Chef’s Knives

Chef's Knife

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Bridgetown Forge makes chef’s knives, custom knives for camping, hunting, and general purpose.

Having apprenticed with a sword-maker and a knife-maker in Japan, my knife design and construction often follows Japanese sensibilities.

All knives are hand-forged from carefully selected grades of tool steel, heat-treated to bring out the best qualities of the steel, ground on a Japanese water wheel, polished, and hand-honed. The hammer marks are usually left on the parts of the blade that don’t come in direct contact with the material being cut, while the cutting edge is polished to a satin finish. This allows the making process to be seen, and testifies that the blade is truly hand-forged. Knives are made in the following configurations:

* Laminates: hard, high-carbon steel, which forms the cutting edge, is fused with soft steel, which forms the body of the blade. this way, a very hard, keen, long-lasting cutting edge is created, while the entire knife retains toughness and flexibility. This is a traditional japanese method, used in kitchen knives, samurai swords, and woodworking tools.

* Single-piece blade: the entire blade is made of one piece of tool steel, and differentially hardened: the cutting edge is very hard, but the back is soft and flexible. in commercial knives, the the entire blade is the same hardness, which means that the cutting edge has to be softer to prevent breakage. The handle is usually made of a suitable hardwood.

* One-piece construction: the entire knife, including the handle, is forged from a single piece of steel. this makes for a very solid knife, with no joints to break or crevesses to accumulate dirt or moisture. The handles often carry the double twist design, which makes for both a pleasing appearance and a very good grip.

* Single-bevel construction: this is a traditional Japanese method for many kinds of kitchen knives: sushi, filleting, meat, etc. It makes for a perfect straight cut and an easy separation of the cut piece from the blade.

* Double-bevel: used mostly for thin vegetable slicers.