Saturday, June 27, 2020

When it Rains.....


Ken Onion made his first knife in 1991 and hasn’t looked back.  He is a prodigious innovator holding 36 design patents on different items including locks, mechanisms, and knife designs.

Ken Onion Designed Rain Paring Knife


And frankly, I really love his designs.  So when I had the chance I picked up a kitchen knife from his Rain collection from Chef Works.  The instantly visible, the most striking aspect of the knife is the highly polished blade with a textured rain drop pattern.  Hence the name.  The pattern on the blade is designed to reduce food drag caused by surface tension and drag coefficient by creating multiple pockets of air.

Beats me.  I know drag coefficient is used in calculating friction forces which resist movement. I’m sure if you spent 8 hours a day cutting food, you’d want reduced food drag too!

Reverse paring knife
The blade is on top


The business end is a 3 inch reverse paring blade made from Carpenter’s DBZ-1 stainless steel.

DBZ-1 isn’t made from exotic elements.  The bulk of it is iron.  Carbon is between 0.6 and 0.75% with chromium falling in line with 12.5 to 15.3%.  There’s only 0.75% molybdenum  and a smattering of other elements.  The key to this martensitic steel is that it is designed to produce a network of fine carbide particles throughout the steel.  This produces a steel that takes a remarkable edge and holds it.

The most interesting part is the reverse edge.  The curved blade has the sharp, business edge on the top of the blade.  You need to be careful gripping the knife, because the finger grooves are on the opposite side from the edge.  I can’t tell you how many times I wanted to put my thumb on the razor sharp edge.  Just be real careful with this one.

They even warn you in the box.


The handle is shaped from G-10, a high-pressure fiberglass laminate.  It is made by stacking multiple layers of epoxy resin soaked fiber glass sheets and curing under high compression.  G-10 is the toughest of the glass fiber resin laminates.  It is almost indestructible.

This is a glamorous knife.  The blade catches the light and winks as you move it.  The handle with it’s finger grooves feel really good.  It was Blade magazine’s Kitchen Knife of 2013.
But you better watch that blade.  You may not shoot your eye out, but you’ll cut you finger off.


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