Henckels Zwilling Twin Master Vs Victorinox (Forschner)

Discussion in 'Cooking Knife Reviews' started by kartman35, Apr 24, 2016.

  1. kartman35

    kartman35

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    Anybody have experience with these yellow handled knives?

    I'm wondering why we hear so little about them vs the strikingly similar and hugely popular Victorinox offerings.  Zwilling claims 57 rockwell for them which is higher than Victorinox or Wusthof's "stamped" knives.  (Stamped in quotes because all Wusthof blades are stamped...the only forging on the "forged" knives is the bolster being forge welded to an otherwise stamped blade).

    Oh yeah...and they're cheaper too...So why don't we hear more about them?  Do they suck in some way?
     
  2. grande

    grande

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    Don't know the henkles you're refering to specifically, but I've looked at henkles that cost more than a vic that I would not consider superior in design or construction. Vics are good, solid, professional knives - the only knock I've heard that seems valid is that some people don't like the handles. And in the $30-40 dollar range, do you really need to save money?
     
  3. kartman35

    kartman35

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    I'm talking about these

    https://www.zwilling.ca/zwilling/knives-and-accessories/knives/twin-master

    Certainly the Wusthof Cordon bleu is a nicer knife..but it's four times the price of what I'm talking about...The Cordon Bleu line is one of what Wusthof calls their "forged" knife lines and are hardened to 58 if we can believe what Wusthof says.  These compare to Zwilling Pro S, Pro, Four Star, etcetera and not the plastic handle Twin Master or Vic Fibrox.

    Also, I think it's fair to say that while the more expensive Zwillings are perhaps no more functional than a Victorinox, It's hard to argue that for the money you get nicer fit and finish in a more elegant package that many home cooks prefer.  Also a harder blade at 57 according to Zwilling.
     
  4. rick alan

    rick alan

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    Henckles, Vic and Wusthof are all stamped knives.  Vics have a superior grind, slightly flatter profile I think and certainly nicely thin behind the edge.  All the handles on these knives suck but you can fix that with a dremel and sanding drum attachment.  Wusthof pro is in this class and they are harder than a Vic, though the Vic is not that much softer.
     
  5. chefjonbailey

    chefjonbailey

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    I love my 12 inch Dick. $120. 8 inch is way cheaper than that. Wusthof are atleast twice that. And I really can't believe my Dick and the Wusthof are not fully forged. I must be missing something about this conversation. I've seen the Wusthof forging process in pictures from start to finish.
     
  6. rick alan

    rick alan

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    Sorry Chefjon, but you never saw forging of any kind actually.  What you saw was a stamped blank being induction heated in the area of the bolster, well above forging temperatures, and then squooshed and pressed to form that annoying full bolster.  These knives, the edge in particular, benefit in no way from the grain structure refinement of the forging process.

    Some French Sabatiers are still fully forged if you want a forged euro, but the stainless ones still are nothing great even with the forging.

    Rick
     
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2016
  7. kartman35

    kartman35

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    Watch the Wusthof "forging" process once more...At around the 1 minute mark you'll see that the only part of the rectangular section of steel that is heated is the bolster, and at around 1:12 where the narrator says "the knife is cut into shape" is where the blade is stamped.

    Any more questions?
     
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2016
    millionsknives and chefjonbailey like this.
  8. millionsknives

    millionsknives

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    Forged by a cookie cutter
     
  9. rick alan

    rick alan

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    In the forging process that grain of the metal flows in a natural and non-orientated manner, and this does contribute significantly with edge stability.  Also, repeated pounding, whereas it does not affect carbide size, it does reduce grain size in the crystalline structure, and this allows for a keener and also more stable edge.  And even the modest amount of forging in the die-strike process of some Sabatiers does help.

    Some PM steels do not benefit by additional forging from what they receive at the rolling mills that produce the sheet, in fact they will degrade.  I am told SRS-15 is one of these, it can tolerate one die-strike at very controlled temperatures (to pre-shape and aid in the manufacturing process), and that is all.

    Actually it was Jon "if he don't know it you don't need to know it" Broida who told me that about SRS-15.

    Rick
     
    Last edited: May 3, 2016
  10. brianshaw

    brianshaw

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    Rick makes a good point that much of the "forging" on modern knives actually happens during the steel production by rolling rather than the old fashioned hammered by Thor approach. How the two forging processes compare I don't know for sure, though.
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2016
  11. rick alan

    rick alan

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    The idea of improved grain structure through forging abandoned in the 20's?  That's curious as forged parts to this day demand a premium price.

    I'm not a metalurgist, and certainly don't believe everything that comes out of the mouths of guys like Murry Carter and Ed Fowler.   But it does appear the forging process works for a lot of metals when done right.

    Who knows what the heck the French do to German stainless, but Wusties definitely have a harder and perhaps otherwise better heat treat than Vics.  I too get a keener edge with the wusty.
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2016
  12. kartman35

    kartman35

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    Just to be clear I never meant to imply that a forged knife is automatically better than a stamped one.   The steel factories are clearly able to create sheets of steel that ready to be stamped into a blade that can outperform the truly forged knives from Wusthof and Zwilling's past.

    People in general seem to think forged=better, so they continue to call them forged to sell knives to those people.  I just don't like it because it's dishonest on it's face, not because I wish they'd actually start forging them again.  

    I think the "Forged" wusthof's perform better than the stamped vic because they harden them to 58.  Wusthof only hardens their "stamped" lines to 56 I guess to give people a reason to buy the more expensive ones.  Zwilling claims 57 for all their 'regular' stainless knives...this is kind of why I started the thread..I would expect the 57 blade of the Twin Master to similarly outperform the Vic yet no one seems to recommend them anywhere.

    As has been said before I'm sure whatever benefit heating and hammering the blade into shape can give can be accomplished prior to forming the steel into the rolls from which these blades are subsequently stamped.
     
  13. brianshaw

    brianshaw

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    Out of curiosity I ask: Where did either Henckels or Wusthof ever say that anything more than the bolster was forged? I've only been paying attention to knives since the 1980s and can't recall any evidence of overt lies. Seems like it is assumptions and arrogance that causes what may be perceived as dishonesty.
     
  14. millionsknives

    millionsknives

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    You mean like the description for wusthof classic?
    • Forged high-carbon stainless steel blade, hand-honed for razor-like sharpness
    Or the description for wuthof ikon?
    • Precision forged from single piece of high-carbon German stainless steel; laser-controlled and tested cutting edge
    A sheet has to be forged at some point I guess but it seems duplicitous to me
     
  15. brianshaw

    brianshaw

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    Thanks.  Apparently I've been paying attention but not good enough. Plus, I tend to pay attention to Henckels rather than others since I aligned with them eons ago...

    I watched the Zwilling video last night and they are perfectly clear about only the bolster being forged in their shop during manufacturing.  Maybe tonight I'll have the time to watch the Wusthof videos... but  Kartman was pretty clear that they were honest in the video too.

    So, ya... that leaves a bit to the imagination and seems like typical advertising rhetoric that may not be completely technically true or fully accurate. "Forged by a cookie cutter", to quote someone I respect... Does one bang of a press constitute forging????

    This kind of marketing stuff tends to go in one ear and out the other. I much prefer more technically oriented information. But it does drive me crazy, too, when the admen stretch the truth or misrepresent the truth out of ignorance.
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2016
  16. brianshaw

    brianshaw

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  17. kartman35

    kartman35

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    Let's be perfectly clear about one thing.  Most people that want to buy a kitchen knife don't go to the trouble of watching manufacturing videos to help choose.  They might however go to Zwilling.com, and if they do they'll see stuff like this (in this case on the 4-star chef's knife page):

    :

    More than 30 years ago ZWILLING J.A. Henckels revolutionized the standards for top-quality knives with the introduction of the seamless synthetic handle. This masterpiece of safety, ergonomics and comfort has become the best selling ZWILLING J.A. Henckels knife series worldwide. Each Four Star knife is forged from a single piece of steel, resulting in a sturdy, balanced, and flexible blade. The seamless transition from bolster to handle makes Four Star knives comfortable for long periods of use. Made in Germany.
    • German special formula high carbon, no-stain steel
    • Forged from a single pieced of steel
    • Ergonomic molded polypropylene handle
    • Made in Germany

    or perhaps they shop at Sur la table:

    Using Zwilling’s exclusive Sigmaforge® process, knives are precision-forged from a single piece of Friodur® ice-hardened high-carbon German stainless steel, laser-cut for optimal blade angles and finally polished by hand. This results in a sharper blade with a 57 Rockwell hardness for excellent edge retention and superior resilience.

    I think that's enugh for now
     
  18. kartman35

    kartman35

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    Can we agree that any forging that may occur at the level of the bolster is unlikely to 'result in a sturdy, balanced, and flexible blade'  or have any effect on the blade whatsoever?

    I may be arrogant, but I'm never wrong.   In fact once I thought I was wrong....turns out I was mistaken :)
     
  19. foody518

    foody518

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    Not to mention the average consumer probably has close to zero knowledge of what forging is as anything other than a prestige term. Materials science? Manufacturing processes? Who cares about that stuff :(
    Technical information about these knives as far as really digging into the specs or the manufacturer process is going to be of interest and understandable to a small minority of consumers. It does bug me though on how general and vague the descriptions on many of these product listings are. You've really got to dig, and sometimes into forums like these.
     
  20. brianshaw

    brianshaw

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    Of course we agree on that.  No question about it.

    Thanks for doing that homework that I haven't yet done.  It is clear that I haven't been paying much attention to the advertisements!!  The bizarre thing is that if you read that stuff about the 4-star line and twist your head a certain way it isn't a lie. The blank and what is forged into the bolster is and was a single piece of steel. ;)

    The "arrogant" comment wasn't directed at you or anyone else in particular. I was intending that to be generic. I, too, can be arrogant at times and I, too, am never wrong.  :)
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2016