Once in a while we get a knife or other item in on trade, get a factory refurbished unit, etc. We post those items here. Typically they will have a few cosmetic scuffs and scrapes but still work perfectly. If there are any mechanical problems with the item we will make note of it in the description. This is a great place to pick up new or slightly used knives and gear at discounted prices. Note that bargain bin items are excluded from some promotions.
We are especially interested in rare, discontinued, and custom knives from top brands such as Benchmade, Microtech, and Protech. We are not generally interested in current production knives, fixed blade knives, or knives under $100.
Yangjiang knives from TURWHO are hand-made and crafted from quality blades of forged Damascus steel. The AUS-10V Damascus steel used in making this razor sharp Japanese knife is hand hammered to ensure the strength of the blade and at its core is one of the best steels used in kitchen knife production due to its superior edge retention, sharpness, and being stain resistant.
This chip carving knife has a special blade shape with 45-degrees secondary bevel and is used for geometric wood carving. The wood carving knife blade is made from high carbon steel, hardened and well sharpened. This chip carving knife is one of the main tools in any type of woodwork.
This is an affordable knife for a beginner or advanced wood carver. It holds it's edge well. Fits in your hand comfortable and does nice detail work. One of my go to knives when I'm carving. You really don't have to spend a fortune on knives, this is a really nice one. I would recommend and I would buy it again.
In 2017, we gathered a testing panel of seasoned cooking pros and curious home cooks in our test kitchen to chop, slice, dice, julienne, chiffonade, and mince with the 15 knives we collected. The panel included Wirecutter staff members as well as Sam Sifton, an assistant managing editor at The New York Times and founding editor of New York Times Cooking.
Most mass-produced Western-forged knives are drop-forged, meaning the manufacturer heats a blank of steel to an extremely high temperature and then uses a high-pressure hammer to pound it into the shape of a blade. Stamped blades, as the name suggests, are punched out of sheet metal before further refinement and sharpening. The quality of stamped blades varies widely, from the flimsy knives found at grocery stores to our top pick and runner-up pick. Knife makers like Mac and Tojiro heat-treat their blades to make them just as strong as forged steel.
In 2020, we had to pare down our testing. I tested two knives in my home kitchen, cutting butternut squash, tomatoes, onions, and carrots. I also used them for daily meal prep to see if I found them sharp and comfortable to use day in and day out.
In our tests, the Wüsthof Classic Ikon cut smoothly through butternut squash and onions, although carrots did split slightly. Like the other drop-forged German knives we tested, it caused moderate bruising to cut basil. Compared with the Mac Mighty MTH-80, this Wüsthof knife was less agile and sharp when peeling the skin from butternut squash.
Steel hardness is measured on the Rockwell C scale. Decent high-carbon steel knives should register anywhere between 55 HRC and 64 HRC. Steel at the lower end of the scale is softer and more durable. Higher HRC ratings mean the steel is harder and more brittle.
Steel alloys for knives are formulated to increase stain resistance, machinability, and hardness; to improve grain structure; and to increase shock resistance. The composition of most German knives (including our also-great and budget picks) is X50CrMoV15, which roughly translates to 80% iron, 0.5% carbon, and 15% a combination of chromium, molybdenum, and vanadium. Chromium protects against corrosion and is what makes the knife stainless, while molybdenum and vanadium increase machinability and wear resistance, and refine the grain. This stainless steel is usually hardened to 56 HRC, softer than Japanese knives but capable of taking a beating well and withstanding up to a certain level of mistreatment.
Even though the Mac MBK-85 is an objectively good knife, our testers were pretty lukewarm about it. The edge was sharp and the knife itself was comfortable to hold, but the 8½-inch blade length was a little too much for home cooks. This model was one of the knives we gave to pro chefs to try, and no one mentioned it in any of our interviews as a favorite.
A well-made knife is expected to function consistently without failing. However, making a knife that is not susceptible to failure can be difficult to do since a knife blade is sharpened to a fine edge that must not fracture or dull. To achieve this, it is important to select the proper knife material, as the incorrect metal and grade will ultimately end in premature failure and edge dulling. Not all metals are created equal for knives, so here are some examples of the best metals for making knives.
One tool steel grade that is used as a knife material is A2. While it cannot reach hardness as high as some other tool steels, it has excellent toughness. However, A2 could be subject to rust if care is not taken. D2 is another option that has better corrosion resistance and edge retention than A2; however, this is at the expense of toughness. M2 is a tool steel that is excellent at retaining a knife edge, but it can be too brittle for some applications.
Carbon steel grades with high amounts of carbon are desirable for knife making because they will give the blade the hardness and strength needed to hold up against impact and wear. However, proper heat treating must be performed on high carbon steels. If too rapid a quench is used, the knife will be too brittle and may fracture, while if the steel is allowed to normalize or anneal, it will be too soft and the knife will not hold a sharp edge very long.
Stainless steel is another type of knife-making metal. The added benefit of using stainless steel is addition of chromium and other alloying elements that increase corrosion resistance. Stainless steel knives are normally made out of ferritic or martensitic stainless steels. In order to make knives that have decent edge retention, the martensitic and ferritic grades of stainless steel need to have a high enough carbon levels to be able to reach high hardness. Grades such as 420 and 440 are frequently used for knife making.
Austenitic grades such as 316 may occasionally be used for knife making, however, austenitic grades are generally not able to be hardened enough to ensure a lasting edge. Low carbon versions of austenitic stainless steel, such as 304L, should be avoided when making knives unless corrosion resistance is the main concern and blade life is secondary.
There are also precipitation-hardening stainless steels that have excellent corrosion resistance and hardenability properties. These are typically used in applications where corrosion is a large concern. A commonly used precipitation-hardening stainless steel for blades is 17-7 PH. To achieve the maximum benefit of these alloys for making knives, one must know how to properly precipitation harden the metal.
My perspective has changed with several of the vendors below because prior to the research, I did not think I could wrap my tiny brain around them all. Aside from just breaking them down into two camps of either the in-store retail shop experience to the online companies, I wanted to go a step further. This time around I reached out to every Japanese knife vendor, and I experienced first-hand what sets them apart.
These specialists include the sellers to the highly skilled individuals who service our knives, which is why I will only promote these specialized businesses (65% of their business is Japanese chef/kitchen knives).
German to Japanese knives both have their distinctive attributes. Attributes that are likened to a straight, double-edged European knightly swords, to a curved, single-edge Japanese samurai swords. Knowing those differences is what Japanese kitchen knife specialists know all about. While the rest of us debate the important stuff such as who would win, a samurai or knight?, Superman or Thor?, or Star Wars or Star Trek?
Since several of these companies are international, I start with an email inquiry and document the time it takes to get a response. I do that because buying online can be very sketchy, especially if you are not familiar with the seller. It makes not knowing worse when you have an issue, and you are now making a mad scramble to find their phone number, an email address, or even better, a physical address, to at the very least, a P.O. Box.
The vast majority who did not respond were all online small businesses, and one was a big-box retailer. The ones that did come through were also a few of my favorites from my brief yet revealing correspondence (even parents have favorites).
While I lived in the UK I used to buy them in army surplus stores, but those stores are now an endangered species in the island. Back in Brazil I buy in cutlery fairs, gun or outdoor stores. Knives are like apparel or shoes, we have to try and see if it fits.
My wife is a collector. I am a user. I buy wherever and when ever I find something I want a a price I can pay. I like unusual, strongly built, and unusual handles. All my knives are to be used. I enjoy most brands, if they are quality, and fit my need. My wife likes all things Benchmade, and her working knives are Tops, Essee and a couple of Condors. We buy and sell on EBay, buy from shows, dealers and from the occasional friend. I am considered rather eccentric by my friends as I normally have a multi tool, a small pocket knife, at least one usually two assisted or auto knives and one Fixed blade on me at all times . Habit I guess.
I have purchased knives online but I live about 20 miles from the Benchmade factory and retail store and about 30 miles from Kershaw and sometimes stand in line (long, long, long lines) for Kershaw blems. Works out very well for me. Really like the Benchmade store. 781b155fdc