NORA #1529 - 3.5' Paring - CPM-M4 Carbon Steel - Helga 2.0
PLEASE BE AWARE - THIS IS A CARBON STEEL KNIFE. THIS IS NOT A STAINLESS STEEL KNIFE. A CARBON STEEL KNIFE WILL FORM A PATINA ON THE KNIFE AND IS PRONE TO RUST IF NOT CARED FOR PROPERLY.
- Blade Type: Paring
- Blade Length: 3.5 Inches
- Total Length: 8 Inches
- Handle Style: Western | Right or Left Hand Use
- Steel: CPM-M4 Carbon Steel
- Rockwell Hardness: 64 HRC
- Grind Type: Full Flat
- Handle Materials: Stabilized Olivewood Wood, black G10 liners, stainless steel pins
This Blade is Ground...
- Thin for Performance (best performance but also more delicate)
- >>>Thick for Durability (tough, built to last for heavier wear-n-tear)
- Mid-Range with Special Geometry (specially ground for food release and glide but blade is kept slightly thicker for durability)
This Knife Feels...
- Heavy in Hand (hefty, durable)
- Light (nimble, maneuverable)
- >>> Not too heavy, not too light (Mid-Range Weight)
GENERAL USES OF THIS KNIFE
The paring knife is often overlooked but the truth is it is one of the single most-used knives in the kitchen. It is also unique with respect to where it is used...not just on a cutting board but also in hand.
With this in mind, we redesigned our paring knife to have a smaller, more nimble handle that feels great in hand and gives its user a wide amount of maneuverability. This knife works wonderfully for small tasks that are easier completed by using the knife in-hand, such as hulling a strawberry, paring fruit, or deveining shrimp.
HANDLE DESIGN & MATERIALS:
Every one of our knives is handmade, unique and numbered. We kept this NORA clean & classic and handled it with a beautiful piece of stabilized olivewood. Sometimes simple is better and we love the soft yellows of this wood and the weaves of brown figure that streaks thru the wood. Olivewood is one of our favorites here in the shop and is sure to be a great fit in almost any kitchen.
Wood stabilization is an added feature that we offer with our knives. Wood that is stabilized has been injected with a clear acrylic resin under a vacuum process. Stabilization helps to minimize, if not eliminate, any cracking, warping, shrinkage and/or expanding of the material. Stabilized wood will not absorb water and is generally impervious to oils. The process helps to ensure your knife has a long lifespan in the kitchen.
We did this engraving once before and we decided to bring her back for one more appearance since she looks so lovely against a darkly etched blade. We named this engraving after Andrew Wyeth's muse: Helga Testorf.
If you don't know of Helga you have probably still seen a picture of her. But to give you a background, over the course of more than 15 years, Andrew Wyeth created 250 secret paintings. He hid them from everyone—including his wife, who was also his business manager—in the loft of a millhouse near his home in rural Pennsylvania. When they were discovered, in 1986, they generated a small frenzy that extended to the art world and beyond. The Helga paintings, as they came to be called, all depicted a single subject: Helga Testorf.
**This knife has been custom engraved. The engraving was done via fiber laser so there is depth to the engraving more so than you see with an electro etch or CO2 laser. We do, however, keep the depth low so it does not catch food and minimally interferes with the primary cutting function of the knife. A small amount of sticking is normal around the engraved area. This will lessen over time with use.
If performance is your #1 priority then we encourage you to NOT purchase this blade. A blade with no engraving WILL have a smoother glide than a blade with engraving. For most, however, this difference is so minimal that it is not even noticed. We just like to provide a full disclosure up front so you know exactly what you are purchasing.
The engraving should last as long as the knife but please note that it will slightly degrade over time as abrasives are used on the knife. We recommend the soft end of a sponge with soap and water for cleaning and mineral oil periodically to condition the blade (and handle). Keep in mind that stronger abrasives, such as steel wool, scotch brite pads, sand paper or stone sharpening directly on the engraved image will degrade the image.
CPM- M4 CARBON STEEL
The blade on this knife is composed of a high carbon CPM M4 steel. M4 is the best carbon steel we have ever used in regards to blade performance. After doing a wide amount of research on this steel, we decided to give it a go and have been extremely impressed with its performance thus far.
CPM M4 steel is unique in that it gets extremely hard. Hardness in steel generally equates to a finer edge and great edge retention. We took this blade to a solid 64 HRC which is incredibly hard compared to most production knives which fall in the mid to high 50's.
The high hardness allows amazing edge retention but unlike other steels at this hardness it's not as brittle or delicate. It is actually highly wear resistant which means you don't need to worry as much about the knife chipping or breaking. As an added bonus, M4 is surprisingly corrosion resistant when compared to other carbon steels.
Its a rugged knife for the performance it offers and this combination is rare when you harden steel to beyond 62 HRC. Please note though that the steel isn't bullet-proof...if you drop the knife on a very hard surface or slam it down on a hard object, it is likely to chip.
The pros of this steel outweigh the cons in our opinion but it must be mentioned that this steel is harder to sharpen than many others so you will need to factor that into your decision as it does represent a bit more maintenance than other knives. On the flip side, you don't need to sharpen this knife nearly as frequently as others.
**As this is a carbon steel, the blade will form a slight patina over time. This is normal and is actually the mark of a beautifully used knife. Please note, however, that a carbon knife does require more maintenance than its stainless steel counterpart, mainly that it must be washed or wiped clean shortly after each use to prevent unwanted rust or stains. We have acid etched this knife to protect the steel and start the patina process. Over time this etch will fade slightly and will be replaced by the individual patina you make while using the knife.