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Old 05-01-2012, 01:26 PM   #1
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ISO Help With Knives and Sharpeners

So been lurking this site for quite a while, particularly the knives section and wanted to send out a big thanks to all the posters here (particularly Rob Babcock) for all the great info. Really helped narrow down my choices.

Looking at picking up some Tojiro DP (either the 2 or 3 piece from CKtG):

Tojiro Knives 2 Pc Set
Tojiro 3pc Set

They seem like a great deal for the money and based off what I've read here I will likely be going with them. I'm also still somewhat considering Hattori HD, Global, Messermeister and Wusthof but all are more expensive and from what I've read here the only one that seems significantly better is the Hattori?

I'm not sure whether to get 8 or 10 inch (I've read several threads on that here) so I'm going to try to get a feel for the difference at a local store, but the knife stores around here are pretty abysmal.

I guess my biggest question is what to buy for sharpening. I have no experience so obviously will take time to learn how to do it properly. I see the Apex Edge Pro recommended a lot but the cheapest setup ($160) is more than I'll be paying for the Knives themselves (unless I end up going with Hattori/Global/Wusthof). Any more affordable options out there? I'm not against spending up to $250 for a total setup (including sharpener) but seems wrong to spend more on sharpening tools than the knives themselves.

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Old 05-01-2012, 01:50 PM   #2
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Forgot to add MAC, Fujiwara and Masamoto to my list of considerations.
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Old 05-01-2012, 02:09 PM   #3
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You don't have to spend a lot on a sharpening/honing tool. It's far more important to have read the instructions than to have spent a lot of money. Many simply don't read them.

I keep one of these out all the time.
Amazon.com: Chef's Choice 440 2-Stage Manual Sharpener: Kitchen & Dining



I touch up any knife I pick up that was used for any significant work previously. Twenty passes through the left side sharpening slot and twenty passes through the right side honing slot is enough under normal conditions. More work on the sharpening side is called for with a knife that's been abused or hasn't been sharpened after a lot of use or after being used on an accursed glass cutting board. It will also do serrated blades.

With $100 knives, why would you ever let them get badly out of shape, and if they did get into bad shape, an amateurish job of redoing the blade angle is a bad deal and should be farmed out to someone. If you want the experience of freehand honing, fine. But I want to grab the tool and have a sharp knife in a few seconds.
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Old 05-03-2012, 05:35 AM   #4
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That EP Apex is more important than the knives, truth be told. The initial investment may seem high but you'll be experience a lifetime of better-than-new sharpness with every knife you own.

I'll elaborate a bit more after work.

BTW, welcome to DC! I'm pleased that my input was useful to you.
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Old 05-03-2012, 10:45 AM   #5
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Thanks, appreciate it.

I'm not professional chef or anything, so it seems crazy to spend that kind of money on a sharpener, I just want to keep the thing in good shape.

But you guys are far more knowledgeable than me, so recommend away!
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Old 05-03-2012, 01:15 PM   #6
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What about some cheaper sharpeners? Ie: I've heard good things about Lansky, AccuSharp, Chef's Choice and just using whetstones (though obviously would need to learn how to use properly)
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Old 05-03-2012, 01:52 PM   #7
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Sometimes you can overthink something. Chef's Choice or the one GLC showed you will do the job nicely.

If you were a trained Chef from CIA or other school, I could understand your NEED to have the best. A whet stone for the average cook is a waste of money and time. Do you really want to stand there for twenty minutes sharpening just one knife while your meat is sitting there waiting to be cut? For some cuts of meat you will need to use more than one knife. That is more than a half hour sharpening them. What time did you plan on getting your meal on the table? Go with the KISS theory. It makes life so much easier.
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Old 05-03-2012, 01:56 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Addie View Post
...Do you really want to stand there for twenty minutes sharpening just one knife while your meat is sitting there waiting to be cut?...
I suppose you could sharpen your knives some other time so they'd be ready for meal preparation...
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Old 05-03-2012, 02:07 PM   #9
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Thanks for the advice... I don't think I can justify buying an Edgepro on my budget.

Looking at either the Spyderco Sharpmarker or the Chef's Choice Model 463. Any opinions/recommendations?
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Old 05-03-2012, 02:14 PM   #10
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I suppose you could sharpen your knives some other time so they'd be ready for meal preparation...
You have great faith in human kind. It will all be a new toy. And you know how it is when you get a new toy.
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Old 05-03-2012, 02:18 PM   #11
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You have great faith in human kind. It will all be a new toy. And you know how it is when you get a new toy.
Yes, I do. As soon as I open the package, I want to use it. I suppose that could happen at the exact moment I should be starting to prepare a meal...
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Old 05-03-2012, 02:19 PM   #12
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I have Tojiro DP and Masahiro gyotus, both very hard steel, the Tojiro clad in a layer of slightly softer stainless steel to protect the forged Swedish tool steel under it. Helps prevent chipping. These knives come sharp...very sharp, and can either be sharpened with a water stone (get a 3000 grit), or, just dress occasionally with a ceramic stick sharpener. For softer steel, that meaning most German or American knives, I use a ceramic stick and follow with a steel. Please do not use a steel on a Japanese knife. They form a slight wire like softer steel, but they do not get wavy from use. Just finish with a gentle few strokes from the ceramic. A steel may chip the harder steel. BTW, I really like both Tojiro and Masahiro, and recommend both very highly. The Tojiro DP is a clad blade and less likely to be damaged accidentally than the Masahiro, but the Masahiro will be lighter and more agile in your hand. Has a more comfy grip, too.
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Old 05-03-2012, 02:36 PM   #13
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I have Tojiro DP and Masahiro gyotus, both very hard steel, the Tojiro clad in a layer of slightly softer stainless steel to protect the forged Swedish tool steel under it. Helps prevent chipping. These knives come sharp...very sharp, and can either be sharpened with a water stone (get a 3000 grit), or, just dress occasionally with a ceramic stick sharpener. For softer steel, that meaning most German or American knives, I use a ceramic stick and follow with a steel. Please do not use a steel on a Japanese knife. They form a slight wire like softer steel, but they do not get wavy from use. Just finish with a gentle few strokes from the ceramic. A steel may chip the harder steel. BTW, I really like both Tojiro and Masahiro, and recommend both very highly. The Tojiro DP is a clad blade and less likely to be damaged accidentally than the Masahiro, but the Masahiro will be lighter and more agile in your hand. Has a more comfy grip, too.
I've decided on the Tojiro DP 2 or 3 piece set, the quality for the money is too good to pass up.

So I don't need to steel the Tojiros? Just sharpen occasionally?

Anything you'd recommend beside the water stone? I was thinking a manual sharpener like the Chef's Choice 463 or Spyder Sharpmaker.
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Old 05-03-2012, 05:02 PM   #14
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I use a ceramic rod. It looks almost like a steel...wooden handle with a ceramic rod instead of a piece of steel sticking out. Occasionally scrub the rod with a Scotchbrite pad and some cleanser to remove the metal from the surface. You don't need anything fancy or expensive, and using the ceramic stick will help you learn about blade angles gently, as it only removes a small amount of metal, and slowly. Your new Tojiro's shouldn't require frequent sharpening. Please don't use like a cleaver against bone.
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Old 05-03-2012, 05:15 PM   #15
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I'll be ordering one of the two piece (F-800 and F-808), two piece professional (F-800 and F-809), or three piece (F-800, F-802, F-808) tonight in addition to probably a Forschner bread knife. Anyone know how much shipping to Canada is from CKtG?

Just need to figure out what to buy for sharpener.
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Old 05-03-2012, 07:21 PM   #16
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I've bought many sharpeners over the years, both electric and manual. I've settled on The Edgemaker system, it's the one that works best for me when I do the paper cut test. It's also relatively cheap to buy.
The Edgemaker sharpens serrated knives too. I own the red one, the blue one and the yellow one.

EDGEMAKER - Knife Sharpeners
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Old 05-03-2012, 09:53 PM   #17
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Went to order my Tojiro's and shipping was near $40 :( E-mailed a Canadian company to see if they would price match or at least be somewhat more competitive but not expecting much.
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Old 05-03-2012, 10:34 PM   #18
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Try searching Tojiro DP on ebay. The knives are there, priced competitively, and I think the shipping cost may be a pleasant surprise.
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Old 05-03-2012, 11:30 PM   #19
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Try searching Tojiro DP on ebay. The knives are there, priced competitively, and I think the shipping cost may be a pleasant surprise.
That's a good idea - I found bluewayjapan who seems to be a good seller. Does this look legit?

Japanese TOJIRO DP Cobalt Gyuto Chef Knife 210mm | eBay

Same price for the Gyuto as CKtG but doesn't offer the 2-piece or 3-piece set, nor do they have paring knives, only the gyuto, nakiri, and petty for the most part. However, at $4 shipping it's definitely something I'm considering. I could purchase that and then buy some Forschners local (bread knife, utility, paring).

Guess it depends though - by ordering the two or three piece set I save about $20-50 from buying individual which covers part if not all of shipping. But then I have to worry about customs and stuff too.

Decisions!
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Old 05-04-2012, 10:11 AM   #20
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Yes, that seller looks legitimate.
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