For Japanese knife enthusiasts....

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Bemopti123

Re: For Japanese knife enthusiasts....
« Reply #60 on: 22 Jul 2010, 12:22 am »
Lou, those Kramer knives look fantasic but I believe that each one of his signature creations will be as expensive as a pair of good speakers(no hint intended) and you can tell this when even Shun has used his knives as exemplars to
mass produce their knives that sell for $150,00.00!


Pez

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Re: For Japanese knife enthusiasts....
« Reply #61 on: 22 Jul 2010, 01:31 am »
Damascus and folded japanese steel are often confused but are very different. The Shuns are traditionally folded blades. No kind of etching would produce the pattern you see in the metal, almost like a wood grain. Now the edge of the blade may be etched in order to produce the Hamon look which is a result obtained normally by differentially clay treated steel, but often an imitation look is achieved using chemicals which in the case of a knife is perfectly fine. I do have an actual Katana with both folded steel and differentially hardened blade which is just breath taking. Maybe I'll post a pic or two later on...

Rob Babcock

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Re: For Japanese knife enthusiasts....
« Reply #62 on: 22 Jul 2010, 02:13 am »
Yes, there are a lot of terms being thrown around that are often misunderstood.  The terms Damascus is generally used to refer to two dissimilar products.  The first is a type of cladding, particularly used on Japanese knives.  The stuff Shun uses is produced by Takefu Special Steel Co.,Ltd. based in Echizen City, Fukui Prefecture.  It's a blend of relatively soft steel that's roller laminated to VG-10 (or Super-Gold II for the higher end knives) under tremendous pressure.  This stock is supplied to many manufacturers.  IIRC, all VG-10 comes from Takefu, but I can't swear to that.  Even some very expensive knives like the Hattori KD are made from "faux Damascus"- although perhaps a more correct term would be suminagashi (roughly "ink" or sometimes "marble").  Hattori makes the KD by drilling and hammering, creating a swirling suminagashi pattern.  Etching is the process of using a solution of acid to make the pattern "pop."  It's just for looks, and after etching the blade will actually be a bit rough feeling and cut less smoothly for awhile.

"True" Damascus as we understand it today refers to Wootz steel.  It's really a pretty modern material, dating back only to the 1980's.  There are others who've made laminated materials and called them "Damascus" but the fact is no one has conclusively demonstrated that they've reproduced the ancient recipe, although there have been many claims.  Today a pretty "authentic" Wootz style product is being made by Chad Nichols, Mike Sakmar, Bob Kramer, & Devin Thomas.  Devin actually has supplied Kramer with some stock; he's a genius at the stuff.  Of the top of my head I can't think of any kitchen knife that you could call true damascus that isn't made by either Bob or Devin.  But I might be overlooking somebody.

"Real" Damascus is very expensive to make, and has some advantages and disadvantages re standard forms of steel.  As nice as Bob's stuff is, his pricing is $300 per inch at the moment IIRC, and the wait is about 3 years.  Devin's work is also stunning and a "bargain" at just over $100 per inch.

So, no- a mass market Shun, Hattori, Tojiro, Hiromoto, Masamoto, Kanetsune or Ryu-Sen is not true Damascus but that's really irrelevent.  They all are thin, light and cut very well.  The Shun Kramers are made the same basic way the other Shuns are but they use Bob's unique shape (based on an old sailboat) and are very good mass market knives nonetheless.

Bemopti123

Re: For Japanese knife enthusiasts....
« Reply #63 on: 22 Jul 2010, 02:16 am »
Thanks Robert for the very informative post, dispelling all wrong notions about what IS and IT IS NOT about Damascus type of knives.

rahimlee54

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Re: For Japanese knife enthusiasts....
« Reply #64 on: 22 Jul 2010, 02:25 am »
Rob where do you knife forum sir?  You sure do have alot of specific knowledge  :thumb:.

Never mind I found you at the forum I use.

Thanks
Jared

lonewolfny42

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Re: For Japanese knife enthusiasts....
« Reply #65 on: 22 Jul 2010, 04:54 am »
just saw this thread.  Bob Kramer is the man for Damascus kitchen knives.  he's also a great guy who loves audio (he has a pair of Daedalus & a Modwright KWA150) he's even been to a couple of RMAF with me. I have two of his knives on my sailboat (that's home) and they do very well as far as rust... and as for sharp, after fiver years of daily use they still beat a razor and I haven't touched them to a steel yet!

check him out!

http://www.kramerknives.com/

lou

I remember watching this on TV..... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-OCoS81G2CY

Rob Babcock

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Re: For Japanese knife enthusiasts....
« Reply #66 on: 22 Jul 2010, 06:01 pm »
Yeah, I haunt a few different forums. :wink:  You pick up stuff just working in restaurants for a couple decades, too. :eyebrows:

SET Man

Re: For Japanese knife enthusiasts....
« Reply #67 on: 23 Jul 2010, 04:23 am »
Hey!

    Rob, very informative indeed. :D

I remember watching this on TV..... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-OCoS81G2CY


     Pretty amazing and beautiful damascus stuffs from this guy and made here in the USA!  :o

Take care,
Buddy :thumb:

SET Man

Re: For Japanese knife enthusiasts....
« Reply #68 on: 23 Jul 2010, 04:52 am »
Hey!

  Well, finally it's happened.....





   It was a bit busy in the kitchen today and I think I didn't give a completely wipe dry before I stick it back in the saya. What surprised me is that this happened over the period of about 7 hours. :o

   Hmm... the downside of using high carbon knife. I knew this will come. But the good news.... well it is still sharp as hell. And seems to retain sharpness better than my VG10 stainless steel knife.

Take care,
Buddy :thumb:

Rob Babcock

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Re: For Japanese knife enthusiasts....
« Reply #69 on: 23 Jul 2010, 07:34 am »
That'll come right off.  You might wanna force a patina on the edge- it will prevent it from rusting in the future.  There's lots of ways to do that; vinegar, mustard, apples or onions, etc etc.

Bemopti123

Re: For Japanese knife enthusiasts....
« Reply #70 on: 23 Jul 2010, 01:04 pm »
Hey!

  Well, finally it's happened.....

Take care
Buddy :thumb:

Call is Buddy Damascus like finish :icon_twisted:

But honestly, that is the pain with that sort of knife material.  Do not fret, even my own knife once had a rust spot when I exposed it for a long period to water....even though it is claimed to be "Stain resistant"...which obviously does not mean "Stain proof."

SET Man

Re: For Japanese knife enthusiasts....
« Reply #71 on: 23 Jul 2010, 04:14 pm »
Call is Buddy Damascus like finish :icon_twisted:

But honestly, that is the pain with that sort of knife material.  Do not fret, even my own knife once had a rust spot when I exposed it for a long period to water....even though it is claimed to be "Stain resistant"...which obviously does not mean "Stain proof."

Hey!

   Paul, its in it nature with this type of knives. And I know it will happen sooner or later. Man! But this happened in about 7 hours from the time I put it back in the saya after some prep works and I took it out later when I got home to oil it.  :o

   I've seen old carbon knives and the chef I work with right now like it and swear by it. All his knives are old carbon steel. He told me they are French made I think. And they are all stained but sharp as hell!

   Well, it sure got a character to it. :D

That'll come right off.  You might wanna force a patina on the edge- it will prevent it from rusting in the future.  There's lots of ways to do that; vinegar, mustard, apples or onions, etc etc.

    Come right off? I know that it can be remove using rust eraser. Is that what you mean?

      Thanks for the tip I might try it. Well, I do chop onion on regular basis so I'm sure that will do  :icon_lol:

Take care,
Buddy :thumb:

Rob Babcock

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Re: For Japanese knife enthusiasts....
« Reply #72 on: 23 Jul 2010, 06:43 pm »
Rust eraser or just polish it.  Being careful of the edge, of course.

SET Man

Re: For Japanese knife enthusiasts....
« Reply #73 on: 25 Nov 2010, 02:09 am »
Hey!

   Just want to pass this along. Korin is having a knife accessories sale...

http://korin.com/site/home.html

   But the sale end Nov. 30. A bit of a short notice but here is a good chance to pick up some good stones and etc.

Take care,
Buddy :thumb:

Rob Babcock

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Re: For Japanese knife enthusiasts....
« Reply #74 on: 25 Nov 2010, 02:54 am »
Nice!  Now would be a good time to pick up a saya or some stones, if they have what you're looking for.  Korin is good to deal with. :thumb:

taoggniklat

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Re: For Japanese knife enthusiasts....
« Reply #75 on: 25 Nov 2010, 08:08 pm »
I like my Tojiro's....

270MM Chef Knife
90mm Paring
170mm Honesuke


Rob Babcock

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Re: For Japanese knife enthusiasts....
« Reply #76 on: 26 Nov 2010, 05:38 am »
I have 3 Tojiros- a 240mm Gyuto, a 240mm Western Deba & a Nakiri.

SET Man

Re: For Japanese knife enthusiasts....
« Reply #77 on: 26 Nov 2010, 03:49 pm »
Nice!  Now would be a good time to pick up a saya or some stones, if they have what you're looking for.  Korin is good to deal with. :thumb:

Hey!

     I've just got email from Korin. Now knives are on sale too!

http://korin.com/site/home.html

      I think the sale still end Nov. 30.

     Hmmm.... maybe I should pick up another Misono... tempting.  :icon_lol:

Take care,
Buddy :thumb:

Bemopti123

Re: For Japanese knife enthusiasts....
« Reply #78 on: 26 Nov 2010, 03:56 pm »
Hey!

     I've just got email from Korin. Now knives are on sale too!

http://korin.com/site/home.html

      I think the sale still end Nov. 30.

     Hmmm.... maybe I should pick up another Misono... tempting.  :icon_lol:

Take care,
Buddy :thumb:


hahaha, is it passion or obsession?  Men with all the electronics with thousands of volts passing through it or interest in intricate mechanism or with sharp, deadly objects...   :thumb:

turkey

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Re: For Japanese knife enthusiasts....
« Reply #79 on: 26 Nov 2010, 04:33 pm »

"True" Damascus as we understand it today refers to Wootz steel.  It's really a pretty modern material, dating back only to the 1980's.

"Damascus steel" and "wootz" are the same thing and they date back more than 2000 years. "Damascus steel" was simply what the Westerners called pattern-welded steel.

Quote
"Real" Damascus is very expensive to make, and has some advantages and disadvantages re standard forms of steel.  As nice as Bob's stuff is, his pricing is $300 per inch at the moment IIRC, and the wait is about 3 years.  Devin's work is also stunning and a "bargain" at just over $100 per inch.

Pattern-welded steel can be _very_ time-consuming to make if done manually by a bladesmith. So, it is thus going to be more expensive than a plain forged blade from the same smith.

There are also pattern-welded steels that are more mass-produced, and they can work out quite well.

Quote
So, no- a mass market Shun, Hattori, Tojiro, Hiromoto, Masamoto, Kanetsune or Ryu-Sen is not true Damascus but that's really irrelevent.  They all are thin, light and cut very well.  The Shun Kramers are made the same basic way the other Shuns are but they use Bob's unique shape (based on an old sailboat) and are very good mass market knives nonetheless.

Other than looks, pattern-welded steel is of dubious utility for modern blades. Like other steels, it can be good or bad, suitable or unsuitable. However, it's almost always more expensive, and unless you're buying a blade for show is probably not cost-effective.

A laminated blade, on the other hand, can work out very well. It lets the edge be made out of very hard steel that would be too brittle or too hard to work with to make an entire blade out of. I have a couple of knives made of Sandvik laminated steel that work extremely well.

Some very skilled bladesmiths are able to temper the edge of a blade differently than the spine. You can often see a change in the steel at the point where the temper changes. This also allows for things like a hard edge with a softer spine for flexibility.

Here's a pattern-welded blade with a differentiated temper.




When I was younger I was very into cutlery and read everything I could find on it, plus I went to shows and talked to various smiths and knifemakers. My favorite pattern-welded steels always came from Daryl Meier.