eBay T-Rex

Chef’s Knives on eBay

Dollar Flipper Ebay Research, eBay Tips 16 Comments

Hitting you up with some research today. We’ll be taking a look at chef’s knives that sell well on eBay.

This blog is right on the cutting edge!

OK, that’s the last knife pun. I tried a bunch of others but even I couldn’t handle them (unintentional pun). Way too cheesy. Believe me, we’re all better for this decision.

So, chef’s knives! Chef’s knives.. umm.. what the hell are they anyways?
If you’re wondering, I am not the chef in my house. Unless it’s eggs or on a grill, I’m not that good.

The thing is, I’m willing to cook. It’s just that my wife doesn’t want to eat it. I argue that my wife is too choosy. She says I’m too picky and won’t try new things. I say that she needs too much variety. Can’t you just be happy eating a sweet potato and some chicken with hot sauce every day like me?

Her response: No.

Because of all this, I don’t do much cooking. Is it in a box? I can probably make it. Does it require a recipe? Why bother? I can just add some garlic and hot sauce, and it will be great. I do clean the dishes afterwards though, so I’m not completely useless.

What’s the point of that ramble? It’s that I don’t know jack when it comes to chef’s knives other than which end to hold. Although I’ve apparently been cutting things with the wrong technique! I can’t even cut things right. Jeez.

On top of not knowing them, I haven’t even sold a chef’s knife on eBay yet. I’ve just been intrigued by the knife/silverware sections that you find in most thrift stores. There’s all those big bins just loaded with sharp objects. What’s not to love?

eBay T-Rex

I’d be the worst caveman. Caveman 1, “Those teeth look sharp.” Me – “I wonder if I can scavenge them to re-sell at the market!

It may look like a pain in the butt at first, but that’s the catch. If it’s hard to deal with, that’s a nice barrier to entry. So all you need is a little bit of an edge (shoot, that’s another unintentional pun, I swear), and you can be looking at big profits.

Since I don’t know a lot about knives, I figured that we can start off with the basics.

How is a chef knife different than a regular knife?

Per Wikipedia, it’s a knife that was originally used to disjoint beef (yum) but is now an all purpose kitchen knife.

I feel like these are used by people who want to get into cooking more stuff. Yes, the knives you were using were what was really holding you back. 😉

I won’t include this kind of sarcasm in my listing though and won’t judge you if you’re buying from me.


There seem to be a ton of them. So, let’s add a few in lumps that seem to be popular.

  • Wusthof
  • J.A. Henckels
  • F. Dick (Why do I still giggle at these types of names?)
  • Veritable Sabatier Bresduck Paris France – “Sabatier” is actually used by a TON of companies in France. I think that it’s a safe buy as long as it’s in good shape, and you can get it for a few bucks.
  • Dufresne & Co La Trompette
  • Thiers-Issard
  • Jean Pernot
  • GLOBAL – These have some really futuristic looking blades – see below.
  • Sakai Takayuki
  • Shun – subsidiary of Kershaw, an American company
  • Kikuichi
  • Lamson & Goodnow
  • Dexter-Russell – I find it ironic that there was a T.V. show about a serial killer called Dexter, and there’s also a nice set of knives of the same name.
  • Gerber – Don’t mess with these babies.
  • Kershaw
  • Calphalon – This is an American company that makes their knives out of Japanese steel.
  • A.G. Russell

Cutco brand knives can sell for over $30+. Ones with a certificate that came with the knife sold for a little more. The certificate lets someone send it back in for either sharpening or a replacement. These apparently are good knives even though they are sold through a direct marketing, in your home method. I might still take a shot at them

I did not see a lot of Pampered Chef, but I’m betting if you could grab a bunch in really good shape on the cheap, they would sell well too.

Handle Style

You’ll want to include the material of the knife handle (stainless steel, wood, marble, etc.).  GLOBAL brand is known for a more futuristic all metal knife.

GLOBAL Chef's Knife eBay

Do they market these knives as more aerodynamic because of the handle? I’d love to hear “woosh” as I was chopping something up…

Metal Type

There’s a Rockwell scale for metal that’s also used for knife blades. The higher means it will keep an edge longer. The harder alloys are also able to have a steeper angle too. Japanese knives tend to be towards the higher end (60 HRC). If you can find the actual value of the knife’s hardness from a manufacturer’s website, it’d be great to include in your listing.


Like clothing, it’s nice to include measurements of a knife. The important ones are the length of the blade, overall length, and the width (height?) of the blade. Chef’s knives are generally 8″ long, but can range from 6″ to 14″ depending on brand.


The edge will be something you’ll want to describe when you’re listing your knife. It’s probably not as important when out thrifting, but still can mean the difference to that one eBay buyer who wants your knife! Here’s a great resource for identifying a knife’s edge (just look along the edge of the blade with the point towards you and perpendicular to a flat surface). Most of the time, the edge will differ based on the country it’s made in.

Chef’s Choice makes some electronic knife sharpeners that sell for $40-80+ too! Even more if you still have the box.

How to ship a Chef’s knife

Ideal method would be just a regular box. Just wrap it in something soft like paper towel. Be especially caring to the sharp edge/point. You can even throw it into a plastic bag too. Then plop it in the box and stuff the box till it doesn’t move!

If you don’t have a box that the knife will fit in, you’re going to have to be a little more careful. The pointy edge is what you’re going to want to focus on. I plan on using a square of cardboard. You can fold the cardboard in half, and then fold over the top of the cardboard. This will make a sheath. As long as the whole knife is covered by the cardboard and is secure, you can fit it in a flat rate padded envelope or a regular one if it’s under 13 ounces.

Make sure to tape all edges if possible. Hard/sharp ends can poke through, and you can lose the knife in transit.

If you were wondering, kitchen knives are allowed to be sold on eBay. If you’re selling international, just make sure that knives are allowed per the receiving country!

Finally, no, that sword cane doesn’t count as a chef’s knife, even if it is really cool.

eBay Sword Cane

These are NOT allowed to be sold on eBay!


Image Credit: David Monniaux, Minnesota Historical Society

Comments 16

  1. I’ve been looking for knives in bins for a long time. Never really find anything there. But I did pick up some nice sets at some recent estate sales that are listed. But none of the ones you have listed. But will probably sell around $30 or so. Hubby and I both do a lot of cooking and he prefers dishes that are much more elaborate than I’m willing to make..LOL So about 5 years ago I bought him a semi-pro set of knives for about $350. A good knife is really worth the money. They are amazing!

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      Wow, that’s a lot of dough on a set of knives! But at least you get to benefit from all of the fancy food. Win-win!

      I’m going to be keeping an eye out for these at garage sales and estate sales. I feel like it’ll be easier to find them there, but can’t hurt to try at the thrift store too!

  2. I have sold Cutco with success. Also Bone handle (style) seems to do well. Does it matter if they have been visibly sharpened?

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      I wouldn’t think so. Can you even sharpen a knife incorrectly? I don’t think I would sharpen one though if I bought it. Leave that to the person who’s going to know what they’re doing.

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      Well you just made me blush and simultaneously guilted me into really posting every Monday morning! 😛

  3. Great info! I’m going to bookmark this. Do you sharpen/polish the knives you find before you sell them or just sell them as is?

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      I might try to clean them up a bit, but I don’t think I would sharpen them. I’m no expert there and would be afraid of doing it incorrectly…

  4. I actually have to cane swords… good to know I can’t list those on eBay.

    I always enjoy reading your posts about eBay. I learn so much about items that can be sold. Thanks!

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  5. I found a set of vintage Sabatier ****elephant (four stars and an elephant on the blade or handle) at a rummage sale for $5. Bought them on a hunch. (Looked good quality) I split up the set of 7 and ended up getting over $600 for all of them. I definitely look for knives now! Hint: serious chefs like the older hand forged high carbon steel blades. (Pre WW2) It looks dull and dark gray. Many also prefer to have the knives sharpened themselves. Thanks for the post!

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      That’s what I’m talking about! That’s some awesome profit and great information. Glad to know that we shouldn’t sharpen them ourselves too. Thanks!

  6. My husband sold CUTCO knives over one summer in college, so we’ve got a great set at home that I love. Actually, he kept his account active over the years by making small purchases every 6 months or so, in order to keep his discount. This past summer, we bought a bunch of knives and flipped them on eBay. They sold so fast–people love CUTCO! (And I should point out that you’re not allowed to do this as a CUTCO employee. He finally severed (pun!) his ties with the company before we flipped the knives on eBay. Otherwise, I imagine the market would be flooded with people trying to do the same, and the market value would go down.)

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      That’s a great idea! I’m sure you were able to make some of that money back, and you have a great set of knives. I’ve heard the same thing about Mary Kay (that you can’t sell them on eBay if you work for them). I almost had a lady sell me her big bag of makeup at a garage sale last year but she just kept thinking of how much she spent on it. She just couldn’t let it go.

  7. Nice post! Very informative! I have Cutco knives at home. They’re fabulous! Now I have to look for that certificate to get them sharpened.

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