Jun 14, 2011

Knives I Recommend Part 2 Yoshihide

Continued from Knives I Recommend Part 1 Shigefusa.

Sanjo Yoshihide is my private brand made by Yoshida san at Yoshikane Hamono.
I chose Yoshikane because his knives are free forged, have similar geometry (distal taper spine) like Shigefusa and he can make semi SS and (semi)SS knives because he has a gas forge which is capable to go higher temperature.

He can make the free forged knives at more affordable price because he uses laminated bars.
(Do not misunderstand it to laminated sheets which are not free forged and just stamped out - these are used to make less quality double bevel knives and do not have the distal taper spine)

Yoshida san has 2 different laminated bars now.
SKD is semi SS and is JIS  SKD12 or ANSI A2. It has a soft SS clad.
SLD is (semi) SS (some say SS to it some say semi SS) and is JIS SKD11 or ANSI D2. It has a Sekisou (Damaskus) SS clad.

He made knives with VG10 before but he thinks A2 and D2 are better (Easier to sharpen and better edge retention).

So my recommendations:

1. Semi SS SKD knives double bevel
1.1 SKD Gyuto Migaki (Kasumi) wa handle  180mm to 270mm
Very good knife as workhorse in pro kitchen and also home kitchen because it is semi SS and does not have to be cared like a carbon knife.
Sharpening is relative easy (but not as easy like a  carbon steel knife) for a semi SS knife and gives relative very good edge. Edge retention is very good.
It has a very good  price (It is lower than the Suji in same steel and same lengths)
The spine is distal tapered and has similar geometry to a Shigefusa.

1.2 SKD Petite Migaki (Kasumi) wa handle  75mm to 180mm
Same as the Gyuto. It is also very good if you want to try the SKD steel.
You can have it in petite form as also as a paring knife as you can see in the picture (the lines).

1.3 SKD Suji Migaki (Kasumi) wa handle 210mm to 270mm
Also a workhorse. It is a bit higher in price for same length as gyuto but it is worth every Yen.

All these knives above can be made with a western handle.
There are 2 types of handles

This is the "stock handle" and it made by black reinforced wood. It can be used to petite too.

This is a Bubinga handle. It is bigger and I recommend it for bigger knives.
I am working now to reinforce and buff it to make the look better.

These western knives are made by welding the bolster to the blade. The price is only about 10% to 30% higher than the wa handles (Shigefusa full bolster western handle are up to double the price of wa handles because it is made by free forging)

2. SLD (semi) SS knives with Sekisou (Damaskus)

There are 2 finish for this steel. The SLD Migaki Sekisou (Damaskus) and the SLD KU Sekisou (Damaskus).
I recommend the SLD KU Sekisou (Damaskus) for all the double bevel knives. It is  not only for the better look (the contrast is higher) but because Yoshida san hammers the blade more to make it flat as possible resulting to more thinner spine and  blade.
The blade must be more flat after free forging because you cannot grind to much steel off after heat treatment to make this finish.

3. Other special order knives by your sketch.
As I wrote here The Story of the Chopper you can custom order any knife to Yoshida san. But the order must be more than 3. If you have an idea to make your knife get 2 friends who want it too.

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