Recommendation? Easiest Stock Removal Chef Knife Style?

Discussion in 'Shop Talk - BladeSmith Questions and Answers' started by fadugleman, May 19, 2020.

  1. fadugleman


    Dec 28, 2012
    Hi guys, I'm still a pretty inexperienced maker, but what I would really like to start making is knives people will want/use often. To me this means hunting, kitchen, carving, slipjoints etc. I'm not arrogant enough to think I can make a folder and what I really have interest in is making kitchen knives. From this, I would like to ask you what is your opinion on the easiest chef knife/ kitchen knife style to make from stock removal. I was thinking maybe a nakiri with slab handles and a simple v grind? The shape/grind seems pretty straight forward to me. I've made 2 or 3 small kitchen utility knives but nothing larger than 8" OAL. Your thoughts would be appreciated.
  2. Justin W

    Justin W

    Jul 30, 2019
    I do not know from experience, but generally size seems to correlate with difficulty. Some will do better or worse with different types of grinds like flat, convex or scandi or s based on personal comfort. If I were to rank, I would say easy to hard:
    Steak set

    Not sure where to put cleavers.
    TheEdge01 likes this.
  3. TheEdge01


    Apr 3, 2015

    I’ve mostly made paring knives, but I have made a Petty chefs knife and today I finished up a simple Sujihiki style carving knife for my wife. I agree with the above post, it mostly depends on your experience and comfort level.
    Last edited: May 20, 2020
  4. HSC ///

    HSC ///

    Nov 7, 2012
    Nakiri without a point is the easiest
    DeadboxHero and DevinT like this.
  5. John mc c

    John mc c KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Aug 23, 2018
    I agree a nakiri with ffg is easiest after paring, petty
    No tip and no belly on blade where things can go wrong
  6. Stacy E. Apelt - Bladesmith

    Stacy E. Apelt - Bladesmith ilmarinen - MODERATOR Moderator Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Aug 20, 2004
    I agree with this. Simple to make and a very versatile kitchen knife. I rarely pick up any other knife when cooking.
  7. fadugleman


    Dec 28, 2012
    Well you guys are the experts so I appreciate all the answers. May have to try a nakiri next week after I’m caught up with schooling and some other projects.
  8. CallumRD1


    Jan 10, 2020
    The only real difficulty with a Nakiri is that the profile is very flat so if you are grinding to zero thickness at the edge and slightly over grind in the middle of the blade you'll end up with the middle of the edge not being able to touch the cutting board. This problem is most evident when cutting things like peppers skin side down where you're left with all the pieces still connected by a small piece of skin.
  9. DeadboxHero

    DeadboxHero Triple B Handmade, Custom Knives Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Mar 22, 2014
    "Don't pray for easy knives, pray to be better makers"
    JFK :D:p
    Jpgied, WValtakis, milkbaby and 3 others like this.
  10. Stacy E. Apelt - Bladesmith

    Stacy E. Apelt - Bladesmith ilmarinen - MODERATOR Moderator Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Aug 20, 2004
    The way I deal with that on all kitchen knives is to grind the bevels to a near zero edge and then flatten or shape the edge on a 220 grit belt. This leaves a small flat edge that is perfect if doing the blade pre-HT, or if you HT the blade blank first, the flat edge is usually just right for the next belt grit and final sharpening. On a nakiri or cleaver I never make the edge a perfect straight flat line. Since most cutting boards and other surfaces are slightly concave a perfectly straight edge won't cut cleanly. Instead I make the edge a very slight curve which is a bit more pronounces toward the tip. I also round the last few millimeters of the heel.
    FredyCro likes this.
  11. milkbaby


    Aug 1, 2016
    Scandi grind nakiri just sayin...
  12. Rhinoknives1

    Rhinoknives1 KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Jul 1, 2013
    Make a 3 1/2” paring knife. Look around in your kitchen for the Parer you or a SO or parent use the most & Copy & make it your own. Very practical and people love’em . Particularly women. Some only use a Parer except for slicing, Carving Etc, You could make a Nakari & a matching Parer. Great duo!
    eric brinkerhoff likes this.
  13. Cushing H.

    Cushing H. Gold Member Gold Member

    Jun 3, 2019
    Why Stacy - this makes me feel better: very occasionally I will just slightly over grind and create a very slightly flat spot ... and have had to do exactly as you mentioned. Nice to know I am not alone :)

    seriously though: so far I have been relying on my initial profiling to define the edge curvature. Am I thinking about this backward ... and that it is ok to plan to do a final refinement of the edge during the final stages of grinding the bevel?

    re the edge of the nakiri ... I have not seen a lot of them ... but the one commercial example I have actually had a significant curvature to it. Flat spots on an edge are a pain ... but all (?) japanese knives are intended to be used with significant slicing motion (not a chopping motion that is typically taught for a western chefs knife) .. and with that slicing motion the impact of the slightly flat spot is pretty much negated...
  14. fadugleman


    Dec 28, 2012
    Thanks again everybody. I think I’m gonna try a nakiri and a few paring knives. Might post some designs in this or another thread
  15. Mark van Elteren

    Mark van Elteren

    Jan 5, 2020
    I find paring knives easiest to grind. Also, if you mess up you don't loose hours of grinding, and they are fast to hand sand if that is what you are after.

    Also - if you can make a knife, it is quite likely you can also make a straight razor or friction folder, if you are thinking about going down that road.

  16. fadugleman


    Dec 28, 2012
    What stock thickness do you like to start with for your paring knives?
  17. Justin W

    Justin W

    Jul 30, 2019
    The 0.063" AEB-L from JT is perfect.
  18. Rhinoknives1

    Rhinoknives1 KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Jul 1, 2013
    .094” Aebl or equivalent in 440C work great. Do a slight Distal taper blade for fine work with the tip. I’ve used 1/8” for 4” or longer, then your making a Petty/Utility Knife .. I buy sheets or bar stock from
  19. CallumRD1


    Jan 10, 2020
    I use .062” stock for paring knives. I don’t want one any thicker than that.
  20. Willie71

    Willie71 Warren J. Krywko. Part Time Knifemaker Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Feb 23, 2013
    How tall do you guys make a Nakiri? A friend just asked me to make him one. I would never take a new model as a sale, but for a friend for feedback, I’m open. I was going to ask @HSC, but his inbox is full. Tia.

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