, control is more important. Also, handle heavy for shorter and especially paring knives make sense too, for in hand work in general, plus it would be a very strange small knife with blade heavy design wouldn't make much sense and would be difficult to do without making the blade unreasonably thick.

    I sometimes adjust the grip when I want the blade to be slightly longer on a shorter gyuto, then I grab a little back almost pinching emoto if it is tall enough to allow it.
     
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