Veg Chopper

Posted by Ramon Elzinga on

Big Red Knives BBQ Collection:

Ah, spitting fires, smoking coals. On largest island that is also the smallest continent is there anything more Australian on this unique land than firing up the barbie and having a group of mates over for the arvo? These proudly Australian made and owned barbecue knives will elevate your outdoor cooking and dining experience to a level never before seen. Accessorise your Aussie dream with the manly and roguishly handsome Big Red Knives BBQ Collection. For knives like these, it’s not an expenditure, it’s an investment!

Our BBQ collection will be available early July. 

Vegetable Chopper | The “Platypus” Knife

Although not an obvious requirement when one thinks of the traditional barbecue, the Big Red Knives’ Platypus Vegetable Chopper will make your outdoor cooking experience a whole lot easier and enjoyable! Outdoor cooking unlike indoors may make washing your knives less convenient, which makes having a seperate knife for meats and vegetable very appropriate. The unique, small, duck-billed Australian mammal is here to help with the new Vegetable Chopper “Platypus” Knife! 

Use:

At the blade length of 150mm (5.9 inches) this is an easy to handle knife and at a size easily transportable for outdoor cooking. Modelled after classic vegetable choppers the Big Red Knives’ Platypus Knife has a straighter edge designed for fast and efficient rapid chopping. With a slight upwards bend towards the tip the blade is also able to perform the rocking style of chopping for all the usual suspects such as spring onions, garlic and herbs. Like all Big Red Knives this blade was made with the signature combination of premium Japanese high-carbon VG-10 steel with sand-blasted stainless steel protecting the high-carbon on the upper portion of the blade. This ensures both a razor sharp edge but also the longevity and rust resistance of stainless steel. The sandblasting process was also designed to create micro air cavities on the blade which prevents vegetable starches from adhering to the surface, giving you that clean surgical cut. Numerous tests were performed with these knives, including the tomato, onion and paper (T.O.P.) tests, making certain that our blades will guarantee TOP performance and reliability. A handsome knife to add to your collection and a beautiful animal to be reminded of. A perfect addition to the all-purpose Great White knife, pair your saltwater fish with this charming freshwater mammal sidekick!

 

The Australian Platypus:

How lucky are Aussies to have such unique and endearing native fauna such as the platypus? An actual wonder of nature, the platypus is what is known as a mammal under the order of monotremes where their most distinguishing feature is their ability to lay leathery eggs. This egg-laying mammal confused many European naturalists who thought the species was a hoax when first discovered in Australia, and this is coming from the continent that has fruit in their pies instead of meat! Males are larger than females and can grow over 60 cm (27 inches) long when measured from the tip of the bill to the end of the flat paddle-shaped tail, weighing between 800-3000g (1.8-6.6 lbs) they are generally small in size. These semiaquatic guys propels themselves through the water with their front, short, webbed limbs while their hind feet which are only partially-webbed perform the role of rudders to help steering. Its partially-webbed hind feet has strong claws for burrowing and moving on land, making it a versatile creature that can roam both wet and dry environments.

You’re probably wondering how I’m going to write this section on the similarities between a small egg-laying mammal and a knife, well, be prepared to go on a journey of uncanny associations with me! Our ergonomically designed vegetable chopper has a 150mm blade with a curved spine taking after the large blunt bill of this unique Aussie fauna. A platypuses’ bill in particular has a special unique set of nerves that allows it to detect electric fields generated by all living things. These nerves are sensitive to the degree that allows the mammal to hunt with its eyes, ears and nose closed, simply relying on electrolocation. Our knives are full-tang in their structure and design, meaning the same steel that makes up the blade traverses the entire length of the knife, transferring not only strength and stability but also a higher sensitivity of what you’re cutting from texture to hardness. This duck-like bill though sensitive in feel lacks however in a crucial function that the animal requires, this being teeth. The ingenuous Aussie battler has found a solution to this by picking up gravel along with its favourite feeds such as worms, insects and shellfish. Carrying the combination of food and rough aggregate to the surface in its cheek pouches the platypus is then able to crush its food with the gravel as makeshift teeth. When first designing our Australian Big Red Knives range we were concerned that western steels would not make knives with sharp enough edges as they lack the high-carbon composites of Japanese steels that gives it the thin razor-sharp cutting edge. Like the platypuses’ idea of intelligent combination we combined premium Japanese VG-10 steel with western sandblasted stainless steel, giving our blades both razor-sharpness of Japanese blades and the durability of western knives. Aussie fauna, always an inspiration! How is that for bio-mimicry!

PLATYPUS FACT: In keeping with Australia’s reputation as a country with dangerous animals, this little charming semiaquatic mammal is no exception with the males of the species equipped with hollow spurs on their ankles connecting to venom glands. The venom is strong enough to kill small animals and cause crippling pain for humans. Wonderful!

Specs:

Collection: Big Red Knives BBQ Collection

Manufacturer: Koi Knives

Made in Australia with Japanese steel

Blade steel: VG-10 Japanese hard steel core with Stainless Steel cladding

Blade length: 150mm (overall 292mm)

Blade thickness: 3mm

Weight: 275gm

Handle length: 130mm

Handle wood: All local but varies from wood of olive trees, Shiraz grapevines from McLaren Vale (wine region of South Australia) to specially sourced wood Australian deserts.

 

Aussie Knives by Aussies:

Thats not a knife, THATS a knife” now we all know the memorable quote from Crocodile Dundee but his Bowie knife though good for hunting is not ideal for use in the kitchen. In fact, as far as Aussie knives made by Aussies go and in the words of our bladesmith Shannon theres nothing like it that exists.”

We are a local Australian company of two, Shannon and Ramon. Our story began in the dry Adelaide Hills with our parents, Shannons father was a blacksmith and Ramon has an affinity with Japanese culture as his parents met in Japan. Combined with our love for knives, cooking and making things from local materials, we came up with a unique idea of making traditional Japanese knives with an Australian twist. Since then our company Koi Knives have been making knives for several years we have made a range of 12 Japanese knives. However, many have asked us to make a range of Western knives. Initially, we were hesitant as Western knives are made with softer steel, they tend to be less sharp and also blunt quicker. Wheres our true Aussie early settlers pioneering spirit we thought? This is not a challenge! This is an opportunity! We decided to give the idea a fair suck of the bottled sauce and a fair crack of the whip. From there we began designing and eventually crafting this new range. Instead of western steels, we stuck with a Japanese hard high-carbon VG-10 steel as the core of the knife but designed with a Western-style grip.

Our knife shed as our HMS Endeavour, we hit the shores of our expedition with this new set of Aussie knives. The first and finest truly Australian knives are crafted here locally by your two local blokes. We sought to pay homage to our land and our native animals with this set. To create a truly unique and Australia product the shape and form of each knife was modelled after a specially chosen iconic native animal which we also emboss onto the steel at the end.

 

Blade:

The core of the blade is made entirely of VG-10 is a type of Japanese hard steel, it is  cutlery-grade steel with a high carbon content containing 1% Carbon, 15% Chromium, 1% Molybdenum, 0.2% Vanadium, and 1.5% Cobalt. The G in VG-10 stands for Gold, as an indicator of the premium standard of quality. This core is then sharpened to razor sharpness and then cladded with the same steel for protection and longevity. After this, we smelt three layers of sandblasted stainless steel on the top section of the blade for a gun-mental steel finish. The sandblasting also on a practical level provide micro air cavities which prevent vegetables from sticking to the blade while cutting. The final result is like the Australian landscape in a blade, from the scorching sands to shimmering shore: from the spine, the darker sandblasted steel tapers down from the grind line to reveal shiny stainless steel before a dancing line glints off the clad edge to the razor-sharp cutting edge.

 

Handle:

These Aussie knives are part of our Full Tang Clan. Full tang is when the steel of the blade runs all the way through the handle instead of Partial Tang where the steel might end partway through. Full tang allows for more force to be applied without a risk of the knife snapping at the bolster (the base where the blade transitions to the handle). Our knives are very sharp so less force would have to be applied in any case, however, we chose the full tang design in keeping with the aesthetics of Western knives and to set this collection apart from our Japanese Koi Knives. Functionality was designed into the handle with different grips in mind to fit ambidextrously and snugly in your hand. When using a "Handle In Hand Grip" the bevel contours seamlessly from fingers to palm. When using the "Pinch Grip" the smooth transition from handle to blade forms a great comfortable position to pinch the knife.

One of the elements we are most proud of is our signature resin-infused handles crafted with local woods. Each handle is one of a kind and cannot be replicated. All the wood is sourced locally, typically in South Australia’s wine region and varies from the wood from olive trees to Shiraz grapevines, however we have even gathered Gidgee wood from the Simpson Desert. These handles are made with resin in a range of different colours, we feel very strongly about pairing certain colours to the animal that inspired the knife.

Veg Chopper

Maintenance:

After each use:

Simply wipe down in warm soapy water, dry and place on a knife rack away from humidity. Job done!

Long term maintenance:

Big Red Knives are made with a VG-10 Japanese steel core and therefore has a higher carbon content than the average Western kitchen knives. This lends the knives their particular long lasting sharpness, however they also like to be kept dry when not in use and should not be exposed extensively to heat, hot water or ambient high humidity. They should most definitely never be put into the dishwasher or other such nonsense. Each knife was made with love, so please take care of them for us!

Sharpening:

Knives made with a VG-10 Japanese steel core are harder at the edge, this means less honing is needed but should instead be professionally sharpened and ideally with a whetstone. Depending on frequency of use, the knife may need to be sharpened by a professional every 3-6 months for most people. We have an extensive list of sharpeners we can recommend in every state if you’d like to contact us.

Handle:

Similarly, the handle was crafted with resin and coated with a polish that also should not be soaked in hot water. Extended exposure to hot water may damage the polish on the handle that is the protective shield for the wood and resin. Over the years, if the handle starts to look a bit dull a small amount of furniture polish may be used to buff back the shine.

For more information on knife maintenance please see our page: https://www.koiknives.com/pages/maintenance

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