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Time for a New Knife?

al b. darned Jul 11, 2012 04:04 PM

I have a 7" Wüsthof Grand Prix Santoku (Original, not GP II) with what used to be called "kullens" ground into the blade, similar to this:
http://www.williams-sonoma.com/produc...

Over the years, sharpening has worn it down so now the edge is well into the hollow ground area. This has made the edge uneven. Is it time to look for another?

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  1. petek RE: al b. darned Jul 11, 2012 04:31 PM

    Time for a New Knife?

    Yes,yes it is..... :-D

    1 Reply
    1. re: petek
      Chemicalkinetics RE: petek Jul 11, 2012 05:26 PM

      Is it? Is it really? :D

    2. k
      knifesavers RE: al b. darned Jul 11, 2012 04:38 PM

      Post a pic up. Maybe and maybe not time to replace it. A true Ganton edge is in the dimples and is fine.

      http://www.granton-knives.co.uk/grant...

      1. petek RE: al b. darned Jul 11, 2012 06:01 PM

        New knife,granton edges are overrated anyway....

        1 Reply
        1. re: petek
          Sam Salmon RE: petek Jul 11, 2012 10:27 PM

          Any time is The time for a new knife!

        2. cowboyardee RE: al b. darned Jul 11, 2012 11:01 PM

          Two questions:
          How do you sharpen?
          &
          Could you post a pic?

          Sharpening a knife into the hollows doesn't necessarily ruin a knife. Often, it's no problem at all. If you're well into the hollows, depending on how you sharpen, you might find that the parts of the edge under the hollows begin to retreat just a bit (that is, they no longer touch the board while you're cutting), and that can be a problem.

          I'm also inclined to side with Petek - you really don't need too much of an excuse to buy a new knife. They're like old knives but shinier.

          5 Replies
          1. re: cowboyardee
            j
            JavaBean RE: cowboyardee Jul 12, 2012 08:44 AM

            Hi cowboyardee. Is there a way to get a good edge on one – after the edge recedes into the dimples? I tried a couple times and eventually gave up.

            1. re: JavaBean
              Chemicalkinetics RE: JavaBean Jul 12, 2012 08:55 AM

              I believe so. While I have never work with the situation you described, I have worked with knives with "wavy" or "uneven" edge. Basically, some areas along the knife edge is hollowed out. They are not designed, but they have the same challenge as the granton edge. I find it to be helpful to first grind the knife edge along and parallel with the length of the knife, as oppose the typical perpendicular motion. I remember cowboy has a different technique to handle this, and I will let he describes his version.

              1. re: JavaBean
                cowboyardee RE: JavaBean Jul 12, 2012 10:14 AM

                You can get a good edge once it retreats into the dimples, in most cases. There are possible exceptions if the dimples are very deep or if the temper of the steel that high on the knife is off for one reason or another.

                Again, 2 questions -
                Exactly what problem did you have? (wavy edge, retreating edge at the dimples, or just increasing difficulty achieving a sharp edge)
                Also how do you sharpen? (i seem to recall you're a fellow freehand sharpener, but I'm not positive)

                Assuming the most likely problems (the edge is retreating at the dimples or else is becoming wavy) and that you are indeed a freehand sharpener, the solution is pretty much what chem said - sharpen lengthwise on the stone so that more of the edge is contacting the stone at once, and so any retreating parts of the knife's edge aren't touching the stone until the edge is more even. More or less the same technique I describe here:
                http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/8464...

                One more thing that will help - thin behind the edge. That is, sharpen at a more acute angle to thin the shoulder or top of the edge bevel. Basically, you're trying to make the edge bevel a little less uneven in width, so that future sharpening doesn't tend as much to warp or retreat the cutting edge over time.

                1. re: cowboyardee
                  j
                  JavaBean RE: cowboyardee Jul 12, 2012 11:22 AM

                  Thanks cowboyardee. Yes, I’ve been sharpening free hand for quite some time now. I recall making some sectional and lengthwise passes, but only parts of the edge would contact the stone. I thought leveling the bevel area to get the high and low spot more even might do it, but I was reluctant to try b/c the knives belonged to my wife co-workers. My sis-in-law has one, so I’ll give it a try on hers.

                  Hey Chemicalkinetics. Speaking of wavy edges, the old sabatier (restoration guinea pig) that I just got was twisted like a snake. I bent it and then stuck in a vice a couple of days…got straight enough to make working on resetting the edge / fixing the divot much easier.

                2. re: JavaBean
                  TraderJoe RE: JavaBean Jul 12, 2012 10:29 AM

                  If the edge is ground into the dimples it's past time for a new knife IMO.

              2. al b. darned RE: al b. darned Jul 12, 2012 12:36 PM

                Knife Pics. One of what it looked like new and two of what it looks like now.

                 
                 
                 
                6 Replies
                1. re: al b. darned
                  Chemicalkinetics RE: al b. darned Jul 12, 2012 12:59 PM

                  You can keep on sharepning it, but it may also be easier tor you to buy a new knife. Maybe it is a sign for you to get a Japanese made Santoku now. :P

                  1. re: Chemicalkinetics
                    al b. darned RE: Chemicalkinetics Jul 12, 2012 01:44 PM

                    Something like that would probably too nice to use, lest I ruin it. I have a set of wood chisels my Dad gave me like that .Now where's that Ginsu knife?

                    1. re: al b. darned
                      Chemicalkinetics RE: al b. darned Jul 12, 2012 02:17 PM

                      <Something like that would probably too nice to use,>

                      I believe you can get a good Japanese made Santoku at a lower or equal price point of your Wusthof Santoku.

                      1. re: Chemicalkinetics
                        al b. darned RE: Chemicalkinetics Jul 13, 2012 09:17 AM

                        Recommendations?

                        1. re: al b. darned
                          Chemicalkinetics RE: al b. darned Jul 13, 2012 10:37 AM

                          I have so many recommendations, but I will list just two for now.

                          For a stainless steel knife:

                          Tojiro DP Santoku for $70:

                          http://www.chefknivestogo.com/todpsak...

                          For a carbon steel edge knife:

                          Hiromoto AS Santoku for $92-114:

                          http://japanesechefsknife.com/TenmiJy...

                          1. re: Chemicalkinetics
                            al b. darned RE: Chemicalkinetics Jul 13, 2012 11:51 AM

                            Thanks, Chem. Now I just need to thin down the list before I give it to Santa...if I can wait that long.

                2. al b. darned RE: al b. darned Jul 13, 2012 08:57 AM

                  Hmmmm.... I think I found the answer to my question. This guy sharpens knives for a living and "reviews" knives that come thru his shop. In his review of my knife he sez:

                  >>>
                  the scalloping is not very evenly spaced from the edge, and in some places too close to the edge. That poses knife life expectancy issue, in simpler words after N number of sharpenings, the edge will be hitting the scalloped sections and the knife will be pretty much useless and not really sharpenable either.
                  >>>

                  http://zknives.com/knives/kitchen/ktk...

                  Note: he doesn't speak too well of Shuns, either.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: al b. darned
                    Chemicalkinetics RE: al b. darned Jul 13, 2012 10:34 AM

                    The zknives guy is a knife expert. Shuns are decent knives. My undersrtanding is that most people criticize Shun knives because you can get similar quality lesser-known knives at a lower price point.

                    1. re: al b. darned
                      cowboyardee RE: al b. darned Jul 13, 2012 12:27 PM

                      I like zknives and I've learned a lot from that blogger, but I actually kind of disagree with him there, Usually, after N number of sharpenings causing the edge to hit the scalloped sections, the knife is still sharpenable and still basically usable. It can be trickier to sharpen, and that may depend on sharpening technique. I wonder if his use of the edgepro led him to say that (an edgepro, while great, would make this particular job harder and also makes it harder to thin the shoulders of the bevels down, which usually helps this kind of situation), or if it was just an offhand statement.

                      I'm not trying to argue that you should keep this knife and not get another, BTW. Your knife has clearly seen better days, and there are so many great options available to you (Chem named a couple). I'm just saying that it's still possible to put a useful edge on it if you want to do so, and I'm sort of surprised and baffled that zknives would say otherwise.

                    2. al b. darned RE: al b. darned Jul 21, 2012 09:18 PM

                      Update:
                      I purchased this one as a stopgap until I decide on a "good" one:
                      http://www.cutleryandmore.com/victori...
                      But after using this one a couple of times, it may be a while before I feel the need for a "better" one. It arrived razor sharp and passed the paper and tomato tests with flying colors. The handle isn't as chunky as my Forschner boning knife, but about the same as the Wusthof it replaces. It is light and well balanced. At $25, it's a steal.

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: al b. darned
                        Chemicalkinetics RE: al b. darned Jul 21, 2012 09:22 PM

                        Nice. Enjoy the great value Victorinox Santoku

                        1. re: Chemicalkinetics
                          Sam Salmon RE: Chemicalkinetics Jul 21, 2012 10:12 PM

                          I does love me a Santoku!

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