Let’s talk about rectangles a bit more

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Born in Hong Kong, the Chinese cleaver was the only kitchen knife I knew about. I hated it because it's too heavy. That's why I've always used western chef knives, until I discovered the nakiri when I got into Japanese knives earlier this year. I was just curious and dived right in and bought the Yoshikane white#2 nakiri. I immediately fell in love with it. Recently I've bought another one by Shiro Kamo and am also waiting for my Shindo blue#2 nakiri to arrive. I never thought I'd like my nakiri because I hated the Chinese cleaver. It's been a self-discovery journey.

1. I use push pull. I feel that chopping requires too much force and it hurts my wrist. I am very clumsy with rock chop.
2. I love my Yoshikane so I guess that's considered a mid-weight.
3. I like nakiri better than gyuto. I feel like gravitating towards nakiri every time I pick up a knife.
4. Just try it. Go to a local knife shop.
5. I've only used 165mm-170mm. I'd be open to try a 180mm. As for weight, I'd say not too heavy and not too light. Can't say exactly.
Understandable, knife choice is a very personal thing, and alot of younger Chinese are not into the half kilo all purpose cleaver (likely very dull) their parents used, and many manufacturers are trying to put out small and lighter stuff, even "lady's cleaver" that's exactly like a Nakiri.... That said if you haven't yet, CCK1303 or 1302 is worth a try, below 300g and pretty nice change of pace
 
Understandable, knife choice is a very personal thing, and alot of younger Chinese are not into the half kilo all purpose cleaver (likely very dull) their parents used, and many manufacturers are trying to put out small and lighter stuff, even "lady's cleaver" that's exactly like a Nakiri.... That said if you haven't yet, CCK1303 or 1302 is worth a try, below 300g and pretty nice change of pace
I do have a Shibazhi Chinese cleaver that I bought probably 30 years ago but rarely rarely use. Currently, it’s my goto knife to cut water melons 🤣.
 
I do have a Shibazhi Chinese cleaver that I bought probably 30 years ago but rarely rarely use. Currently, it’s my goto knife to cut water melons 🤣.
here’s mine.

1718419357323.png

did I mention I don’t much like watermelon
 
Was about 10 gyutos in when I messaged @SwampDonkey , I was debating between the Shindo vs Wat pro 180 as my first nakiri (end up getting both). Now the nakiri gyuto ratio is approaching 40/60.

As mentioned above, although I am a meat lover, I spend most of the time cutting veggies. The added height and weight at a smaller length just makes cutting more efficient for me. Maybe it's the lack of cutting skills, but I find 180 far more maneuverable. Whereas a 180 santoku/gyuto would be far too light for my liking.
 
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Was about 10 gyutos in when I messaged @SwampDonkey , I was debating between the Shindo vs Wat pro 180 as my first nakiri (end up getting both). Now the nakiri gyuto ratio is approaching 40/60.

As mentioned above, although I am a meat lover, I spend most of the time cutting veggies. The added height and weight at a smaller length just makes cutting more efficient for me. Maybe it's the lack of cutting skills, but I find 180 far more maneuverable. Whereas a 180 santoku/gyuto would be far too light for my liking.
If you like heft to a nakiri, check out the Hatsukokoro Shinkiro
 
I kinda concluded that, for me to actually get into cleaver without keep going back to gyutos, I have to first get rid of all my gyutos…

I probably need to go check out how much insurance coverage the self storage units offer…
No need, I’m here to help you with allll your problems 😇
 
I kinda concluded that, for me to actually get into cleaver without keep going back to gyutos, I have to first get rid of all my gyutos…

I probably need to go check out how much insurance coverage the self storage units offer…
Do you need a sponsor?
No need, I’m here to help you with allll your problems 😇
I can pitch in. For the community 👀
 
I find nakiris fun but a bit silly. I like them for the change-it-up factor but is never the knife I instinctively reach for. I predominantly do a very flat push cuts and pull cuts, and occasionally do fast tap chops for some ingredients. Nakiris are theoretically perfect for that although my Shiro Kamo nakiri has too much belly for my tastes.

My gyuto and santokus are all flat profiled, have enough height for me, and have a tip which makes the nakiri totally redundant.

Chinese cleavers are just tiring to use. "It does the work for you" still means you have pick up an almost 1 pound hunk of metal over and over again.
 
I find nakiris fun but a bit silly. I like them for the change-it-up factor but is never the knife I instinctively reach for. I predominantly do a very flat push cuts and pull cuts, and occasionally do fast tap chops for some ingredients. Nakiris are theoretically perfect for that although my Shiro Kamo nakiri has too much belly for my tastes.

My gyuto and santokus are all flat profiled, have enough height for me, and have a tip which makes the nakiri totally redundant.

Chinese cleavers are just tiring to use. "It does the work for you" still means you have pick up an almost 1 pound hunk of metal over and over again.
I don’t really need/use many nakiris. I do love my Toyama 210. I also have a 180 Mazaki that I use like a petty for bulk mushrooms, garlic, or shallots- sometimes. I don’t even need one then. Small cleavers can be much lighter than 1 lb. Anywhere from 8-11 ounces. Obviously they can also weigh more. But there are many in that weight range. Small cleaver is my personal all around favorite type of chefs knives. I love the big cleavers too, but I’ll use smaller ones more often. I like my bigger ones for certain bulk prep or getting something’s done faster.
 
I was going to post this the 'Show Me Your Best Cleaver' thread, but here seems more appropriate. Note that I am a fully paid up caidao fanboy; I probably have 10 or a 15 atm, but none are that expensive and here's for why...

My favourite cleaver is whatever one I have to hand, provided that it is both: sharp, and tough. I can't really be doing with fancy cleavers made from hard steels that I have to pussyfoot around and worry about.

Today my best cleaver is a stainless Shibazi slicer I picked up for 12 quid a couple of years ago and then thinned out a fair bit, cos Shibazi grinds are quite thick bte. It'll now zing through food prep as well as anything, but afterwards I can also thwack it through the leftover chicken carcasses to break them down for stock:

IMG_7167.jpg



And even smack it on the spine a bit with a mallet to split some wood (to make a quick impromptu saw blade handle for a friend when she was leaving):

IMG_7172.jpg



I can't remember the last time I sharpened it, but I've certainly put it through its paces in the last six hours. Prepped a decent amount of food for four people, then used as a bone cleaver, and lastly basically as a machete.

But despite the mallet-ing the spine's not looking bad:

IMG_7175.jpg



And the edge is still in perfectly usable (frankly surprisingly good) shape. It'll take me 3 minutes on a King 800 tomorrow to get this back to dropping paper towel like any of my most show-off videos:

IMG_7174.jpg




---

I realise this is probably quite an old-school approach to the appreciation of cleavers, and that there are many extremely talented knifemakers who've pushed the art form further, and make knives that are far more impressive than the ones I have.

But that's why I like mine anyway!
 
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I was going to post this the 'Show Me Your Best Cleaver' thread, but here seems more appropriate. Note that I am a fully paid up caidao fanboy; I probably have 10 or a 15 atm, but none are that expensive and here's for why...

My favourite cleaver is whatever one I have to hand, provided that it is both: sharp, and tough. I can't really be doing with fancy cleavers made from hard steels that I have to pussyfoot around and worry about.

Today my favourite cleaver is a stainless Shibazi slicer I picked up for 12 quid a couple of years ago and then thinned out a fair bit, cos Shibazi grinds are quite thick bte. It'll now zing through food prep as well as anything, but I can also afterwards smack it through the leftover chicken carcasses to break them down for stock:

View attachment 329240


And even smack it on the spine with a mallet and split a bit of wood (to make a quick impromptu saw blade handle for a friend when she was leaving):

View attachment 329239


I can't remember the last time I sharpened it, but I've certainly put it through its paces in the last six hours. Prepped a decent amount of food for four people, then used as a bone cleaver, and lastly basically as a machete.

But despite the mallet-ing the spine's not looking bad:

View attachment 329242


And the edge is still in perfectly usable (frankly surprisingly good) shape. It'll take me 3 minutes on a King 800 tomorrow to get this back too dropping paper towel like any of my most show-off videos:

View attachment 329241

View attachment 329252

---

I realise this is probably quite an old-school approach to the appreciation of cleavers, and that there are many extremely talented knifemakers who've pushed the art form further, and made knives that are far more impressive than the ones I have.

But that's why I like mine anyway!
No real comment on the cleaver (mine is HRC61...) but nice mentality. It's like the opposite of knife nerd but packing all the knife nerd credibility and also sharpening/thinning skills.
 
I was going to post this the 'Show Me Your Best Cleaver' thread, but here seems more appropriate. Note that I am a fully paid up caidao fanboy; I probably have 10 or a 15 atm, but none are that expensive and here's for why...

My favourite cleaver is whatever one I have to hand, provided that it is both: sharp, and tough. I can't really be doing with fancy cleavers made from hard steels that I have to pussyfoot around and worry about.

Today my favourite cleaver is a stainless Shibazi slicer I picked up for 12 quid a couple of years ago and then thinned out a fair bit, cos Shibazi grinds are quite thick bte. It'll now zing through food prep as well as anything, but afterwards I can also thwack it through the leftover chicken carcasses to break them down for stock:

View attachment 329240


And even smack it on the spine a bit with a mallet to split some wood (to make a quick impromptu saw blade handle for a friend when she was leaving):

View attachment 329239


I can't remember the last time I sharpened it, but I've certainly put it through its paces in the last six hours. Prepped a decent amount of food for four people, then used as a bone cleaver, and lastly basically as a machete.

But despite the mallet-ing the spine's not looking bad:

View attachment 329242


And the edge is still in perfectly usable (frankly surprisingly good) shape. It'll take me 3 minutes on a King 800 tomorrow to get this back too dropping paper towel like any of my most show-off videos:

View attachment 329241

View attachment 329252

---

I realise this is probably quite an old-school approach to the appreciation of cleavers, and that there are many extremely talented knifemakers who've pushed the art form further, and made knives that are far more impressive than the ones I have.

But that's why I like mine anyway!
Thank you for sharing. What’s your cutting board(s) set up?
 
No real comment on the cleaver (mine is HRC61...) but nice mentality. It's like the opposite of knife nerd but packing all the knife nerd credibility and also sharpening/thinning skills.

Haha... knife-nerd-who-can't-afford-fancy-knives, so has to improvise by trying to make cheap knives good.

TBF one of my few fancy knives is a Shibata Tinker Tank, which I love, but it does need a little bit of looking after. Whereas apparently the Shibazi can do pretty much anything and come out unscathed!


Thank you for sharing. What’s your cutting board(s) set up?

Oh those are just some crappy bamboo ones belonging to my folks. I have one or two nice-ish boards, but don't have them here atm.
 
Of all the rectangles I've had, the only one I keep coming back to use is my CCK 1303. I use it mainly when I want a change of pace or if I'm slicing lots of cabbage or onion or something similar. The 1303 is a great gateway cleaver; I know there are other similar small cleavers that can be had for even less money and this style of cleaver is a great entry point to see if rectangles are for you.

I never really saw much purpose to nakiris... they really do just seem like a gyuto with the tip chopped off.
 
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