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 Post subject: Scalpel nakiri for feather-fingers
PostPosted: Wed Apr 16, 2014 4:38 am 

Joined: Wed Apr 16, 2014 3:45 am
Posts: 11
Hi, sorry for making my first post a recommendation request, but I thought it couldn't hurt to solicit some thoughts.

I've got a few knives at the moment and some are pretty good, but there's this void I'm looking to fill, if it's fillable. I'll start off with the basic questions:

1. Are you right handed? Yep.
2. What type of knife are you interested in (gyuto, nakiri etc..) Nakiri, but considering bunka also.
3. What size knife are you looking for?160-180mm
4. Do you prefer carbon or stainless steel?Both are fine.
5. Do you prefer a western handle or a Japanese handle?Japanese but I make exceptions from time to time.
6. How much did you want to spend?US$250 or less
7. Do you know how to sharpen?Yes, I'm a freehander.

More details: I am a home user; 90% veg such as large raw carrots, cabbage, cucumbers, king oyster mushrooms, potatoes, &c. I cut on a rubber board but never engage in boardsmashing (strong/fast chopping). I cut slowly; push cuts or slices. As a result, I've been a big fan of my Takamura and Yusuke gyuto, and I've flattened/thinned the bevels of some Zakuri knives to practically a zero edge with nothing but a microbevel. These knives are, in my opinion, very good for the light touch I use in the kitchen, but my nakiri hunt has been less successful. I have a few:

Takeda: Thin spine and the anti-stick properties are awesome, and the bevel gets very sharp, but still doesn't move through food as easily as the laser gyuto, with a bit of wedge in thick carrots. I've thinned it a little bit and made the bevel a little higher, but it's still not quiiite where I want it. It's not too far off though.

Itinomon: A bit longer and feels a little heavier but still has a pretty thin spine overall. The kurouchi is very matte but not textured with tsuchime (dimples/peening) or nashiji (pitting/scale), and the edge is a smooth kasumi (mist) and the edge is pretty thin, but the knife sticks to carrot slices quite a bit.

Fujiwara Teruyasu: Just got this and haven't used it much...I like it overall, but the edge seems a bit more beefy than I was hoping, and while it did a respectable job in a quick test, I get the impression the knife would better suit a more aggressive chopping style. The spine is pretty thin though.

I've been considering Konosuke's models, as well as some Masakage Yuki models given the general hype, but I worry about stickage on the former and haven't dug up a more local (Japan or Taiwan) source for either (Konosuke forwarded me to a Konosuke distributor here in Taiwan but they didn't respond to my Chinese email; nothing from Masakage at all and the Japanese retailer I'm familiar with doesn't carry the Yuki AFAIK). I'm happy to explore other options (the Gassan geometry looks interesting) and care more about geometry than steel (as long as it's pretty hard), and although I tend to order through non-American sources, I'd consider CKTG as a source if they ship here.

So to summarize, I'm looking for a nakiri with a paper-thin scalpel edge and reasonable food release. My knives handle most targets just fine if I'm willing to chop with more force, but I really prefer quieter and more gentle cutting motions. I'm considering thinning out the edge of the Teruyasu and doing some rounding of the choil/spine...I like the stainless nashiji. I intend to keep working on my Takeda to get it zeroed in, but I feel like I have to baby the kurouchi a bit (some has already worn off from playing in the mud). Still, the hunt continues, and if anyone's survived this long post and understands where I'm coming from and knows what might fill this gap, please let me know.

Thanks!
Robert.


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 Post subject: Re: Scalpel nakiri for feather-fingers
PostPosted: Wed Apr 16, 2014 5:51 am 

Joined: Thu Apr 03, 2014 12:52 am
Posts: 529
The Gassan Nakiri may be the closest to what you seek: excellent sleek performance.

I purchased one from the close-out section last month and I use it now most for all my cutting needs which is mostly home grown organic vegetables.

Glide is a good word to describe the way it moves through food. It uses a quality blue steel that takes a fine edge. Initially I sharpened to a nine degree angle (Apex + Angle Cube) but settled at fifteen with an 8k polish and it amazes every time I use it.

I have been thinning the spring harvest of carrots and beets and today it was the beet roots that I sliced. These were good sized (3 inch) Detroit Reds and I thought I would have to use much more force than I actually needed to make clean cuts or use a different knife. The Gassan Nakiri went right through effortlessly. The cladding is unique and contributes to reduced stiction. Very understated Zen qualities. Highly recommended.


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 Post subject: Re: Scalpel nakiri for feather-fingers
PostPosted: Wed Apr 16, 2014 8:29 am 

Joined: Sat Mar 01, 2014 7:15 am
Posts: 1362
Location: Raleigh, NC
I use a Konosuke nakiri almost daily. I have no greater endorsement than that it lives up to its reputation. It's a bit undersized, but not uncomfortably so.


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 Post subject: Re: Scalpel nakiri for feather-fingers
PostPosted: Wed Apr 16, 2014 2:06 pm 

Joined: Thu Dec 27, 2012 6:00 pm
Posts: 125
Location: Connecticut
Before you jump, take a look at the Tanaka Sekiso.


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 Post subject: Re: Scalpel nakiri for feather-fingers
PostPosted: Wed Apr 16, 2014 2:32 pm 

Joined: Sat Jan 18, 2014 9:11 pm
Posts: 220
Location: San Diego
Light, great looks, great fit and finish, thin and good deal - Anryu White Kurouchi. Specs on site are a bit off from mine - mine weighs 4.5 oz. Spine tapers to under 3.0mm about just in front of the heel. Pretty darn thin behind the edge, but could be thinned further - I am gonna start with 10* primary bevel and hit it with a 15* micro when the OOTB edge bogs down.

Kurouchi finish is 2nd nicest I have seen (I've seen about 10 different kurouchi lines in person - only the Masakage Mizu was superior IMHO). Hard to believe you get all this for under $120. From one of my favorite bladesmiths - Katsushige Anryu (who, no coincidence, also does the Masakage Mizu line as well).

Yes, out of stock. Hopefully more soon.

Other than that, I really like the Konosuke HH for the price, HD2 for the steel. Both At/under 5 oz, under 2.5mm at spine. Joys of mono steel - thinnnnnn. The Tera-Fuji line has a strong reputation on this site, although I haven't seen anything specifically about the nakiri.


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 Post subject: Re: Scalpel nakiri for feather-fingers
PostPosted: Wed Apr 16, 2014 4:44 pm 

Joined: Wed Apr 16, 2014 3:45 am
Posts: 11
Thanks so far for the suggestions. I didn't think there'd be a clear-cut easy option that everyone would agree on, but it's worth asking. Perhaps sorting out my Teruyasu and Takeda will satisfy me, but I really would like to hit upon a knife that won't require much work.


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 Post subject: Re: Scalpel nakiri for feather-fingers
PostPosted: Wed Apr 16, 2014 9:17 pm 
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Joined: Tue Oct 30, 2012 12:20 am
Posts: 684
"So to summarize, I'm looking for a nakiri with a paper-thin scalpel edge and reasonable food release."

Ha...easy Robert! :)

If the Nakiri grind is anything like my Gyuto, you'll really like it. A little more than your price range...
http://www.chefknivestogo.com/kofubl2na18.html

I'd prefer any Nakiri @ ~ 53mm(for comfort and longevity), but it's no biggy.



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 Post subject: Re: Scalpel nakiri for feather-fingers
PostPosted: Wed Apr 16, 2014 9:41 pm 

Joined: Tue Aug 14, 2012 5:08 am
Posts: 58
When I think of "scalpel" and nakiri, I think of Carter. My Carter KU was almost too thin.


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 Post subject: Re: Scalpel nakiri for feather-fingers
PostPosted: Wed Apr 16, 2014 9:48 pm 
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Joined: Wed Sep 18, 2013 11:21 pm
Posts: 711
Location: Minneapolis, MN
desol wrote:"So to summarize, I'm looking for a nakiri with a paper-thin scalpel edge and reasonable food release."

Ha...easy Robert! :)

If the Nakiri grind is anything like my Gyuto, you'll really like it. A little more than your price range...
http://www.chefknivestogo.com/kofubl2na18.html

I'd prefer any Nakiri @ ~ 53mm(for comfort and longevity), but it's no biggy.



You're a little over his budget


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 Post subject: Re: Scalpel nakiri for feather-fingers
PostPosted: Wed Apr 16, 2014 10:26 pm 
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Joined: Tue Oct 30, 2012 12:20 am
Posts: 684
Image

Not to be a jerk Nmiller, but, if you have a look at my post, do you see anything, at all, indicating that I realize that?



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