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 Post subject: Thoughts from a convert...
PostPosted: Sun Mar 16, 2014 8:01 pm 
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Joined: Mon Dec 16, 2013 3:42 pm
Posts: 109
Location: Boston, MA
While I've been a home cook for many years, it was only in the last 4 months or so that I discovered Japanese knives. For me this feels a little odd because I'm half Japanese so go figure. Anyway I had always thought and been told that the "best" knives were Wusthof, Henckels or maybe Lamson Sharp and as a result accumulated quite a few over the years. I also thought that sharpening a knife meant to take it to a steel or use one of those Fiskars sharpeners.

About a year ago, I picked up some Bark River knives to go in my backpacking kit. Since they were all convex ground, I started researching and learning how to sharpen these knives and picked up an inexpensive set of water stones. Along the way, I found the CKTG website and started researching Japanese knives, then bought my first ones 3 months ago. Today, I am a total convert to both the knives and freehand sharpening (still learning here but getting better). I'm also totally sold on CKTG and this forum.

I now own the following, all purchased from CKTG:

Masakage Yuki 240 Gyuto
Anryu Hammered 210 Gyuto
Goko Damascus 210 Gyuto
Kohetsu AS Santoku
Tanaka Kurouchi Nakiri
Yamashin 165 Funayuki

Like I said, I'm converted as well as hooked and am actively replacing most of the knives in my collection. One of the things that I've learned and really like about Japanese knives is that they each have distinctly different personalities as opposed to my other western knives which all seem to be the same regardless of style or manufacturer.

The other thing is how well they sharpen and cut as a result. I'm clearly still a novice but I've been able to fairly easily get them to be sharper than anything I've ever used. I just got the Yamashin and had to do a little work to clean up the shape/profile (there was a distinct "bump out" in the blade edge about an inch from the heel that caused the knife to rock on that point, while the tip was fat and not ground well/evenly on one side), which I did this morning. This re-shaping and re-sharpening was fairly easy and didn't take long. I am very pleased with the result and enjoyed the whole process of working on the knife.

As I've said in other posts and will repeat again, thanks to Mark and the folks at CKTG for a huge variety of great products and for outstanding customer service. As importantly, many thanks to this forum and it's knowledgeable and welcoming members.


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 Post subject: Re: Thoughts from a convert...
PostPosted: Sun Mar 16, 2014 8:15 pm 

Joined: Fri Mar 29, 2013 10:29 pm
Posts: 500
It's always great to welcome someone new who shares the love of all things sharp. Good to have another new person here to hang out with


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 Post subject: Re: Thoughts from a convert...
PostPosted: Sun Mar 16, 2014 8:19 pm 
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Joined: Thu Nov 22, 2012 4:17 am
Posts: 4732
Buying a couple water stones to sharpen my Victorinox knives got me hooked on J-knives. I bought some stones and a few months later I had over $1000 in knives. My wife didn't speak to me for a long time because she got a $2000 bonus at work and I spent it on knives and stones! Shit happens :twisted:



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 Post subject: Re: Thoughts from a convert...
PostPosted: Sun Mar 16, 2014 8:41 pm 

Joined: Fri Mar 29, 2013 10:29 pm
Posts: 500
Jeff B wrote:Buying a couple water stones to sharpen my Victorinox knives got me hooked on J-knives. I bought some stones and a few months later I had over $1000 in knives. My wife didn't speak to me for a long time because she got a $2000 bonus at work and I spent it on knives and stones! Shit happens :twisted:


This really made me laugh. I can totally relate to this. Waterstones got me as well. I remember my wife called me one day and said, I was looking over this bill. It says from cktg and I know you bought some new stones, but that can't be right!..? Let's just say it was correct and she was not very happy. We joke about it now. So what have I done about it? I just started buying naturals. ;)


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 Post subject: Re: Thoughts from a convert...
PostPosted: Sun Mar 16, 2014 8:46 pm 
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Joined: Thu Nov 22, 2012 4:17 am
Posts: 4732
I will say that I did make it up to her. She had her eye on a new car and I kept putting it off. After my knife and stone buying spree slowed down I had the car she was wanting delivered to the house one afternoon and she was blown away. She doesn't complain as much now!



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 Post subject: Re: Thoughts from a convert...
PostPosted: Sun Mar 16, 2014 9:15 pm 

Joined: Thu Jan 30, 2014 10:57 pm
Posts: 162
I got here the long, expensive way.

Started out from a household with the worst knife habits in the world. A drawer full of ancient serrated knives, never sharpened, buy a new one occasionally and throw it in with the rest. My first kitchen knife was some blister pack thing I picked up at the dollar store along with a Diamond brand carbide stone (I still have them, and everything else I've bought, pretty much). From there, it was a Farberware set, then Wusthof LCB because someone told me they were the best, then carbon Sabatiers because someone else told me they were the best, then Shun because Alton Brown (laugh it up). On a trip to Japan I got some Sakai Takayuki hammered damascus knives because I thought they looked really cool (I still do) and a bunch of random waterstones. Finally, a sushi chef acquaintance introduced me to the wonders of Hitachi carbon steel and a little volume by Chad Ward. Several years and several thousand dollars later, here we are.

Currently pining for the Takumi Ikeda gyuto (want to see what all the hype for that Masamoto profile is about, and I like flashy knives) and the Masakage Koishi (tsuchime does things to my head...).


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 Post subject: Re: Thoughts from a convert...
PostPosted: Sun Mar 16, 2014 9:19 pm 
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Joined: Tue May 01, 2012 11:31 pm
Posts: 217
Location: Vancouver, Canada
Jeff B wrote:I will say that I did make it up to her. She had her eye on a new car and I kept putting it off. After my knife and stone buying spree slowed down I had the car she was wanting delivered to the house one afternoon and she was blown away. She doesn't complain as much now!


Oooooo... Just think of what you can get in knives and stones with money for the car :D


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 Post subject: Re: Thoughts from a convert...
PostPosted: Sun Mar 16, 2014 9:36 pm 

Joined: Sat Jan 18, 2014 9:11 pm
Posts: 220
Location: San Diego
Jeff B wrote:Buying a couple water stones to sharpen my Victorinox knives got me hooked on J-knives. I bought some stones and a few months later I had over $1000 in knives. My wife didn't speak to me for a long time because she got a $2000 bonus at work and I spent it on knives and stones! Shit happens :twisted:


That is a gem. Thanks for sharing.

I never knew 15 years ago when I convinced my wife we should hold separate checking accounts and credit cards exactly how beneficial it would be. Truth be hold, we each have our own vices (all legal!) and quietly go about satisfying them.

Last night I asked her how she liked having sharp knives around. She smiled and said well done. Damn that felt wonderful!


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 Post subject: Re: Thoughts from a convert...
PostPosted: Mon Mar 17, 2014 7:44 pm 

Joined: Thu Feb 20, 2014 7:50 pm
Posts: 104
My GF would die if I had the budgets you all do for knives. I am slowly trying to increase my collection.

She thinks a $100 knife is expensive and my first stone purchase, which included everything I needed for a while, was close to $200 and she couldn't even believe it. Funny though that she loves having sharp knives, ALWAYS goes for the 210 Artifex first, and since I bought the Goko 240, asks every time we cook if she can use it. Maybe I just need to stop being so honest about the prices, haha.

I love her though and her attempts to remember the name "nakiri" are downright comical.


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 Post subject: Re: Thoughts from a convert...
PostPosted: Mon Mar 17, 2014 7:55 pm 
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Joined: Thu Nov 22, 2012 4:17 am
Posts: 4732
Nola --> Keep her interested in the knives and it will make future purchases much easier. I tell my wife all the time that I found another knife to buy her and I get the usual "oh, just what I wanted :roll: ". Someday I'll have to teach her how to use all of her knives. :mrgreen:



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