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All Clad knives

n
NotJuliaChild Mar 3, 2013 04:19 PM

Does anyone own any?

If so, please post your thoughts.

Thanks.

http://www.estore.all-clad.com/Collec...

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  1. Chemicalkinetics Mar 3, 2013 08:31 PM

    No, I don't own them, and I have not heard much about them. They do look nice. Based on All Clad information, it is a steel harden to HRC 59, with a steel grade which it calls C1 Mo.75 Ch18. This most likely means a stainless steel with 1% carbon, 0.75% molybdenum and 18% chromium. I don't know exactly what it is, but it is the same as the 440C composition, so I have a strong feeling it is 440C steel.

    http://zknives.com/knives/steels/stee...

    Based on the steel composition and its hardness, I am speculating it to be a moderately high quality knives like Wusthof or Henckels. The price point also look to be about the same.

    Give it a try (if they allow you to try). See how it feels compare to a typical Henckels or Wusthof.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Chemicalkinetics
      n
      NotJuliaChild Mar 4, 2013 05:21 PM

      Thanks. This is helpful.

    2. petek Mar 4, 2013 03:29 PM

      Good looking knives,never used one though.Nice sale going on at Bloomingdale's.

      1. k
        kitchenknifeguru Mar 4, 2013 11:11 PM

        Ditto, Chemicalkinetics comment. But a few things to add:

        - All-Clad has a great reputation in pots and pans. I swear by the ones I've had for 30 or more years. So, knowing this, these knives might be quite decent.

        - Knives are a very different product than pots and pans. And I'm always suspicious when a knifemaker is as skimpy on info as All Clad's is about these knives. They're asking you to pay $150 for an 8-inch chef for heaven's sake and that's all they're going to say? But they do say a lot about "USA made" and that is what they are banking on.

        - There are quite a few other knives in this price range from major brands that are going to be a sure thing--products you can know more about and that have more of a track record. Why should you bother risking on a unknown quantity?

        - It's the handsome natural-wood handles, isn't it? They are great looking! But looks won't keep you going when you end up having to sharpen the blades all the time because they won't hold a decent edge.

        - Here are a couple of suggestions of other more unusual-looking knives you may not know about. Both are more expensive, but sport beautiful natural-wood handles and are high-quality with a proven reputation:

        1) Wüsthof Ikon Blackwood Knives:

        http://www.cutleryandmore.com/wusthof/ikon-blackwood.htm

        2) Wüsthof Epicure Knives:

        http://www.surlatable.com/product/PRO...

        Have fun learning more about knives!

        22 Replies
        1. re: kitchenknifeguru
          n
          NotJuliaChild Mar 5, 2013 03:00 PM

          I consider Wusthof and All-Clad knives to be homogenous, so far as the blade is concerned. Really, the only distinguishing factors are handle comfort and aesthetics.

          Price-wise, the All-Clad knives are actually less expensive than the Wusthof Ikon Blackwood.

          1. re: NotJuliaChild
            Chemicalkinetics Mar 5, 2013 05:13 PM

            Couple things to consider. If you can, you should see the Wusthof and All Clad side by side. I expect the quality of the two steels to be functionally similar. However, the blade thickness and blade geometry will be different. Take a look. They do matter. As for the handles, I have a Wusthof Ikon Blackwood knife. The Blackwood is essentially water proof. The wood does not get swelled up by water. The Wusthof knives are still mostly forged knives, and Ikon knives are forged with a reduced bolster.

            I am not sure if All Clad knives are forged or not. I really don't care if a knife is forged vs stamped, but many people do care, so I like to point this out.

            1. re: NotJuliaChild
              k
              kitchenknifeguru Mar 6, 2013 10:06 PM

              I don’t quite understand why you would consider Wusthof and All-Clad knives homogeneous, especially as far their blades are concerned. The quality of a decent blade is a knife’s most important element, and probably the most expensive aspect to produce. Wusthof, a family-owned business, has been making knife blades since 1814—over 150 years before All Clad even existed. All Clad only started “making” knives last September. Don’t you think that counts for something?

              My concern is that All-Clad is getting the steel (and maybe even roughly-hewed blades) from China, and then finishing the knives in the US and, thus, calling them US made. They are very cagey, fuzzy, and restrained in their descriptions about how the knives are made. Oh, the composition is proprietary. . .so now they think they’re Henckels. Where are the concrete credentials? Who’s doing quality control of the steel and the design and standing behind it? All Clad? Where’s the factory where the knives are being made? If their knives have so much quality going into them, why don’t they give us more details?

              Please don’t get me wrong, I don’t have anything invested in this. If you love the look of the knives, go out and buy them! Their fit and finish are beautiful and definitely match the established brands. But I wouldn’t automatically assume their blades (and steel) will match the quality of other brands that have a lot more experience making knives. They might. . .they might not. . . :)

              1. re: kitchenknifeguru
                j
                JavaBean Mar 7, 2013 07:11 AM

                +1.  I'm not familiar with them, but wouldn't assume their blades are on par with Wusthof.  Wusthof and many other German knife makers, typically use a blade steel called X50CrMoV15 ( or something similar) on their better knives, and German OEM knives often have some sort of "Solingen steel" labeling.

                Unless All-Clad is getting into the knife making business, their knives are likely OEM'd. Maybe by a US company like Lamson or someone in China/Taiwan.

                1. re: JavaBean
                  Chemicalkinetics Mar 7, 2013 08:26 AM

                  If All Clad's blade is what I suspect, that is if it is 440C, then it should be a decent steel. In fact, I think 440C can just as good if not better than Wusthof's X50CrMoV15. My concern is that All Clad is new to knife making, and I am almost certain that All Clad itself does not make the knives. Rather, some other companies make it for All Clad. Does All Clad designed the knives and then source the knife making to a knife company? Or does All Clad market the knives for this company? That I have no idea.

                  I will remain healthy skeptical until I see the All Clad knives in person.

                  1. re: Chemicalkinetics
                    k
                    kitchenknifeguru Mar 7, 2013 09:10 AM

                    My understanding is that, although the type of steel is important (especially as far as HRC hardness is concerned), the way it's been heated-treated can be equally important. It's the whole package!

                    Designing and manufacturing the steel for a knife blade is a serious biz. Even Henckels, behemoth that they are, when they entered the Japanese knife market bought an established Japanese knifemaker in the city of Seki, a knifemaking capital of the world. They worked closely with a major Japanese chef to give it credentials. The result--Miyabi.

                    1. re: kitchenknifeguru
                      Chemicalkinetics Mar 7, 2013 10:24 AM

                      < the way it's been heated-treated can be equally important>

                      Absolutely. If the steel is good, but the heat treat is poor, then the knife is still bad. However, if the steel is bad, then it is just bad. So, at least, All Clad probably uses a good steel. It does not mean the knives are good, but at least they MAY be good. Whereas if All Clad was making its knives from 420 grade steel, then we can just throw our hands up.

                      <Even Henckels, behemoth that they are, when they entered the Japanese knife market bought an established Japanese knifemaker in the city of Seki>

                      Right. Henckels does not have the technology or rather the mindset and tradition to make the Japanese knives, so for them to enter the Japanese knife market, it is much more efficient to buy a Japanese knifemaker -- essentially buy to learn.

                      1. re: kitchenknifeguru
                        j
                        JavaBean Mar 8, 2013 07:40 AM

                        Your spot on.  In my mind, heat treating the steel is akin to cooking a steak.  If you severely under / over cook it, the quality of the steak is irrelevant.  Plus, variations in the makers' ht process can make the steel behave differently than others - even though the steel is the same. 

                        +1 on the Miyabi line.  IMO, the combination of German (manufacturing, QC, f&f, ergo) + Japanese (steels and blade smithing) + competitive pricing, retail distribution makes them one of the better if not best brick & mortar knives current available. 

                        1. re: JavaBean
                          Chemicalkinetics Mar 8, 2013 08:44 AM

                          Or you can get really bad combination too. It took Henckels/Miyabi awhile to get it right. The first few Miyabi they launched got subpar reviews, like the 600S, 5000S, 7000, 7000D, 7000MC, 7000 MCD. The knife design was not optimal, the price was high...etc. 600S and 5000S are actually German steel knives with HRC 57.

                          It wasn't until probably the Miyabi Fusion, Kaizen, Birchwood, Artisan that it is finally getting right. Even now, I still feel Miyabi a bit thick in my opinion. I bought a Miyabi Artisan Che'f knife.Still, the Miyabi knives are are really good compared where they once were.

                          1. re: Chemicalkinetics
                            j
                            JavaBean Mar 8, 2013 09:53 AM

                            The initial Miyabi line didn't catch my attention and guess they weren't that great. The Miyabi in not as thin or anorexic as other knives, but I don't find it's thickness an issue. In what way to you see the Miyabi as thick?

                            What's your take on the SG2 artisan? A friend at work is eyeballing it.

                            1. re: JavaBean
                              Chemicalkinetics Mar 8, 2013 11:55 AM

                              < In what way to you see the Miyabi as thick?>

                              Just a feel. I bought the knife for a friend, so I didn't get to use it, but looks slightly thick to me for a Japanese knife. It is not as thick as an European knife. I prefer thinner knives usually because they allow me to glide through the foods much better. I don't mean to bash the new Miyabi. I do think nicely of them.

                              <What's your take on the SG2 artisan?>

                              I actually think it is a good knife especially for someone who previously used German knife. I think it is slightly thinner, but not too thin for a new user. The SG-2 will be hold its edge very well. It will be tough to sharpen, but it won't be a problem if he goes to a professional knife sharpener. The 8" Chef's knife is still having a very good sale price. $140 for a SG-2 steel knife. Not a bad deal.

                              http://www.surlatable.com/product/PRO...

                              1. re: Chemicalkinetics
                                j
                                JavaBean Mar 8, 2013 01:25 PM

                                Thanks Chem, don't worry about offending me. I prefer my advanced jknives as well, and recently got another yangiba (blue #1) and usuba (white #2). But, my jknives aren't a good of a choice for non knife enthusiasts.

                                I'm often asked to suggest something better than the typical German knife, but less advanced than knife nut class knives, hense the Miyabi and other brick and mortar knives.

                                The artisan seems like a killer deal. I'll likely be the one sharpening it, what's the challenge with SG-2? Is it a pita like tool grade steels?

                                1. re: JavaBean
                                  Chemicalkinetics Mar 8, 2013 01:34 PM

                                  <Thanks Chem, don't worry about offending me>

                                  Nah, I didn't think I offend you

                                  :P

                                  I was worry that I might have given you the impression that I think lowly of Miyabi which isn't entirely accurate. I do like the new ones and the prices are attractive. They are slightly thicker blade than what I would like, but I can say that just about any of my knives. I wish my CCK knives have better handles and a touch better edge retention (edge retention is acceptable, but not great like blue steel or white steel). I wish my Tojiro DP is not so generic and has some characters. I definitely wish my Watanabe nakiri has a better handle. It has a very nice blade, but probably the worst handle on a good knife.

                                  < I'll likely be the one sharpening it, what's the challenge with SG-2?>

                                  Why would you be the one sharpen your friend's knife?! I actually have not sharpened a SG-2. What I know from people I trust is that SG-2 steel takes longer to grind.

                                  < Is it a pita like tool grade steels?>

                                  I have sharpened tool steel knives, and they are not that horrible. So I can only assume the SG-2 powder steel to be worse?!

                                  1. re: Chemicalkinetics
                                    j
                                    JavaBean Mar 8, 2013 02:54 PM

                                    I'm with you, I have minor nits with mine as well and really want to learn how to make some handles.

                                    They know I'm into knives and sharpening, plus I usually do it for free. Anyway, I just did a bunch Benchmade knives in D2. They're not tricky or anything, just take a lot of strokes to sharpen. If SG-2 sucks, I'm going to ask for lunch or something.

                                    1. re: Chemicalkinetics
                                      k
                                      kitchenknifeguru Mar 8, 2013 09:27 PM

                                      For what it's worth, the guy at zKnives.com has run some pretty thorough reviews on some Miyabis. You might find it helpful and informative to peruse. It's funny you find the Miyabi's thick, because he comments on how thin they are. (And he, like you, is an aficionado of Japanese knives!)

                                  2. re: Chemicalkinetics
                                    k
                                    kitchenknifeguru Mar 8, 2013 09:37 PM

                                    This knife looks like a great deal to me! And it's not just a pretty face. Also, my impression is that the custom handle is especially well designed, and more comfortable than the traditional D.

                          2. re: Chemicalkinetics
                            j
                            JavaBean Mar 8, 2013 07:41 AM

                            Chem, your guess of 440c is good enough for me and yeah 440c and X50CrMoV15 - are in the same class.  I highly doubt All Clad is making them, and don't know if they outsourced them or are getting paid to put their name them.  In either case, the All-clad name ( which means nothing to knives) is not enough to consider them over more well established  knives in the same price class.

                            1. re: JavaBean
                              Chemicalkinetics Mar 8, 2013 08:47 AM

                              <In either case, the All-clad name ( which means nothing to knives) is not enough to consider them over more well established knives in the same price class.>

                              I know, but hey, you always need to cheer for the little guys, right? In this case, All Clad (ironically enough) is the little guy.

                              By the way, I just came across a quote by Benjamin Franklin, which probably better expresses what I wanted to say:

                              “There never was a good knife made of bad steel.”

                              1. re: Chemicalkinetics
                                j
                                JavaBean Mar 8, 2013 09:58 AM

                                I like underdogs, but they have makeit better and/or cheaper than the competition. As far as I can tell, AC has done neither.

                                1. re: Chemicalkinetics
                                  k
                                  kitchenknifeguru Mar 8, 2013 09:29 PM

                                  Love the Ben Franklin quote (and it rings so true), but sounds to good to be actually said by him. I wonder if there's a way to track down the source. . . :)

                                  1. re: kitchenknifeguru
                                    Chemicalkinetics Mar 9, 2013 06:21 AM

                                    I totally understand. Many so-called Washington's and Lincoln's quotes were not from them, they were fabricated. But I like to think people fabricated mostly Presidents' stuffs, and Ben was not a president. More importantly, as you said, the quote itself is good. It would be nice if it is from Ben Franklin, but it is equally good if it is not from him.

                                    As for zknives, the guy is great and knows tons. I am nothing compare to him. I actually have read his reviews on these knives before and in fact they are some of the reasons why I considered getting the Miyabi as a gift. I don't know. The knife I bought definitely felt heavy, and I contribute that to blade thickness, and the handle. Mind you, they are not Henckels Four Stars heavy. I didn't measure the spine width. It does not look thick-thick, but it is not thin. Based on the two zknives reviews on Miyabi, they are about 2.2-2.3 mm thick (not sure if they are at the heel or center). This is thicker than Tojiro DP gyuto which is 1.8 mm at the spine heel area, and 1.7 mm spine thickness at the center. I know spine thickness can be misleading especially the heel area spine thickness, but it is a ok guideline.

                                    I have mix feelings about the Artisan handle. It is very beautiful. It is very well made without any gap or any misfitting. I didn't find it extra comfortable or uncomfortable -- but that is because I use a pinch grip, so my hand barely touch the handle. Again, I felt the handle slightly heavy. (I know there I go again). But it makes sense. If the blade is heavy, then you will need a slightly heavy handle to balance it out. Overall, a great knife. Hey, I won't have bought it for my friend if I don't like the knife.

                            2. re: JavaBean
                              g
                              GH1618 Mar 7, 2013 09:36 AM

                              Lamson is in Massachusetts. The All-Clad knives are reported to be made in Pennsylvania.

                      2. n
                        NotJuliaChild Mar 5, 2013 02:54 PM

                        According to All-Clad, the blade angle is 14 degrees. They recommend professional sharpening if the sharpening steel no longer gets the job done.

                        The metallurgical composition is proprietary.

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