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Old 08-06-2009, 07:42 PM   #1
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Buying first Japanese knife?

So I've decided to finally make the jump to japanese knives, and i'm already lost. I'm looking to spend no more than $400...just curious to some of the better knives out there?

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Old 08-06-2009, 07:51 PM   #2
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Check these sites:

Products Japanese Knife,Japanese Kitchen Knife,Japanese Chef's Knives.Com

Korin - Fine Japanese Tableware and Chef Knives

Global Knives,Wusthof Knives,Henckels Knives,Ceramic Knives,Kitchen Knives,Shun Knives,Steak Knives

Also, what shapes and sizes are you interested in? How many knives do you want to buy for your $400?
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Old 08-06-2009, 08:20 PM   #3
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Check these sites:

Also, what shapes and sizes are you interested in? How many knives do you want to buy for your $400?
It'll be 1, maybe 2 knives.


If I had to choose a shape/size this is pretty much what i'd be going for:
http://www.japanesechefsknife.com/images/Img883.jpg

Gyuto 170mm
Total Length:285mm Blade Thickness:2mm
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Old 08-06-2009, 08:30 PM   #4
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I'd suggest a 240mm Gyuto (similar to French Chef's knife) and a 135mm or 150mm Petty (like a large paring knife) to start. I'm partial to the Hattori HD series. That would be a bit under $400 delivered. You might also like a Nakiri if you do a lot of veggies.
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Old 08-06-2009, 08:33 PM   #5
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This topic has been discussed at length in the knife forum. Check it out.
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Old 08-06-2009, 09:56 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fire34fighter View Post
It'll be 1, maybe 2 knives.


If I had to choose a shape/size this is pretty much what i'd be going for:
http://www.japanesechefsknife.com/images/Img883.jpg

Gyuto 170mm
Total Length:285mm Blade Thickness:2mm
Those Mr. Itou customs are beautiful! Should be great cutters, too- R2 blades IIRC. The few people I've corresponded with that own them say they're very impressive. That's a pretty steep & unforgiving way to enter the world of J-knives but there's something to be said for skipping the training wheels and starting with the good stuff.

If you're talking $400 for one or two knives I suggest you look into the Hattori KF (or FH depending on where they're listed). These are semi-custom knives Hattori designed in conjunction with members of KnifeForums. I like a bit more substantial knife- 240mm is my preferred size for a gyuto. I really wouldn't go smaller than 210mm if you're only getting one. For the money the Hattori HD line is very nice, too.

FWIW I think my next purchase will be an Akifusa from EE.
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Old 08-06-2009, 11:49 PM   #7
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The best non-ceramic blade I've ever used has been the Kasumi Titanium line. And the blue color is pretty sweet looking, as well.

Runner-up would be either MAC or Shun.
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Old 08-07-2009, 12:18 AM   #8
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The best non-ceramic blade I've ever used has been the Kasumi Titanium line. And the blue color is pretty sweet looking, as well.

Runner-up would be either MAC or Shun.
You specifically state "non-ceramic" - do you have a preference for ceramic blades? I'm curious, as I've never tried one.
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Old 08-07-2009, 10:00 AM   #9
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You specifically state "non-ceramic" - do you have a preference for ceramic blades? I'm curious, as I've never tried one.
I do, but I would be in the minority here simply because I buy higher grade. A lot of people here (and you can find it in a multitude of threads) go out and buy a cheap entry level blade, use it, and then proclaim the entire material inferior, which I don't get. That'd be like me going out and grabbing a cheap "Chef Tony Special" at the local grocery store and proclaiming steel worthless as a result. It's apples and jet skis.

Yeah, if you go out and spend 40 dollars on the cheapest knife Kyocera makes, or spend 10 dollars on a ceramic pare knife from BB&B....odds are pretty good it's not going to perform as well as your $140 Shun. People expecting miracles or something, I guess.
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Old 08-07-2009, 10:04 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by Poppinfresh View Post
I do, but I would be in the minority here simply because I buy higher grade. A lot of people here (and you can find it in a multitude of threads) go out and buy a cheap entry level blade, use it, and then proclaim the entire material inferior, which I don't get. That'd be like me going out and grabbing a cheap "Chef Tony Special" at the local grocery store and proclaiming steel worthless as a result. It's apples and jet skis.

Yeah, if you go out and spend 40 dollars on the cheapest knife Kyocera makes, or spend 10 dollars on a ceramic pare knife from BB&B....odds are pretty good it's not going to perform as well as your $140 Shun. People expecting miracles or something, I guess.
There are plenty of people here who have also bought quality ceramic knives and did not like them either.

Like anything, they have their positives and their negatives and one persons experience will not necessarily equal another persons experience. I know of people who have used a good quality ceramic knife that chipped cutting soft food (just hit the board the wrong way) and others who have had the same exact knife and have dropped it on hard floors multiple times and cut through hard foods without a single problem. Just because your experience say one thing that does not negate other peoples experience.
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