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Old November 2, 2014, 09:06 PM   #1
Bobson
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Cutco Kitchen Knives

I did a search for Cutco and found the general consensus here on THR to be that their products are okay. Not terrible, but not great.

I was at Costco earlier and they had a rep there doing his sales pitch. Their products have a "forever warranty" that covers blade breakage (including broken tips from abuse like using it as a screwdriver), handle damage or melting, etc. They also have free in-your-house sharpening for life; just call and set it up. The knives are made from "high carbon 440c steel" (I asked).

Their products are very expensive. A 22 or 23 blade set (I can't remember now), which includes 8 steak knives, meat shears, a sharpener, and a carving fork/knife, with block for all of them, was $999.99. Not the most expensive set in the world, but it's still several times more money than I've ever paid for a comparatively equipped set.

So what gives with the price, given that most people here believe their products are mediocre?

I didn't buy it. I wouldn't even if I had the money and needed a knife set, neither of which are true. But watching the pitch, it really made me curious. A thousand dollars for a mediocre knife set seems absolutely obscene. What does a high quality set cost, and what's different about it?
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Old November 2, 2014, 09:27 PM   #2
rcmodel
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Quote:
A 22 or 23 blade set
IMO: That's about 15 more knives & $800 dollars then you or anyone else needs!

This set will do all your kitchen knife work 95% of the time.

http://www2.knifecenter.com/item/H35...ar-3-Piece-Set

Carving set?
http://www2.knifecenter.com/item/H35...-set-35037-000

Steak knives.
http://www2.knifecenter.com/item/H39...teak-Knife-Set


Or, start here and add too it.
http://www2.knifecenter.com/item/H35...iece-Block-Set

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Old November 2, 2014, 09:30 PM   #3
ford8nr
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I've had a set for over 25 years. After ordering it at the State Fair I panicked and called several knife shops for a compairable product. All were just if not more expensive and NO salesperson could tell me why theirs were better, so I kept my order and took the Cutco's. I send mine back to Cutco about every 2-3 years for factory sharpening. Twice they have replaced knifes when something showed up during inspection. Didn't even know I had a problem. I have had friends of my wife's comment how nice they are when used during social events at my house. I'd buy them again in a heart beat. Same thing with REAL GOOD cookwear. I cringed at the cost after we were married 30 years ago, yet never cringed at a $1000 rifle...go figure.
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Old November 2, 2014, 09:30 PM   #4
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Years ago maybe twelve we bought a set from a friend of our grandson, two forks, eight assorted kitchen knives and eight steak knives, we still have them and use them daily zero complaints, did we pay to much? Probably but then they have given us great service and at our age I doubt we'll ever need another set of knives.
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Old November 2, 2014, 09:51 PM   #5
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I did not know they were still around. Over 40 years ago I bought the hunting knife from a buddy of mine. We were both in the Navy and he was trying to make some extra bucks.
It was sharp as h**l and had a nice leather sheath but was lost to the ravages of time and moving...
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Old November 2, 2014, 10:23 PM   #6
OH_Spartan
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I dint think they are overpriced for what they are. Depending on who you ask, they are the best of the worst or the worst of the best. Their service is amazing. they have replaced multiple knives that we didnt even know had a problem. We use and abuse ours heavily and they get sharpened about once a year. They probably need it in half that time but we plan their sharpening around vacations when we won't be using them anyway.

If you want to build a set, I recommend ebay, household auctions and patience. We've built our set one or two at a time for 50-75% off retail. Even second owners get the lifetime warranty. There are better knives out there and some may even be cheaper but I have always found value in cutco.
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Old November 2, 2014, 11:13 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rcmodel View Post
IMO: That's about 15 more knives & $800 dollars then you or anyone else needs!
This is exactly what I was thinking. Thanks for the links.

Quote:
Depending on who you ask, they are the best of the worst or the worst of the best.
That's a good way to put it.
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Old November 2, 2014, 11:39 PM   #8
Wildbillz
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I have a set that my mother got as a wedding gift in 1952. I inherted them when she passed away two years ago. While at a local Art & Wine festival I came across a Cutco dealer and asked about getting them sharpened. We set a date for her to come by the house and put an edge back on them. Turned out that the edge was to far gone for her to sharpen properly so she sent them back to the factory. A couple of weeks later I got a call from the factory, they wanted to know if it would be all right to replace a couple of the pieces as they had some issues. They couldn't give me ones with the nice wooden handles that my set had, but they would replace the bad ones if I wanted. So I ended up with several new knifes out of it. They also refinished all the old wood handles and made them look new. When we got them back the wife dropped one and it cut through her pants leg and into her flesh just from the edge dragging along. So they are dam sharp. There not cheap, but I was moved enough that I bought a set of stake knifes and a couple of other ones that I liked.

Some of them I don't think I have used or ever will. The long slicer, the butcher knife and meat cleaver. I just wish I could have found the hunting knife my dad had from them. Good stuff as far as I am concerned. Made in the US and backed by a good warranty.

Old Sarge
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Old November 3, 2014, 12:09 AM   #9
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Quote:
IMO: That's about 15 more knives & $800 dollars then you or anyone else needs!
I agree, we have cheap knives for everyday use that get abused. And then I have knives my wife has rarely seen.
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Old November 3, 2014, 12:32 AM   #10
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Skip Henckels' and Wusthof's overpriced knives with their DIN X50CrMoV15 steel that's barely not even on par with 440A. Spend a few $ more per piece and get Tojiro knives with far better laminated VG-10 blades - http://www.cutleryandmore.com/tojiro...fe-set-p124781.

Last edited by ugaarguy; November 4, 2014 at 03:06 AM. Reason: corrected error
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Old November 3, 2014, 01:04 AM   #11
rcmodel
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Doe's it really matter?

I have, and have used a block of 6 Case stainless kitchen knives I bought for my wife at a hardware store for Xmas in 1960 something for 50 years.

Of the six, the paring knife, boning knife, chefs knife, and ceramic steel are the only ones that ever get used.

They are sharp, stay sharp, and are relatively easy to sharpen if they need it once a year or so.

On the other hand, the best food I ever ate was prepared by my mother, and mother-in-law with nothing but a Old Hickory, or Utica carbon steel butcher knife handed down from their mothers, and a dime store paring knife!
That they sharpened on the rim of a big Red Wing pickle crock.

Owning a $1,000 set of kitchen knives doesn't make you a good cook.

Any more then owning a priceless old Samurai sword makes you a Samurai!

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Last edited by rcmodel; November 3, 2014 at 01:12 AM.
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Old November 3, 2014, 02:11 AM   #12
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I have worked in professional cooking off and on since 1963. Started at mom's restaurant in 1960. Best cooking knives have always been Dexter/ Russell. I have Messermeister knives for show and impressing people but Dexter/Russell for everything else. Go to a restaurant supply store and look for sanisafe handles. Secondly remember that a "Knife Block" is frequently a breeding ground for bacteria, magnetic knife bars are far more sanitary. Finally a base group of Dexter/Russell should run well under $100.

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Old November 3, 2014, 03:30 AM   #13
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We have a full set from when a family friend was selling them door to door. 20 years ago I would guess. We didnt spend a grand, but it was a couple hundred.

Dad opted for the hunting knife as an add on to the set. (Steak knives, pie cutters bread knife etc etc). Dad broke some teeth off his knife abusing it in a manner that made me cringe. Cutco replaced the knife no questions asked.

http://www.cutco.com/products/produc...=hunting-knife

To be fair its a wicked sharp blade, no idea how to re sharpen them but we have never needed to.

PS a fully serrated knife is not a great hunting knife, it's crap for skinning. However looks like they have a regular blade option. I think that's a HEFTY price compared to a Buck of similar shape and size.

PS this Buck is the best skinner I have ever used: http://www.amazon.com/Buck-103BKS-Sk.../dp/B000EHUYN2
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Old November 3, 2014, 07:19 AM   #14
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Quote:
Doe's it really matter? ... Owning a $1,000 set of kitchen knives doesn't make you a good cook.
Well, you were the one who recommended a $100 set of Henckels that have mediocre steel. Why recommend those when lower priced Dexter-Russel or Victorinox-Forschner food service grade will do the job just as well and hold up to abuse better. With the Tojiro knives you get real value for the money with a premium cutlery steel that will take a keener edge and hold it longer than the Henckels, or the D-R or V-F food service knives.

I bought Henckels' competitor Wusthof knives before I knew better than to buy the big name German brands with mediocre steel. I've kept them because it isn't worth the expense to replace them, and I have no trouble sharpening them. I have friends who have Shuns and Tojiros that I get to play with when they have me sharpen them. Both of those Japanese brands will take far keener edges than the German stuff, and they hold their edges far longer. The Tojiros barely cost more than the German stuff, and they're about half the price of Shun Classics. Of course I'm comparing Tojiro's DP line to Shun classic, which isn't exactly fair since Shun doesn't make a basic line like Tojiro's DP. Tojiro's equivalent DP Damascus line sells for about the same price as Shun's Classic line.

I'm just trying to help Bobson and anyone else reading this thread to learn from my mistake and get knives that are actually worth the money.
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Old November 3, 2014, 08:04 AM   #15
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You have to be careful about what is recommended based on products bought 20 years ago since they may look the same, but the company may have changed the materials.

I have never thought it was a good idea to buy every piece of cutlery from the same source. Flatwear should match, but that's just for place setting reasons. Kitchen knife sets often come with a knife or two that never see use.
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Old November 3, 2014, 08:18 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rcmodel View Post
IMO: That's about 15 more knives & $800 dollars then you or anyone else needs!

This set will do all your kitchen knife work 95% of the time.

http://www2.knifecenter.com/item/H35...ar-3-Piece-Set

rc
Holy crap, those are getting cheap. When I cooked professionally (in the late 80's) I paid $260 for a Four-Star 8" Chef's knife alone.

And I don't know if the quality is the same anymore, but I still have it and use it as my main Chef's knife.
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Old November 3, 2014, 09:30 AM   #17
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Cutco 10x Overpriced ( the sellers make a huge commission) cut sheet metal, with a great sales pitch, and cool handles. They will sharpen them for free if you don't know how, or want to sharpen a knife so they are a fine deal for folks who like them. 440C is decent steel but the knives are not forged.

Wusthof Trident forged, and Henckels Forged 4 star Knives are great knives made out of superior steel with an advanced hardening and annealing process that will take and hold a razor edge. If you think a steel is the way to sharpen chef's knife then they are probably not for you as you have to use proper sharpening stones to get a proper edge.

I own a cutco butcher knife that I use to carve meat at the table I love the shiny finish, it's a cool looking knife. I bought it on ebay for $18 used and it will take a fine edge using whet stones.

I also own several Wusthof and Henckels forged knives I use to cook. I sharpen them occasionally when they need it with Spyderco ceramic stones and a hard black Arkansas stone.

Different strokes for different folks.

http://www.wusthof.com/usa/knowledge/index.jsp

http://www.wusthof.com/usa/knowledge...ones/index.jsp

Japanese knives are also great most of the ones mentioned above use VG-10 cores with the equivalent of 440 Damascus layers.
They are also hardened to Rockwell 60 instead of 55-57 like the German knives. That is great for holding a razor edge but it also makes them brittle and if you are not careful you can chip them. Shun and Tojiro warn against cutting through frozen foods and bone for that reason.
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Old November 3, 2014, 01:16 PM   #18
skoro
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bobson
So what gives with the price, given that most people here believe their products are mediocre?
It's just high markup, is all.

Get yourself a set of Wusthof or Zwilling Henckels (not Henckels International) and you'll have better knives at a lower price.
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Old November 3, 2014, 01:46 PM   #19
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Cutco's marketing is unique. They hire mostly college students and young adults to sell their product to family members and neighbors. When these kids run out of potential victims they quickly quit selling Cutco products.

I've had the pleasure of sitting through a Cutco sales pitch by several friends kids.

Now I just tell them to ship me one utility style knife and pay the $100.00 or so $$ to help them out. As others have stated Cutco's products are fair at best, and are not a good value.
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Old November 3, 2014, 02:31 PM   #20
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I ran into a salesman at my county fair this summer. What first drew me to the table was the couple Syderco-type folding knives he had laid out. They sucked. And I was not impressed with the kitchen knives either. Looked and felt like stamped junk to me. I think you could get comparable knives at Target for far less money. Cutco is trying to sell you on the warrantly and sharpning service. If that is attractive to a buyer than it may be worthwhile for them. I will stick with my small set of forged Wusthoff knives and sharpen them myself.

After he gave me the rundown on his simpy amazing folding knives, I pulled out my Benchmade and 710 and handed it to him. Of course, he wasnt impressed, and continued to tell me how his loose, clunky, Spyderco imitaion was superior. It was entertaining anyway.

Last edited by mboe794; November 3, 2014 at 02:41 PM.
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Old November 4, 2014, 12:39 AM   #21
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My parents have a cutco set that they got 40 years ago. Several of the pieces have been sent back to cutco for replacement after being damaged during extensive use. We got them back no questions asked. The knives are kept sharp by my father as needed so I don't know anything about the sharpening service. I would by some for the right price, but I know better than to spend $800 or more on a set of kitchen knives that are mass produced. I do enjoy watching people demo knives, people have no idea how to properly use a knife nor do they seem to care.
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Old November 4, 2014, 03:41 AM   #22
ugaarguy
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Quote:
Cutco 10x Overpriced ( the sellers make a huge commission)
Yes, they're overpriced.
Quote:
cut sheet metal, with a great sales pitch, and cool handles. They will sharpen them for free if you don't know how, or want to sharpen a knife so they are a fine deal for folks who like them. 440C is decent steel but the knives are not forged.
They're actually 440A. It doesn't mater that they aren't forged if the heat treat is done properly, which Cutco actually does do properly.
Quote:
Wusthof Trident forged, and Henckels Forged 4 star Knives are great knives made out of superior steel with an advanced hardening and annealing process that will take and hold a razor edge.
NO THEY ARE NOT! You're grossly misinformed. Wusthof and Henckels use DIN (Deutsches Institut für Normung, or German Institute for Standardization in English, their equivalent to AISI) X50CrMoV15. X50CrMoV15 is almost exactly the same composition as AISI 425M. AISI 440A has significantly more carbon, chromium, and molybdenum in the alloy than does 425M / X50CrMoV15. 440A is more corrosion resistant than X50CrMoV15, and with equivalent quality heat treats 440A is tougher and will hold an edge longer. The Germans hype their knives but use one of the least expensive and lowest grade cutlery steels available.
Quote:
Japanese knives are also great most of the ones mentioned above use VG-10 cores with the equivalent of 440 Damascus layers.
They are also hardened to Rockwell 60 instead of 55-57 like the German knives. That is great for holding a razor edge but it also makes them brittle and if you are not careful you can chip them. Shun and Tojiro warn against cutting through frozen foods and bone for that reason.
VG-10 at 60 HRC is no more brittle than X50CrMoV15 at 56 HRC. The difference in edge chipping is that the Japanese knives are sharpened at 15 to 18 degrees per side (Shun is 16 degrees), while most German knives are sharpened at 20-22 DPS. I have a Wusthof Classic forged santoku from a few years ago when they went to a 58 HRC target hardness and factory sharpened at 18 DPS on their Grand Prix line, and the Asian style knives within the Classic line. That knife edge chips like crazy. The Japanese knives with VG-10 blades at 60 HRC and 16 DPS edges are far tougher. The German brands are full of bovine excrement when they tell you they have superior steel and superior heat treat.
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Old November 4, 2014, 04:38 AM   #23
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Cutco....

My older sister purchased a few Cutco kitchen knives & products thru a "authorized" Cutco sales rep. She said the whole ordering process was a ordeal.
She considered the Cutco blades decent but not worth all the stress & hassle.
I thought you could just order products direct from Cutco's New York office/factory. I guess not.

I like Cutco's field knife the Ka Bar type blade but I think the Gerber Infantry blade in desert tan(flat dark earth) with the built in sharpener & nice blade is better for camping/prepping/hunting.

Rusty
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Old November 4, 2014, 04:58 AM   #24
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Skip Henckels' and Wusthof's overpriced knives with their DIN X50CrMoV15 steel that's barely not even on par with 440A. Spend a few $ more per piece and get Tojiro knives with far better laminated VG-10 blades - http://www.cutleryandmore.com/tojiro...fe-set-p124781.
That seems like a good place to start, or with RC's link. I agree with RC a grand is about $750 more than I'd pay. I'll spend a grand on a gun easy but not on Kitchen knives. Dang I should have made some for me when I was making knives!
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Old November 4, 2014, 05:29 AM   #25
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+1 on RC Models suggestion.

A Zwillings Chefs knife is all one ever needs.

The two other knives in the set are for the girls to cut the veggies.
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