SKD vs SG2 Steel?

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Hi everyone,
Has anyone tried Yoshikane SKD Nashiji Gyuto and Nigara SG2 Tsuchime KU Gyuto both?

Smooth Cutting feel, food release, easy to sharpen and edge life.

For fit and finish I believe they both have excellent fit and finish.

I want to buy 240mm gyuto and eying on Yoshikane SKD 240mm Nashiji Gyuto and Nigara SG2 Tsuchime KU finish Gyuto for my collection 😊

Purpose: for commercial kitchen wich 240mm is essential to have for cutting Vegetables, meat, fish, slicing steak and everything else.. 210mm is just to short for kitchen use but OK if you use it in the sushi counter for cutting roll and vegetables (mostly small vegetables).
 
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There's probably more to it than the steel differences...
SKD will be easier to sharpen but will be very slightly reactive. SG2 should have better retention and be stainless.
I think Yoshikane has a better grind (that is wide bevel) whereas the Nigara seems to have a hollow grind.

I'd recommend Yoshikane more in general
 

Jason183

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I prefer SKD12 for most tasks, I don’t liked to sharpen R2 knife, I only use my R2 Sujihiki for one cutting task only with no board contact. It held up pretty good, Haven’t sharpen it in 2 years.
 
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I haven’t had any issues sharpening R2 but SKD is one of my favorite steels (including those knives presumed to be made from this or a close cousin). Yoshikane is also an impressive all around grind, but I haven’t tried anything at all from Nigara so I can’t compare.
 

tostadas

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As others have already said, SKD is most similar to other carbons. It will react and patina, but pretty resistant to rust. On the stones it feels like carbon steel also.

If you need stainless, SG2 is very good at taking and holding a fine edge. I havent tried a Nigara specifically though.
 

blokey

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Don’t forfgot about heat treatment, most SG2 are pretty good, some like Ryusen are excellent. SKD on other hand can vary quite a bit, ranging from 61 HRC to 64 HRC. Personally I like SKD on the Yoshikane.
 

Delat

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Yoshikane SKD is awesome, mine might as well be stainless as it’s not very reactive at all. I don’t leave it sitting for long periods unwashed though.

I have several SG2 knives as well and I like them all. They’re close enough that I’d say pick the knife and maker and don’t worry about the steel.
 
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There's probably more to it than the steel differences...
SKD will be easier to sharpen but will be very slightly reactive. SG2 should have better retention and be stainless.
I think Yoshikane has a better grind (that is wide bevel) whereas the Nigara seems to have a hollow grind.

I'd recommend Yoshikane more in general
I didn't see that. I just take a look at the choil shot and pay attention to the bevel and indeed Yoshikane has wider bevel. Thank you @superworrier
 
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At least on the topic of wear resistance, SG2 and SKD12 are pretty similar. So which steel has better wear resistance is really up to the hardness of the steel that has better wear resistance. SKD12 has the same wear resistance as SG2 if it is 1 HRC harder which is a pretty small difference.
 
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At least on the topic of wear resistance, SG2 and SKD12 are pretty similar. So which steel has better wear resistance is really up to the hardness of the steel that has better wear resistance. SKD12 has the same wear resistance as SG2 if it is 1 HRC harder which is a pretty small difference.
I think Yoshikane SKD has 62-63 HRC while Nigara SG2 Tsuchime KU has 62-64 HRC. Almost similar. I think reading from this thread the difference is in the grind of the knife. You are absolutely right About the steel, it depends on who make it and the heat treatment.
 

captaincaed

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Sg2 may be harder to deburr. A2 is pretty easy. For me edges on SG2 last measurably longer. Both are favorites.
 

Steampunk

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For me, it would depend on the sort of edge one likes, and your sharpening process... As @captaincaed said, SG2 / R2 does have more edge retention, and they're both great steels, but the experience of using and sharpening them is very different.

I haven't sharpened a Nigara, but I've currently yet to see an SG2 / R2 heat treat that keeps its tooth above a 1K on AlOx stones. Sometimes you can use a 'hybrid' edge with AlOx (Creating a bevel on 1K or coarser, and then using only a few strokes on a 4-8K stone to deburr.), but I've still noticed reduced durability. Above that level, they seem to really need diamonds, and respond well to these for edge bevels. The Gesshin 6K S&G does a better job than most, if you're technique is spot-on, but it's still far from a perfect solution to taking SG2 / R2 above the 1K point, without going full-diamond... The Takamura brother's sharpening process negates this by taking them to near zero, but this process in my experience chips very easily.

A2 / SKD-12 steel by comparison, is a lot more responsive to high-grit AlOx stones without losing its tooth or edge retention, more like carbon. You can polish it a lot finer without losing tooth using 'conventional' stones, including various naturals. You can take it marginally thinner without chipping. Diamond is a 'want', rather than a 'need' at higher grits... The sharpening and cutting feel is closer to carbon, but with acidic ingredients especially the durability is vastly better. It also is far more forgiving to atmospheric rust.

Sorry I can't help more with those specific knives. There's going to that separate them which go WAY beyond the steel.

Hope this helps... If you're leaning towards SKD-12, you won't go too wrong. It's an awesomely well balanced steel for culinary work.
 
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Delat

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I should mention that the edge on the Yoshi is a bit delicate, probably because it’s so thin behind the edge. I damaged mine cutting the root ends off unpeeled garlic. But treated well it’s a fantastic knife. After that initial learning experience it’s been just fine though. Super fast and easy to sharpen, likely due to a combination of the steel and thinness behind the edge.

I haven’t been using it much for a while though, generally reaching for my Myojin R2, Shiro Kamo R2, and Birgersson (unknown Swedish steel) much more often. But I grabbed it for a prep last week and was wowed by it all over again.

Also very similar in feel to the Yoshikane is Wakui, if you’re still looking around. Not sure what steels Wakui uses other than the one I have in white 2 though.
 
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I should mention that the edge on the Yoshi is a bit delicate, probably because it’s so thin behind the edge. I damaged mine cutting the root ends off unpeeled garlic. But treated well it’s a fantastic knife. After that initial learning experience it’s been just fine though. Super fast and easy to sharpen, likely due to a combination of the steel and thinness behind the edge.

I haven’t been using it much for a while though, generally reaching for my Myojin R2, Shiro Kamo R2, and Birgersson (unknown Swedish steel) much more often. But I grabbed it for a prep last week and was wowed by it all over again.

Also very similar in feel to the Yoshikane is Wakui, if you’re still looking around. Not sure what steels Wakui uses other than the one I have in white 2 though.
Shiro kamo SG2 acid etched Damascus??
 

Delat

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Shiro kamo SG2 acid etched Damascus??

Yup; mine was purchased early 2020 and I’d characterize it as a midweight. I use it when I want a tough, carefree knife. More recent examples seem to be thinner, but I haven’t personally compared. Pronounced righty-biased grind, I’ve been sharpening it at 20 degrees left, 10 degrees right for kicks but it came with a symmetric bevel. Like most damascus, it benefits from a few swipes of fine sandpaper to reduce friction.

The myojin and Birgersson are both smoother/lighter through produce than the Shiro Kamo. The myojin is marginally thicker than the yoshi but feels more solid and polished, a notch higher in fit and finish. If I was spending all day chopping up stuff I’d probably grab the myojin or Birgersson before the Yoshi. But personal preferences differ and I’m not a pro cook.
 
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At least on the topic of wear resistance, SG2 and SKD12 are pretty similar. So which steel has better wear resistance is really up to the hardness of the steel that has better wear resistance. SKD12 has the same wear resistance as SG2 if it is 1 HRC harder which is a pretty small difference.
CORRECTION. I mixed up SKD and SLD. SG2 has much better wear resistance and similar toughness to SKD.
 
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SKD12 is Japanese version of A2 steel. Even though minor variations might exist they are unlikely to be material. What has always been confusing to me is when steel is reported as SKD because without a number next to it it can be any number of steels that are very different to each other. It is generally accepted that SKD is SKD12/A2 and SLD is SKD11/D2, but I remember seeing at least one knife where SKD moniker turned out to be SKD11/D2.
 
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