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Old 11-16-2020, 12:50 AM   #1
S21FOLGORE
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(Mostly) kitchen knives free hand sharpening videos


youtu.be/RpLNm-UTGTA

Sharpening Masamoto Hitachi White #2 Honyaki Yanagiba
Honest opinion after buying & using two of them in the last 12 years or so.
Also, a little bit about the lies and myth that's been floating around, about Yanagiba.

Are they worth the asking price?

Are they that difficult to sharpen?

What is the advantage of "honyaki"?

And, ... what is "honyaki", really?

(There are quite a bit of misinformation floating around on the net / youtube.
Not that it matters, since MOST everyone will never buy / handle them.
But, knowing the truth never hurt.)
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Old 11-16-2020, 07:04 AM   #2
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I have a couple of small, cheap ceramics that I adore.

One is a Kyocera 6" (maybe, perhaps it's 5"). It's maintained its sharpness for quite some time. Another is a 3-4" paring knife, nameless, "Good Cooks", something like that.

Keep them both in sheaths, let the rattle around in the silverware drawer.

I stay away from the metal knives as a rule, these are better.

I do need to send these off to the sharpener, if I can find a local one that uses a belt. Everyone else grinds them through one of those counter sharpeners, something I've not heard particularly good reviews of.

I will say, I have been meaning to look up to see is Kyocera can touch up the blade on the one I have. It's nice, but after 5+ years, I'm sure even it can use some touch up, if they can do it (I think they can).
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Old 11-16-2020, 08:17 AM   #3
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I thought the deal with ceramics was that they are sharp until they are busted, then you throw them away and get a new one.
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Old 11-16-2020, 10:34 AM   #4
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My gyuto finally got dull enough to be annoying and a bunch of my friends have complained about dull kitchen knives. So I've been on a whetstone sharpening kick lately. I even bought a leather strop & compound. Now that Ive sharpened my knives and some friends' (7 total) I need to flatten my stones. And hopefully I dont forget how to sharpen before the next time they dull.
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Old 11-16-2020, 09:24 PM   #5
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This reminds me. I bought a knife last time I was in Japan, it's getting a bit dull. Need to figure out how to sharpen it. I feel like the over the counter sharpeners will just ruin it.
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Old 11-23-2020, 12:21 AM   #6
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youtu.be/3aoZnvpGEwk

Masamoto Honyaki Yanagiba sharpening part2

Explanation of what is ura-oshi, what is ura-suki, and why they are so important.

There are a lot of Youtube video saying that Ura-Oshi / Ura-Suki (concave back side) is there for creating air-pocket, for food release.

Majority of the time, the food is released on the beveled side of the blade, so creating air pocket on the back side of the blade is totally meaningless.

Food release (on traditional Japanese knives) is the function of the primary bevel.

The "Ura-suki", " Ura-Oshi" is there to create flat, straight edge line on the back of the blade.
(Not just kitchen knives, but also wood working tools have Ura-Suki (concave backside).)

If there's no "Ura-Suki", you can't keep the back side straight. If the back side isn't straight, the knife doesn't cut well.
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Old 11-24-2020, 03:19 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by UDRider View Post
This reminds me. I bought a knife last time I was in Japan, it's getting a bit dull. Need to figure out how to sharpen it. I feel like the over the counter sharpeners will just ruin it.
ya, it probably has a grind that will be destroyed by most retail sharpeners. mine has a narrow angle and is single-sided. using one of those pull-through sharpeners would attempt to make it double sided with a wide angle

watch some 'Burrfection' on YT. then you can decide if you want to do it yourself or take it somewhere.
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Last edited by stangmx13; 11-24-2020 at 03:21 PM..
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Old 11-26-2020, 09:37 AM   #8
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Sharpening this knife to hair whittling sharp, and mini tip about the sharpening.


youtu.be/TBa9-KmtwUQ

Not a kitchen knife.
Small utility knife.


Spyderco VG-10 blades are excellent plat form for sharpening practice.
Not insanely hard, so it's (relatively) easy to get to the hair whittling sharp,
It's not soft either, so it'll hold up well in your everyday regular use.





Because of the small size + blade shape + (maybe) the orange handle color,
it looks far less intimidating than ... say, something with pointy tip + longer blade+ blacked out blade + camo handle ...

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Old 11-26-2020, 09:52 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by UDRider View Post
This reminds me. I bought a knife last time I was in Japan, it's getting a bit dull. Need to figure out how to sharpen it. I feel like the over the counter sharpeners will just ruin it.
Are you talking about those "pull-through" sharpeners?



They don't really sharpen your edge, actually.

These things have two pieces of carbide set at an angle, and they just roughen up your edge as you pull through your knife...



... fooling you think as if the knife got sharp.

It didn't.

They just chew up your blade, if you use them repeatedly.


You first want to check the grind of your knife.
(How it came with the factory.
Is is 50/50 double bevel?
Many Japanese kitchen knives come with 70/30 or 80/20 asymmetrical grind.

If you are happy with the way your knife has been performing, you should follow the factory grind.

You can change asymmetrical grind to symmetrical grind if that's what you prefer.
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Old 11-26-2020, 07:29 PM   #10
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does asymmetrical orientation matter if you use it left or right-handed? I switch back & forth so I don't have to rotate cutting board
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Old 11-28-2020, 10:11 AM   #11
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does asymmetrical orientation matter if you use it left or right-handed? I switch back & forth so I don't have to rotate cutting board
In theory, yes.
Asymmetrical edge pull to the less beveled side.

However, in the real life, it depends on ...

what you are cutting?
(meat / fish? vegetables / fruits? Outside of the kitchen knife world, are you using it for hunting / fishing? (cleaning up small game / fish), working on wood (feathering) ...)

How "asymmetrical" is the grind?
60/40? 80/20?

How "sensitive" are you?

So ... if you are mostly cutting up something soft, flexible, and grind is something like 60/40, you may not notice it, or you may, but it doesn't bother you.
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Old 11-28-2020, 01:55 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by S21FOLGORE View Post
They don't really sharpen your edge, actually.

These things have two pieces of carbide set at an angle, and they just roughen up your edge as you pull through your knife...
Last time (and it's been too long) I had my kitchen knives done, it was done the back of a van at a hardware store by a guy with a belt grinder.

The guy said most of his business is actually from sharpening scissors for hair dressers.

My friend took his wife's knives to one of those mall knife stores, and they used one of those "drag it through" spinning wheel knife things. They had a similar system at the Sur La Table store, where a clerk just fired the thing up and started dragging knives through it.

I don't know, save that "Alton Brown says so", but seems to me that the guy with the belt grinder doing it by hand and eye is perhaps doing a better job than the counter clerk at the cooking stuff store.
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Old 12-13-2020, 02:02 AM   #13
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youtu.be/sp7X0abrEPA

Masamoto Honyaki Yanagiba Part 2.5
One of the simplest, easiest decorative cut with Yanagiba .
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Old 12-13-2020, 05:23 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by S21FOLGORE View Post
Are you talking about those "pull-through" sharpeners?



They don't really sharpen your edge, actually.

These things have two pieces of carbide set at an angle, and they just roughen up your edge as you pull through your knife...



... fooling you think as if the knife got sharp.

It didn't.

They just chew up your blade, if you use them repeatedly.


You first want to check the grind of your knife.
(How it came with the factory.
Is is 50/50 double bevel?
Many Japanese kitchen knives come with 70/30 or 80/20 asymmetrical grind.

If you are happy with the way your knife has been performing, you should follow the factory grind.

You can change asymmetrical grind to symmetrical grind if that's what you prefer.
How can I check?
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no. nothing against strippers. just have never completely trusted anyone in sales and marketing.
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Old 12-14-2020, 09:52 AM   #15
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You can check visually, by looking at the blade like this...





If it's hard to tell, you can look at the width of the secondary bevel from the side.

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