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on May 28, 2010
I'm uploading some pictures so you can see the quality control issues I am mentioning in this review.
This was part of the Vine program, so I did not pay for these knives, but if I had paid for them, they would be on their way back right now. The commonly accepted wisdom when buying knives is that you get what you pay for and this set seems to confirm that.
Right out of the box, the knife block itself was in extremely poor shape. Note the photos that show the logo was not completely colored in...I suspect this is supposed to look like a "wood burned" logo, but is instead cheaply printed on with ink. In this case, the stamping is incomplete. Also note the scratches on the block around the base.
The knives themselves are obviously cheap and do not handle well. Blades cut okay for now, but this won't last and I don't think they will sharpen well. Brand new, they should be great, and they are not. I am never sure what is preferable in knives...lightweight or heavyweight (I've heard people refer to both as desirable), but I'll just tell you that these are super light. I also uploaded a picture that shows that the difference in material between the larger knives and the two smaller ones. The smaller knives are really like the paring/slicing knives you might buy at any grocery store in their little kitchen utensils section (my grocery store has one anyway)...basic plastic handles.
The handles on the bigger knives are slightly different...might also be plastic, but they are not as shiny. Very, very lightweight as well. Not sure if this matters, just trying to mention it.
The scissors are very stiff and cheap feeling. I might try to loosen them a bit but since the hinge is covered with metal button this might not work.
Incidentally, the picture of the knife on the product page...the one that has a Santoku look with the little sort of cutouts on the side? It's not included in this set at all.
I seem to have upset some people with my review and I am sorry about that. I thought I'd post an update. First of all, I don't think it is unreasonable to think that brand new items look brand new, so the business with the knife block still is troublesome. Nor do I think it is unreasonable to mention that the picture that was given in the ad copy does not match the items that are in the box.
Regarding the blades themselves, they are wearing about like any other mid-range knives I have ever had, not extraordinary in any way. I have added 2 more stars to my review for a total of 3 stars, which probably more accurately reflects my experience with these knives than the one star I originally gave it, which was, admittedly based on a first impression. They still seem awfully lightweight to me, to the point that they feel unstable or cheap. The scissors are just okay, still kind of stiff. Probably my favorite knife in the set is the smallest one, the paring knife. That feels good in my hand and cuts very nicely. The larger ones tend to feel as though they might break or bend on bigger jobs.
One commenter called my original review a "travesty" which seems a bit harsh, but I am only expressing opinions after all. I'm sure other folks might have had a different experience with this set and found it completely acceptable. For me, I just know I would be disappointed had I paid full price for the set.