Hi KMS! I don't post often, and always in English (sorry for both! ).
I just received a lovely knife - a B-Grind Workhorse from Dan Bidinger, made from CPM MagnaCut.
I haven't had the knife for enough time to give a full review, and it hasn't needed sharpening yet. However, the food release is quite good, and I know some here find that interesting. The three slices on the side stuck a little, otherwise nothing.
As a teaser, here are the potatoes for Pommes Anna (yes, I cut them too wide this time). I'll try to offer some updates as I get to know the knife a bit better.
Don't forget to answer the poll: how should I try to touch-up the edge first when it needs it?
Hm, difficult to answer. I've never heared about an Idahone. Is this a stone that stems from Boise, or so? I don't have experience with the steel (although what I read here seems extremely promising), nor do I know about the quality of the heat treatment of the actual knive. Nevertheless we typically were pretty reluctant to use a diamont based abrasive for finishing an edge, let alone a rather coarse one.
But You did ask for the recommendation for a touch-up, and not for the initial care of the knife. So I think, that - if the knive was still in a rather good shape - I'd try to start the touch up with the 6k stone. But then I recommend to continue the touch up with a non-diamond based hone.
Stropping it with a diamond loaded leather might be worthwhile for a fast touch-up, if one really has no time to do a traditional touchup using stones.
I also have to confess, that I am not fully convinced in _not_ using something as a 3..5k synthetic stone as the primary stone. There are lots of good stones available in that range, which are perfectly suited for a touchup done by hand (rather than an aided one). One could even have a Shapton Pro 2k as a primary touchup stone (if one resists in doing too many or too heavy strokes). So I am not in the position to choose one of Your options. But I tend to think, that this knive should be a pretty capable one...
Best regards Peter
PS: If one were willing to let the stone dry for a few days, than the Suehiro Rika 5k is the best stone in that range. I find also the 8k Kitayama a very attractive stone - but an 8k stone needs a skilled sharpener unless one uses a system. There is a great 3k Naniwa Pro. All of these are very suited for a touchup of Your knive.
Thanks Peter! I think the knife will be capable as well. The reason for diamond is the vanadium carbide content. I think the steel developer recommended it, although I certainly can try other synthetic stones before diamond. I have a Gesshin 4k that I also received recently. I would very much like to try it.
Hi, Dan builds some really nice knives which I got to try (on older knife from him without B-Grind) at a friend of mine. I would try to use a synthetic stone as well for the touchup. The developer of the steel is right about vanadium carbide content, but you can touchup other vanadium carbide-rich steels with a synthetic stone. Just setting the edge or reworking one most likely requires diamand tools.
I would love to see a cutting demo of the knife, if you have the time for that!
i recommend for steels with carbide content like this one the following:
You may sharpen it as usual till the finest stone. Bevor you finish take a matching diamond hone/ Lapping Film and after this clean the edge with an even finer synthetic and a natural stone after this process.
For MC390 (with matching V content) i recommend (on systems):
-DMT325/Progression with Shapton Pro till 12k switch to DMD 12k or 1my Dia Lapping Film followed by Shapton 30k and Nakayama/Arkansas (depends on cutting style pull/push)
Thanks for the comments and the sharpening tips for high-hardness carbides! I'll take a video when I have a busy kitchen day in the near future. It may take ma another week or so, but one will arrive soon.
Having cut a bit more, it's definitely a workhorse grind at heart, with a special B-grind on top. The foundational grind is quite good. I generally don't like workhorse knives as much, and prefer something like Yoshikane as my standard knife. However, both Dan and Rob Trimarchi (The 9.nine) make a workhorse grind that cuts very well - not all of them do so well. I'm excited to keep cooking!
OK, so I have to admit, I went against all recommendations
I was asked to try the edge, and see how long it lasted, so I went with the "least invasive" option first - leather stropping with a little 1m diamond spray.
Use: all meals for a 4-person family for about one month, plus several cases of apples on plastic boards for a cider pressing event. This also involved leaving the knife wet for a couple hours - no problems with stainless properties.
Findings: The heel started with a toothy edge out of the box, and retained that for past month. The belly had a tiny burr to start, which I quickly removed on a soft Arkansas stone (2 strokes). Otherwise, no stones used. The belly cut tomato skins until the cider event. After stropping, it lasted another week until finally becoming a bit smooth. Still push-cuts newspaper from the edge, and slices rolled-over newspaper. I think a really clean edge would last a long time based on overall use, and how it responded to stropping.
I've taken some video over the past month, and will start editing it together this week to omit the boring bits. After that, sharpening on the 6k diamond and start the edge-testing all over next month.
Hey all. Sorry this took so long, I had a major career change, a death in the family, then a death in the computer (video card), so putting this together took quite a while.
I asked the kind and inimitable Dan Bidinger for a knife that maximized food release at all costs. He returned a MagnaCut B-Grind with a beefy, workhorse geometry underneath (basically he ground it like a workhorse first, then removed the fullers). You can see how it does against two other top performers (top in my block anyway, The 9.Nine and Yoshikane). Keep in mind, those are already stiff competion for blancing ease of cutting and food release.
I gave this knife the hardest tasks I could think of that need good geometry. Potatoes were far too easy, so it got squash, a whole bunch of other stuff, and a hard AF cold soaked for 3-days Japanese sweet potato. Every knife I have choked in that potato, it was Godzillatato.
Oh, and if you want to see TWO B-Grinds head to head, watch until the end. The second was a loaner that has a mid-weight geometry under the B-Grind.
My takehomes were: 1) Dan really knows how to grind a knife, even before the B-Grind is added. Smooth convex, heavy, constant distal taper for onions, fantastic balance, very usable profile (I preferred the yellow handle’s profile, personally) 2) The B-Grind significantly helps increase food release and reduce cutting drag 3) His handles are amazing, just amazing. 4) I ordered a second B-Grind with the mid-weight geometry after trying the loaner.
And yes, I go through many costume changes in the video.