[Request] Tips on maintaining newly bought Yaxell Zen

Discussion in 'Cooking Knife Reviews' started by ivan hant, Apr 14, 2015.

  1. ivan hant

    ivan hant

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    So as tittle mentioned, i just bought myself a Yaxell Zen 10-inch Chef's knife and i really love it.

    Anybody has advice for me to keep it going as long as possible?

    Thanks in advance.

    -Ivan
     
  2. mhpr262

    mhpr262

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    VG-10 is known to be initially crazy sharp after sharpening (if you have managed to get rid of the burr properly) but to lose that sharpness somewhat quickly and then be merely "very sharp" for a very long period of time. This is normal, so don't go crazy with the whetstones or you will lose a lot of steel.

    Other than that: The most important thing when you want to keep a knife undamaged and in good shape is to never let anybody else work with it ... a knife with such a hard steel should never be steeled!Never trust somebody else to know that!

    Some VG-10 can be chippy, usually the chips happen when people try to rock-chop with a Japanese knife as if it was a German big-belly knife. Really hard steel doesn't like the twisting motion needed to advance the blade across the cutting board with that method. Best use a push cut or pull cut move where you lift the blade off the cutting board after each cut. Chips also happen when people mince herbs and press the tip too hard into the cutting board with one hand while pumpming and twisting the handle with the other.
     
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2015
  3. spoiledbroth

    spoiledbroth

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    I have to disagree with benuser, I get by pretty well with a 1200 and 4000 king stone and my Tojiros (VG-10 knives as well, though I only have to work against soft stainless cladding not damascus :p). Hair popping sharp though as mhpr says they do plateau quite quickly.

    Granted King are not "good stones" and my understanding is that their abrasive (ie. part of the swarf that develops when sharpening) can actually be ground down, achieving a finish comparable to higher grits -- this is assuming you don't clear the swarf off the stone too often.

    I recommend your practice sharpening a cheaper so to speak "normal" stainless knife and once you can produce something at least as uniform as a factory edge then you can work on the yaxell. You're going to have a hell of a time learning to sharpen such a hardened, temperamental steel.
     
  4. itsdoe

    itsdoe

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    I've not worked with kitchen knives in VG 10 but certainly have in other knife styles (outdoors double bevel and scandi, convex scandi etc)

    I haven't seen mention of a strop yet? Stones are all very well and I use them upto 8000 grit, but the edge can't compare with the final result after stropping and/or glassing, and more importantly its more resilient. Is there any reason this would be different for kitchen knives?
     
  5. spoiledbroth

    spoiledbroth

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    physics would dictate that the more refined your edge ultimately the more evenly spread along the edge the force is and therefore the edge should, in theory, sustain more abuse before dulling. There are a few problems with that- I find when I strop my knives I have a pretty damn hard time slicing ripe tomatos. I also suspect the longer your sharpening regimen the more likely you are to start putting funny bevels on the knife, etc. More or less, the longer you put the knife to the stones, the higher the probability that something could go wrong. Experience sharpening notwithstanding.

    at the end of the day sometimes I think we go overboard and the "knowledge" that you just use a 1 micron or finer abrasive to hone your edge can sometimes be worth more than any utility that edge is going to provide (or lack thereof)-- what's the point of having a super sharp knife if you once again need to saw through ripe tomato with it?

    Then again.. I strop my tojiro DP nakiri every time I sharpen it... doping with chromium oxide and it absolutely falls through stuff like celery, leek, carrot.
     
    Last edited: May 13, 2015
  6. cookingbear

    cookingbear

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     I'm not sure I understand what you mean, the more refined the edge, the thinner the cutting surface is, which means the force is more concentrated in a thinner line, hence it cuts more easily. 

    you probably know this, but 'cutting' means the force you put is stronger than the electric attraction between nearby atoms in the material you're cutting. a thinner edge means a more localized force, which means less atom bonds to cut through. the reason you can't cut through diamond with a steel knife is that the bonds between carbon atoms in a diamond are stronger than the bonds between the iron atoms.
     
  7. rick alan

    rick alan

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    By refined here SB means less jaggedness or "toothiness" to the edge, as well as thinness at the apex.  My subjective experience agrees here, though I haven't conducted any controlled experiments.

    Conventional course stones cannot easily, if at all, produce a thin edge.  But stopping on diamond hones of about 8K or less, and loaded stops perhaps also, will produce an edge that is both thin and toothy.  How well this edge holds up I can't personally say.

    Rick
     
    Last edited: May 21, 2015
  8. cookingbear

    cookingbear

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    that makes sense, thanks