Takeda ....What to look for (now) to keep from getting screwed

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Dave Martell

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Takeda used to make really thin knives that cut great. Now they're leaving the area above the edge really extra thick making for wedgie-monsters. They need to go back to grinding them as they used to but in the meantime new buyers are coming along and getting screwed by these new bad grinds.

Below shows a brand new never used or sharpened 240mm Takeda gyuto.

You can see where Takeda removed steel and I marked in where they need to grind up to, where they used to grind up to, you can see the difference.

I tried to get a choil shot but had no luck in clarity. :(

I screwed up and forgot to measure the thickness but my guess is that the area above the cutting edge is nearly as thick as (or maybe even thicker than) the spine.

Anyway, should you be thinking about buying a Takeda I would advise that you request of the retailer to take a picture of the actual knife you're considering buying (not a stock photo) and verify which grind it has before you get stuck with a lemon.

Thick_Fat_Takeda_Bad5.JPG
 

panda

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In other words dont buy one if you are not proficient in reshaping knives..
 

XooMG

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I wonder if anyone's got a pic of an older grind nakiri that I can compare to. Every pic I've seen has been similar to mine, though some are much thicker and my knife is very thin. I just cut up an ogre carrot, maybe 5-6cm thick, and while mine wedged a bit when making thick cuts (My Itinomon gyuto and Harner petty did noticeably better), the Takeda was magical at the thinner slices (<1mm to 3mm) with no sticking.

I'm a little conflicted about it, but it seems almost like a double-ground ultralight usuba.
 

Lefty

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If you're cutting only items less than a centimeter tall, the new grind should suffice....
 

JBroida

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ironically, i just ended up having to fix one of these today... it was a new stainless clad one.
 

Eric

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Dave: when you refer to the "old grind" how long ago are you referring to? I have an unused 240 purchased in 2011, and out of curiousity just looked at it. The grind is slightly higher than the one in your photo, but nowhere near as high as your line?
 

Dave Martell

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Dave: when you refer to the "old grind" how long ago are you referring to? I have an unused 240 purchased in 2011, and out of curiousity just looked at it. The grind is slightly higher than the one in your photo, but nowhere near as high as your line?

I'd guess that I started noticing this problem in 2012 but again that's just a guess.
 

Dave Martell

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Here's a couple of old school Takedas...notice how tall the bevels are cut on these knives.

P1010006.JPG
 

Dave Martell

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One of the first, maybe even THE first Takeda gyutos seen in the USA....Louisinacook Lee's 240mm gyuto...

P1010049.JPG
 

JHunter

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Do you think he's pushed it down for the aesthetics more Ku finish on the blade?
 

Don Nguyen

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I tried the one in the passaround a few months ago. It had a short grind line, but it was forged really thin with a slight hollow above the grind. Just a bit of thinning and it would be one hellofaknife I think.
 

Dave Martell

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Do you think he's pushed it down for the aesthetics more Ku finish on the blade?
I couldn't say.

The issue here, however, is not that of the height of the bevel being incorrect - this is just a symptom - the issue is that the knife is too thick above the bevel which requires more steel to be removed to correct. If the knife was hammered thinner to begin with then the tall bevel grind wouldn't be necessary.

So if he wants a small looking bevel he would need to make a thin knife.
 

JHunter

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So cost and time savings to keep up with increased demand?
 

Dave Martell

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My guess is that the guy forging isn't pushing himself the way Shosui does when he forges. The knives are well forged but 1/2"-1" above the edge remains VERY thick which tells me that someone doesn't want to take chances. Then again, maybe the guy grinding in the bevel is holding back on really laying the knife down on the wheel, doesn't want to mess up the pretty KU finish or blow the edge out.
 

Dave Martell

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Oh wait.....this explains it...they got a new guy on the hammer.....looks like he got his hair singed off in the forge...well except for that little horned tuft up on top. :D

[video=youtube;UMnepgKmQNM]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UMnepgKmQNM[/video]


PS - sorry for the detraction, I found this when searching for Takeda pics and just couldn't help myself.
 

labor of love

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i imagine a huge secondary market is about to be created on BST, takedas forged and ground prior to 2011 could become a hot commodity.
 

ecchef

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You're evil, Dave. :spitcoffee:
 

TheDispossessed

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i bet it's just that takeda-san used to oversee much more of the process and due to demand is now delegating a lot of responsibility to young trainees and not following up properly with some good old QC.
 

erikz

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I have a Nakiri custom made from Shosui witch he has forged himself. Its really thin and I havent had any wedging problems when using it, it has the low grind.

Standard knives will probably not be forged by Shosui as he is on the road about 50% of the time visiting shows both domestic and international.
 

bkultra

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I tried the one in the passaround a few months ago. It had a short grind line, but it was forged really thin with a slight hollow above the grind. Just a bit of thinning and it would be one hellofaknife I think.
I too partook in this passaround and agree with your observation.
 

WillC

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Such a shame, the one I borrowed belonging to T.B. London was forged very thin towards the edge and the hollow forging was very pronounced , made for a fine cutter, the bevels on T.B.s did not come up as far as you indicate though, I would say 10-12mm? And were close to flat, at a very shallow angle, probably around 7 degrees per side. The edge held up nicely with a little micro bevel. Was in no way a wedge monster. It really fell through stuff i a way that some might want for a bit more feedback and resistance on some tasks even....Has anyone spoken directly to Mr Takeda about this issue?
 

Timthebeaver

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Such a shame, the one I borrowed belonging to T.B. London was forged very thin towards the edge and the hollow forging was very pronounced , made for a fine cutter, the bevels on T.B.s did not come up as far as you indicate though, I would say 10-12mm? And were close to flat, at a very shallow angle, probably around 7 degrees per side. The edge held up nicely with a little micro bevel. Was in no way a wedge monster. It really fell through stuff i a way that some might want for a bit more feedback and resistance on some tasks even....Has anyone spoken directly to Mr Takeda about this issue?
I purchased that Takeda in 2009. I agree totally, as a further point, this knife didn't have the thick "shoulders" above the bevel which seems to be the problem now.
 

XooMG

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Posting my choil shot for reference...not a gyuto, but a nakiri.


Here it is next to my Asai, which is much thicker at the spine, a bit thinner at the edge, and has just as many wedging problems as the Takeda, and much worse sticking:
 
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