Hiragatake SLD Santoku

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Korpulentny

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Hello everyone,
I'm a new member here and recently I've seen Jeff post about a sale at epicedge. I decided to check it out and I ended buying an SLD steel santoku for just under 100 USD. It is worth mentioning that that is my first true Japanese knife.
I'm writing because I'm wondering whether that was a good deal and maybe I should think about returning it and looking for something else. I've also recently ordered a gyuto from miyabi (mizu series 8 inch sg2) for 130 USD at Black Friday sale. As I live in Europe where knives are significantly more expensive here and miyabis are quite well known I think I'm not going to loose much if it doesn't suit me and I decide to resell it later. I'm going to get them both arouns Christmas as they are being shipped to my brother who is currently in the USA.
Ever since learning about Japanese knife I always wanted to try out something with wa handle and I really like santoku knives so this one from epicurean seemed like a good deal. Now, however I'm having second thoughts. I am wondering what are your thoughts on this and I'm grateful for any help.
This is the link for the santoku: https://www.epicedge.com/shopexd.asp?id=95567
Best regards
Tom
P.S.
I don't know if it's relevant but I sharpen my own knives.
 

James

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No experience with this particular knife, but SLD is an amazing steel imo
 

GorillaGrunt

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I really liked the 180mm gyuto, sort of a stainless version of the Mazaki 180mm petty. And the edges on the couple knives I’ve had in SLD have always been great.
 

Korpulentny

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After ordering the miyabi I had some time to rethink my decision and I think I'm going to try to resell the miyabi asap and use the santoku while keeping an eye for a well priced gyuto some time in the future. Thanks everyone for their input. Cheers
 

Korpulentny

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I have received the Hiragatake today. I had known before purchasing that it will have a different grind that all the knives that I had sharpened before. I have been doing some research about sharpening wide bevel knives, thinning them. I watched Murray Carter sharpening convex blades, but as I am quite inexperienced I don't really know how to sharpen the santoku. It seems to have what I know some people call zero grind. I am not sure but I don't see a secondary bevel on the knife. When sharpening in the future should I sharpen the whole wide bevel every time or would a different approach be preferred? I have a Chosera 800 and Rika 5000 stones. I have some experience sharpening thin-bevelled knives.
I'm uploading some photos for reference below. Many thanks for all the help. Cheers and Merry Christmas
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Korpulentny

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As those are my first knife photos that I have ever made, they may not be that relevant. Also I am sorry for duplicating all of them by mistake
 

NO ChoP!

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That's a rather interesting grind. Has me a bit intrigued.

I would sharpen it normally between 10 and 15 degrees. With such an acute edge, you wont be needing too much time on the lower grit stones. Just enough to expose some fresh steel. By the look of it, there is actually some hollow grind behind the edge.
 
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Korpulentny

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Thank you very much for the input. It does seem to make a lot of sense. Do you think that I should take some special care when it's time to thin it in order to preserve this grind?
 

Midsummer

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Thank you very much for the input. It does seem to make a lot of sense. Do you think that I should take some special care when it's time to thin it in order to preserve this grind?
The beauty of the wide bevel knife is that you lay the bevel on the stone and grind it to thin- both sides. Many folks thin a little each time before they sharpen. Some others like to grind the bevels till they are perfectly flat (example: https://www.kitchenknifeforums.com/...-sharpening-my-teruyasu-fujiwara-denka.44721/).

It really your choice. It is important that you thin periodically because you can maintain an apex grind that is thin. But without thining; each sharpening makes the blade progressively fatter behind the edge.
 

Korpulentny

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I don't know know if I understand correctly. I do understand the need to thin the knife but I am more concerned with the exact method. On this particular grind I don't really see any convexivity on the wide bevel. Should I try to make it convex or just thin the whole bevel. Or maybe just put pressure right behind the cutting edge when thinning? Sorry for such simple questions but I am very green when it comes to this whole thinning business, I think one could say I am green to this whole sharpening business, but I sure am captivated by it. Cheers
 

M1k3

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For wide bevels, I personally like to use this method, on both sides. Minus the uraoshi sharpening.
 

Korpulentny

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Many thanks, I'm going to do that when it comes time to thin. Thanks everyone for the help. I am so excited every time I'm about to cook something, because I'll get to cut things. It's a whole new, even more pleasurable experience. Cheers everyone
 

Midsummer

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I don't know know if I understand correctly. I do understand the need to thin the knife but I am more concerned with the exact method. On this particular grind I don't really see any convexivity on the wide bevel. Should I try to make it convex or just thin the whole bevel. Or maybe just put pressure right behind the cutting edge when thinning? Sorry for such simple questions but I am very green when it comes to this whole thinning business, I think one could say I am green to this whole sharpening business, but I sure am captivated by it. Cheers
Because the wide bevels are done on a large whetstone grinding wheel, the bevel is actually concave and not convex. So when placed on a stone, the apex and the upper portion of the bevel are in contact with the stone. The middle of the blade road(bevel) is not. People like to grind that bevel perfectly flat. That way you can more easily get a consistent finish of the blade road with flat stones.

You can leave the bevel mildly concave and still sharpen the knife. It will cut. It will kill... ;)

Some could say that by flattening the bevel you just are wasting good steel for aesthetic appeal. Others can not rest until they have got the knife “how they want it”.

Have fun and enjoy your knife!!
 

Korpulentny

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I think I am more focused on the performance aspect rather than esthetics but I must admit that looks also matter for me. Would preserving the concave grind significantly improve the performance? If so how would one try to do it? I'm afraid that even though I cannot justify buying more knives for the moment it definitely is not my last knife :p
 

bryantcw

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Looks beautiful. I almost bought that knife.

That kanji looks so familiar. I *think* akifusa has a few different lines that use it, probably in larger quantities than the smaller 1 guy in a pit type of workshops.

Anyway, check the bevel on both sides with a straightedge. I would bet you find that it is concave, flat, and convex in different spots.

929376CA-BAA4-4A48-A8C8-7C7739B1676C.gif


https://i.imgur.com/DsEAlWQ.gifv

It’s obviously up to you if you want to change it. The hard part isn’t getting it concave or flat, it’s having it look good when you’re done. I’ve just been cheating with using sandpaper.

Here is how I did my santoku as an example. Total time was probably, 5 hours. If I didn’t have diamond stones, honestly I probably wouldn’t do it.

https://www.kitchenknifeforums.com/...nitial-sharpening-of-yoshikane-santoku.44741/
 
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Korpulentny

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That looks really cool! I think I'll hold off with doing the harder work on it for know but I will definitely keep what you showed me in mind for when I'm ready.

Meanwhile I ordered my first coarse stone (King 300 as I've read it it's decent and it's reasonably priced in the EU) and will probably practice sharpening and maybe thinning on my cheaper knives. I'll probably also sharpen my relatives' knives as well but it's not going to be that pleasant as most of them are crappy SS. :/

All in all I am very satisfied with this santoku as my first decent knife. I think that for a hundred bucks it was a pretty sweet deal. I hereby thank everyone for the help.

I'm really glad I joined this community as I can see there are so many amazing people from all over the world that all jumped right into the same giant rabbit hole and are all happy they did. Cheers everyone
 

M1k3

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The King 300 is a pretty good stone. I'd get a lapping plate for it though, it tends to load up and abrasives dull instead of releasing grit and refreshing.
 

Korpulentny

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I have some cheap small diamond plate that should help with releasing new particles and when it comes to flattening I'll probably go with sandpaper on flat surface method. Eventually I'll probably end up with an atoma but I'm not ready to splurge on it just to flatten stones. I'm sadly not sharpening often enough to dish the stones too much. Thanks for the tip
 

M1k3

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That'll work. Just a few laps should do the trick and no need to clean the slurry off.
 

Korpulentny

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I guess I'll be fine. Long road ahead of me. I've got a lot to learn when it comes to sharpening
 
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