the Sabatier appreciation thread

Kitchen Knife Forums

Help Support Kitchen Knife Forums:

McMan

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 15, 2018
Messages
2,214
Reaction score
2,233
Owning a good old Sabatier should be mandatory. I figured it’d be worth starting a thread to see what else is out there…

Fun to use, easy to sharpen and easier to bring back with a honing steel, a blast to restore…

Here are some I’ve tuned up/restored and kept.

(1, top) 4-star elephant (plastic handle). Originally, this one had a SS# engraved in the blade and grinder wheel trails. I refinished the handle but sent out to have the surface refinished. 1960-70s.
(2) Old “Centaur”. Thinnest nogent handle I’ve seen, and has a slightly different shape--no bird's beak--from the standard nogent handle. Hallmarked “Sperry and Alexander” on the other side (*Sperry and Alexander operated from1893-1927). Likely pre-WWI.
(3) Marks long since worn off. Possibly “Jeune”. 1960s.
(4) Unknown. Stainless. Branded for LL Bean. 1970s-80s.
(5) Unknown w/ hard rubber handle. eBay find that was much longer originally but had an inch or two broken off and a big recurve from over-honing. This is what’s left after I completely re-profiled. Repaired/refinished the handle too. 1960s.
(6) NOS “K” (dyed Beech not ebony handle) paring

1626513213196.png
 

Carl Kotte

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 5, 2019
Messages
3,290
Reaction score
5,961
Location
Stockholm, Sweden
Oooooooh, beautiful!!!

I haven’t kept as many as I would have liked. But I still have the epic Dalman-modded Sabatier that I love. Pics to come!

Also, my mother has kept her Sabatiers from the late 70s. I use them everytime I visit my parents in the countryside. Those sabs are lovely.
 

McMan

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 15, 2018
Messages
2,214
Reaction score
2,233
Wow--Nice spread! Very cool to see the re-handles!
Cool, too, to see so many "Canadians" in one place (the bolster without ferrule was marketed/exported mostly to Canada--or so the story goes).
 
Last edited:

spaceconvoy

Senior Member
Joined
Mar 8, 2011
Messages
1,072
Reaction score
1,920
Location
Florida
omg that Centaur 😍 looks like it's got a nice heel height too, for a sab... is that massive pitting in the middle of the blade, or does it have an actual engraved centaur?
 

McMan

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 15, 2018
Messages
2,214
Reaction score
2,233
omg that Centaur 😍 looks like it's got a nice heel height too, for a sab... is that massive pitting in the middle of the blade, or does it have an actual engraved centaur?
sab centaur.jpg
sab mark.jpg

The "France" as opposed to "Made in France" puts this at somewhere in the 1891-1914 window. The "Made in [country of origin]" formulation began in 1914. Before that, starting officially in 1891, only the country of origin had to be listed.
 
Last edited:

TSF415

Supporting Member
Joined
Sep 4, 2019
Messages
1,053
Reaction score
1,598
Location
San Francisco, CA
Just great, now I feel like I need a sab!

Any recommendations? What to look for? Where to buy? What to avoid?
 

Aidan

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 12, 2020
Messages
60
Reaction score
29
Location
UK
I picked this up from a bed and breakfast I was staying in Previously there was a very faded elephant stamped on the blade along with ‘Thiers’ but gone now. I’m pretty sure this is the elephant 4 star but I note it doesn’t have that on the handle as yours has.
 

Attachments

McMan

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 15, 2018
Messages
2,214
Reaction score
2,233
Just great, now I feel like I need a sab!

Any recommendations? What to look for? Where to buy? What to avoid?
eBay + patience + creativity with the search terms. I bought one that was just listed as "Chef Knife".
I'd suggest getting a 50s-60s riveted handle (~$50-75) and an older nogent handle (older the better, figure ~$75-100).
One thing to avoid is ones with a big frown (recurve) from years of improper honing steel use. To get the profile back to serviceable can be a PITA and sometimes means knocking off a good bit of bolster. But these also sell cheap, especially the nogents, so could be fun if you wanted a project.
Also, avoid the "Two lions"--these were cheapies, with pinned on bolster made of a different metal than the blade.
1626575628707.png
 

TSF415

Supporting Member
Joined
Sep 4, 2019
Messages
1,053
Reaction score
1,598
Location
San Francisco, CA
eBay + patience + creativity with the search terms. I bought one that was just listed as "Chef Knife".
I'd suggest getting a 50s-60s riveted handle (~$50-75) and an older nogent handle (older the better, figure ~$75-100).
One thing to avoid is ones with a big frown (recurve) from years of improper honing steel use. To get the profile back to serviceable can be a PITA and sometimes means knocking off a good bit of bolster. But these also sell cheap, especially the nogents, so could be fun if you wanted a project.
Also, avoid the "Two lions"--these were cheapies, with pinned on bolster made of a different metal than the blade.
View attachment 134681
Awesome! Thank you……. And down the sab hole I go
 

cotedupy

Supporting Member
Joined
Apr 27, 2020
Messages
1,535
Reaction score
2,497
Location
South Australia
Some lovely collections! Will snap some pics of mine later, just three I'm afraid though.

Two are interesting in that they were bought together; I believe in Paris, I believe in the 50s, and the slicer is 'Canadian' handled, the Chef's isn't.
 

Logan09

Member
Joined
Dec 16, 2020
Messages
22
Reaction score
29
Location
US
Wow--Nice spread! Very cool to see the re-handles!
Cool, too, to see so many "Canadians" in one place (the bolster without ferrule was marketed/exported mostly to Canada--or so the story goes).
If this is a comment to me, thanks! Also, most of the "canadians" you speak of are American made. LF&C, Dexter and Utica
 

Benuser

from The Netherlands, EU.
Supporting Member
Joined
May 3, 2011
Messages
7,405
Reaction score
1,949
Wow--Nice spread! Very cool to see the re-handles!
Cool, too, to see so many "Canadians" in one place (the bolster without ferrule was marketed/exported mostly to Canada--or so the story goes).
To North-America. French public expect a ferrule, in nickel silver.
 

Jeff

Active Member
Joined
Jan 30, 2018
Messages
25
Reaction score
17
Owning a good old Sabatier should be mandatory. I figured it’d be worth starting a thread to see what else is out there…

Fun to use, easy to sharpen and easier to bring back with a honing steel, a blast to restore…

Here are some I’ve tuned up/restored and kept.

(1, top) 4-star elephant (plastic handle). Originally, this one had a SS# engraved in the blade and grinder wheel trails. I refinished the handle but sent out to have the surface refinished. 1960-70s.
(2) Old “Centaur”. Thinnest nogent handle I’ve seen, and has a slightly different shape--no bird's beak--from the standard nogent handle. Hallmarked “Sperry and Alexander” on the other side (*Sperry and Alexander operated from1893-1927). Likely pre-WWI.
(3) Marks long since worn off. Possibly “Jeune”. 1960s.
(4) Unknown. Stainless. Branded for LL Bean. 1970s-80s.
(5) Unknown w/ hard rubber handle. eBay find that was much longer originally but had an inch or two broken off and a big recurve from over-honing. This is what’s left after I completely re-profiled. Repaired/refinished the handle too. 1960s.
(6) NOS “K” (dyed Beech not ebony handle) paring

View attachment 134616
I love my array of vintage Sabatiers!

To anyone who cant get a great vintage Sabatier I suggest a good vintage CS Dexter chefs knife. They are neither light nor nimble. They are massively sturdy cow killers!

Great for heavy tasks.
 

cotedupy

Supporting Member
Joined
Apr 27, 2020
Messages
1,535
Reaction score
2,497
Location
South Australia
I said I was going to post pictures of mine and then never did... so here we are:

IMG-2601.jpg


The slicer and Chef's are actually what led me to KKF in the first place. My wife and was cleaning out some old stuff from her grandmother's house, and asked if I wanted to do anything with them, or should she put in the charity box. And googling about knife restoration led me here (they were very rusted and beaten up before). These were bought I believe in Paris in the mid 50s when she was studying at Le Cordon Bleu. The little 5" petty is a NOS K Sabatier.

The Chef's knife I've re-handled with some stabilized ebony, and smaller brass pins, and it really is rather pretty now! Not quite as shiny as these pics make out, as I had just put a bit of oil on.

IMG-2602.jpg
 

Benuser

from The Netherlands, EU.
Supporting Member
Joined
May 3, 2011
Messages
7,405
Reaction score
1,949
@cotedupy, what was the original handle of the Chef's made of?
 

cotedupy

Supporting Member
Joined
Apr 27, 2020
Messages
1,535
Reaction score
2,497
Location
South Australia
@cotedupy, what was the original handle of the Chef's made of?
Umm... it was the same as the slicer. So I assume either Ebony / African Blackwood / Rosewood, does that sound about right? I'm not quite enough of an expert on old Sabs to know what kind of woods they might have been using. Possibly @McMan could help...

Some before pics here, from my very first KKF post apparently... A couple of old Sabatiers I found
 

Benuser

from The Netherlands, EU.
Supporting Member
Joined
May 3, 2011
Messages
7,405
Reaction score
1,949
Thanks! Haven't seen French full tang and full bolster with a wooden handle, so can't tell. The ones I know have some synthetic handle, and the bolsterless ones a handle in bubinga wood, which is very resistant.
 
Last edited:

McMan

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 15, 2018
Messages
2,214
Reaction score
2,233
Umm... it was the same as the slicer. So I assume either Ebony / African Blackwood / Rosewood, does that sound about right? I'm not quite enough of an expert on old Sabs to know what kind of woods they might have been using. Possibly @McMan could help...

Some before pics here, from my very first KKF post apparently... A couple of old Sabatiers I found
AFAIK ebony. There was also a slightly lighter brown wood that was used (~1960s), which I'm not sure of and would like to learn what it was.
 
Last edited:

cotedupy

Supporting Member
Joined
Apr 27, 2020
Messages
1,535
Reaction score
2,497
Location
South Australia
AFAIK ebony. There was also a slightly lighter brown wood that was used (~1960s), which I'm not sure of and would I'd like to learn what it was.
Ta. That's what I had in my mind (why I went for ebony for the new handle). The the new one is very dark, with the grain only just visible, I imagine the stabilization was probably dyed.
 
Top