Steve Callari Custom Knives – The Knife Junkie Podcast (Episode 381)
Steve Callari of Steve Callari Custom Knives joins Bob “The Knife Junkie” DeMarco on Episode 381 of The Knife Junkie Podcast.
A professional chef and knife steel expert, Steve has been publicly discussing the importance of heat treating and blade geometry for years, especially as it pertains to major manufacturers.
Steve, a member of the Georgia Custom Knife Makers Guild, has transitioned to making chefs knives and other kitchen knives. Steve Callari Custom Knives feature extremely thin blade stock and behind the edge geometry. He has illustrated this geometry by cutting onions with an unsharpened knife.
Find Steve Callari Custom Knives on Instagram at www.instagram.com/Stevecallaricustomknives.
Be sure to support The Knife Junkie and get in on the perks of being a Patron — including early access to the podcast and exclusive bonus content. You also can support the Knife Junkie channel with your next knife purchase. Find our affiliate links at theknifejunkie.com/knives.Steve Callari of Steve Callari Custom Knives joins me on episode 381 of #theknifejunkie #podcast to talk about his custom kitchen knives -- and more. I think you'll enjoy this one. Click To Tweet
Steve Callari, Steve Callari Custom Knives - The Knife Junkie Podcast (Episode 381)
©2023, Bob Demarco
The Knife Junkie Podcast
[0:00] Welcome to the Knife Junkie Podcast, your weekly dose of knife news and information about knives and knife collecting.
Here's your host, Bob the Knife Junkie DeMarco. Welcome to the Knife Junkie Podcast.
I'm Bob DeMarco.
On this edition of the show, I'm speaking with Steve Callari of Steve Callari Custom Knives.
You may know him as Super Steel Steve, the firebrand defending proper HRC, blade geometry, and USA manufacturing.
But as a professional chef with a lifelong love and need for knives, it's exciting to see Steve put his money where his mouth is.
He is now hand making in the United States incredibly thin, slicey, handsome, and utilitarian kitchen knives in a number of different models. I have one right here.
Just got it. I just received my eight inch Steve Callari custom chef's knife yesterday as we record this. cut up an apple and diced an onion and I'm already strategizing the excommunication of all my other kitchen knives.
[1:05] Of course, I am joking, but what isn't a joke is that only I and my wife will be permitted to use this knife. I look forward to catching up with this Paizon and finding out what it's like taking a plunge into knife making.
But before we do, be sure to like, comment, subscribe, and hit the notification bell and download the show to your favorite podcast app.
And as always, if you want to help support the show, you can do so by going to Patreon.
Quickest way to get there is to go to theknifejunkie.com slash Patreon. Again, that's theknifejunkie.com slash Patreon.
Don't take dull for an answer.
It's the Knife Junkies favorite sign off phrase and now you can get that tagline on a variety of merchandise. Like a t-shirt, sweatshirt, hoodie, long sleeve tee and more. Even on coasters, tote bags, a coffee mug, water bottle and stickers.
Let everyone know that you're a Knife Junkie and that you don't take dull for an answer.
[1:57] Get yours at theknifejunkie.com slash dull and shop for all of your Knife Junkies merchandise at theknifejunkie.com slash shop.
You're listening to the Knife Junkie Podcast. Steve, welcome to the show. How's it going, sir?
I'm telling you, Bob, I'm gonna get you to write my next resume, because that might have been the best introduction of me I've ever heard in my life.
Cool, well, the pleasure is mine, sir. I wanna congratulate you on, well, doing this thing and making a jump to actually making knives, these things that you love that you've been talking about for so long. It's gotta be a thrill.
It is, it's a big thrill. It's something I wanted to do for a long time.
[2:39] I just, it's kind of the barrier to entry to get into knife making on any sort of like a legitimate level is obviously you need like a big old grinder, like a big old 2x72 is kind of the industry standard and they're very expensive.
[2:57] And it's just, it was, didn't have the money basically. I just, I got an opportunity to pick up a.
[3:03] People, any knife maker will laugh at me with the grinder that I'm using, but it is a 2x72 and it does move a lot of metal. So once that, once I had the opportunity to get that for a really good deal, a good friend of mine sold it to me. I just, I got two gears. I got park and seven.
And so once I had that, I just went hog wild and was like, all right, I'm doing this.
Okay. And by that, you're, you're, you're talking about your grinder motor does not have a variable speed is what I'm assuming, which makes it more difficult and...
[3:33] Yeah, it's a grisly 2x72. So it's just got, you know, one speed and that is terrifying is the speed that it is. It just... So yeah, it makes it obviously... You can't... There's
no... It's very hard to do very... How do I say this? Like, there's no nuance. I have to know exactly what I'm doing when I'm approaching the grinder because one mistake with a 50-grit belt moving at 3600 RPMs, it's going to take a big old chunk of steel or handle material,
especially doing handles. It's extremely nerve-racking because it's moving so quick.
It generates a lot of heat. I can burn the scales super easily. It takes less than a half a second to burn the scale. Especially when you're eating the higher grits. So it's... If there's any knife makers that watch this, they'll be laughing. He's using a grizzly. It's kind of like a joke,
I learned amongst knife makers. I didn't know that at the time. He said,
said, Hey, I got this two by 72. And I was like, I'll take it.
But hang on, if you're working on a substandard machine, I'm throwing up air quotes, but you're still grinding steel that is this thin and making it paper thin behind the edge. This is the knife I just received that I was talking about up front.
Doesn't that mean you're actually learning with more resistance kind of like weight training, the more resistance,
the stronger you get, you have more resistance because you don't have this, this super lux machine to make these with and yet you're still generating super thin slicey knives.
[5:00] Yeah, yeah. It's like it's kind of a running joke. I talk about pops, I supply because they're local to me. So there's lots of knife makers in there. It's like I guess the thing to do is like when you go to a shop, everybody brings their work and the ticket and stuff like that.
So I'm always handing my work to every... All the guys there and whatever knife makers are in there just getting feedback. And it's always like they'll be looking at it and they'll be like, oh, wow, this is, you know, this is good. And this is what I would do. And and then it's like somebody will like holler from the back.
He's got a grizzly. He's doing it on a grizzly. And they're like, you're doing this on a what?
[5:33] And they're like, oh, never mind. That's as good as you. It'll be like little detail things they'll be telling me to like critique. And they're like, never mind.
Wait till you get another grinder because you're already punching above your pay grade with what you have.
Because I have that grinder, I've got an old used Harbor Freight drill press and a super jerry rigged nine inch disc sander,
that is literally, I'm almost positive, old dish machine motor hooked up to a disc sander with a belt that is bolted to a big piece of wood with door hinges. Again, that doesn't even have an on and off switch. I
have to hook it up to a power strip and turn it on and off like that. And that thing has,
that thing just rips. I use that to flatten scales and stuff like that. So I definitely have a super caveman setup for sure. But yeah, I like to think of it as, you know, like swinging about with a donut,
like if I can get, if I can put out really high quality work,
with this, then once I start getting the better stuff, it'll.
[6:33] Be even better.
That's my feeling like it's always easy, no matter what pursuit and I've done this a lot in my life, to to back away from,
some ambition because, well, you use the term barrier for entry because the barrier for entry is too high.
Oh, well, this camera is too expensive, or, oh, well, this grinder is too expensive, or it's too much of an investment to get into this thing.
Well, you do that your whole life, you end up doing nothing.
Exactly. If you don't, and for me, it's like, I have, like I said, I have two speeds. I have park and seven gears.
And I've had a love of knives and wanted to make knives. I didn't realize how much I would love making knives. That I didn't know, but I wanted to do it. But if I'm gonna do it, I'm gonna do it, right?
And I realized very quickly with a little, you know, one by 30, I wasn't going to be able to do this as much as I wanted to, right? It was going to simple things were going to take too much time.
I don't have that kind of patience to sit there.
Like some of these life makers you see like Elisha Witts that are making these incredibly or you know, tiny or what's his name?
[7:36] From Black Dragon Forge, he's doing these crazy engravings on hand. I couldn't do stuff like that. I have to constantly see progress and see progress in myself in every night that I make.
So that's why I just put it to the side. I made a couple blades for the YouTube channel. They were tiny just for testing and stuff.
Then when it's two by 72, I was like, okay, this is, I can do something. It might suck.
There might be a, I might have to, you know, it's caveman. I might have to, you know, really be good, really get good at it.
But that's just work. That's just time and effort. And I've got, I've got that in spades. So I'm going to make it happen.
[8:10] Well, so the, the pursuit of, first of all, have you always been a handy person? I mean, someone who just comes in with equipment that might not be the best, and you're trying to do something very hard with that material, and you're doing a great job so far, from,
what I can tell from my knife.
Have you always been handy? Is this something that you kind of easily transition to?
I don't know if I'd say I was handy. I mean, being a chef, I've always worked with my... I don't know.
Definitely... I get it a lot that I progress very, very fast with knife making. I think it's just... I don't know. I kind of got a knack for... I don't know. Making knives and cooking are real similar to me. I mean, it's time, it's temperature, it's some nuance with your hands. So, I don't... I wouldn't say I'm like a super handy guy. I mean, I'll fix,
things around the house. I usually can figure stuff out fairly easy. I think one of my biggest strength has always been, I can learn. I've always been a good learner. I can learn. If I... That and
I'm... I am to a fault. I will always outwork everyone around me. That's how my cooking career was. I couldn't afford to go to college. So I was like, okay, well, I can't go to... I can't afford to go to culinary school. So I'm just going to outwork every single human being around me. And,
that's how I'm going to... I'm going to get good at this. And that's just what I did. And the same.
[9:32] With this. It's like, I don't have good equipment. Okay, well, I'm just going to... I'm just going to I'm gonna do this till three o'clock in the morning.
When I wake up at five for work, I'm gonna do this till three in the morning every single day for four months straight until I can start putting out things that look like I want them to look.
[9:50] You know, when I was asking Handy, I think what I more meant was artistic because cooking is definitely an artistic pursuit.
You know, when it's a job or a career, maybe less so, but the point is you're making something for enjoyment and for sustenance and you're making it from nothing,
or you're making it from raw ingredients and you're kind of doing the same thing with knife making.
Are you still a chef and, or does knife making kind of take the place of that creative need?
It more than takes the place for, I'm telling you, I can't explain, I don't know who I was talking about.
I did not know I would fall in love with making knives as much as I did.
I've been doing sporadic private gigs and caterings and stuff like that, but I've been in food sales the last three years outside of the kitchen.
[10:44] This I I probably enjoy I enjoy making knives even more than I enjoyed To be honest, like I didn't realize I would enjoy the process The see giving like once I give it to somebody and hearing their experience.
[11:00] As much as I do I really didn't think that would happen Yeah, you make me a dish and I'll eat it and be like my god Steve. This was delicious.
[11:09] But two weeks from now, I'm not gonna be saying man that steak was I mean, I might, I might, but this I'll be, you know, I'll have this for a lifetime and then or the rest of my lifetime and then my girls will take it. One of them, they'll probably fight over it. But the point is like you get return on this over and over and over. You,
get to hear about how great your creation is, but also you get to know that it's, you know, doing someone solid for their cooking and, you know, providing for their family.
Yeah, that's a, cause that's who I had in mind. Like I remember it was like the line That's what I had in mind. Because I remember when I got my first really good knife, how...
It sounds corny, but how much more professional I felt. This was a really high performance tool and I'm going to use it like that.
And then it's funny when you say that because it's like a... Now that you're saying it, I didn't think about it like that. But it is like a double-edged sword. It's like with cooking, you're there for the moment. You're trying to... When you do fine dining like I did, you're trying to be...
[12:06] You're almost trying to be unnoticed. You're trying to provide an experience where people almost don't even know that they're in your restaurant. They kind of forget where they are and the food's amazing and the service is great. And then they walk out and go, oh my God, that food was amazing. And then it goes away whereas a knife
It gets to be in someone's home. Part of running a restaurant is amazing, especially fine dining restaurant, is I'm part of people's memories.
I used to tell my staff this all the time. You don't know what first dates are going on in here that might lead to a marriage. You don't know what birthdays, what 75th anniversary. You don't know any of this stuff.
So we got to be perfect every time because we could screw up someone's anniversary. We could screw up a marriage proposal.
We could screw something up. We can't do that. And with making knives, it's kind of that same thing because those knives are going to cut a birthday cake.
Gonna make someone's first dish for a girl he likes, they're gonna, you know, they're gonna cut hot dogs for their kids for the first, you know, stuff like that.
But also on the flip side, if we do screw up in the restaurant, well, at the end of the night when the restaurant closes, it's a new day.
If I screw somebody's knife up, they've got their knife possession forever. Yeah, yeah, exactly.
And the knife is there every day after work when I come home and I have to cook, you know. There isn't for, especially for someone like myself who's just obsessed and always has been with knives, there's a there's a joy beyond, wow, this thing cuts so great, I don't even have to think about it. You,
know, it's it there will be the little flash of joy. Oh, you.
[13:29] Know, of knowing this is my first custom knife. This is my first really good kitchen knife. I have a Wustoff Trident that I love. I have a I have some shuns that I have tweaked to love, you
know, you know, this is this is the thing and it's well, it's very special to me. And last night I diced an onion in a way that I've never been able to do before. You know how you do the this way and then that way?
Yeah, the horizontal and the vertical cuts to dice. Well, I've never used a knife so thin that I could just swipe through it. I always have to kind of lightly saw through it so that I don't go all the way through and cut my fingers. This I could just...
[14:11] Thanks for watching!
[14:11] And I'm sorry for those listening, I'm mimicking just swiping the blade horizontally through the onion instead of having to gently saw through it.
You know, and that sounds like nothing, but I've always watched chefs do that. As a matter of fact, I watched you do it in a video where you released cutting without an edge on one of your knives and that's how you were doing it. I was like, I want to cut an onion like that.
[14:37] This is so damn thin at the spine and so sharp, it slips through it like it's not even there.
It's funny, I joke around and I tell people, my knives are like Pia Flyers, right?
They're guaranteed to make a guy cut faster and better. But there is a little bit of truth to that.
It's how the knife, there's technique you learn when you're cooking professionally, obviously, but yeah, you need, I can't do that with a super thick knife. I can't sit there and slam through an onion super quick like that.
The only way I can slam through an onion really quick if the knife will let me slide through the knife really, slide through the onion really.
That's the deal. Like I said, there's a little bit of truth behind it. If you get a knife that's ground well, right? And ground to be a performance-based knife, then yeah, you can cut things a lot quicker.
And people don't realize that when you get a really good kitchen knife, like I remember my first experience with mine, and you go to cut an onion, and it's just, we call it ghosting. It just goes through, it just drops through it. You're like, what is that? And then you just start looking for stuff to cut because you're like, oh, I want to keep that feeling going, you know, like that effortlessness when it just,
like you said, it just zips right through the side. You're like, did that even go through? And you're like holding the onion up.
Like, oh my God, it did.
This is also one of those knives where when you cut yourself, you're like, did I cut myself? And then it takes a second and then it yawns open and bleeds and then you feel the pain. You know, I would say the feedback takes a while because it's thin.
[15:56] So I want to talk a little bit about your process, especially considering your past in the knife world. You have been, I mentioned upfront that you've been a bit of a firebrand for maintaining quality in things like heat treat,
and holding people's, holding companies feet to the fire about that.
Heat treat, geometry you talk about a lot or have spoken about a lot in the past. and then also manufacturing in the United States. Obviously, you've got that part down.
But in terms of ensuring that these things that were so important to you when you were reviewing knives and talking more about production knives and knives on the market and that kind of thing, what kind of steps do you go through to make sure that your heat treat is great?
And tell me about that learning process because you're going from the user side to the maker side but with very strong ideas. So how are you, what are you doing?
[16:56] So like I said, knife making, like the chemistry of knife making and my heat treating stuff just always came very natural to me. I understood it really well. Chemistry has always been something,
that I enjoyed and cooking is a lot is all chemistry. So probably one of the reasons why I got along with... I joke around all the time and tell people like, I was your favorite knife makers, favorite YouTube guy. Because I know a lot of these knife makers because they would come up to me and they would DM me or I'd be in a blade show and we'd start talking and stuff. Because they resonated with a lot of stuff points that I was making and they agreed with a lot of it.
[17:28] So going into it, I knew what I wanted to accomplish. I knew how to accomplish it. It's just, I went through a lot of, and I still go through, like I have a...
[17:39] I'm making some knives out of a big circular saw blade that I purchased. So there's a lot of testing going on right now to how to heat treat it because I don't know what it is. Like last night, I took
it, put a nudge on it, hammered it through some nails to see how it would react. Then I shattered it and looked at the grain, realized that the grain is not quite what I wanted to be. So I got
to do some further thermo cycling, the grain refining stuff. So I just, yeah, I knew the process of it. The trick was, obviously, I don't have the funds right now to have a proper heat
treat kiln. So I had to use a forge. So then I had to figure out how can I execute what I want to execute in, again, another caveman situation, right? I don't have a grinder.
I don't have a proper oven. So how can I do this? So it took a lot of taking heat treat recipes and then figuring out ways. Really, with heat treat, it's getting your... I made,
post about this getting your temperatures correct. And the problem with most guys, most guys that heat treat the forager, like they're foragers, like I forage knives as well.
And they're more old school guys. And they kind of have that mentality because there wasn't, and it's not their fault. There wasn't any information back when they started.
[18:43] You take whatever steel it is, whatever carbon steel, you heat it to non-magnetic, you quench it in canola oil or whatever in it, and it will get hard. And actually, I encourage everyone, Outdoors 55 to go watch his video. He did a video a couple months ago about heat treat.
[18:59] And it was extremely... He did three knives exactly the same and did a proper heat treat, kind of screwed up heat treat and completely screwed up heat treat. And he demonstrated some really surprising results. And a lot of times with crap heat treats, you don't even...
You won't even notice it as long as the rockwell is where it should be, right? Where the... As far as far as edge retention. In toughness testing though, you've noticed a significant difference.
[19:25] Like I said, I got Park and Seventh Gear. So if I'm going to do anything, I'm going to do it to the max. And like you said, I talk a lot of shit. I talk a ton of it and have for a lot of years. So,
I know if I'm going to come out, I have to come out correct, right? Because there's people going to put myself under Microsoft. And again, that's... I'm the type of person that that kind of pressure,
elevates me. So I did this in cooking. Everyone can go on Yelp and hammer me about my food, my name's on the menu, same exact thing. So I wasn't foreign to it.
So what I did is I went out and I got... I bought some what they're called temple sticks.
And these are basically like... It's like a crayon. Looks like a piece of chocolate.
[20:05] And they're using... They've been around for 100 years. They're industrial temperature gauges. And what they do is you can buy them in every temperature from 100 degrees to like 2,500 degrees.
And if you buy one for 500 degrees, that crayon will not melt on the surface until it hits 500 degrees.
[20:21] Cool. So I have them in 1400, 1450, 1550, 1550, 1600, 1650, 1700, every temp that I need. So I can get... So what happens is, so most of the time when I'm... Let's say we're normalizing the
steel, looking for 1600 degrees. What I would do is I have my knife in the forge and I start going.
And I do everything at night, first off. So with all the lights off out of my garage, so I can see the temperature. And it's not even so much the temperature I'm looking for. It's the shades. What I'm trying to make sure is I'm getting an even color because I don't... Some guys go by the color of the steel. I notice the color of the steel, but I'm using the temple sticks.
So that's more important. It's more accurate. They're accurate within, I think, like two degrees.
[21:03] So I'm looking at night to see, make sure that whole piece of steel is all evenly, all evenly orange. There's no dark spots anywhere. Once I start getting it, once it gets to cherry red, I know we're getting coming close to non-magnetic, which is about 1400 degrees.
I have a magnet, a big industrial magnet on the side of my forge. I start tapping it on that magnet. Once it reaches non-magnetic, I know I'm around 1400 degrees. Then it's, I got the
crayon on the other hand, then it's a matter of in the forge for a few seconds. And I run the crayon from the tip of the knife all the way back here.
And back in, back in until I get, let's say I'm normalizing, let's say it's 1600 degrees. Once that crayon melts from here to here, the whole length of the knife, there we go.
[21:47] Then it gets hung up and it lets the air cool for normalization. Then when we're doing austenitizing where we're going to quench the seal and make it hard, same process.
Let's say I'm doing 1550. I've got the 1550 crayon. Same thing. Wait till it's at room temp. We go back in. Once we're at non-magnetic, then it's every few seconds. We're checking, we're checking.
Once it hits across and we're at 1550, I give it a quick pass in and then into the oil it goes.
And then another extremely important part that nobody ever talks about is the time it goes from quench to cryo to... Well, I use dry ice. So it's not technically cryo, but from quench to cryo to
temper. And that's another... That's the reason why I think we have a lot of... Like most production heat treats aren't the best is because they don't... And why most custom... Any custom
a knife maker that cares at all at what they're doing. Just the fact that they're taking it from the quench to the temper in a very short amount of time has a huge impact on how the
steel reacts because it's a chemical reaction you're causing in the steel. So the time that it goes from quench, I'll have it in the oil, it'll come out, usually comes out at about,
150 to 200 degrees. I take the oil off, then it goes straight into the cryo. It's in there for an hour and then it goes straight from the cryo into my oven here.
[23:00] I'm sorry, I got two questions. One is normalizing. That's normalizing the grain. Is that what's happening? The grain structure? Yeah, so what normalizing is doing is now this is more important
on a forge knife than I do with all my knives. I think it's important and particularly because I heat treat in a forge. Ideally if you're using a heat treat oven
And you have precise temperature control. You'd want to anneal the steel, have it in an anneal state, a spirit ice state. Because then you can play with how hard you want to make it, the hardness, the out of the oven hardness, out of the pinch hardness, with how hot it is, right?
With a forge, because I don't have that temperature range, what I want to do is I want to normalize it. So normalizing is we're taking it to a temperature where the carbon,
diffuses into solution and kind of everything gets normalized. If there's any stresses in the steel, they get relieved. And that happens usually around 1600 degrees, depends on the steel.
[23:50] And then what it's also doing is I'm allowing it to cool in still air. And because it's a longer cool or a quicker cooling process than annealing, it will turn from an annealed state, which is how I buy the steel, to what's called a pearlite state.
Pearlite is harder, a harder state, technically, than an annealed state. And it's a different... It's a very almost...
Almost looks like bacteria. These long strands is how the steel will look. And that will allow me to when I when I also ties also give me maximum hardness.
I actually learned this technique from Larry Thomas, Dr. Larry Thomas, it's in his book and he's done videos on it. So a lot of the stuff that I that's my Bible, I've had that book since I started and I think I've read it covered it covered twice.
So I defer to him, he's got a couple videos on that. And that's where I got that technique.
And I ran through probably a dozen knives using that technique. And then again, I'm fortunate Pops will poke a knife for me and then I have it verified over there for the Rocklehogs. That is so cool.
That, that, that makes it even cooler to me.
Yeah, he is the guy to defer to, right? But I didn't, I obviously didn't know the process that this went through. I made the assumption that you sent it to someone to have it professionally heat treated so that, you know.
[25:05] But that's awesome. That is awesome because you're blending the old school with the new school. I mean, you're really, well, I mean, you said caveman, but really it's a little more MacGyver in a way
because you got the knowledge and you got the process and you got the outcome. That's the important part. You could use a fancier machine when you can afford it and maybe that's a quicker way to do it. But for now you're doing it in a way it's been done forever. Let me ask you this.
The cryo part, does that bring it down to a regular room temperature so then you can like, what's the cryo? How does the cryo fit in? I just got a knife in the mail today that boasts cryo and I want to know what that means.
So cryo is technically liquid nitrogen, right? And what you, so the process, this is the way I understood it and talking to Laren, it's how it works. So when you're trying,
when you take a steel that's annealed or soft and we're going to make it hard. So we're taking it, you have to take it to a certain austenitizing.
Technically, that is once the steel becomes non magnetic, it's changed from ferrite to austenitizing and it loses its magnetism.
[26:15] Now each steel above that, usually you have to go above it. There's a certain temperature where everything, where the carbon diffuses and everything starts going where it needs to be.
I'm trying to not get too geeky on this, but once technically once it hits non magnetic and you were if you quench it fast enough, depending on the steel, whatever it may require
water, oil, slow oil. You're dropping the temperature. There's a thing called the TCC curve, which is how quickly the steel has to cool from, say, 1500 degrees to 800 degrees in order for that process to happen.
[26:47] Cryo is furthering that. So what happens is when you take a steel up to its austenitizing temp and then you quench it in oil, it drops down, boom, from 1500, let's say, to 800 degrees.
Steel, you've initiated that change and everything starts changing and locking up and the steel starts getting harder. Matter of fact, if you take the steel out of the oil, let's say it's still 500 degrees and you start running a file over it, it'll still feel soft. And if you continue to do that,
you can literally feel the steel getting harder because the process has been enacted. Yeah.
So cryo, now when you quench a blade, not all of the austenite type converts... When you quench a blade you're converting it to martensite. That's the hard stuff that the steel is in the state.
[27:29] Not all of it gets converted, right? Usually it's in the ballpark of 90%.
[27:33] So what we're trying to do with cryo is keep that temperature drop continuing. And this is what a lot of people don't understand. That's why you get a lot of production knives that
claim their cryo. How fast you go from the quench to the cryo, it makes all the difference on whether the cryo does anything at all. So what you're trying to do is you're trying to keep that temperature movement. So you're going from 1500 degrees, boom, we quench, we're at 800 degrees,
now it's still cooling in the oil, you take it out, now we're going to take it down from room temperature to below zero.
So liquid nitrogen will take the steel down to like I think negative 327 degrees. Wow. I don't have access to liquid nitrogen. So what I do is the next best thing is I take.
[28:12] Either denatured or 91% isopropyl alcohol and then I dump a bunch of dry ice in that.
And it makes a... When I use my temp gun, it's usually like negative 100, 101 somewhere around there. And then we submerge. So again, knife goes from 15,
800, comes out of the oil at say 200 degrees. Still coming down, goes from 200 degrees right into negative 100 degree cryo, you know, dry ice, a liquid dry ice basically.
And then we continue to drop it down to about a negative 80, 100 degrees. We keep it there. All the data I've seen from land and everyone else has been usually about 30 minutes to an hour is where the effect maxes out. Once that happens, so as we're continuing to keep that steel cooling, more retain... All the austenite, the retained austenite at 90%, we.
[28:59] Convert more of it into martensite.
So what you end up getting is you end up getting, you can increase the rock roll hardness by anywhere from half a point to a point, depending on the steel. A lot of steel is almost, not required, but it does a lot better.
[29:12] So that's why I'm trying to get it. 86.70 is a steel that doesn't get super hard. So hitting 63 is actually what I, what that knife is at is actually fairly difficult.
I got to, I have to do that cryo to get it to pop 63. Getting it to 61.62 is not a problem, beginning it to 63 and above is like kind of pulling molars at that point.
So I'm forcing it to do that. And then obviously, like with your every batch that I do, I have one out of every five poked and then usually one of every batch, unfortunately I have to snap in half and look at the grain and take a look at it.
But it always makes me, I feel bad doing it. And then I look at the grain and I get happy and then I feel good about it.
That's cool. Cause you're seeing how uniform the grain is.
And when you say poke, you mean put on the Rockwell tester, right? That, that. So for a knife in your experience, in the kitchen for a chef's knife, do you want a higher Rockwell?
Because I'm always seeing, you know, people on the steel, I'm always running mine over a strop and always keeping it honed. But if you're a professional chef or cook, and you're just, man,
you're you're using it all day long, and it do you want to hire Rockwell?
Absolutely. So I get a lot of guys asking me about like when I'm going to do super steels and stuff like that for kitchen knives and I will probably for fun. But when you're dealing with a kitchen knife, right?
[30:36] Produce and meat are not abrasive materials. So all the edge retention that you get from all the edge wear you get from the knife is it impacting and sliding across that cutting board, which is usually wood or poly polyurethane. It's not a very abrasive material. So you get 95% of your edge retention on a kitchen knife through what sharpening angle you have it at and how hard it is. Basically, the harder the steel is, the longer the edge is going to last.
Because it's not like you're cutting through cardboard like with an EDC knife where you'd need like, where vanadium or certain carbides.
My favorite knife, my first Big Chef knife was made out of Rex 45 actually. And the only reason, I didn't get that because there's any carbide. I got that because it was at 65 Rockwell.
And it was the hardest knife I could afford at the time.
Because the Sukunari's were like 700 bucks. So that knife would last me on a fresh edge, like a week in a professional kitchen without actually having to touch that, like strop it or put it on like a diamond steel or something like that.
So you do want higher hardness.
So on a chef's knife, you might want a thinner behind the edge geometry, but a more obtuse actual edge.
[31:47] Does that make sense? Is that right? It depends. So it depends on how thin the knife is.
So it depends how the knife's ground. So you could take like that knife for instance, the knives that I send out, I keep those at about 20 degrees per side only because it's five thousandths behind the edge.
So once you get to that kind of behind the edge geometry, the, you saw I cut the onion when it was dull, right?
So when you get to that point, you would benefit, I'm sure. but.
The risk to reward ratio I'm looking for, the ROI on making it thinner, like the edge thinner, isn't really worth it to me. It's not to make it put a 15 degree edge or versus a 20 degree edge on a thing that's as thin as a sheet of paper.
[32:28] It's kind of like, would you even notice it at that point? Because the geometry is you're going to go through that, whatever you're cutting regardless. When you have a thicker ground knife, then yeah, absolutely.
The thicker the knife is ground, the more the edge geometry is going to play a role.
Why if you see like traditional Japanese knives, they're single double. Now they're single bevel because instead of having let's,
say two 15 degree edges, right, you have one 15 degree edge, which means it's 15 degrees total. So that's why the knife,
and those knives tend to get thicker pretty quick. But because that angle of attack is so narrow, they just drop through food very, very quick.
[33:03] Right, right. And they and they seem to like, make the food peel off in a certain way that's efficient for cutting when it's
that sort of chisel. So when I was in college, I worked the pantry position at an Italian restaurant for two summers. So only about six months in total working in a professional
kitchen. But it was a lot of fun. And we had four sets of knives on things around the wall on those magnetic bars.
Yeah. Yeah. And then a company would come and sharpen them every week and then people would rush to their favorite type of knife.
And the funny thing is they came very broad because they just sharpen the crap out of them.
So the blades were very broad. It's also nice because you could scoop up a lot of ingredients on them to move it around. But I just remember looking at them, they had, now that I know something about knives that I didn't back then, they had very high relief edges, the cutting edge.
It just looked like they just...
Yeah, yeah, those things man it was cozy,
Cozy, what's that cozy? Cozy knees co ZZ? I and I coziness the company. They're the black handle They look almost like the toron accident like five rocks. Yes. Yes, and they have and they have about an inch tall hollow brown like.
[34:25] 36 grit ground bevel on them, right? Yeah And then every you could watch them they would start off about this tall and then when you wanted a fillet knife all it was was one of those knives that was six months old that they had ground into a fillet knife.
Yeah, I love this. But it's so ham-fisted. So do you find, did you find in your professional career that people who are really devoted to the craft would show up with something more special?
Yeah, well, you'd be surprised having professional chefs don't carry good knives, like especially the old school ones. Now you see it a lot more. A lot of younger guys are hip to it. A lot of the The younger guys are into knives. So now you see a ton more. The last like I see like.
[35:06] 8 years or so, 8, 10 years. Now you see guys showing up and guys have like chef knives to go and NTC kitchen, those distributors. Guys know who they are. Guys show up. Because now they take...
Now cooking is cool. Cooking is like a thing. You've got this food network. Everybody wanted to be a chef. So guys are all into... And the girls in the kitchen, they're all into having
good knives now. So yeah, you definitely see the guys... Now they still don't know how to sharpen been a half time, which is, which is funny. But back when I first started, like, yeah, over 15 years ago, like, guys would look at me and they're like, what is that? You know, they're like, that's peach crates too thin, it's gonna break. You,
know, and they would look at you like you were stupid for spending 200 bucks on a knife. You know, they're like, oh, this thing does just fine. You know, they destroy whatever they were cutting.
Right, right. So yeah, it's like, that's funny. Any time I've ever eaten goat, I always say it seems like it's butchered with a hammer. That's a totally, I don't know, non sequitur, but that just reminded me.
But when you're in the kitchen using knives like this...
[36:11] Like a professional kitchen, I would imagine they are coveted. It's like hands off my knife. It's like not something that you're just kind of grabbing around for tools.
I'm gonna keep this PC, but there is a saying, it's like touch my knife, you're touching my Johnson is how it is in the professional kitchen.
You don't touch, which is weird, because there's a lot of like really, yeah, questionable activities that happen in the professional kitchen, but guys, yeah,
they take their, because you always, like not everyone... Especially in the States, we have not the most savory individuals that work in kitchens. Not everybody's like a career chef who wants to be one. So you end up with
a lot of guys who might have idle hands and things like tend to walk off and then you never see the guy again, which is weird because you're like, what are you even going to do with it?
So yeah, people are very protective about this because there's also usually guys in there that have no idea about your knife and they will grab your knife and they'll go try They'll take your 5,000th ground edge knife and go try to spatch cock a chicken with it.
Then you come back and the edges all look from sawtooth and you're like...
[37:16] Oh, man. Yeah, yeah. You're ready to smack them with it. Or do that thing where they'd open up big cans with this part of the blade.
Oh, I've seen it. Oh, yeah. Quack, quack, quack.
Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah. Those are the guys that look at you and you have this really well-ground knife to cut. They're like...
Because they look at it like a non-knife person looks at a pocket knife. Like I always say, if you want to see how tough a pocket knife is, give it to someone who's not a knife person, like your wife, and you'll get that thing in all kinds, I mean, they'll use that thing to pry things and poke things you've never even dreamed of,
because they just don't know any better.
Those guys that would open the back of a number 10 can with the butt end of a knife, those are the guys that would look at you like you're crazy for carrying a knife that actually, it cuts things.
[37:58] So before you started making them, and when you were in the kitchen every day, what knives did you use?
I saw your tattoo says Wusthof, or was that your? Thanks for watching.
That was the first set I bought. Yeah, that was the first set I bought. The Wustoff Tattoo was when I got my first sous chef job. I beat out... It was like a... I showed up and it was almost like Chop Style. I got there. There were two other dudes. And they had like, you know, a cutting board with like a chicken breast, carrot, celery, onion. And then they were like, okay, you guys have an hour to make me a dish or whatever you want, basically. You have an hour. It was like Chop Style. You can use anything in the kitchen. So we were all like running around and I beat the two guys out for it. And that was like the moment where I was like,
okay, I'm gonna like I can do this. Like I can do this as a career. So the Wustoff thing was more of like what the company represented because they've been around for two and a plus years. Like consistency, precision, longevity, things that I thought were important in a.
I also didn't like I thought the guys that would get like the corny like pig tattoos on their arm or whatever like they look like a butcher block. So instead, instead I got
really corny stupid Gustav tattoo but I thought at the time that it was cooler than the stupid butchered pig tattoo that I run into. The knives I prefer were all... And you can see it in my knives
that were all Japanese. Once I learned about Japanese knives and the difference, Chef Knives to Go was the first website I ever went to that like my head just exploded and I was like,
what are these? Unfortunately, they have a form on there and they're always... They love what professionals get on there, they have a lot of pass arounds. But the owner will send knives around
to get tested before he puts them on the site. And other guys will... And there's a lot of guys on their professionals too that'll do... A lot of people do pass arounds because it's the knife community. It's another section. They're all super generous. Everybody's super nice with their time and their stuff. So I would get in on these pass arounds because I was a professional. There wasn't,
too many professionals on the site. So I was a professional. So guys always wanted me to try out out the knives. So I got the chance to test dozens and dozens of these different makers.
[40:06] And I was like, I'm looking at some of these knives that were cheaper than a shun, but were handmade in Japan that were just, I mean, amazing. And I was like, well, this is the ready to go.
So that was my first... I still have a knife. My daily driver for like almost 10 years straight It was a co-hex to 240.
So like a 10 inch, half 40 chef knife.
That was my wife actually got it for me. That was actually like a big deal.
That was like, it was like game changing. It's like clad and there was this tool steel, a 65 rock bow. I was like, oh my God, this is gonna cut seven life points.
It was ground super thin.
Was it the French chef's knife shape?
[40:49] It's not a sabatier. I don't have it up here. It's more, it's more, it's more Gyoza style like this right here. This is actually a gift. This is a reality. It's more, it was very similar shape to this. Kind of a lower set point, lower rocker.
I remember, hang on, before I ask you this next question, I remember being obsessed with trying to find this one Japanese chef's knife. This was years ago. It was for a girl I wanted to get it for, but I never found it, but I had seen it somewhere and it was a big long 10 inch chef's knife and it had these oval holes in it.
It almost looked like a chef's knife and a cheese knife had a... Glessin. What's that?
Glessin, the brand's Glessin. G-L-E-S-S-I-N. Glessin, yeah. They have these huge...
What do you call them? I can't think of the name. There's a name for them, but they're these huge scooped out divots in the blade. Yes. Yeah. they're there to reduce stickage.
That's what I thought was so cool. I guess it was reduce the surface area. So you just chop and your cucumbers not sticking to your thing. It's just kind of falling off.
I always thought that was cool. Since you were talking about Japanese knives, I had to bring that up.
But in terms of your knives, have you gotten them in the hands of any professionals who are in the kitchen right now, testing them out or how do you test them?
[42:06] What kind of things do you put them through and that kind of thing? So that's the first thing I did.
So the first three prototypes that I made, I kept one and then obviously I have friends that are, I have a bunch of friends that are professional chefs that own restaurants. And I gave three of them to friends.
And I, with my exact instructions, were just beefy, ever-loving dog crap out of these until they break and then tell me what happens.
And they haven't broken them yet. I go, I see them in the kitchens usually once a week or once every two weeks and they're all patinaed.
And matter of fact, two of the knives that I sent out into the kitchen. One of my buddies, he also has a catering business, He uses the knife exclusively himself.
[42:45] The other two, it's, you know, like you were talking about the black handle knives on the magnet. Yeah. Yeah. My knife is one of those though. So it's not just being used by a chef,
it's getting used by every degenerate in that kitchen. I mean, it's just like, I see it in there and I looked over and I saw it on the magnet and I saw some guy walk over that I'd never seen in
the kitchen before. And he's got it. It's sitting in like lemon juice. I don't know what he was cutting. So that's, yeah. So that's, I did that. And then obviously me being a chef for so many years. I know. I know because how do I say this? Designing a knife for professional kitchen.
[43:18] Is a little bit different than if it's going to someone's home. And when I am selling to a chef, I do like the tip geometry, like particularly up top. I still grind behind the edge, very thin,
but I try to keep more thickness towards the tip because that tip, these things end up on cutting boards and they slide and there'll be like stainless steel tins and matter of fact, matter of fact,
one of the guys, the chef that I, up in Pennsylvania, just sent me a picture and he, he got the tip knocked right off his right here that I just made him because the cutting boards, those long cutting boards, there are these little like clips kind of things that were, that keep it from sliding,
and there's a gap and that little clip, his knife went under it like this and somebody hit it and knocked the very tip of it like that off.
So I got him sending that back. So I'm going to regrind that back and swedge that tip out to make it a little bit tougher. tougher. But so what I would do in my kitchen and stuff like that, I would, I mean, people
sound crazy, but I, before I ever put a knife out, I would grind it down to five thousands and I would smack it into the side of a steel mug or, or I, you acquire, you acquire restaurant
bowls and third pans and hotel pans over the years, they magically find their way in your house. So I have stuff like that. So I would take the knife and I would just smack it in the side of a pan and then I would grind it to 10,000, smack it in the side of the pan.
That's one of the reasons I chose to use 8670.
[44:41] Is because according to Laird's chart, it's a 10 out of 10 toughness. So it's tougher than 3V, it's tougher than 4V, it's up there with Z tough and 5160.
So it's extremely tough stuff.
So what went through my mind was this would be a perfect steel. If I could get this steel hard enough, that combination of strength with toughness would give really, really good edge stability to a thin ground knife.
Then I could hand it, put it in the hands of a professional chef and not have to worry about it. You know, big chunks getting taken out of it. Bar, they don't do anything crazy.
But you know, like pack a ham bone in half or something. You'd be surprised how many people try to do that.
So yeah, I sent them out to them and let them use them for about two months before I threw the knife out. And then I did my own testing here at the house. Like I said, I just tested the limits of it, seeing how far it could go, doing stuff like leaving it. This sounds weird, but I would literally leave it on the edge of the table like this. And I'd walk I'd smack it with my hand so it would back into the side of a container.
Because that's what happens. Stuff like that happens all the time. I would drop them on the floor.
I would sit there, grind the tip nice and thin, and then literally knock it off onto my tile floor and see what would happen when it would bounce off the floor.
Because that's how tips get busted all the time. Yes.
[45:56] So that's how I would sit there and I would get an idea of, at this rock well, at this heat treat, in this geometry, this is what I can expect from it.
And that's again why my main line is with this 8670 because I've had these things, the first time it happened actually was some handles were getting glued up and I had it on here on my counter because it was too cold outside and I woke up the next morning and the knives were on the floor because the cat decided to walk by and just smacked them all off the counter in the middle of the night.
[46:23] Thanks for watching!
And I was like, well, the handles didn't pop off, which is good because I don't even know if they were dry yet at that point. And none of the edges, the edges got off, the tips got popped off.
Little bastard did you a favor.
[46:34] Yeah, at first I was mad. I wake up and I look and I'm like, you've got to be kidding because they're glued up now, right? Like we're on the home stretch, he's about to get out the door.
And I'm like, he's got to be joking. And the blades as I'm moving them stuff, once the blades done, I tape them with tape so they don't get scratched. So then I had to like, you know when
you like stub your toe real bad and you don't want to take your shoe off because you don't eat it feels like it's broke but you don't even look at it or you scrape your knee under your jeans and your kid and it's like i didn't want to take that tape off and like see what was so i had to sit there and like cut it off gently and i'm like oh thank god i'm three two for three okay.
[47:10] Oh okay we're good you know stuff like that so yeah i just beat the crap out of you just yeah you know you don't want to take that tape off and see just the shards of narsil That's what I thought. I feel it and I'm like, maybe it's there. Maybe it is. And I'm already in my head thinking, okay, how fast can I get this done? Because I told this guy it's going to be out the next day.
So, but again, it's just I know what goes on. And I also know what goes on in a regular house because despite what a lot of people think, my wife is not like... Does not think
like a professional chef. She leaves stuff with food all over it. She'll throw stuff in the sink and leave it wet. She'll do all kinds of stuff to carbonize. You know what I mean, she doesn't pay attention, doesn't care.
I mean, she cares about what I'm doing here. But as far as night maintenance, that's not something on her list of priorities when she's cooking dinner or something.
So I let stuff like that happen. I let her use it. I watch what she does with it. I don't tell anybody to be careful with it.
I just let them use it. If something busts, then I know.
That's the only way to figure it out is to push it as far as I can and then get an idea of, okay, is this reasonable?
Or is it like, do I need to make it softer?
Do I need to temper the seal down? Do I need a grinded picker and so forth?
All right, well, up front, I...
[48:22] Indicated how precious I was going to be with this. Only me and my wife. But you know what, my 12-year-old daughter is showing an interest in cooking. I think she just cooked everyone.
[48:31] A meal upstairs. So maybe actually hearing what these go through and hearing how you've sort of tested them and made sure they're worthy, maybe I'll let her have a crack at it. I'm just worried
about it. We have a stupid knife block and all but one of the slots are too short. So if you drop a long knife in there, it hits the bottom. I'm afraid that's going to happen because no one
else in this house cares as much as I do. But maybe actually, it'd be better for her to know as she's coming out of the gate, what a good knife feels like. I would encourage and if she busts the tip off to send it to me, I'll fix it. So you'll never know. We'll make it better. It'll,
It'll be easy.
So just to reiterate, 8670, which is this steel.
[49:18] Okay, so basically to sum up, it's super, super tough, but you can also get a super high rockwell hardness on it, which seems to be the perfect set of qualities you want,
out of the big three for a kitchen knife.
100%. Like I said, I've never even heard of this stuff, which for me, a guy who's been in the steel, saying a lot, like I never heard about it I walked into Pops, a knife supply store, and they were just raving about it. It's just the,
best carbon steel you could use for anything. And I'm like, okay, how much is it? I thought it was super expensive. And no matter what, they cut a deal when you buy this stuff. You won't find...
It's their house steel. They call it their house steel. They sell that for the best price that you could find anyway. They want people to use it. This is one of the reasons I love those guys so much is because they use everything and they promote what they think is actually the best,
not what they can sell you. So I was like, okay, let me give it a shot. And when I started looking, I looked through Larren's book and I saw that and I was like, huh, now granted.
[50:19] The harder steel gets the less tough it gets. But at 63 Rockwell, that's the toughest steel you're going to find at that Rockwell, if that makes any sense. So when, you know, we want edge stability with an edge, right? Edge stability is the edge not chipping or rolling.
Well, that's kind of like the, in my opinion, that's the combination of strength, hardness and toughness kind of meeting its perfect spot.
And to me, 8670 does it better than so far anything I've done. W2, ADCRV is a good close second.
[50:49] 1084, 1085, got a camera. I've tested a bunch of steals and that does it better than...
[50:56] And it also has a lot of ductility to the steel. A lot of flex. I've messed around the other day and I ground a knife down to 2000s.
[51:04] 2000s, and not just 2000s, Sethy, this is another thing I want.
If you can look at it on your knife. You can grind a knife to 5,000ths like this.
[51:14] Or 5,000s like this. Okay? So, when I grind a knife, I'm focusing on grinding it thin all the way. So, if you could take a caliper and measure that knife, I want to say quarter inch,
quarter inch up the blade and it won't be... It shouldn't be higher than 20,000s.
[51:32] So, I want the whole knife to be thin. So, when you grind a knife to 2,000s, right? And then it's like, you know, 10,000s up here, I mean, I could literally flex it. Like, it would cover my
fingered it. Like it was the whole thing. And then I would sit, I was sitting here on the counter on the corner and just flexing it to see whether it would finally bust. And I got it like 60 degrees before it finally popped. If you, if I take this knife and gently, you know, roll it over the edge.
[52:00] Yeah, you can see this light, light little, I mean, I don't want to do it too hard, but you can see that flex. And that, I mean, that to me is really impressive. You mentioned pops a a couple of times when I was talking to Andy Roy of Fiddlehead Forge, he was talking about Pops.
That's gotta be an amazing place. That's down in Georgia, right?
[52:20] Yeah, so Andy Fiddleback Forge, he's one of the owners of Pops. Okay, okay. Him, Dirk Lutz, Joey Berry, and Alan, I was messing his last name with the W. Those are the four professional knife makers that own Pops Knife Supply.
[52:36] That's cool. So a little shout out to Pops. I've just heard such great things about them.
But I guess one of them was from one of the owners. But still, I've heard them being mentioned before.
So I wanna find out, I want you to tell people what they can get, first of all, how they can order a knife from you, and then what their options are.
This is not the only thing you make.
And you gotta follow Steve Callair Custom Knives Instagram and you'll see the different things, but describe the different models you make.
So I've got a 10-inch chef's knife, an 8-inch chef's knife like Bob has, a 7-inch Santoku, which is a very popular style. You see a lot. It's got a very sheep's footy style blade to it.
[53:24] More drop in the tip than a chef's knife. A 6.5-inch Nikiri. A Nikiri is a cleaver style blade that's technically specializes in chopping vegetables.
A lot of women tend to love that knife. A lot of dudes too, but for some reason women love the Nakiri. It doesn't have a technical point because it's squared.
I don't make mine like a traditional Nakiri where it's dead straight across. straight across I put some belly in it.
You get better chopping and better rocking that way. And then I also have a four inch paring knife that I'm very proud of.
Making a good paring knife was a... Making the perfect paring knife is literally one of my life's missions in knife making because they're all done so for me.
But yeah, I got a four inch paring knife. And I actually just finished up a six and a half inch bunk, which is...
Do you know... They call them K-tip chef knives. You ever seen one of those?
[54:17] A Krichi curry? It's got a K tip to it, like a reverse tampo. Yes, yes, yes. A bonka is just a shortened version of that. So it's got a K tip on it, and it's like a six inch chef's knife with a reverse tanto. Oh, cool.
I turned my shun 10 inch into one of those because I dropped it and broke the tip.
I was like, oh. Now let's go. So this is cool.
[54:39] You were talking about your paring knife, making the perfect paring knife as a life's mission. It's funny, I kind of have always intuitively thought, man, why is it every paring knife I have sucks? But what why?
Well, it's funny, like you can Google chef knife, right? And if you took all the silhouettes of chef knives, they're all going
to look fairly similar. You take all the slicers, all the you know, all the butcher boning breaking knife, you take all these in the silhouettes and they have a shape. You Google pairing took the silhouettes. They're all different. They're different lengths, they're different handle sizes,
different thicknesses, different... Everything is different. The most hated knife, the knife that I hate the most, the redheaded stepchild of the knife block, the utility knife, like it's like a
six inch long thin knife that serves no purpose because it's too thin to use on the cutting board and it's too long to use in your hand. A paring knife is to pair, which means in hand, like peeling an apple, that's paring. You're paring something. You're paring through each one.
So, a paring knife should be an in-hand knife, right? You should be able to use it in-hand. Now, most people don't do that. They'll like cut the crust off bread and stuff like that.
They use it for everything because it's little. As somebody who had to use a paring knife, coming from traditional French fine dining, you pair a lot of stuff. For instance, there's a cut called a tournée that nobody even knows about because nobody does it anymore. But.
[56:03] It's a cut that you shape up, let's say a potato. It looks like a football, about an inch and a half long and it has seven, not six and not eight, seven sides that you have You have to turn in your hand like this.
I used to have to do 1500 a day, okay, for Cerda. 1500. I had the worst carpal tunnel you can imagine. I used to have to dunk my hands in ice water and get them to stop smelling as I would do it.
[56:26] So, I know what a good paring knife feels like. And one of the reasons I would get that carpal tunnel is because my paring knife was so thin, you know, having to... Where's the camera? Having,
the grip like this over and over and over again. So, I developed the paring knife. Instead of doing three inches like it should be, I know in my head, again, what my wife, what other people's families use a paring knife for and a lot of it they cut on the board with as well.
They'll cut stuff in. So, I made it four inches. I made it a little taller and then I kept the back round and I added belly to it and I kept it about an inch and a quarter. So, I have a very average size. It's about three, three quarters across. So, when I hold the knife.
[57:04] Here's a prototype for it. Don't mind it's all, it's a prototype. But so, this belly right here.
[57:10] So when it's in my hand, see, I can turn it like this and it fits.
This doesn't get exhausted. So what I do, I sat there and I peeled a dozen apples with this.
[57:20] So I peel a dozen apples, then I peel a dozen potatoes with it, then I peel the onions with it. And I kept doing it to see because the less flexion in your hand that you have to do with this, the less tired your hands are going to be.
So and then like I said, I gave it height so you can do, you can cut on a board like so.
So if I don't cut myself, my wife is beating up, so it's probably dull. So there you go. Yeah, this is but this is the beginning. This is I'm going to forever be tweaking this until it becomes The perfect pairing knife because there's never a good pairing,
That is that is funny because I agree, but I never really thought about it. But now that you mentioned it, I agree and also I remember seeing your paring knives in your Instagram feed and,
and also not really consciously, but now that you mention it, noting the.
[58:06] Interesting dimensions of the handle or different, different looking dimensions of the handle. And I think thinking that it reminded me a little bit of an oyster shucking knife a little bit, because I think oyster shucking knives have have larger more teardrop handles because you're exerting a lot of force.
[58:23] Back to doing this over and over again. Yeah, now now I feel I I need a paring knife, but I'm going to first bond with this one. But man, I like that it's part of your mission, you know, to, I don't know, to fill that gap.
Because if you feel it, no doubt many, many other professionals and cooks out there have experienced that too and feel the same way. Before we close, I want you to let us know,
A, how people can order from you and B, these are two unrelated questions, But tell me how people can order from you and be where you want this all to go.
[59:04] First off, anybody wants to order from me, just go to my Instagram right there and just DM me.
[59:10] And also for the record, I make all knives. I've got to, I make choppers, I make hunting knives, I make all kinds of, just kitchen cutlery in particular is my love. And that's what I have
like a set line for. But if you have any knife, I actually have a line of EDC knives that are going to come out. I'm doing a collaboration with a guy by the name of Lynch, Justin Lynch of Lynch love it. But if you... Like I said, I'm just saying that so if you have any interest in hitting me up for any custom knives you made, I'd do that. But go to my Instagram, SteveCallariCustoms,
or SteveCallariCustoms2. I have two of them because Instagram likes to turn stuff off if you don't,
say the right things sometimes. So I have two. And where I plan on this going, I plan on being a full-time knife. That's exactly where I plan on going with this. Like I said, I've got two gears, Park and seven. I don't do anything half-assed. And like I said, I love doing this more than I ever thought I would.
[1:00:02] And I plan on doing this for as long as I can. Right on. Steve, thank you so much for coming back on the show. I really appreciate it. And if you're a patron of the show, you can catch a few more
minutes of conversation with Steve after the fact. Steve, thanks so much. Best wishes with this venture. I love this knife and I really look forward to bonding with it over time and showing
off the patina after a short period of time. Thanks for having me on, man. And cut some hot meet with it it'll turn it'll get blue patina it'll be real pretty okay oh that's a great excuse
for steak tonight there you go cut steak with it and you'll see a really pretty like blue and purple patina nice all righty sir have a good one you too thank you do you use terms like
handle the blade ratio walk and talk hair pop and sharp or tank like then you are a dork and a knife junkie there he goes ladies and gentlemen Steve Callari. I'm really excited about my new knife as you may have gathered. But I'm also really excited to see when people take that next step,
especially passionate people like Steve, who's been into knives for so long and using them professionally. Well, now he's returning the favor and getting great creative joy out of it. So Steve.
[1:01:14] Congratulations. And man, I'm really looking forward to digging into that steak tonight.
All right. Join us again for another great episode, great interview conversation. Next week on Sunday. Of course, there's the midweek supplemental on Wednesday, and then Thursday night nights 10pm Eastern Standard Time right here on YouTube, Facebook and Twitch. Until next time,
I'm Bob DeMarco saying for Jim working his magic behind the switcher, don't take dull for an answer.
Thanks for listening to the Knife Junkie Podcast. If you enjoyed the show, please rate and review at ReviewThePodcast.com. For show notes for today's episode, additional resources and to To listen to past episodes, visit our website, TheKnifeJunkie.com.
You can also watch our latest videos on YouTube at TheKnifeJunkie.com slash YouTube.
Check out some great knife photos on TheKnifeJunkie.com slash Instagram and join our Facebook group at TheKnifeJunkie.com slash Facebook.
And if you have a question or comment, email them to Bob at TheKnifeJunkie.com or call our 24-7 listener line at 724-466-4487 and you may hear your comment or question answered on an upcoming episode of the Knife Junkie Podcast.
Share This With a Friend >>>
For early access to The Knife Junkie podcasts and YouTube videos, receive Knife Junkie stickers and be entered into the monthly knife drawing giveaway, join The Knife Junkie’s Patreon group of awesome supporters.
Let us know what you thought about this episode. Please leave a rating and/or a review in whatever podcast player app you’re listening on. Your feedback is much appreciated.
Please call the listener line at 724-466-4487 or email email@example.com with any comments, feedback or suggestions on the show, and let us know who you’d like to hear interviewed on an upcoming edition of The Knife Junkie Podcast.
To listen to past episodes of the podcast, visit theknifejunkie.com/listen.
Today’s podcast in sponsored in part by Send a Card Online. Send a Card Online is a website where you can create a beautiful greeting card, thank you card, sympathy or get well card, graduation card, “thinking of you” card, birthday or anniversary card, or any type of greeting card that you’d like to mail to someone you care about. Cards come in either postcard style, large oversize, or traditional two-panel and three-panel cards. You can also choose from a card catalog of pre-made cards, or create your own with your own pictures and text. The cards are printed in full color, stuffed in an envelope, sealed, stamped and mailed — NOT email — to your recipient. And right now, you can get a FREE greeting card just by visiting sendacard.online. Don’t miss that upcoming birthday or anniversary or special occasion! Go to Send a Card Online right now!
Shopping for a Knife?
Support The Knife Junkie Podcast and YouTube Channel by Buying Through My Affiliate Links
Other Products and Services
Groove (Free Account) – Replace 17 Apps/Services in Your Business
Rakuten (Cash Back for Shopping Purchases)
Upside App (Cash Back for Gas Purchases)
TubeBuddy (Free Browser Extension and Mobile App for YouTube Creators)
Follow The Knife Junkie
Visit The Knife Junkie website
The Knife Junkie Listener Line — 724-466-4467
Email The Knife Junkie
Follow The Knife Junkie on YouTube
Follow The Knife Junkie on Instagram
Follow The Knife Junkie on Twitter
Join The Knife Junkie Facebook Group
In the name of full transparency, please be aware that this website contains affiliate links and any purchases made through such links will result in a small commission for me (at no extra cost for you). If you use these links, I might be rewarded credit or a small commission of the sale. If you don’t want to use these links, no problem. But know that I truly do appreciate your support.