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 Post subject: Help piecing together a set
PostPosted: Wed Mar 26, 2014 5:10 pm 

Joined: Wed Mar 26, 2014 4:23 pm
Posts: 5
Hey Guys,
I've been lurking on a few sites, soaking up a lot of info. Honestly though, it's becoming a bit of a blur. So many options, so many producers, and a multitude of opinions. Before I got deep into the world of blade knowledge I was about to pull the trigger on a set of Shun Edo knives.

This Set to be exact...

but before I clicky clicked that complete purchase I felt I needed to research a bit more. Quickly finding out I could be getting much better for the money. I will say in regards to that set, I liked the look of the handle, not ecstatic over the exaggerated hammering effect. The odd styling for the bolster is probably what made me keep looking.

This is what lead me here...

I'm looking for some advice on piecing together a set.

A little info to go with this request to help the process....

I'm a professional chef, so these knives will be in heavy daily use.
I'm fully aware of and have no problem with providing care and attention.
I'm right handed, I have bigger hands, but know how to hold a knife (pinch)
I definitely like the flatter gyuto style of Japanese knives as opposed to the German style.
I guess the "WA" style handle suits me better than the classic German styling.
no issues if it is "D" or octagonal in shape.

what I need in a pieced together set and what I'm looking to spend. This budget is not including what I expect to spend on sharpening and maintenance...(stones, holders etc. )
Budget= $500-600 ( another consideration....only in stock items from cktg)

1 270mm Chef (on the lighter side) use on skinning fish etc.
1 210mm Chef
1 mid sized utility knife, controllable for "in air" action as well as board work
1 knife for boning, silver skin work, I prefer thin and flexible...I know..."he like's skinny boners"..( doesn't need to be super high end...more work horse style)
1 or 2 options for pairing knife range ( again, high end not entirely needed for these)
1 serrated option( I did like the looks of the serrated knife in the Shun set )
inexpensive ceramic honing rod 12"

Final thoughts....

I do have a few knives to beat on. Got a few Henkle Chefs, hollow ground santoku, cheap cleavers for grunt work.

edit: something important I missed.... my main focus = edge retention over looks, etc.

I'm not opposed to maintenance, but not a huge fan of rusting...(again, I will use on line, so the occasional missed wipe down will happen)
a little bit of patina in time is fine, but not looking to have to change knives simply because I'm cutting something acidic or what not.

So, any help on making this decision would be greatly appreciated.

Looking forward to never using shit service knives again.....well I mean, except for opening cans or cutting boxes etc...!


 Post subject: Re: Help piecing together a set
PostPosted: Wed Mar 26, 2014 6:45 pm 
User avatar

Joined: Wed Nov 21, 2012 10:17 pm
Posts: 7740
Location: Derby City, Kentucky
I would start with the knife you will be using the most, decide what attributes your looking for and we can help you find what fits your needs.
Purchase each knife in this manner by the importance of need. Uh....and forget the Shuns, you can do better for the money.

If God wanted me to be a vegetarian he wouldn't have made animals taste so good.
 Post subject: Re: Help piecing together a set
PostPosted: Wed Mar 26, 2014 7:07 pm 

Joined: Thu Dec 12, 2013 7:45 pm
Posts: 272
I had one of those Edo's that I returned to Amazon and one I got for a couple friends.

It was actually incredibly sharp OOTB for a knife in it's price range, I got both on lightening deal over the summer. The handles were nice as were the blades, really thin IIRC.

My issue was the bolster. the blade recesses back into like a collar of sorts and it has a deep gap on either side where water and food product gets stuck. Not feeling it at all. I gave my friends a chance to return theirs but they opted to keep it anyway because they loved the look and to them it was a light saber coming from their clunky cheap block set knives that hadn't been sharpened ever in like 3 years of ownership and frequent use.

I wouldn't recommend those and at that price point I'd give an emphatic no.

On top of all that, there are so much better on this site and others, whether mass produced stuff or handmade knives with a more personal feel, both for looks and performance, along with durability and value.

 Post subject: Re: Help piecing together a set
PostPosted: Wed Mar 26, 2014 7:17 pm 
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: Thu Apr 19, 2012 1:18 pm
Posts: 10864
Location: Madison Wisconsin
Welcome to the forum Mike.

My mind is number from work today so I'll give you some suggestions tomorrow.

Mark Richmond
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 Post subject: Re: Help piecing together a set
PostPosted: Wed Mar 26, 2014 8:34 pm 
Forum Moderator

Joined: Tue Feb 05, 2013 12:00 pm
Posts: 4638
Mike - my top 270 recommendation would have to be the Kohetsu 270 Gyuto: It's light, thin, well made, has nicely heat treated AS core steel with great edge retention - just a super nice 270 Gyuto. Lot's of length without all the weight.

Great post BTW.

 Post subject: Re: Help piecing together a set
PostPosted: Wed Mar 26, 2014 9:18 pm 

Joined: Tue Mar 04, 2014 8:28 pm
Posts: 1368
Not sure how flexible they are, but a meat cutter friend of mine told me that f. Fick boning knives are as good as it gets. For paring knives, id look at either forschner, tojiro Richmond, or shun. Since you jave big hands, I love my sab artifex for a 270 (yo handled, but the things a clydsdale) or any of the lasers or kohetsus. The yuki is a beautiful knife. I dont know much about pettys but theres a start.

 Post subject: Re: Help piecing together a set
PostPosted: Thu Mar 27, 2014 12:31 am 

Joined: Sat Mar 01, 2014 1:15 am
Posts: 3050
Location: Raleigh, NC
You made a good choice skipping the Shun set. The entry level Japanese knives here surpass them. The Tojiro DP and Fujiwara FKM lines could fill out most of your kit and leave a little cash to spare.

I've had trouble spotting many knives made by Japanese companies that I would consider analogous to a flex boning knife. The technique and knives are just different from what you and I know. I remember the Artifex Hankotsu promises a little flex at the tip, which I like. Maybe even (treason incoming) a Mercer flex boning knife. I've used the Genesis line and find it appropriate as a working class knife.

I'd buy every other knife here.

Honing rod, that one's easy. The Idahone 12" is equal to a Mac or Messermeister. Shoot, read the url. It just says "sharpeningrod".

I think the Tojiro ITK bread knife would fill your serrated knife need well. You might also consider the Mac Superior bread knife which many consider the greatest bread knife in the history of bread knives, but that's going to cut into gyuto money for a questionable return.

 Post subject: Re: Help piecing together a set
PostPosted: Thu Mar 27, 2014 1:10 am 

Joined: Tue Mar 04, 2014 8:28 pm
Posts: 1368
Personally, I prefer skinning fish with a more flexible blade, after you fill the kit if theres any money left over, id check out the artifex sujihiki. I dont know why its not on the site, but dmt makes a great ceramic rod, although ive heard great things about the idahone.

 Post subject: Re: Help piecing together a set
PostPosted: Thu Mar 27, 2014 9:17 am 

Joined: Wed Mar 26, 2014 4:23 pm
Posts: 5
Thanks for all the suggestions Gents ....

that artifex looks good in regards to the properties of the steel, but the handle looks eerily similar to some steak knives I have...

how does this look for what I'm looking for....I like the looks of the curved heal section

but how much of a pain is the rusting ? how much care we talking about ?

 Post subject: Re: Help piecing together a set
PostPosted: Thu Mar 27, 2014 9:56 am 

Joined: Sat Mar 02, 2013 9:16 am
Posts: 186
I own another knife from the Masakage makers the YUKI and it is bad ass in all regards.

Care is just wiping down your blade when it is wet that is all you have to be mindful of and acidic ingredients can form a patina
but personally I like patinas I think they give the knife character. But some people do not like them, they think the knife looks "dirty" I think once you build a patina though it will help with reactivity. I have no idea how reactive that knife is but I know the Kurouichi on that knife is good and much better than other kurouichi knives.

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