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When people go too far thinning their knives

Thu Aug 09, 2012 4:47 am

Take a look at this video clip...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NUThRYShwjA

I would have thought the blade would become too brittle and just start chipping like mad. Not turning into an Indian "rubber knife". :)

I'm considering a Yoshikane SKD11 or two (e.g. gyuto & nakiri to start) actually...has hammer mark. Any how the sharpener over did it this time. Whoops!!

Re: When people go too far thinning their knives

Thu Aug 09, 2012 8:09 am

...mmmm...I really don't know whether that little bit of flex right at the tip end would be detrimental in any way really....????

Just my 2c....


:)

Re: When people go too far thinning their knives

Fri Aug 10, 2012 8:59 am

In a professional environment, it gets annoying really fast.


That is pretty cool that the steel will put up with that though.

Re: When people go too far thinning their knives

Fri Aug 10, 2012 4:40 pm

burkecutlery wrote:In a professional environment, it gets annoying really fast.


That is pretty cool that the steel will put up with that though.


Better than finding metal flakes in your food. :)

I don't know if it's a testament to the quality of the forging work by the smith or the steel. But
yeah...as I said...I'm suirprised that knife just ended up turning into an "Indian rubber knife". And not just crumble piece by piece.

As I said. I'll likely buy a few Yoshikane's. But won't thin mine any where near that much if at all. Why change the geometry of the knife? (I mean, I know why some people thin their knives...just not sure I subscribe...). If you owned a Ferrari would you alter it's "geometry"? :) If someone wanted an ultra-anorexic blade on their knfei why not buy such a knife in the first place?? :)

Re: When people go too far thinning their knives

Sat Aug 11, 2012 3:58 am

Why not change the geometry of a edge?

Typical factory sharpening is a sorry excuse for a cutting edge compared to what can be done by a skilled sharpener. It's not that they always do a bad job its the edge angle and usual over polishing that causes it to be sub-par.

How thin or the level of finish is determined by the task and cutting skill of the user, too thin in your opinion may be just right for someone else.

If you owned a ferrari would you not want it to go faster and have more horsepower?

Re: When people go too far thinning their knives

Sat Aug 11, 2012 4:23 am

I don't own any where enough JP knives to really comment on the factory cutting edges most makers give us. Or, the edge angle, over polishing as you put it... Just seems to me a good cutlery would not ship a knife that wasn't up to their standards. Also, I think it depends on the particular cutlery and batch.

Now, if you're changing the geometry of a knife to make it more suitable for said task, that's a different story. Though, I would ask, "Why not buy a knife with the right geometry & other characteristics for the intended task in the first place??". :)

As for modifying a Ferrari to go faster...let's just say I wouldn't change it's geometry. :) And while I'm aware of all the tuners out there for Ferrari (e.g. Underground Racing) and other super-cars I honestly don't see the point for the typical driver. Driving from stop light to stop light. A tiny percentage go on "track days". A stock Ferrari 458 is more than "fast enough" for the street. Especially if you live in a major metropolitan city.

The only aspect of a knife I would change is the degree of sharpness (and possibly polish on the cutting edge...more, less...) from the factory. Which for me is already sharper than I'm used to.

Re: When people go too far thinning their knives

Sat Aug 11, 2012 10:38 am

BDD wrote:
Better than finding metal flakes in your food. :)

I don't know if it's a testament to the quality of the forging work by the smith or the steel. But
yeah...as I said...I'm suirprised that knife just ended up turning into an "Indian rubber knife". And not just crumble piece by piece.

As I said. I'll likely buy a few Yoshikane's. But won't thin mine any where near that much if at all. Why change the geometry of the knife? (I mean, I know why some people thin their knives...just not sure I subscribe...). If you owned a Ferrari would you alter it's "geometry"? :) If someone wanted an ultra-anorexic blade on their knfei why not buy such a knife in the first place?? :)


The problem with your analogy is that most knives you buy aren't Ferrari class, but more along the lines of a Chevy Malibu. Too often edge sharpness ("it will whittle hair!") is confused with proper edge geometry.

Don't conflate thinning with thinness, either. They are not the same. I've had several knives with spines of 2 mm that were terrible cutters until they were thinned behind the edge, and several others with 3+ mm spines that were excellent cutters.

Re: When people go too far thinning their knives

Sat Aug 11, 2012 5:38 pm

BDD,

"Why not buy a knife with the right geometry & other characteristics for the intended task in the first place??".

Because they don't sell them. The factory put a "edge" on so the knife will at minimal cut. They don't know the user or the uses so they apply a edge that will be the most durable which unfortunately means a high inclusive angle.

It's the job of a professional sharpener to apply a better geometry as learned from years of experience and the knowledge of how a cut actually happens. It's like asking a sword polished why he does what he does.

Re: When people go too far thinning their knives

Sun Aug 19, 2012 3:38 pm

To illustrate why some knives need thinning, here are two photos showing the OOTB grinds of two chef's knives. For what it's worth, both had "shaving sharp" edges. Take a guess which one cut poorly?

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