Peasant chefs knife - update

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Joined May 24, 2006
I thought I'd give an update on a thread I posted on buying this knife a while back..
I did purchase it, from Lee Valley, and at a darn good price too..
I'm finding it so easy to work with. Much much better than some of the bigger and heavier knives I've purchased over the years..
Its nice and light in weight, feels great in my hand, has a thinner blade which I prefer, and cuts like a dream!

Who knew a tomato could slice so easily!! :bounce:

I know that most of you have top of the line knives, but I just had to let you know that this one is a pretty darn good one too!

Just in case you want to check it out...

http://www.leevalley.com/garden/page...=2,40733,40738
 
1,691
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Joined Dec 23, 2000
Well, I've been buying from Lee Valley (mostly their very thoughtfully designed woodworking tools) for over 20 years, and I have complete confidence in their products.

About 12-14 years ago, they showed the first Microplane wood rasp, and said "hey- this thing works really well in the kitchen, too!" I ordered one, used it for a month or so. and then got seven or eight - one for each of my three kids, and others as house gifts when we were guests. They make many kitchen-tool varities of this now, most available at W-S and other cookware outlets.

A couple years ago, they acquired a quantity of Sabatier knives out of a warehouse in France, and sold them off.

You should follow the link and ask to be put on their catalog mailing list. They are adding kitchen items all the time. Also gardening stuff, which is not my thing - why I'm happy in a condo these days.

Mike :smiles:
 

phatch

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This knife has tempted me a number of times when their catalog arrives at my door

I finally gave in and ordered one myself. It came today and it's nicer than I anticipated for the price. It arrived in a nice box with a corrosion protection wrap on the carbon steel blade.

Quite an excellent edge, well and evenly ground and the tang is longer than I estimated from the two rivets, though still an inch shy of being a full tang. The blade shape and handle are well designed for general utility purposes, though do not conform to modern kitchen concepts. I think the handle looks better in person than the picture as well.

The blade is not mirror polished as you might be used to from common kitchen blades. The machine marks are visible on the blade. This might bother some but it's a non-issue to me.

I had bought this knife with the thought it might be my camp knife. I'll give it a go in the kitchen as well, but it probably won't live there. Too many other people using those knives for a carbon blade and wood handle to live there out for all to use.

Phil
 

phatch

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I put it through some light paces tonight. Cuts very well. Handles well though It's not my favorite for mincing garlic.

Picked up some stains in that short work. I've used some other carbon steels on food and all of them were much more stain resistant. A2, D2, M2. I suspect this blade is probably something very basic, perhaps in the range from 1050 - 1095.
 
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Joined Mar 28, 2008
This stinks, now I have to get one. I am such a sucker for nestalgia that this is a must.

Congrats of a good new knife. How does it sharpen?
 
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Joined Jan 25, 2009
I'm always on the lookout for carbon steel knives. Can you tell me where the knife is made? The Lee Valley website doesn't indicate. I don't know of any US made carbon steel knives any more except Russell Green River Works and I'm not even sure they still make carbon blades. That blade looks sort of like one of their patterns.
 

phatch

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No idea. No markings on the knife at all. I didn't look at the box for origin. There are a number of carbon knife makers in the US, but they're all more boutique brands. Bark River makes some for kitchen use, AG Russell has some as well plus lots of hand makers.
 
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Joined Oct 4, 2007
I just wrote and asked about the steel composition and will relay when I receive the answer. Neat looking knife.
 
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Joined Oct 4, 2007
Just received the following:

Thank you for the inquiry. We are currently in the process of contacting the vendor to further clarify which carbon steel exactly is used in the production of the Peasants Chef Knife (45K3646), beyond the “…high-carbon steel…” stated on our website.

We trust this answers your question and we will contact you as soon as the vendor has provided sufficient information.

Regards,

Marc Charbonneau
Customer Service Representative
 
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Joined Oct 4, 2007
Kudos to Lee Valley customer service representative Marc Charbonneau for sending me the following information:

Thank you for your patience in regards to your inquiry on the Peasant’s Chef knife (45K3646). After finally receiving an answer from our vendor, the knife is made from SK5 High Carbon Steel.

We trust this answers your question and apologize for the delay.


Buzz
 

phatch

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Sk5.

I was close. Sk5 is a japanese version of 1085. It has nickel and chrome as well in small amounts which should bump up its rust resistance a tad.

This table won't display just right but it can be deciphered.

____________SK-5___________1085
C__________0.80-0.90__________0.75-0.95
Si_________0.10-0.35 _________0.35 MAX
Mn________0.10-0.50 ____________1.0 MAX
P_________≤0.030 _____________0.04 MAX
S_________≤0.030 _____________0.50 MAX
Cu_________≤0.25
Ni_________≤0.25
Cr_________≤0.30
 
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Joined Jul 18, 2009
Hey sorry for the bump but this knife is worth it! My parents have used one for nearly 2 years. It doesn't get sharpened often, but it doesn't really need to be. That thing holds an edge very well. Even though it's not very well cared for (i.e. not promptly washed and put away), after all this time it has only a nice patina and a few darker stains. It is, by a wide measure, the favorite knife in the house which is used for pretty much everything. I'm about to get one for myself.
 
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Joined Nov 18, 2010
A nice profile, at a very attractive price. If it were available in Europe I wouldn't hesitate.
 

phatch

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Joined Mar 29, 2002
I ordered one. Inexpensive enough to play with.

More german in the profile than the pictures led me to believe. That might also be manufacturing variability, as I'm not aware of enough instances in the wild to know. Subjectively, seems longer than 8.5. Haven't physically measured it. Quite sharp. Quite tall, Good geometry and edge. It seems to be dulling faster than I recall for the small one, but I've used it more aggressively, even on some spaghetti squash. Some fine blades recommend against use on hard squash. My MAC does as I recall. But going back to geometry, this blade is thin enough that the cut in hard squash wasn't preceded by cracking as it is with my Henkels--the blade I usually use for this.

The handle has a chamfer where it meets the blade, sweeping back into the handle. This is an improvement over the smaller one as it facilitates the pinch grip much better. I know the smaller one was modeled after an old Sabatier. This one seems to be more of its own thing with the same design cues but important upgrades.

Blade discolors easily just like the original. I'll post up some pics later.
 
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Joined Sep 21, 2010
I bought quite a few of these knives years ago when Lee Valley first brought them out. I was so impressed with the first couple of knives that I bought more -- they weren't expensive.
While packing up to move last month, I found some of them, still in their original corrugated cardboard packing, the blades still greased.

You can see how 'rustic' they are, some are branded, and others aren't. Branded or not, I love these knives and use them daily. Well, not these, these particular knives must be 75+ years old and never used. The knives I've shown here are all 'butcher' style, and I have others, including a massive chef's knife and a delicate, rosewood-handled salmon knife.
IMG_4387-1.JPG IMG_4388-1.JPG

IMG_4390-1.JPG
 
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