Wooden knives sharper than steel?

I’m just going to say NO. Even the brief video shows it tearing the steak.

They had a brief convo with Bob Kramer who, IIRC, was highly touted on CH, and whose custom, handmade knives are on backorder for years. He made this stunning custom steel and meteorite knife for Anthony Bourdain that sold at auction for $231K in 2019.

By Richard W Photography - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=87707833

The first knife is very beautiful. Yes, Bob Kramer knives are highly touted on many food forums including CH. I haven’t had the pleasure to use one. They are probably very good. It is unfortunate to hear about Anthony Bourdain news, but I hope the audited knife is for good use.

I am unable to view the NY Times article but I read the USA Today one.
Wood knife three times sharper than steel utensil (usatoday.com)

Here is a youtube video, and it certainly does not seem “sharper”.
Watch a wooden knife that is sharper than steel cut through steak - YouTube

I am not sure what they mean by “stronger”. Not that I disagree with them, it is just that the term stronger has more than one definition. I need to read more. I think the application is yet to be seen. At this moment, it is probably not ready for prime time yet.


I think the most realistic application is the following. Wood that is processed to be stronger and last longer. Wooden furniture, wooden floor, wooden doors… can last much longer.


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Hey, maybe wooden tennis rackets will make a comeback. (that is more likely than wooden knives replacing steel knives)



Wooden knives comparable to the one demonstrated have been made and even marketed in Scandinavia–without such exaggerated claims.

What’s missing, of course, is the Rockwell measure of hardness as a reference point. That number would be more meaningful than a steak cutting demo–and, IMO, would undercut (no pun intended) any claims.

There is no doubt that wood of some kind could perform like metal materials, but we already have known that for decades. Take the famous Spruce Goose airplane by Howard Hughes.

A more likely material for future commercial development is bamboo–which is already being used in many ways. Easier to produce, harvest, and process.

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I can’t get past the paywall, but it’s likely not wood. Rather, I think it may be pressed cellulose.

I would expect that if you left such a knife in your sink, or ran it through a dishwasher, it would fall apart without some nasty impregnating/stabilizing chemicals.

If it can be made cheaply enough, it might solve the problem of useless plastic picnic knives, though.

Hi Linda,

Read this in the Times this morning before you posted. Here’s an interesting example they should have looked at–he even cut steak (better):


Here’s an article about Bob in his early creative years:

You can already get regular wood to use in place of plastic.

You can get functionally sharp wooden knives already? Got a link?


Got this, @Vecchiouomo

Better luck here?


Yup. But boy, they seems really flimsy. I guess it just depends on what you’re looking for. I think those might work for a camping trip? But anyone who’s really looking to cook with wooden knives in a regular kitchen would be sorely disappointed.

Absolutely! However, as a compostable replacement for plastic they seemed fine.

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I have used these wooden disposable knives and forks. In my experience, the plastic ones are more durable and stronger.

I think switching from plastic disposable and wood disposable is not a significant change. I think we can just bring our own traveling utensils.


Hey, maybe wooden tennis rackets will make a comeback. (that is more likely than wooden knives replacing steel knives)
Nothing to do with this thread, but I thought I’d mention that I have my old Tad Davis Imperial wood racquet (used thru 1969) at home, fully strung, just in case. I also have my subsequent Wilson T2000 (used '70-73) strung. You never know.

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Nothing cuts people like a dull knife so maybe a wooden knife is sharper. :smiley:

My Maxpli Fort is in the closet. Want to play?

As a former club tennis player and highly enthusiastic tennis gear freak I highly doubt wooden tennis rackets will EVER make a comeback.