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Thread: Keeping sharps sharp - a foray into knife-sharpening

  1. #41
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    Default Re: Keeping sharps sharp - a foray into knife-sharpening

    Alright salonistas. Looking to step up my sharpening game. I've got an electric sharpener I'll keep for the cheap knives, but for our nicer new knives (Wustof Classics) I don't want to use it. Also, I'd like to sharpen my pocket knife, but the blade has some curves to it and I'm not sure what the best way to go about it is. I could send it back to Kershaw but I'd rather learn how to do it myself.

    What do y'all recommend?

    Here's the blade on my pocket knife, 2.25" blade. You can see a burr near the tip, and it's just a bit dull in general. I've been using it regularly around the shop opening boxes and what for a few years now.

    Last edited by dgaddis; 01-05-2018 at 09:16 AM.
    Dustin Gaddis
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    Default Re: Keeping sharps sharp - a foray into knife-sharpening

    This year I picked up a Shapton HR 1000 (med. grit). This is becoming the one thing I use alot. UTube is my best friend for staying on point...so to speak ;) I learned to use a whetstone in the Boy Scouts. Turns out not to be rocket science just alot of motorskills and good habits.

    My pocket knives get touched up as needed, mostly using the Shapton and a strop for extra credit.

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    Default Re: Keeping sharps sharp - a foray into knife-sharpening

    I've got a few options at the house for sharpening (Japanese waterstones, oilstones, wet/dry sandpaper on a plate), but the thing I use for sharpening knives now is a diamond Lansky system. It's quick, easy, maintenance is simple, and you don't need to think about it. It has limitations, including using it for larger knives where the sharpening angle gets wonky unless you move the guide across the blade, but works well especially for the smaller stuff like pocket knives. Guests at the house always comment on the sharpness of the kitchen knives, and it's a minimal time investment.
    My name is David Moeny

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    Default Re: Keeping sharps sharp - a foray into knife-sharpening

    Quote Originally Posted by dgaddis View Post
    ...

    What do y'all recommend?

    ...
    I've got bad news... you probably want to send that back to kershaw. The blade has a slight recurve to it, which is going to make it just about impossible to sharpen with a stone. You could potentially use the corner of a stone for the curve, but it's going to be tough to keep the correct angle and will be hard on the stone. The only other option is a rod system, like the spyderco sharpmaker. I guess one last option would be to just sharpen the bit below the second "o" in onion to the tip, but that's going to result in a pretty unsatisfying knife. There are many knives out there that I have wanted and said no to just because the shape of the edge would have meant that I wasn't going to be able to sharpen it myself.

    ...but if you're still looking for traditional sharpening goods, Toots has the right idea. The shapton 1000 (which is actually 800... but all the numbers are just an estimate) is the way to go for a medium stone, especially for beginners. Its durable, hard wearing, and actually works on even the harder stainless steels. I use the ohishi 1000, but I can't bring myself to recommend it. Mine is beginning to stress crack from the inside out. Turns out the stone is really sensitive to getting bumped, nicked, set down too hard, soaked for too short of time, and/or dried out too fast. It's a massive pain in the butt. I'll probably end up buying another once this one falls apart.

    The best finishing stone, especially for double bevel kitchen knives, is the takenoko 8000 (probably more like 6000...). It's a little pricey, but it will put exactly the right kind of polish and edge on the blade. Also it already comes mounted to wood and includes a nagura, which is nice. I personally prefer the kitayama 8000 (some say it's really 10000-12000...) but this is again a kind of high maintenance stone that if you're not doing single bevels and/or white steel you probably won't enjoy it.

    You will need a flattening stone (easiest way to go here is a DMT extra coarse diamond stone) I would strongly suggest a leather strop for knocking the burr off (even better if it's prepped with chromium oxide). That's enough to do just about any edge you own. Except for badly damaged blades (need a coarse stone for edge repair), straight razors (need something harder and finer), ...and recurve blades like you kershaw.
     

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    Default Re: Keeping sharps sharp - a foray into knife-sharpening

    spopepro gives a masters level advice in four paragraphs.

    Can't tell you how much use I've gotten from my DMT as a flattening stone. It is just perfect and fast. Double thumbs up for a big arse leather strap with CrOxide.

    The only thing missing for me at this point is all the loot I've wasted finding what works best for me :( heh. Oh well.

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    Default Re: Keeping sharps sharp - a foray into knife-sharpening

    dmt stones are great. I have a few. the big ones don't come out that often, but when they do, they can't be beat (except maybe by expensive japanese water stones that I've never tried, owing to price and maintenance). Once your technique is good, the little pocket stones are awesome (and way cheaper), as you can almost use them in a manner similar to a sharpening steel, i.e. freehand in a way that approximates the action of the lansky system. with them being cheaper, you can afford to have a coarse, medium and x-fine.

    as for the kershaw, follow spo's advice; it might be one of the few uses for a diamond sharpening rod. there are quite a few available that can do double duty on serrated edges, etc
     

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    Default Re: Keeping sharps sharp - a foray into knife-sharpening

    Thread revival.

    The Kershaw I pictured above, I'm just gonna send it back to Kershaw. The Speedsafe assisted opening needs repair anyways. Sharpening is free.

    My nice kitchen knives - I got a dual sided whetstone a while back, played around with it very briefly, got frustrated, put it up and didn't touch it for a while. Yesterday I watched a few YouTube videos, got the stone out again, and now have it pretty well figured out. All my knives will now cleanly slice fairly stout paper without tearing, just a smooth, easy slice. Did ~8 or so kitchen knives, plus a couple pocket knives, all in under an hour. Now that I know what I'm doing I can move much faster even.

    The trick I found, the first time I used the stone I simply wasn't putting enough pressure on the blade. I was basically just sliding it across the stone under it's own weight and nothing else. You've gotta lean on it a bit though, you're trying to remove steel after all. The knives aren't nearly as fragile as you (I) may have thought.

    As eRichie often says, you gotta show the steel who's boss.

    Next up I'm gonna get the Dremel out and round the corners of the spine on a few knives. The other night I cubed up a giant 4.3lbs butternut squash, and where my index finger wrapped over the spine of the blade (holding it with a pincher grip), the skin was sore and sensitive from rubbing against the sharp 90 degree corner of the spine. Know how your skin feels if you touch a hot pan, and you don't get burned bad enough to blister, but it does hurt for a while and is really sensitive - it felt like that. I'm a weenie I know.
    Dustin Gaddis
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    Default Re: Keeping sharps sharp - a foray into knife-sharpening

    good on ya for mastering that; I also ran into similar frustrations. I think it's just that some of the modern stainless steels are harder than the good ol carbon steels and harder to put an edge on, though they will keep one better too, especially if you religiously use the honing rod aka sharpening steel
     

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    Default Re: Keeping sharps sharp - a foray into knife-sharpening

    Quote Originally Posted by dgaddis View Post
    Yesterday I watched a few YouTube videos, got the stone out again, and now have it pretty well figured out. All my knives will now cleanly slice fairly stout paper without tearing, just a smooth, easy slice. Did ~8 or so kitchen knives, plus a couple pocket knives, all in under an hour. Now that I know what I'm doing I can move much faster even.
    Cool. Which YouTube videos were most useful?
    Andy

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    Default Re: Keeping sharps sharp - a foray into knife-sharpening

    Show the butternut who's boss.

    TH
     

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    Default Re: Keeping sharps sharp - a foray into knife-sharpening

    i just went all in and ordered a Bester 1000grit sharpening stone, Tekanoko 6/8000 grit polishing stone, and Tsuboman Atoma Diamond Stone 400grit for maintaining the stones and correcting big imperfections. ill make a leather strop of some sort and should be good to go. i have a few decent knives in need of attention, so figured i may enjoy this making sharps sharp thing. looks meditative and fun.
    Matt Zilliox

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    Default Re: Keeping sharps sharp - a foray into knife-sharpening

    Quote Originally Posted by mzilliox View Post
    i just went all in and ordered a bester 1000grit sharpening stone, tekanoko 6/8000 grit polishing stone, and tsuboman atoma diamond stone 400grit for maintaining the stones and correcting big imperfections. Ill make a leather strop of some sort and should be good to go. I have a few decent knives in need of attention, so figured i may enjoy this making sharps sharp thing. Looks meditative and fun.
    right on!!!

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    Default Re: Keeping sharps sharp - a foray into knife-sharpening

    How much work should I expect to put in using stones to rehab completely dull knives?

    I have a few kitchen knives (2 chefs, paring etc) that have made too many trips in the dishwasher. I've tried to sharpen them with a Spyderco Sharpmaker and, although neat in principle, they barely restored the blades to dull. They are not even good for crushing herbs! I think they need the attention of a pro with power tool, but the only local sharpening service is the lawn mower blade guy.

    These were not boutique knives to begin with (Bed Bad Beyond grade Zwilling) but I'd rather not throw them out. Should I expect to be able to rehab them if I bought a set of stones or is there such a thing as "too far gone" for hand sharpening with stones?

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    Default Re: Keeping sharps sharp - a foray into knife-sharpening

    Quote Originally Posted by Bobonli View Post
    is there such a thing as "too far gone" for hand sharpening with stones?
    In my opinion the answer is no. You need more than one stone though, coarse ones to restore the angle and fine ones to restore the edge. I like to start with a coarse diamond stone and move through (by stages) to a fine waterstone.
     

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    Default Re: Keeping sharps sharp - a foray into knife-sharpening

    ^ agreed
    something like a 220 stone then 1000 then 3000 would be great
    a strop takes it even further.

    get real crazy you just need like a 6000 stone in there before the strop, the edge will be mirror polished and will easily shave the hair off your hand.
    it will just take a little practice, watch some youtube vids for ideas on technique...
     

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    Default Re: Keeping sharps sharp - a foray into knife-sharpening

    Lane DeCamp

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    Default Re: Keeping sharps sharp - a foray into knife-sharpening

    Quote Originally Posted by Andrevich4 View Post
    Cool. Which YouTube videos were most useful?
    This one was decent. A bit long, but, worth it. His sourdough videos are good too.

    Dustin Gaddis
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    Default Re: Keeping sharps sharp - a foray into knife-sharpening

    My stones arrive today from Hida Tools in the Bay Area. I will be sharpening this evening most likely. Im watching this video now. I love French People. will report back.
    Matt Zilliox

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    Default Re: Keeping sharps sharp - a foray into knife-sharpening

    Im gonna like this sharpening stuff. Started with a couple older wustof knives to get the feel then moved onto my favorite Shun knife.

    The Bester 1000 stone does not muddy up like i had expected stones might. It took a while to understand the feedback from it, but then i sort of got the feel. once i felt the edge was sharp fomr the 1000 grit, i did some sharpening strokes, then some stropping on the Takenoko stone. this one provided easier feedback, one could see easily when material was being removed and feel the proper angle and stroke. stropped and polished.
    [IMG]sharps by Matt.zilliox, on Flickr[/IMG]

    and it cuts newspaper! i dont know why this is the test, but it is.
    [IMG]knife by Matt.zilliox, on Flickr[/IMG]
    Matt Zilliox

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