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First knife out of these?

Thu Jan 03, 2013 8:28 pm

Im brand new to the forums, and was wanting to know if you would help me out with my first knife purchase..

After extensive research and limited funds, I think I have narrowed down my options to these three knives and was wondering if it is worth going up the latter in price or staying cheap...these are all made of different steels and so I have really no idea which will be the best performer for everyday use (yes I plan on sharpening with stones and learning and all that fun stuff).

Tojiro ITK Shirogami Gyuto

Yamashin White #1 Gyuto

Tanaka Kurouchi Wa-Gyuto

Anything better in price/performance? Nothing at all higher than the $120 Tanaka though, and I'd rather spend the $60 on the Tojiro unless you all think the money is well worth it. I can tell this is going to be an addicting little hobby..Thanks for help!

Re: First knife out of these?

Thu Jan 03, 2013 9:22 pm

Tanaka, Yamashin and Tojiro in that order. I will be ordering the Tanaka tomorrow; I have one of his damascus 240's and love it. the yamashin is much nicer than the tojiro from what I have seen on the forums.

Re: First knife out of these?

Fri Jan 04, 2013 8:43 am

I'll ditto Taz's order. They are worth the extra money as you go up that ladder.

However, why those knives? I don't think any of the three is a good "first knife purchase" frankly.

Don't get me wrong, if you know what you're getting they can all be good knives. But all are carbon, and all are KU finish.

I'm just trying to make sure why you're getting before recommending one. :)

Re: First knife out of these?

Fri Jan 04, 2013 9:56 am

I like the look is one reason. I can't really say its my first knife, I have a henckels and hate it, and over thanksgiving I went to visit my parents and my dad bought a shun premier 8" chef knife and I fell in love with it. The high carbon knives from what I've read are easier to sharpen and get razor sharp then say a tojiro dp and the money seems hard to beat out of those knives for their price. I should also add maintenance on anything is not of any concern as I take care of things meticulously. Let me know if you think I'm wrong in any of these assumptions.

But from what I can tell I will probably be pulling the trigger on the tanaka, so thanks for the quick replies.

Re: First knife out of these?

Fri Jan 04, 2013 11:10 am

I ordered my 3rd Tanaka today :) I will do a review when it arrives!

Yeah, the carbon is very easy to sharpen to a stupidly sharp edge and easy to touch up, especially compared to the Tojiro Vg-10 in the DP series. The Richmond Artifex is also a great bang for the buck knife with awesome steel and great handle F&F; the AEB-L is almost as easy as carbon to get a sick edge on and is easy to sharpen where the Vg-10 can be a pain to deburr. The Fujiwara series are really nice for a low cost knife as well and perform well.

Re: First knife out of these?

Fri Jan 04, 2013 11:12 am

There are some really good stainless knives out there these days capable of edges equal to carbon and just as easy to sharpen.

But, your statement isn't wrong per say....there are just exceptions these days with the good stainless that's out there.

If you've used the Shun Premier and liked it and know what you're getting into, the Tanaka will be a great knife. I'm just always leary of suggesting a carbon knife to a complete knife newbie without making sure they know what they're getting. :)

Let us know how you like it.

Re: First knife out of these?

Fri Jan 04, 2013 11:13 am

That's it, I'm sending Taz a Tojiro for Christmas this year. :D

Re: First knife out of these?

Fri Jan 04, 2013 11:32 am

Please NO!!!! I have a 330mm DP Gyuto and a 150mm Honesuki from like 8 years ago (before the VG-10 switch IIRC) that are OK, but kinda clunky feeling. I rehandled a 270mm Tojiro suji recently and it felt like a beast compared to the 270mm Artifex or even my 300mm Kono White #2 suji I just got. The handle was wide and the bolster was pretty big and heavy. The grinds were nice and thin behind the edge, but it just feels overly heavy to me, especially after I have gotten used to Wa handles recently. Kinda reminds me of the Hiro AS series; they work well, but are a bit thicker and heavier than I prefer, but still work well. Nice workhorse type of knife, but that's not really my preference.

I haven't found a VG-10 blade that I like yet (haven't done much with the Hattori line, but I got one for my brother and his wife years ago as a wedding present), but I prefer carbon anyway, or, AEB-L or a SS Supersteel like M390 or other power steel stainlesses. I got to play with a ITK 210mm gyuto before I reground the while thing to thin it out, and I have a 240mm ITK K tip on it's way.

I just never was a fan of VG-10 blades; they look cool with the Damascus, but I just prefer carbon over SS except AEB-L, M390 and some of the CPM steels like CPM 154, and S35VN. I like that fine edge I can get with carbon (or other good stainless steels) that VG-10 just doesn't seem to deliver. Heat treat plays a big role in how the steel performs, but I just haven't used any vg-10 so far that really WOW's me like the carbon and nicer stainless steels do!
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