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ceramic knives

Does anyone have experience with and opinions about ceramic knives? I was watching Ming Tsai on TV and am talking about the kind of white ceramic knife that he is seen using.

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  1. No experience with ceramic knives, but Ming Tsai promotes them.

    1. I've had a 6 inch white ceramic knife for about 4 years...it is my favorite knife, even over my Global ones. It holds an edge for ages, but it's difficult to find places that are trained to sharpen them.

      1. People have said they're nice and sharp generally, and don't dull with fruit acids, etc., like some other knives purportedly can. But some have mentioned you can't be a klutz and drop them - something about their strength being only in the direction of the cut and at least a little fragility otherwise.

        2 Replies
        1. re: Cinnamon

          There's a youtube video of someone chucking around a kyocera, and it doen't appear to be visibly damaged. Not the best idea though

          1. re: Cinnamon

            I've recently bought one and found that it is great for cutting most things as far as you stay away from any bones / similarly stiff items.

          2. I've used the Kyocera ones. They are light weight and stays sharp longer than my Global, Henckel or Wustof of similar size. Great for chopping, dicing and carving. But they are expensive and brittle. I've seen 2 knives shatter from falling into a stone sink and falling on the floor. I'm hard on my knives and don't treat them well so I've avoided the temptation of purchasing ceramic.

            1. The Kyocera paring knives are great but fragile--not a quality I value in a paring knife meant for regular and sometimes rough use. Got one as a gift and busted it inside of a year after a drop to the kitchen floor.

              2 Replies
              1. re: Kagemusha

                I have to say though, although dropping a kyocera on a floor could well bust it, the same is true of other knives. They could easily be damaged to the point where they need to be extensively ground down, but I've also heard of two separate instances where global knives have been damaged beyond repair after less abuse. Possibly a design flaw in those two cases, but still.

                1. re: Soop

                  The most common break in a metal knife is the tip. A new tip can be formed with a coarse stone and then the edge can be finished and sharpened. Ceramics are very sharp and as been already stated brittle. They can be sharpened on diamond stones. For someone looking at a knife that can stay sharp for a long time and who has little interest maintaining the edge the ceramic is not a bad choice. You can send it to the manufacture for resharpening. Not on must have list but I understand the draw.

              2. I have a small Kyocera knife, it's sharp, it's "cool" looking, but the tip broke when I dropped it on the floor (wooden floor).

                Every time I use it, I'm kind of afraid that I will break/chip it; I'm not at peace when using it to do all sorts of "food" preparation.

                1. I have had a kyocera ceramic for about 8 years. I bought mine in Japan. It is a single bevel blade. The blade looks like a small santoku, about 5 1/2 inches. It is very light and sharp. The blade has a tendency to chip if I am not careful. I use it for small jobs like chopping green onions, mincing garlic, etc.

                  If you buy one, you will probably need to buy a sharpner as well unless you have a diamond sharpner. I have recently came across a simple diamond hone system for about $15. It holds the knife at the right angle and I slide the "stone" over the blade at horizontal. If you are a real anal about sharpening, this is not for you but this is fast, simple, and I can see what angle I am sharpening at.

                  1. I dropped and broke my 4 sun Kyocera petty knife after about 6 months. Just as well. I'm the kind that likes to tinker and make things better - so I enjoy sharpening my knives on my Japanese whetstones. The edge on the ceramic blade did indeed stay sharp for a very long time, but at the point I would have been either steeling my German blades or taking a few swipes on the stone with my Japanese ones, I stopped using the ceramic knife regularly. I couldn't bring myself to send it off for sharpening just yet, but I couldn't bring myself to use it. Silly me.

                    I think that ceramic blades are perfect for things you never sharpen and toss after a period of time - they'll last much longer than their steel counterparts. Things like mandolins:

                    and peelers:

                    But for knives, stay away, unless you're the type that doesn't like to tinker at all, and has no problem sending things off to get fixed (sharpened).

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: applehome

                      I have to agree with you on all of your conclusions, I have to ceramic knives with broken tips and chips in the blades thanks to past roommates. I'm not really interested in replacing them, they were good but not in any sort of "wow" way.

                      Ceramic mandolines and peelers however, are a heavily used group in my kitchen and really, really good applications of ceramic technology.

                    2. I also have a cheaper one of 6" white blade.only cost me $39.00.I use it to cut vegetable and meat only.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: kimdoner

                        What make is that one, and does it seem quite a bit sharper to you than any comparably priced nonceramic knives you've used? (Sharp for veggies and mincing is what I'm thinking.)

                      2. I have three of them. And a peeler.

                        I like them very much but you need to be extra careful with them as they can chip or break very easily.

                        You should not sharpen them yourself -- you need to send them off to Kyocera.

                        1. I've used Kyocera and Tachi both, Kyocera seems to get micro chips after several uses. Tachi holds up a little better and is half the price.