Chipped Shun Kaji Knives - Consumer Justice Foundation

Chipped Shun Kaji Knives

Written by Faith Anderson on October 18, 2011
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Doubts About the “Samurai-Sword” Construction of Shun Kaji Knives

Crafted in Japan, Shun Kaji knives boast strong, razor-sharp blades that merge new technology and centuries-old samurai sword-making techniques, according to Shun Kaji retailer, Williams-Sonoma. In fact, Shun Kaji chef’s knives carry the claim that they are manufactured with a core of SG-2 powdered steel, giving them higher density and grain structure with no imperfections or weak points. This means that the knives are hard enough to perform as expected, but flexible enough to hold a razor-sharp edge without chipping. Retailers claim that the Kaji line of knives is clad in a damascus layer of forged nickel and stainless steel, which have been folded together to provide additional strength. This construction is intended to give the knives the sharpest blades and hardest edges with a remarkable resistance to chipping.

Unfortunately, what Shun Kaji knife users might be able to tell you is that Shun Kaji chef’s knives are actually remarkably prone to chipping, possibly because of the damascus-type steel used, which retailers claim lends to the product’s strength and value. Some consumers believe that the Shun Kaji knives’ tendency to chip is due to the way the damascus steel wears naturally, which may cause the layers of steel to corrode at different rates, effectively leaving consumers with a very expensive serrated knife. Others claim that Shun isn’t tempering their steel properly, causing the metal crystals in the knife to be very large and more prone to chipping. Regardless of the cause of the chipping, consumers have found the Shun Kaji chef’s knives, which sell for around $250 or $300 at retailers, to be significantly less durable and “samurai sword-like” than they were led to believe. In addition, consumers whose Shun Kaji knives have severely chipped are voicing concerns about possibly suffering injuries caused by the pieces of metal that have broken off of their steel knives.

Legal Action for Potentially Defective Shun Kaji Knives

Any potential legal action regarding the Shun Kaji chef’s knives is based on the fact that these very expensive knives have been marketed as particularly strong, durable and chip-resistant, when this may not actually be the case. These NSF-certified knives have also been touted as meeting the high-level safety standards for professional kitchens, a claim which has also been scrutinized. Product manufacturing companies like Shun are expected to manufacture safe and effective products for consumer use, and should be held accountable for any defects in their products or for any injuries caused by a defective product of theirs. Unfortunately, some consumer products enter the U.S. market without being adequately tested beforehand, which may significantly increase the risk of a product causing serious consumer injury. In light of this possible risk, defective product attorneys across the United States are currently investigating claims regarding potentially faulty Shun Kaji chef’s knives, in order to determine the next course of legal action, if any.

Posted Under: United States
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