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A Gyuto and a Paring Knife

Thu Jun 07, 2012 11:21 am

Hi all. I'm planning to get a Gyuto and a paring knife for my mother. Thinking maybe a Takeda Gyuto AS 210mm and a Tojiro DP 90mm Paring Knife.

The Takeda Gyuto because I've only read good things about it (sharpness, superior edge retention, light, great feel/balance...). The length seems perfect as well. 240mm and 270mm is a tad too long, she rarely deals with anything more than the common veg, chicken and fish more than 4lbs. We have a Henckel Twin Pollux Cleaver to deal with the very rare occasion when she needs to chop through the bony parts (the butchers here are too generously helpful with the heavier knife work). I've originally asked Mark about the Takeda Deba as well but decided against it since my mother rarely does any of the butchering stuffs and the Henckel Cleaver has been more than competent for the occasional ones. Who knows maybe someday but not now or maybe it is.... What do you guys think? Anyway she has never used a carbon steel knife before but we thought it's worth a shot. So any pointer on good usage and maintenance practices is much appreciated.

The Tojiro Paring Knife seems perfect as my mother likes to sit on her rocking chair and take her time with the peeling and cutting. So I figure a stainless steel knife would be less of a hassle since constant cleaning and drying is not required. I was considering a Hiromoto Petty 120mm paring knife as well. The stainless cladded AS seems enticing but I'm not sure whether that will stand up to the neglect/abuse. I also read that the fit and finish may not be as good as a Tojiro. What do you guys think?

On top of the 2 knives, I'm also looking at the Edge Pro Custom Full Monty sharpening kit that Mark assembled. The Edge Pro Apex seems like something that can produce consistent quality sharpening results even when operated by people who are crap at sharpening knives like myself. Is there anything else that I should add to/remove from the kit or something from the kit that I should get a spare or two? At this stage I don't think I want/need a mirror finish on the edge unless it actually improves the cutting performance by leaps and bounds. That said I'd like the kit to be practical, complete and last for at least a year or two. Seems like there're many things that I can't get in Singapore so I'd like to not have to wait for weeks/months for replacements.

One last thing I'm trying to keep the budget under $1k. I don't mind going slightly above if there're solid reasons for splurging a bit though. Many thanks in advance for the help. This is a great site for knives by the way.

Re: A Gyuto and a Paring Knife

Thu Jun 07, 2012 11:43 am

If your mother will care for a knife, the Takeda 210 is a great knife.

I suggest you go for the Suisin Inox Western Parer--I like the steel and handle better.

+1 on the Takeda. If she can simply remember to wipe it off, by all means, great knife.

Re: A Gyuto and a Paring Knife

Thu Jun 07, 2012 5:41 pm

I tend to like petty knives with larger handles but that might not be the case with your mom. The shun classic petty would be a good choice too:

The Edge Pro full monty is a good one if you want to get the whole thing with all the bells and whistles in one shot. I'm going to add the little compression spring to that set shortly and that will complete that set in my eyes.

The Takeda is a gamble on a couple levels. Its carbon and it's tall, I love the tallness of the blade but some don't. As long as you would like it if she does not I think it's worth trying. You can always get something different for her and keep the Takeda if she isn't into it.

Re: A Gyuto and a Paring Knife

Fri Jun 08, 2012 7:40 pm

Thanks Burkecutlery and Mark for your feedbacks. Both of the knives seem excellent. The Suisin INOX Petty's handle looks great and comfortable. The Shun Classic and Premier's handles do look kind of thick though that might be ergonomic in some people's hand. The Shun Reserve Paring Knife's handle looks more "normal" but it gives the impression that it looks too good to be used. I don't really mind the price tag as long as the finishing can withstand normal home kitchen use. That said I think I'm willing to give any of the ones you guys recommended a try. Like what Mark said, I can always keep it for myself and get another one for my mother if she finds it awkward and we've got to start somewhere. Anyway it appears that both makers use different steels for the blades. Is there any obvious difference in terms of cutting performance, edge retention and stain resistance between the Suisin INOX, VG10 and SG2 from your experience?

One more question. This is probably a stupid one and maybe not for this part of the forum but is the Edge Pro setup suitable for a small knife like a petty or paring knife? If not what should I get? Like I said previously, it's kind of difficult to find most of the knives/accessories in Singapore. Though I've read that some makers like Shun offer free sharpening service if we mail the knives back to them, I have a feeling that once we get started using these knives it'll be too painful to do without them even for a few days. So I'd rather have all the required tools to keep them going for a long time.

Many thanks again for the feedbacks

Re: A Gyuto and a Paring Knife

Sat Jun 09, 2012 3:18 am

kek wrote: This is probably a stupid one and maybe not for this part of the forum but is the Edge Pro setup suitable for a small knife like a petty or paring knife?

Hey Kek, I just started using the Edge Pro. I had a MAC paring knife that had a snapped tip. I ground the end of the knife back with a dremmel and sharpened with the edge pro... my wife took the end of her finger off with it this morning washing up! I can't say I was happy but there was a tiny part inside of me that gave a smug nod to the Edge Pro and my new found sharpening ability. I found the smaller knives a bit more difficult to sharpen than the biggies but it works a treat with a little patience.


By no means perfect but a useable knife


Re: A Gyuto and a Paring Knife

Sat Jun 09, 2012 6:32 am

Well done on that tip and nice picture too!

Re: A Gyuto and a Paring Knife

Sun Jun 10, 2012 2:10 am

Hi DJ_m. Sorry to hear about the wife but thanks for clearing my doubts about using the Edge Pro on a paring knife. Very nicely taken photos.

So I guess I've more or less settled on 1 of the 2 choices, a Shun Premier or a Shun Reserve Paring Knife. I read from their catalogue that the Premier has a thinner edge than the Reserve version. I guess novices like my mother and myself will probably not notice the difference between the VG10 and the SG2 so I guess it's down to the blade profile and handle comfort. Which one would be more practical and performs better when it comes to peeling fruits, onions and cutting the tiny stuffs? The thicker blade or the skinnier one? Many people probably disagree with the choice of a Shun and suggest better(?) alternatives. I appreciate the suggestions and will definitely KIV those recommendations. I just thought that a maker with a reputation like Shun would be a good place to start and establish some benchmarks for future reference, for better or worse.

Another thing. Should I get a honing rod on top of the Edge Pro for a quick work on the blades in between sharpening? If yes then any suggestion?

Burkecutlery, thanks for posting about the Deba before I do any damage to one that I'll potentially own in the future. Very educational and humbling video there.

Many thanks again for the replies.
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