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TOPIC: Kershaw Shun 6" Blue Utility/Butchery Knife

Kershaw Shun 6" Blue Utility/Butchery Knife 11 months 2 weeks ago #14320

  • FredHermann
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Introduction:

My lovely Bride bought me this for my birthday. We got it from a local specialty shop, and the price was the same 199.00 as about everywhere on the net. So a stupidly expensive kitchen knife. More expensive than the last 3 swords I've bought. And worth every penny (more on that later). I have a number of Shun kitchen knives, and love them all, so I decided I needed to try the next flavor.

Full Disclosure:

My wife bought this knife for fair retail price. I am not being compensated for this review, nor do I have any affiliation with either the seller or manufacturer. I'm not that lucky....

Specifications:

(From the Shun/Kershaw site, my notes between *'s)
Hand-sharpened 16° double-bevel blade (32° comprehensive)
• Japanese san mai blade
• Steel: "Blue" carbon steel cutting core between two layers of mirror-polished stainless (*VG 10 from research*)
• Full composite-tang
• Handle: Grey PakkaWood®
•Blade length: 6 in. (15.2 cm)
• The razor-sharp, easy sharpening benefits of carbon steel & easier maintenance
• Includes wooden saya (sheath)(* I call bullsh*t, it's plastic of some sort*)
• Handcrafted in Japan

Initial Impression:

The knife came quadruple wrapped to protect it from ham fisted retailers...unwrapping was like a cruel joke...it never seemed to end. But the knife was well protected, I have to give them that.
The blade had a light coat of mineral oil, easily washed off. The pics aren't mine, my camera fu is very weak....

Knife:


BlueSteel6inch.jpg




Saya/Scabbard:

scabbard.jpg




Blade:

The 6" blade is probably the sharpest factory edge I've ever encountered. The edge is scalpel sharp, maybe sharper. Polish is very nice, the transition between the stainless and mild steel is very attractive, and reminds me of a nice hamon. The stainless is polished to mirror with a pebbly acid etch look as it transitions to the mild steel. The mild steel is polished but not to the level of the stainless, and my one gripe is that there are a few small waves from partially polished grind marks in the transition to the true edge. Not anything most folks would see, but I tend to look at blades with a microscope....(you know you do too) :cheer:

Handle:

The handle is stabilized Pakka wood, a nice gray. Initially the hexagonal handle gave me pause, but I find it very comfortable to use.
Very nice...

Sheath/Saya:

Not sure how to be objective on this. The sheath is a throw away afterthought. It's some kind of nylon/plastic, so not wood...it's loose enough the blade rattles in it, and the peg that keeps the sheath from falling off needed light sanding to get it in the hole, as it was far too tight a fit. Now to be fair, most folks would toss the sheath and put this baby in a nice block or magnetic holder. But it feels like a Windlass sword scabbard...bleh.

Handling:

I've used every excuse to use this over the last week or so. The knife is scary responsive and transitions nicely between a pinch and hammer grip. It's so sharp I've cut thru 3 cheap cutting mats (note to get more). Everything about this knife is elegant and user friendly. Boning a chicken was a dream, and mundane slicing was just...fun.

Final Thoughts:

The knife is a dream. An expensive one, but very nice, and will last me...forever. The saya is a cheap afterthought, but if you had the blade in it, and it was rattling around in a drawer, it would do its job and protect the blade, and keep you from losing a finger playing *Kitchen Roulette*. I plan to get this blade on my Wicked Edge and refine the edge waaaayyyy past the factory edge, so watch for reports of that exercise in silliness.

So getting anything by Shun, while you'll pay for it, you won't regret it. I'm really loving this knife.
“On one otherwise normal Tuesday evening I had the chance to live the American dream. I was able to throw my incompetent jack*ss of a boss from a fourteenth-story window.”

Owen Pitt – Monster Hunter International
Last Edit: 11 months 2 weeks ago by FredHermann. Reason: Missed a picture - duh
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Kershaw Shun 6" Blue Utility/Butchery Knife 11 months 2 weeks ago #14327

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Thanks! Great review! And great knife, so it seems.

Really interested in your experiences with this knife on the WEPS. I love white steel, it probably gives the greatest feedback when sharpening of all steels I've tried. But I've never been able to try true blue steel.
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Kershaw Shun 6" Blue Utility/Butchery Knife 11 months 2 weeks ago #14328

  • LeoBarr
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would highly recommend the board smith he makes end grain chopping boards they do not damage the blade edge as much as other boards theboardsmith.com

Good appraisal of your knife like you say the Saya looks a little disappointing still its a super looking ~Shun.
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Kershaw Shun 6" Blue Utility/Butchery Knife 11 months 2 weeks ago #14332

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I'm also interested in white steel...just a matter of time until I get something.
I always cut on plastic boards, I was just shocked this went clean thru the thin ones.
I'll check out the cutting board link also.
So is there a reason to not use the plastic boards? The up side is you can toss them in the dishwasher. can't do that with wood.
“On one otherwise normal Tuesday evening I had the chance to live the American dream. I was able to throw my incompetent jack*ss of a boss from a fourteenth-story window.”

Owen Pitt – Monster Hunter International
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Kershaw Shun 6" Blue Utility/Butchery Knife 11 months 2 weeks ago #14333

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When cutting with a good blade through meat you can hold the meat above the board to remove legs etc rather than cutting so much on the board help save the blade and the board a bit


The end grain boards are the best you can get the knives will stay sharper for longer the blade will go between the grains rather than cutting them they are made of hardwoods the cheapest they use is maple :kiss:.
What is the advantage of end grain?
– End grain boards are easier on the knife edges and will last much longer. When cutting, the edge goes between the wood fibers and those fibers aren’t severed. Long grain cutting boards, while they are much easier to make and much less expensive, will have their wood fibers severed as an edge cuts across. They will require resurfacing more often to rid the cutting surface of splinters.

Can I use a plastic cutting board?
– Plastic is much easier on the edges than glass but the deep cuts that remain make it difficult, if not impossible to clean and sanitize. However, their cheaper initial cost makes them easier to discard but they will last in a landfill almost forever.
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Last Edit: 11 months 2 weeks ago by LeoBarr.
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Kershaw Shun 6" Blue Utility/Butchery Knife 11 months 1 week ago #14392

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So a quick update...

My brand new knife already has significant staining on the blade. Left in a dry drawer in the saya it even had a tiny rust spot or two.
So now I store it oiled until the weekend, and I'm going to hand buff the blue steel part of the blade back to a shine and re-test what it does for staining. And for the record, it was really clean when I stored it.

Anyone have experience with blue steel? Is this normal?
“On one otherwise normal Tuesday evening I had the chance to live the American dream. I was able to throw my incompetent jack*ss of a boss from a fourteenth-story window.”

Owen Pitt – Monster Hunter International
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Kershaw Shun 6" Blue Utility/Butchery Knife 11 months 1 week ago #14393

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FredHermann wrote:
So a quick update...

My brand new knife already has significant staining on the blade. Left in a dry drawer in the saya it even had a tiny rust spot or two.
So now I store it oiled until the weekend, and I'm going to hand buff the blue steel part of the blade back to a shine and re-test what it does for staining. And for the record, it was really clean when I stored it.

Anyone have experience with blue steel? Is this normal?

It sounds like you're describing the natural patina that occurs with this kind of steel. Some people really like the patina look and actively cultivate it. The oxide layer also offers some protective benefit against additional oxidation. Acidic foods will greatly accelerate the patina process. It's important to clean and dry the blade immediately after use. Using oil, especially in a humid location will help but I think you need to be careful about what kind of oil you're using. I've been told that some common oils will also corrode a fine edge. A contact from a razor blade manufacturer told me once about how many oils will eat up and dull a razor blade so it would be worth some investigation. A quick search on some other forums indicates a consensus for food grade mineral oil.
--Clay Allison
Last Edit: 11 months 1 week ago by wickededge.
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Kershaw Shun 6" Blue Utility/Butchery Knife 11 months 1 week ago #14394

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Thanks Clay,
That's what I'm using, mineral oil is cheap, easy and safe.
I am just shocked at how fast the steel oxidizes, I don't think I've ever seen anything like this.
So as usual, it's a learning curve.
I just want to do it in a more controlled environment to see if this is worth rambling on about....
“On one otherwise normal Tuesday evening I had the chance to live the American dream. I was able to throw my incompetent jack*ss of a boss from a fourteenth-story window.”

Owen Pitt – Monster Hunter International
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Kershaw Shun 6" Blue Utility/Butchery Knife 11 months 1 week ago #14395

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Japanese Camellia Oil is an edible oil that is used for exactly what you desire many oils dry out this is the one to use to stop oxidation.
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