Knives

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Oh yes, the knife sharpener. It's on my desk, and I've played with it a bit, but not as much as I need to before providing a full report. The instructional DVD that comes with it shows the company's founder sharpening a penknife, then using it to cut a flat 8.5x11" piece of typing paper the thin way, into two thinner 8.5x11" sheets. I haven't gotten that far yet but I've gotten some knives I thought I'd never use again to arm-shaving sharpness.

You have to think a bit about angles and bevels when you use it, and take into consideration the bevel your knife already has, and it definitely takes an hour's commitment on a dull knife, but the instructions are helpful. It seems like using it without making the initial effort to understand the why of what you're doing might be frustrating or unsatisfying, but if you do that, home sharpening does seem to give a lot of control beyond what taking a knife to a sharpening service offers.

Paul Eater (eater), Sunday, 26 February 2006 05:05 (thirteen years ago) link

(I worry though that too much of this board is me linking to products and you buying them! Still, I'm glad you're happy so far. I could have used a sturdier grippier board for this morning's debonings.)

Paul Eater (eater), Sunday, 26 February 2006 05:12 (thirteen years ago) link

Hahahah! I've only bought the Skyline chili and the cutting board :) That food-shooter is under consideration though. Well, and also the japanese knives - they are on my wishlist, so someone else can buy them for me.

I don't think I want to get that technical with the knives. But I would like to see the video of the guy slicing paper the thin way!

Jaq (Jaq), Sunday, 26 February 2006 05:38 (thirteen years ago) link

seven months pass...
I just got one of these. Short, orange, and endorsed by Rachael Ray, although mercifully her name is nowhere on it. It's too short to mince with, and too fat for fine work, so I use it like a sort of mini-cleaver that happens to rock a little. The soft rubber handle is comfortable to hold. It's especially good for taking apart meat.

Paul Eater (eater), Wednesday, 4 October 2006 19:56 (thirteen years ago) link

six months pass...
Paul Eater, I love the giant sani-tuff board I got so much, I bought two more little ones the other day. Got free shipping on them via Google, somehow. All the poly boards I bought 6 months after I got that first Sani-tuff are all warped and scratched and needing to be pitched out. They're heavy as all get out, but damn! Last forever, can be sanded down, don't warp, and treat the knife blades well.

Jaq, Tuesday, 1 May 2007 23:54 (twelve years ago) link

I'm glad!

eater, Wednesday, 2 May 2007 20:57 (twelve years ago) link

one year passes...

I've decided to take the plunge and start sharpening my knives myself. I just ordered this system + special c-clamp - the reviews make it sound straightforward to use and that it gives a good edge.

Jaq, Wednesday, 4 June 2008 16:45 (eleven years ago) link

Today, my knives are SHARP!

Jaq, Friday, 6 June 2008 20:33 (eleven years ago) link

Nothing like a sharp knife. My steel and sharpener are perpetually at work so my home knives are in a terrible state. I am a poor show.

Matt, Wednesday, 11 June 2008 20:15 (eleven years ago) link

Just like the poor cobbler's kids never having any shoes :) Now that all mine are sharp, I'm starting to solicit them from family and friends, so I'm not tempted to just keep sharpening my own into nothing. Next you know, I'll have a stand set up down on the sidewalk, like my shoeshine guys.

Jaq, Wednesday, 11 June 2008 21:04 (eleven years ago) link

i need to learn how to sharpen. we've got a water sharpener and a crazy expensive, apparently difficult to use japanese sharpening system, neither of which i can use. i'm taking a knife skills class in a couple of weeks, and i hope this is covered!

lauren, Thursday, 12 June 2008 14:38 (eleven years ago) link

I'd be surprised if it wasn't. In fact I'd be bloody outraged.

Matt, Thursday, 12 June 2008 20:50 (eleven years ago) link

i assure you that i'll cause a scene if it's not!

lauren, Friday, 13 June 2008 01:03 (eleven years ago) link

six months pass...

I'm coveting knives. I have one great knife and it's great. I love you so much, Only Good Knife I Own.

Abbott of the Trapezoid Monks (Abbott), Thursday, 1 January 2009 23:34 (ten years ago) link

Happiness is not having what you want, it's wanting what you have.

Plaxico (I know, right?), Thursday, 1 January 2009 23:39 (ten years ago) link

lauren how did the knife skills class go? i really need to learn how to sharpen, too.

Tracer Hand, Friday, 2 January 2009 12:45 (ten years ago) link

I gave up trying to sharpen the old-school way--broke down and bought a chef's choice dealie. It's pretty awesome, but not as awesome as sharpening on a stone like a true knife badass.

quincie, Friday, 2 January 2009 16:40 (ten years ago) link

My dad stood around in the kitchen sharpening knives bcz he loved his wetstone so much. It was his dad's, though, so he wouldn't let us touch it, ever.

Abbott of the Trapezoid Monks (Abbott), Saturday, 10 January 2009 23:09 (ten years ago) link

three years pass...

http://home.woot.com/ has a really good deal on a knife dock today. I've been wanting one of these for awhile - a better way to corral the steak knives in the cutlery drawer as we don't have quite enough counter space for knife blocks.

Jaq, Sunday, 4 March 2012 19:08 (seven years ago) link

Magnetic knife holder on a spare bit of wall space was one of my best investments.

Steamtable Willie (WmC), Sunday, 4 March 2012 19:45 (seven years ago) link

If we are ever in a permanent space...

Jaq, Sunday, 4 March 2012 20:04 (seven years ago) link

I've been thinking - even if I did have the wall space, I don't think I'd stick a dozen steak knives up on a magnetic strip. Chef knife, slicing knife, cleaver - yes. Do you keep your paring knife on it?

Jaq, Sunday, 4 March 2012 21:03 (seven years ago) link

Yeah -- serrated bread knife, 3 chefs knives, 3 paring knives, no steak knives. I need a cleaver.

Steamtable Willie (WmC), Sunday, 4 March 2012 21:25 (seven years ago) link

Jaq, you can get those magnetic holders with magnets on BOTH sides, they're just hard to find!! I have the wall screw-in kind now but I did find a link from the manufacturer at one point and emailed them asking why I couldn't find the double magnet ones--which affix v solidly to the side of a fridge, for instance. I think iirc they emailed me back and offered to take my order and then I never did anything about it.

drawn to them like a moth toward a spanakopita (Laurel), Sunday, 4 March 2012 21:38 (seven years ago) link

I sort of love that the official description of this cleaver on Amazon includes "great for Halloween haunted houses".

Jaq, Sunday, 4 March 2012 21:41 (seven years ago) link

Laurel, that sounds like a good idea - in our current kitchen though, I do all the knife work at a freestanding central butcher block. If we ever move again, etc etc.

Jaq, Sunday, 4 March 2012 21:45 (seven years ago) link

two months pass...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8FntD3KgIaY

Hungry4Ass, Tuesday, 22 May 2012 13:50 (seven years ago) link

http://home.woot.com/ has a great deal on an 8" cleaver right now, $25+$5 shipping

Jaq, Tuesday, 22 May 2012 19:27 (seven years ago) link

It's a woot-off though, so probably only there for 10 minutes.

Jaq, Tuesday, 22 May 2012 19:27 (seven years ago) link

six years pass...

knifebrag: i've only ever owned a single truly awesome knife in my life. a friend from school had a buddy that won the show forged and fired. this is the first kitchen knife he ever made and it was more or less to my specs. i got to watch him finish it, even after all the forging it was a pretty insane process that took a lot of skill and precision. think it's 7.5". the handle is made from Australian snakewood fwiw that has some beautiful detail.
https://i.imgur.com/MribaRM.jpg

lâche pas la patate (outdoor_miner), Friday, 13 July 2018 04:06 (one year ago) link

That looks beautiful. I really need a new knife. Going back to read this thread. I thought I wanted a Shun but I dunno now.

Yerac, Friday, 13 July 2018 07:52 (one year ago) link

We bought knives from Kamata in Kappabashi last summer. It's the first time we've had excellent knives & it's been terrific.

droit au butt (Euler), Friday, 13 July 2018 13:26 (one year ago) link

I am eyeing the sani-tuff cutting board talked about above. The price is giving me pause but I don't really ever buy cutting boards for the amount that I cook.

Yerac, Saturday, 21 July 2018 20:40 (one year ago) link

I will rep hard for my Sabatier carbon steel chef knife, although I think it's less the brand and more the carbon steel. I bake a lot of whole chickens, and the Sabatier makes spatchcocking really easy.

ヽ(´ー`)┌ (CompuPost), Sunday, 22 July 2018 12:30 (one year ago) link

I also have knives from Kamata, they hold a fiendish edge. I sliced the end off my thumb last time I sharpened mine on the stone rather than the steel. It healed ok, very clean cut.

American Fear of Pranksterism (Ed), Sunday, 22 July 2018 15:05 (one year ago) link

I had decided on the MAC knife listed above but now it seems like because of the beveled edge the left handed person in the house won't be able to use it? Or I see that it can be sharpened into a symmetrical edge? I don't own any Japanese knives so this is all new to me.

Yerac, Sunday, 22 July 2018 16:08 (one year ago) link

That Sanituff board has lasted FOREVER btw. It is a monster. I have sanded down both sides at least twice. I also bought some smaller (and hella lighter) boards from Epicurean that are made of the same composite used for skate parks and they are also excellent.

Jaq, Sunday, 22 July 2018 23:30 (one year ago) link

Yeah, I have used an epicurean board for the last 5 years (love it) but wanted something heftier You just use regular sandpaper for the sanituff board?

Yerac, Monday, 23 July 2018 00:09 (one year ago) link

You can get Japanese knives with a double bevel, particularly the western style shapes. Putting a double bevel on a single bevel knife is not really possible, the back side is flat all the way up.

American Fear of Pranksterism (Ed), Monday, 23 July 2018 07:43 (one year ago) link

Yep, I use regular fine grit sandpaper and then extrafine emery cloth with a sanding block on the sani-tuff board.

Jaq, Monday, 23 July 2018 20:18 (one year ago) link

two months pass...

Finally got my sanituff board. this shit is heavy. And the surface texture is different than I expected.

Yerac, Thursday, 11 October 2018 18:16 (one year ago) link

My latest knife is a little Opinel folding knife. It makes me want to stroll the French countryside deftly cutting into cheeses and pears and hard country sausages. More likely I will get searched and arrested on the subway for having it in my bag.

― Paul Eater (eater), Friday, November 18, 2005 8:39 PM (twelve years ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

YO I never clocked the post before but I "discovered" Opinel last summer when one of my family brought one camping, and I liked it so much I gave my bf a semi-custom engraved one for Christmas. Whatever you're cutting, this knife will definitely class it up in a rustic European mountain meadow picnic kind of way.

There's more Italy than necessary. (in orbit), Thursday, 11 October 2018 19:06 (one year ago) link

I live opinel knives, an almost perfect penknife. Very simple, I love that you knock the heel on your boot to open them, the simple ring lock. Much better than your fancy Swiss Army knives.

American Fear of Pranksterism (Ed), Thursday, 11 October 2018 19:28 (one year ago) link

OOOOH I DIDN'T KNOW THAT. Youtube was very educational.

There's more Italy than necessary. (in orbit), Thursday, 11 October 2018 19:37 (one year ago) link

The Opinel is the Platonic ideal of the simple folding knife. I have never seen its simplicity and functionality done better.

The Swiss Army knives are too multiform to pick one version as "the" Platonic ideal, but I strongly favor the Recruit variant: long blade, short blade, can opener w/ small screwdriver, bottle opener w/ large screwdriver, toothpick, tweezers.

nb: a corkscrew on a Swiss Army knive is only favored by poltroons; it is fsr too important a tool to exist as a subordinated afterthought on a knife.

A is for (Aimless), Thursday, 11 October 2018 20:26 (one year ago) link

I am completely sold on getting an opinel now.

Yerac, Thursday, 11 October 2018 20:30 (one year ago) link

I have one and I probably don't use it for anything other than opening packages and it's still a great tool

I have measured out my life in coffee shop loyalty cards (silby), Thursday, 11 October 2018 20:55 (one year ago) link

Leathermen (Leathermans?) and the like surpass the Swiss Army knife in actual multi tool utility. If I can have one thing that’ll be my one thing and the knife is usable but an opinel is an actual good knife.

American Fear of Pranksterism (Ed), Thursday, 11 October 2018 20:59 (one year ago) link

as a late-stage sufferer of smartphone poisoning I am increasingly drawn to single-purpose devices of all kinds; that's why I bought an electronic metronome instead of downloading an app etc.

I have measured out my life in coffee shop loyalty cards (silby), Thursday, 11 October 2018 21:01 (one year ago) link

I was going to get something to hold the stone then realized that I could just use the sanituff board with towels and maybe a brick on top.

Yerac, Tuesday, 27 November 2018 11:50 (ten months ago) link

two months pass...

I am very into sharpening knives on the whetstone now. I think I have the touch.

Yerac, Thursday, 21 February 2019 01:27 (seven months ago) link


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