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You need to sharpen them regularly and depending on the type of steel, dry them immediately after use. These are 3 general rules you should follow:
For more knowledge read our articles:
If you have never used a Japanese style single bevel knife, you may not want to splurge for you first purchase. If that’s the case, some good choices are the stain-resistant yanagi from Sakai Takayuki standard series. If you, however, want to experience all the advantages of a Japanese style knife, you should consider Tokojou series . Just be aware that single bevel carbon steel knives are more delicate than stain-resistant double edge knives so don’t ever use them for rough tasks. Also keep them dry at all times.
Damascus, Wootz, and patternweld are all names given to different types of steels and blades. Basically, the idea is that two or more steel alloys are forged/cast together through various methods to give the wavy artistic pattern that comes from such a layering process. Historically, true Damascus steel was only made in the city of Damascus. For centuries, the blades made there were prized for their beautiful water-like patterning as much as for their sharpness. The Damascus production method, understandably, was a closely guarded trade secret. Special blade-folding techniques and unique impurities in the steel both contributed to its success. In the end, however, the secret was kept too well. Since the Damascus blade-making industry died out in the 18th century, nobody has managed to recreate it accurately on a commercial scale.
Today, ‘Damascus steel’ chef’s knives contain different grades of steel folded together repeatedly, sometimes around a core of pure knife-grade steel. The aim is to imitate the technique and appearance of historical Damascus steel, if not its exact composition.
A properly made Japanese Damascus chef’s knife will always exhibit great durability and sharpness. However, the main attraction is the distinctive patterning created by the layers of metal.
Whether Japanese, Swiss or German, each type of knife has been influenced by its culture. The Japanese believe in need of having a perfect tool for an explicit purpose, and as such have many specific knife shapes for specific tasks. Meanwhile, Germans value versatility and durability in their culinary efforts and therefore German knives are characterised by being good in many different undertakings. In the end, each knife has its own strengths and weaknesses. It’s not that one style of knife is better than the other — it’s just a matter of use and preference (of course as long as the knife is made from high-quality materials).
For more in-depth information read our article What’s the Difference Between German and Japanese Knives?
If you’re just the beginner or an occasional user(We are guilty as charged! We usually leave this job to our partners), we suggest getting combination whetstone, something between 1000 and 6000 grit like King 1000/6000 combo waterstone. These two stones and a inexpensive flattener will carry you a very long way. Add other stones or stropping supplies in the future as you learn. We think most new sharpeners should stay away from stones coarser than #1000 until they develop a technique they are comfortable with unless there is a very specific project in mind.
For more information read our article Which waterstone grit should you choose?
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