Teak cutting board discussion (again)

Discussion in 'The Kitchen Knife' started by bm11, Aug 14, 2019.

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  1. Aug 14, 2019 #1

    bm11

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    Hello all,

    I've read a lot of conflicting threads/articles/etc on the use of teak as a cutting board. There are two schools of thought on this- one is that due to the natural silica content of teak, it shouldn't be used in the construction of a cutting board as it dulls faster than other wood options. The second school of thought is that it is a perfectly acceptable wood with a number of benefits, and the silica content is low enough that in the use of a board it doesn't make any appreciable difference.

    Additional points/evidence to consider are that woodworkers say that teak will dull tools faster than just about anything. The counterpoint to that argument being "there is a big difference between cutting ON and cutting THROUGH."

    The reason for this thread is that I currently own a very nice Proteak 24x18x2.5 inch end grain board that I've had for about three years, bought before I was into jknives. My OCD is at the point where I'm ready to replace it with walnut in the name of edge preservation, and I just wanted to have one final discussion before doing so.

    Any input is much appreciated!

    Thanks,

    Bob
     
  2. Aug 14, 2019 #2

    HRC_64

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    You can also get high quality japanese rubber overmats and protect your edges that way, eg...
    Asahi Soft Cutting Board 6mm/0.25" Thickness
    https://www.mtckitchen.com/asahi-soft-cutting-board-0-25-thick/

    Teak is a great wood for furniture and sailboats, it looks really nice and can be useful to have around the kitchen. If you want to upgrade, its still a great piece of wood...it can be repurposed as a hot-pot trivet, or serving tray, etc...
     
  3. Aug 14, 2019 #3

    bm11

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    Thanks. I have a ton of wood serving trays already though (my wife went through a wood board serving tray kick a bit ago,) and this one is a pig in the weight department.

    A co worker of mine will buy it off me for $100, which gets me about 25% of the way towards an end grain walnut board from the Boardsmith...
     
  4. Aug 15, 2019 #4

    GoodMagic

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    Just use your teak board. Save he money on a new one for knives or stones. Unless your cutting all day you will never appreciate the difference on your edge.
     
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  5. Aug 15, 2019 #5

    parbaked

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    ^ This and work on your technique so that you are not causing any unnecessary wear on the edge...it can make more of a difference than the variance between woods.
     
    Last edited: Aug 15, 2019
  6. Aug 15, 2019 #6

    Caleb Cox

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    I'd say you're using more energy thinking about the silica content of teak than you are in added sharpening time that might be caused because of it. Not to be flippant, but the difference in hardness between your blade edge and any sub-1000 Janka hardness wood makes the comparison between said woods academic at best by comparison.
     
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  7. Aug 16, 2019 #7

    flying hippo

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    Teak is rated 1,155 lbf on the Janka scale. I think you are good because it's end grain however, especially if you have reasonable technique and aren't slamming the blade into the board.

    I'd try using the board with a lesser of one of your Japanese knives for a month or two and see if you notice the blade getting dull unusually fast. Then if you think the board is dulling your knives, and it bothers you, think about changing your board. Still, I doubt a home cook would wear out knives by over resharpening them even if the board was an issue. I'd still be leaning towards keeping the board especially if it's nice like you say. Retouching your knives a bit more often isn't going to wear them out significantly faster and with care they will be around longer than we will.
     
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2019
  8. Aug 16, 2019 #8

    Talim

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    Yeah don't overthink it, just get the boardsmith.
     
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  9. Aug 16, 2019 #9
    Teak is nice, Boardsmith is nicer, if you want your board to be part of a nice looking kitchen - it's good looking furniture with a purpose.

    If you only want edge friendly then look at the rubber or sani-tuff boards. Ugly as sin but good for blades. I have both and keep the sani-tuff out of sight.
     
  10. Aug 16, 2019 #10

    bahamaroot

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    The problem with Teak is not the hardness, it's the silica content. It's a wood that is hard on edged tools so I personally avoid it.

    Satisfy your OCD Bob and sell the Teak and get the BoardSmith. You won't be satisfied until you do, it's already in your head.
     
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  11. Aug 16, 2019 #11

    bm11

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    Thanks everyone. I do have a Hi-Soft also for what it’s worth, and it is every bit as ugly as Dave’s post indicates. Based on weight, the teak doesn’t come out that often.

    The only other strong consideration is that the teak is more hearty than the other materials. You guys are right though, the OCD will probably not be satisfied until I make a move of some sort.
     
  12. Aug 16, 2019 #12

    HRC_64

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    ATK is not recommending you to buy Kato :D
     
  13. Aug 16, 2019 #13

    bm11

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    Ha! No what I mean by "hearty" is that teak is more resistant to water damage/warping.
     
  14. Aug 16, 2019 #14

    bahamaroot

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    For every board warping story you hear there are 1000 stories of boards performing well for years that you don't hear. Yes wood boards can warp or be damaged but they are the exception not the rule. I have an 18" x 24" x 2" maple BoardSmith board that has provide nearly 7 years now of great service with no problems at all.
     
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  15. Aug 16, 2019 #15

    bm11

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    No doubt. More accurately, what I'm still wrestling with is "is there enough of a difference in edge retention to justify spending $400 to upgrade." There is no doubt that the Boardsmith board is awesome. What I have isn't too shabby either, though in looking at the picture I may not have the 18x24 I thought I did..
    CUTTING BOARD.jpg
     
  16. Aug 16, 2019 #16

    McMan

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    Huge difference in edge retention, probably not. Significant difference in build quality, definitely.
    Those are small squares on the teak board--which means more glue joints, and glue joints are not as forgiving as wood, so that'll impact edge life to some degree. Also, the pieces are laid out checkerboard style (i.e. with seams running straight through the entire board. In the long term, this can be a problem in terms of seams opening up. A Boardsmith doesn't have either of these problems: First, it uses large rectangles, with alternating grain direction--i.e. more wood, less glue joints. Second, the seams are staggered (like bricks), which helps with longterm stability.
    The Teak board will probably be fine for many years. Or maybe not if a seam opens up.
    Are you set on Walnut? There's a Boardsmith 12"x18" walnut and cherry "second" on his website for $165. You said you're buddy would buy the Teak for $100? Well, then there's a Boardsmith for 65 bucks :) Otherwise, an 18 x 24 maple is $263.52, which is a good value, and Maple is the standard.
     
  17. Aug 16, 2019 #17

    bm11

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    Two things- first, I don’t think I want a second. I’d rather pay more for a perfect board. Second, I really like Walnut, is there a tangible benefit to maple over walnut?
     
  18. Aug 16, 2019 #18

    McMan

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    The “tangible benefit” to maple over walnut is that its 100 bucks cheaper :)
    Maple is also harder than walnut.
     
  19. Aug 16, 2019 #19

    bm11

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    Ah. I assumed that walnut being a bit softer would be easier on the edge.
     
  20. Aug 17, 2019 #20

    flying hippo

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    I've done some reading and you are right. I stand corrected. Best to avoid woods like teak.
     
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  21. Aug 17, 2019 #21

    bahamaroot

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    This is one of those things I didn't know of course until I had a reason to do some research. I almost bought a Teak board at one point because of price and appearance. I researched it and discovered that it was best to avoid. It hurts at first to pay the big bucks for nice boards like you get from the BoardSmith but after the pain subsides you're glad you did it! When you look at it as a lifetime investment, and compared to what we spend on knives, the cost is really very minimal.
     
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2019
  22. Aug 17, 2019 #22

    bahamaroot

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    Don't know if there is that much of a tangible benefit for one over the other, other than price, but I'm more than happy with my maple board.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    A 240mm Konosuke HD2 on the board.

    [​IMG]
     
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  23. Aug 17, 2019 #23

    flying hippo

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    ^^^ I double checked with the boardsmith site. Is that 24" by 18" by 2"? 26lbs! The knife gives a good perspective on the size. That's a great looking board!
     
  24. Aug 17, 2019 #24
    Nailed my experience. Definitely a situation where you'll forget what you paid for quality but if you comprimise to save a few bucks you'll regret it in the future. Get the board you like, the wood you like, and then wrap a bow on it and give it to Mrs bm.
     
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  25. Aug 17, 2019 #25

    bahamaroot

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    Yes it is. Mine only weighed 23.5 lbs.;) They call this one the Magnum, lots of room to work on this bad boy.
     
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2019
  26. Aug 17, 2019 #26

    Elliot

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    I had a Teak board for awhile. Did feel like it dulled knives faster.

    I just have a big Hasegawa that lives on my kitchen island like a butcher block. Love it.
     
  27. Aug 19, 2019 #27

    bm11

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    Alright, wanted to swing back by for an update- I involved my wife in the discussion as she will be the primary user of this cutting board, and we both agreed that in our nicely remodeled kitchen, a beautiful furniture grade butcher block cutting board would be a nice addition worth the investment. Furthermore, I was mistaken on the size of the Proteak, it is 14x20x2.5, so we actually do have the opportunity to upgrade.

    We have decided definitively to go with a Boardsmith board, we have decided on walnut in an 18x24, and have decided to make it a permanent addition to the prep area on our island (not storing it under the cupboard when not in use like our current boards.)

    So, our final debate comes down to this- do we get a juice groove on one side with no feet installed to be able to use it as a carving station, or do we keep the Proteak board for that purpose? If I went that route I would find a good solution to elevate it off the granite in case of spilled water. Also, if this board is always out and always ready, do I still order a matching Baby Board to use as a sidekick? My wife also wants to monogram it, I’m not as big of a fan because of lost work space and additional cleaning requirements, but I guess it’ll be a big enough board that if it were put in the corner it wouldn’t really make a difference.
     
  28. Aug 19, 2019 #28

    Stonetherapy

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    Would a monogram on the side do the job? Takes it off the cutting surface.
     
  29. Aug 19, 2019 #29

    bm11

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    99% sure you can’t monogram the side.

    I just ordered, but changes could be made still. I ordered an 18x24 walnut, monogrammed in the top right corner, with a walnut baby board. I don’t really go for the monogramming but my wife really wanted it and at the end of the day it is really for her.
     
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  30. Aug 19, 2019 #30

    Stonetherapy

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    The corner is out of the way, can't see it being a big drama as I have a smallish board with one in the corner and hardly notice it. And if it makes her happy...
     

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