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Old 01-19-2009, 09:02 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by buzzard767 View Post
No, "you" don't need..... etc. I do.
Nah, you don't' NEED it, you just LIKE it -- and believe me, as a knife collector, I fully understand.

But in the kitchen, I've come to believe that knives can be TOO sharp.
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Old 01-19-2009, 09:11 PM   #22
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Buzz you do only because you can sharpen it your self. I can sharpen Wustof, but cuoldn't sharpen the Shun, it is a completely different ball game. I only wish I could, I would love them all fancy Japanise knives. In the mean time my wustof's are razor sharp, unfortunately they do not stay sharp as long as Shun. But unfortunately I cannot afford to pay somebody like you to Sharpen it. Well, some day G-d willing, ok?
Okay Charlie, you have me confused. You say you can get your Wusthofs razor sharp yet cannot sharpen a Shun. It's steel. How can you sharpen one and not the other?

I am not a professional sharpener. I am a home cook who sharpens as a hobby, and a knife collector. Where this forum is concerned, nothing more.

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Old 01-19-2009, 09:30 PM   #23
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Nah, you don't' NEED it, you just LIKE it -- and believe me, as a knife collector, I fully understand.

But in the kitchen, I've come to believe that knives can be TOO sharp.
Wrong Scotch. If I didn't find the enjoyment in my knives that I do I probably wouldn't cook at all. This is a cooking site, and **** few here in the knife sub forum of DC know diddly about knives, the steels from which they are made, and sharpening. I suggest you go to a dedicated knife site with a cooking sub forum and keep your mind wide open. Here's the best one:

In the Kitchen (Topic list) - Knifeforums.com - Intelligent Discussion for the Knife Enthusiast - Powered by FusionBB

This "In The Kitchen" sub forum is filled with a wonderful combination of pro chefs, home chefs, sharpening experts, professional sharpeners, and custom knife makers. Knife nuts all, and they don't speculate nor give generalized information like "dude, I think my Furies are just great and they stay sharp forever." blah blah blah

If you're really a knife collector you should know better, and that business about thinking kitchen knives can be too sharp is just plain garbage. Most times when I've seen statements like that, and I've seen plenty, are made by people who have never even seen or used a truly sharp knife.

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Old 01-19-2009, 09:34 PM   #24
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Ok point taken but out of interest what knifes would you of gone for and would they been more money than the Wusthof?
I see the Japanese steel fanboys have weighed in, and I think you do need to hear the counter arguments.

Basically there are three main designs of Chef's knife, German French and Japanese. Just remember that I'm talking about the origin of the design, not where the knife is made and you can get Japanese style knives from Germany and German style knives from Brazil.

Without going into chapter and verse about ergonomics and metallurgy these designs have different functions.

Japanese knives are all about precision. They are made from high hardness steels and have thin blades.
German knives are all about practicality. They are easy to handle, have soft steel which is easy to maintain.
French knives are about volume. They are designed to make short work of big jobs.

Now all of these designs more or less do the same thing, but are optimised in different ways, so you can be very precise with a German knife or process large volumes with a Japanese knife. But you need to look at what you want your knife to do for you.

You may also decide that you want a mix of different knives for different functions. For example I have a French Chef's knife, a Japanese vegetable knife and a German boning knife and I deliberately sourced them as such.
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Old 01-19-2009, 10:02 PM   #25
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fanboy is a rather deragatory word in my book
seems there's been alot of posts, "what are/who makes the best XYZ knife"

I really don't care what knife it is...if it doesnt feel good in YOUR hand you're not going to use it..period.
Second to that, some knives are pretty use specific or require a use methodology to keep them from being dammaged.

long story short..if you're going to invest in goods knives, go handle them

sure, a Ducati may be a killer fast motorcycle--but if my wrists go numb in 5 miles I'm not going to ride it....
a Harley mabe be like riding down the street on a Laz-y-boy, but if you can't hold it up at a stoplight, well...you get the picture
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Old 01-19-2009, 10:13 PM   #26
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...If I didn't find the enjoyment in my knives that I do I probably wouldn't cook at all....
Wow! That's certainly an unusual approach, sort of like saying if I didn't love my brushes, I wouldn't paint, or if I didn't like my camera, I wouldn't take photos!

In my view, knives are merely tools, the means to an end, which is good food. Cooking is not just a reason to play with one's knives.
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Old 01-19-2009, 10:14 PM   #27
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Cooking is not just a reason to play with one's knives.
Maybe for some people it is.
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Old 01-19-2009, 10:21 PM   #28
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I see the Japanese steel fanboys have weighed in, and I think you do need to hear the counter arguments.
Perhaps I'm merely in an argumentative mood tonight but this fanboy has a few comments.

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Originally Posted by jpaulg View Post
Without going into chapter and verse about ergonomics and metallurgy these designs have different functions.
Eliminating geometry, steels, and the hardening thereof, although a huge topic in itself, is shelving information as to why various blades perform the way they do. These are subjects not to be ignored as they are the heart of knife performance.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jpaulg View Post
Japanese knives are all about precision. They are made from high hardness steels and have thin blades.
German knives are all about practicality. They are easy to handle, have soft steel which is easy to maintain.
French knives are about volume. They are designed to make short work of big jobs.
Japanese knives are indeed all about precision, but only in their designated specific duties. There are many knives that are not thin at all as everything depends on intended use. You don't use an Usuba to process fish any more than you would use a Deba to slice vegetables.

German knives are all about terrible ax like edges that are filled with chromium so they don't rust when you toss them in the dishwasher. They are marketed to the lowest common denominator "could care less" user. It's just business and I fully understand it.

French knives: Volume? I don't get it. Are you saying that an 11" Sabatier makes shorter work than an 11' Messermeister? I have a small collection of around 20 WWII era Thiers-Issard Sabatiers up to 12" and I would never say they make shorter work of anything versus my 300mm Hiromoto High Carbon Gyuto.

Methinks you generalize way too much. Different knives for different folks, but if you want to get into specifics, let's use this forum and discuss it.
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Old 01-19-2009, 10:39 PM   #29
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Wow! That's certainly an unusual approach, sort of like saying if I didn't love my brushes, I wouldn't paint, or if I didn't like my camera, I wouldn't take photos!

In my view, knives are merely tools, the means to an end, which is good food. Cooking is not just a reason to play with one's knives.
Right on. I would not want to take a picture with an inferior camera. You got it Scotch, even if you didn't mean it that way.

Yes, knives are tools, and the best tools produce the best works in accomplished hands. No argument there. There is more to cooking than blindly following the recipe....

There is a great amount of pleasure using a tool, in this case a knife, that does its job better than others. You may not agree, but don't tell me that my "unusual approach" is wrong.

What sort of knives do you collect, and, more importantly, why?

Edit: you didn't answer my question re "too sharp". Please explain that to me.

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Old 01-19-2009, 10:58 PM   #30
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OK I know I was generalising but I think that it isn't controversial to say that Japanese knives are precision instruments designed for specific tasks.

With german style knives, which includes quite a few non-German manufacturers as well, there is an emphasis on practicality and ergonomics. Yes they have steel that is generally geared to high chrome content, but that is a deliberate decision aimed at keeping the knives rust free and looking good. But for example you also have Goldhamster and Scanpan Damastahl knives made in the German pattern but using much better quality steel than one normally associates with German knives.
The ergonomics of handling come into it with the wide belly and more curved edge that German knives carry compared to Japanese or French knives. This makes using the rotary cutting technique easier (your wrist has to travel in smaller circles) and safer (its very hard to get the fingers of your guide hand under the edge). You see a lot of Wusthofs in commercial kitchens precisely for their ergonomic factors.

Sabatiers have much thicker blades than German or French knives. This creates a wedge effect when cutting, most noticable on root vegetables. With the smaller belly your wrist has to perform much larger circles than with a german knife to get the same elevation. This makes the downstroke cut of the Sabatier a much longer stroke with more lateral movement relative to vertical movement than with a German knife. With a French style knife you use more of the edge with your cuts.

You won't notice much of a difference between an 11" Sabatier and 300mm Hiromoto gyuto if you're processing 2 potatoes. You will if you process 200.
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