NORA #1293 - CPM-M4 Gyuto - Draco
- Blade Type: Gyuto
- Blade Length: 7.5 Inches
- Total Length: 12.75 Inches
- Handle Style: Western | Right or Left Hand Use
- Steel: CPM M4 Carbon Steel
- Handle Materials: Stabilized "Snakeskin" Sycamore with very light spalting, Black G10, Copper Sheeting, Copper Pins, Urethane Based Resin Piece with hues of Navy & Royal Blue, Copper, Gold & Black.
- Rockwell Hardness: 66 HRC
- Grind Type: Full Flat Hybrid (workhorse grind)
- Weight: 7.2 oz.
- This Blade is Ground...
- Thin for Performance (best performance but delicate)
- Thick for Durability (tough, built to last for heavy 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 (Switzerland)
- This Handle Feels...
- >>>Mid-Range, not particularly thick but not thin either.
GENERAL USES OF THIS KNIFE
The Gyuto is the Japanese version of the classic Western chef's knife but the blade tends to be thinner, usually more angular and generally holds a sharper edge (due to higher hardness in the steel). A gyuto is similar to a utility knife in that it is a multipurpose knife that can handle virtually every task including chopping, mincing and slicing. Likewise, it works well with almost every medium including meat, fruit and vegetables. The blade is a Japanese inspired profile with a fair amount of belly in the blade to allow for an ever-so-gentle gentle rocking motion.
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 can be treated to a very high hardness. Hardness in steel generally equates to a finer edge and great edge retention. We took this blade to a solid 66 HRC which is incredibly hard compared to most production knives which fall in the mid to high 50's.
The high hardness allows it to maintain amazing edge retention but unlike other steels at this hardness its 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 try to muscle it through a very hard object (i.e. hard gourd, thick bones, etc.), it is likely to chip.
The pros of this steel outweigh the cons, 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. 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.
HANDLE DESIGN & MATERIALS:
Every one of our knives is handmade, unique and numbered. This NORA is handled with an earthy piece of stabilized sycamore with a "snakeskin" like pattern. (Fitting given the engraving) We paired this wood with black G10 and small copper stripes and added a subtle, metallic resin piece that has beautiful hues of blue, copper, black and gold. Pins coordinate in copper and liner is black G10 with small copper accents. We love the overall look of this knife handle. Its not bright in color, but its elegant and everything seems to pair well.
This image was a strong contender for a Game of Thrones themed knife that we are tossing around making. Alas, we decided against it. We like this dragon just as he is and we love the sort of earthy, metallic tones in the handle paired with this medieval, almost gothic looking dragon.
**This knife has been custom engraved. The engraving was done via laser so there is depth to the engraving more so than you see with an electro etch. We do, however, keep the depth minimal so it does not catch food and minimally interferes with the primary cutting function of the knife. A small amount of stickage is normal around the engraved area, especially initially. This will lessen over time as the blade is used. Please note though, 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 barely 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 further degrade the image.