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Global GS-40 4" Paring
Japanese Kitchen Knife Review

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GS-40 4" Paring Knife

Paring knife in general, is a must in any kitchen. For a while I was using Global GS-1 kitchen knife in that role. Along with other non kitchen knives that ended up in my kitchen for testing. When I've decided to upgrade and enlarge my kitchen knives arsenal in April 2008 paring knife was also included in the list. In the end I've picked up several Globals and a Mac 10" yanagi knife. To my disappointment all of the Global knives had much worse edge than from previous purchases in 2006 and 2004. Anyway, I really liked this small knife. Geometry and handling, comfortability, etc. So, for now it's a keeper unlike may other Globals that got retired and replaced with better cutlery. As for the price, it's somewhere in the medium range. Actually it's hard for me to figure out what is medium and what is high price range these days. Is 52$ too much for 4" knife? I think not, for a quality cutlery I've paid a lot more. On the other hand, most of the people give you puzzled look if you say you've paid 52$ for a small knife or around 100$ for a chef's knife. So, I figure that's expensive for ordinary folks and rather cheap for knife nuts.

Blade

- Nice, little pointy blade. I guess it's more of a spearpoint than anything else. Has enough belly to do paring sufficiently and point is good enough to get into tight spots, carve out small spots, etc. 4 inch length is close to perfect for a paring knife in my opinion. Blade was pretty dull out of the box. Packaging of the knife is nice and fit and finish are very good too, minus sharpening job. I don't want to repeat all the complaining I already did about last batch of Globals. Anyway, blade was dull and had a very obtuse convex angle on it. It would still shave, have to note. Obviously, first thing I did is reground the blade to a much lower angle. Started with DMT diamond benchstones, coarse ->fine, them moved up to Silicon Carbide film, 15mic -> 5mic, and finished with 0.3mic Aluminum Oxide. Well, stropped the blade after all that of course. I've ended up with mirror polished, convex edge, somewhere around 13-15 degree per side. Note, this isn't the lower limit for a good kitchen knife. Included edge is still close to 30°. But I already figured out by trail and error that Globals won't hold very thin edge due to softer steel. Other than that no complaints.

Handle

- It's quite different from other Global knives. Of course GS-40 still has Global trademark black dimples on stainless handle, but geometry is different from GS-1 kitchen knife for example. Actually it's similar to other utility knives from Global. In short it's much flatter, but very comfortable and ergonomic. I've used this knife quite a bit in last 6 weeks and like I said I really like how it handles and feels in my hand.

Steel

- The steel is the CROMOVA 18 used by Global for all their knives as far as I am concerned. I've already commented regarding this steel in Global GF-33 Forged Chef's knife review and in Fallkniven White Whale review, thus there is no point in repeating all that in here. Follow the link to see the info regarding CROMOVA 18.

Sharpening

- Is a breeze with this knife :) Which is mainly attributed to relatively soft steel. However, in some situations it is a benefit. Especially when non knife enthusiasts are handling the knife. As usual the case with those folks is that they don't feel too attached to the knife in use, neither emotionally, not physically :) Thus, the knife gets quite of an abuse. If it was a harder blade that'd probably end up with a chip, with softer blade you get rolls and those are easier to fix. Quick sharpening is a plus here, because I can quickly restore sharp edge even in the middle of cutting. To give you an idea, I can tell you that I was able to pretty much reprofile edge, that is thin it down using only 12000 grit Japanese whetstone. That is an equivalent of 1mic abrasive. For Phil Wilson's CPM 10V hunter 45 minutes of work on the same stone gave no visible results. I say visible, because when the stone works you can see dark metal particles floating in water. With G-40 results were immediately available, while with Wilson's knife water on the stone barely changed it's color.

Usage

- GS-40 gets used pretty much for everything a knife of this size can and should be used for. I really like it visually and ergonomics and maneuverability are very good. For a while it was one of the most used knives in my kitchen where it worked as paring, peeling and utility knives in one. Although, given that I'm upgrading my kitchen cutlery to higher standards, I've got Tojiro Flash 4" paring knife. I really like handles on Tojiro flash series and the VG-10 steel on those is hardened to 62HRC. Plus the edges on them are very thin and sharpened very well too. Since my Tojiro paring knife is already here, GS-40 was honorably retired for me. I'll keep it in the kitchen for guests and family members, since I won't have to worry about blade chipping on this one. Perhaps I'll use it again when I feel nostalgic :)

Specifications:

  • Blade - 101.60mm(4")
  • Thickness - 3.17mm
  • OAL - 215.90mm(8.5")
  • Steel - CROMOVA 18 56-58HRC
  • Handle - Stainless Steel
  • Weight - 78.00g(2.64oz)
  • Acquired - 04/2008 Price - 50.00$

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Last updated - 09/01/11