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Son's Old "Sabatier" WIP

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tk59

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This is the knife Son sent me a while back. It was clearly a heavy duty 12+" chefs' knife type deal. A chef/slicer hybrid is what I'm shooting for at this point. The heel area is massive and the tip half of the knife is dramatically thin. On one side of the knife the word "FRANCE" is clearly visible. Next to that I see something that looks like "SIMON" in a smaller font. I don't know much about Sabs and I couldn't find anything relevant to the SIMON part of it. Anyway, here are the initial pics.
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tk59

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Here's the knife in it's current state after some reprofiling and some clean-up. One of thes is the spine shot and the other is an edge shot AFTER heavy thinning. Can you tell which is which?
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sachem allison

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A chef/slicer hybrid is called a trenchelard in French knife terminology.
 

tk59

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Haha. I shoulda ground the rust off the spine and reduced the shadow to make it more challenging. :)
 

sachem allison

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Haha. I shoulda ground the rust off the spine and reduced the shadow to make it more challenging. :)
no, I just know that knife intimately. lol with that massive spine and super thin tip, i wouldn't get it wrong. it is unique.
 

Benuser

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Nice pictures! Have you performed all thinning on the right side only?
 

tk59

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Nice pictures! Have you performed all thinning on the right side only?
Yes. Looking along the edge, it is clear that the right side has a lot of thickness. If I were to thin both sides, the edge would not end up straight or I would have to sacrifice a lot of blade due to the thinness of the tip half of the blade.
 

memorael

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OOOOO yeah this is gonna be good. Trenchelard I like the ring to it.
 

Benuser

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Interesting that the right side here is the fat one. Most western knives I've seen had a more or less flat right side, and a slightly convex left one. A strictly symmetric blade would wedge of course, beside the food release issue.
 

K-Fed

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I love this wip. Makes me anxious to see how the sab that I've got out to Dave for a refurb turns out.
 

heirkb

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Wow, that thing gets really thin towards the tip, huh? I'm assuming that you can't do as aggressive of a clean-up job there. Is that right?
 

tk59

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@Benuser: Since the right side is so thick, I'm planning on leaving it with some asymmetry, putting a decent machine finish and cut some things to evaluate. I may just end up with something fairly thin but I am trying to keep the old geometry, if I can.
@K-Fed: I'm sure Dave will come up with something really nice. This one has a lot of corrosion and pitting. It'll be a judgement call on how far to go before calling it good. I'm thinking I won't try to make it look new but just functional.
@heirkb: Yes. It is thinner than most lasers until you get to the very tip. And yes, I don't think I can get all the pitting out unless I want a piece of foil left over to cut with. :)
 

SpikeC

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Those aren't pits, they are Grantons!
 

Eamon Burke

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That is a CRUSTY looking bolster there!

Also looking forward to seeing this.
 

ajhuff

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According to the internet, there is or was a cutlery manufacturer is France named Usines J Simon which I believe translates as J Simon Mill. Little info other than that but could be your point of origin?

-AJ
 

Johnny.B.Good

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This is fun to watch. Thanks for the pictures and description TK.

Looking forward to seeing the end result.
 

tk59

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This is fun to watch. Thanks for the pictures and description TK.

Looking forward to seeing the end result.
It's my pleasure. I can't ever tell what WIP's are going to be shot down, lol.
 

sachem allison

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Hey, Tk

Steeley found a French cleaver with the SI mone mark only it isn't. That mark is actually saying St Honore rue 84. That is the original Paris address of Sabatier before they moved to Thierss France. This may very well be one of the oldest Sabatiers around. The reason it looks like SIMONE is that the word St and Honore are butt up against each other and all the pitting and wear. Hope this helps solve your mystery.
son
 

tk59

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Yup. I just read that! Very cool. Too bad the hand part of the mark isn't visible in the slightest. I spent a lot of time looking for any other markings but 1. the pitting and rusting is pretty bad/deep and 2. This knife was clearly ground and reground several times over its lifetime. I did a little more work on it. I'll post some pics once I polish out the heavier scratches a bit.
 

tk59

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Okay. Here it is in its current state. I've put a rough finish on it for testing. It will go through at least one more workout on the grinder before I declare it finished, in terms of cutting performance. Then, it will be about cosmetics. That's been tough for me to decide on. This is a very roughly forged blade. The thickness is inconsistent, the spine isn't straight (I've already straightened it some.) and the list goes on. Part of me wants to leave vestiges of its original state. The other part wants to make it look as new as possible. I dunno... Then there's the curvature decision. And there's also the pointedness of the tip and tip height...:dontknow:

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Benuser

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I agree the choice between performance and aesthetics might be a hard one. Not in this case though. It has to do with authenticity as well. Previous grinders and users, and perhaps even the maker, did clearly not care about looks. Apart from possible geometry and profile adjustments, I would just polish the first 1/2" from the edge as that is clearly performance enhancing. Whatever you decide: good luck and have fun!
 

tk59

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...It has to do with authenticity as well. Previous grinders and users, and perhaps even the maker, did clearly not care about looks. Apart from possible geometry and profile adjustments, I would just polish the first 1/2" from the edge as that is clearly performance enhancing...
Agreed.

@heirkb: Yes, it is on the high side. I don't have a problem dicing onions but if I wanted to mince garlic or something like that, the tip wouldn't be great.
 
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