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Old 11-26-2007, 11:19 PM   #21
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Ah, but hollow ground blades have an inherent weakness. If you look closely at the geometry, they get thicker as they move vrom the belly to the spine at an exponential rate, meaning that as more metal is taken away do to sharpening, it become progressively more difficult to sharpen the thicker blade. Now granted, with proper honing technique, and sharpening carefully, a high quality hollow ground blade should last a life-time. But the softer, lower quality hollow ground blades are pure junk.

The other problem with a hollow ground blade is that it wedges foods apart, which is fine for soft meats, most breads, and many veggies. But when you are tring to slice through a large watermellon, or a winter squash, such as a large butternut for instance, or a rutabegga, that hollow gring becomes a royal pain. A high quality knife with a straight grind from the spine to the belly, slices cleanly, and goes through much more easily.

Just thought I'd share.

Seeeeeeya; Goodweed of the North

And grantons are not only used on santokus. They can be found on high-end carving knives, on bread knives, and often on knives designed to slice cheese.
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Old 11-26-2007, 11:39 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by Goodweed of the North View Post
Ah, but hollow ground blades have an inherent weakness. If you look closely at the geometry, they get thicker as they move vrom the belly to the spine at an exponential rate, meaning that as more metal is taken away do to sharpening, it become progressively more difficult to sharpen the thicker blade. Now granted, with proper honing technique, and sharpening carefully, a high quality hollow ground blade should last a life-time. But the softer, lower quality hollow ground blades are pure junk.

The other problem with a hollow ground blade is that it wedges foods apart, which is fine for soft meats, most breads, and many veggies. But when you are tring to slice through a large watermellon, or a winter squash, such as a large butternut for instance, or a rutabegga, that hollow gring becomes a royal pain. A high quality knife with a straight grind from the spine to the belly, slices cleanly, and goes through much more easily.

Just thought I'd share.

Seeeeeeya; Goodweed of the North

And grantons are not only used on santokus. They can be found on high-end carving knives, on bread knives, and often on knives designed to slice cheese.
Goodweed, I disagree (why else would I be responding?)....

Your point - progressively more difficult to sharpen etc - tell me, how many decades does it take to get to that point, and then, why not re-hollowgrind?

Did I say anything about soft "low quality" blades? Nope.

And finally, your comment that hollow ground blades "wedge" food apart. Jeeze man. Think about it. The hollow ground area of the blade never touches the medium, but your straight angled blades contact the medium the entire width of the blade, thus creating more friction and therefore, relatively inferior cutting ability.

Buzz
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Old 11-28-2007, 08:08 PM   #23
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God, so much in this thread. Will answer what I can remember seeing as how I'm probably the board's biggest ceramic nut.

1: It's not zirconium oxide, it's zirconium dioxide--also known as cubic zirconia (those faux-diamonds you see on QVC)
2: Zirconium carbide is most often used in cutting tools.

I don't like the carbides because they react with acids and water. One of the better selling points about ceramic knives is that they are supposed to be non-reactive.

You aren't really dealing with one of them being "harder" than the other, per se--ceramic is the 2nd hardest substance on the planet behind diamonds. The carbides are a bit more durable, but I've never found this to be an issue. Harder actually equates to brittleness in this aspect.

Kyocera (my preferred brand, by far) uses additional firings when making the blades to make them tougher ala the carbide blades without making them more prone to chipping or breaking. These are their Damascus blades--easiest way to identify them is that they're black.

The frailty of ceramic blades is greatly overstated. I've dropped a few of my knives over the years, and I've never had one break on me. The only time I've ever chipped one is when I accidentally cut into some bone. Even in this instance, it was an easy process to have it sent in for repairs.

As for Uri....personally I would never own one. I've heard some negative things about the quality of the knives themselves as well as a friend who sent in her blade for resharpening and it came back messed up. The only brands I'd trust in my kitchen are Kyocera and Shenzhen Hetiansheng.

Oh, and by the way, you can use magnetic strips to hold these knives. The makers put metal inside the knives so that they can be detected by airport metal detectors. They won't hang as well as your carbon steel or stainless blades, but they will hold.

Pricewise, if you're looking for an inexpensive way to try some out, Ebay is your friend. You can find a baseline Kyocera 7" santoku there for about 40 bucks. I've got more than a couple baselines in my kitchen. The more expensive lines are for once you decide to become a knife snob :).

And on the issue of the 300 dollar Kyocera...I've got news for you, that's far from there most expensive blade :P.
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Old 11-28-2007, 08:21 PM   #24
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I saw some Kyocera ceramic knives at TJMaxx the other day but I didn't know anything about ceramic knives. I think I'll get on to try it after reading all these posts.
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Old 11-28-2007, 09:20 PM   #25
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I saw some Kyocera ceramic knives at TJMaxx the other day but I didn't know anything about ceramic knives. I think I'll get on to try it after reading all these posts.
Oh my gosh! My MIL lives in San Antonio! What TJMaxx? I'm sending here there tomorrow! OH wait, that is what I got her for Christmas - if she goes to buy one for me she will get one for herself. Darn it! I will have to check my TJMaxx.

If I were you I would hightail it to TJMaxx tomorrow and purchase one - it will be love at first cut!
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Old 11-28-2007, 09:21 PM   #26
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Poppinfresh, I was wondering when you were going to pop in. You were the one who inspired me to try the ceramics - and I will always be thankful for that!
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Old 11-29-2007, 12:05 AM   #27
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Michelemarie,
Try Home Goods instead of TJMaxx, they belong to the same chain as Marshalls.
They have some high end stuff at good prices (for ex. Le Creuset Dutch oven, 7 Qrts round for $150, or even Mauviel pans), I saw some of those ceramic knives there but I am not sure about the brandname.
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Old 11-29-2007, 12:46 AM   #28
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Hey wysiwyg, I'd never heard of Home Goods but I followed your link and surprise, there is one here in San Antonio! We have Marshall's and TJMaxx but I didn't know about this. Thanks so much! I guess I know what I'll be doing tomorrow.
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Old 11-29-2007, 01:42 AM   #29
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Fisher's Mom,
If you are patient, they get great gear from time to time. Right now, they probably have a lot due to X-mas.
I got there a Kitchen Aid food processor (12-cup model) for $110 that cost me $100 with a rebate a while ago. Since then, I stop by once in a while with the list of things I need.
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Old 11-29-2007, 01:51 AM   #30
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Poppinfresh, I was wondering when you were going to pop in. You were the one who inspired me to try the ceramics - and I will always be thankful for that!
Always glad to bring someone into the light :). Ceramics get such a bad rap that, frankly, isn't deserved at all. Everybody is so terrified of them breaking that they stay away from them, whereas if they'd simply try one for a while they'd be hooked on em. The only reason they aren't mainstream is because of misconceptions about them and lack of consumer knowledge regarding the product.
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