Stainless or Carbon Steel?

You may be wondering whether to choose a stainless or carbon steel knife. Most high street stores selling knives will only stock stainless steel knives. We offer a choice of stainless steel or carbon steel knives, the differences between which are explained below.

Stainless Steel Knives

Stainless steel is the material most customers will be familiar with.  It produces knives with an enduring bright and shiny finish and an edge which is tremendously durable.

Whilst these knives are far more resistant to marking or staining than carbon steel knives and require less maintenance, they should still be cleaned and dried promptly after use to avoid any rust spots from appearing.

Carbon Steel Knives

Carbon steel knives are far less common. While they require more care than stainless steel knives, they are often the professional’s choice for a precision cut with a finer edge which can be readily refreshed with some basic maintenance.

Sabatier carbon steel knives from Thiers Issard are known for their razor like edge and mottled patina.

Thiers-Issard, whose handcrafted knives have been forged in Thiers for over a hundred and fifty years, is one of the few remaining companies that still make pure carbon steel knives. These knives, forged out of a single core of steel provide the perfect balance and alignment that many professionals value so highly.

Please note that carbon steel knives quickly acquire a patina and an aged look. If you are looking for a knife which stays bright and shiny then your choice should be a stainless steel knife.

Carbon steel knives have a greater vulnerability to corrosion and staining. Please be aware that the blades should be cleaned and dried immediately after every use – do not leave them to air dry. The blade can be covered with a light mineral oil to keep it from rusting, and rust can be removed with a metal scourer.

Whether you choose stainless or carbon steel knives, please note that our Thiers Issard Sabatier knives should not be placed in a dishwasher - the combination of high temperatures and caustic chemicals will damage the blade and the rivets (in addition to damaging wooden handles).


We are a specialist kitchen knife retailer offering a range of high quality Sabatier knives made in Thiers, France by Thiers Issard under the Sabatier **** Elephant brand.

Whilst there are numerous knife manufacturers using the Sabatier brand, only those manufactured in Thiers using traditional methods by skilled craftsmen can truly be described as genuine Sabatier.

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Due to a complicated history, knives are sold under the Sabatier brand which have been made by numerous manufacturers, in different locations and to different standards.

All of knives are produced to the highest standard by Thiers-Issard in Thiers, the traditional centre of cutlery excellence in France and the historical home of Sabatier.

Thiers-Issard was founded in 1884 by M. Pierre Thiers who had a extraordinary reputation as a skilled blacksmith. When he created his company he added his wife’s name in order to avoid confusion with other local families of the same name.

If you are interested in the straight razors produced by Thiers-Issard these are available in the UK through The Invisible Edge.

This video presentation below provides more information about Thiers-Issard and the manufacturing processes they employ.




You may be wondering whether to choose a stainless or carbon steel knife. Most high street stores selling knives will only stock stainless steel knives. We offer a choice of stainless steel or carbon steel knives.

Essentially, carbon steel produces a finer edge than stainless but it can easily corode and will quickly discolour. More information may be found on our page Stainless or Carbon Steel?

Our Traditional Forged range of knives are forged from either 4116 Aissy Chrome Vanadium Stainless Steel or from C60 carbon steel, both with a hardness of around Rockwell 55. They have a riveted handle of black nylon, red stamina or white micarta.

Our Ideal range of knives with an aluminium bolster are made of polished molybdenium stainless steel with a riveted ABS handle. The steel hardness is minimum Rockwell 55.

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