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

  1. #81
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    Default Re: Keeping sharps sharp - a foray into knife-sharpening

    Quote Originally Posted by dgaddis View Post
    This one was decent. A bit long, but, worth it. His sourdough videos are good too.

    I've watched one minute only and I already love this guy's way to talk and show things :-)
    Andrea "Gattonero" Cattolico, head mechanic @Condor Cycles London


    "Caron, non ti crucciare:
    vuolsi coś colà dove si puote
    cị che si vuole, e più non dimandare"

  2. #82
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    Default Re: Keeping sharps sharp - a foray into knife-sharpening

    There's a similar one in UK (similar price, too).

    Now, yes, I too got hooked up on the wetstones. Before committing to a more expensive one I thought was better to use cheaper stones just to learn the right way.
    So I got those, they're small but enough for my Sak's, and I can still do the kitchen knives.

    Rough Rider Sharpening Stone Set | Heinnie Haynes
    rr3000.jpg

    Although I'm far from getting an easy and clean "paper-cut test", it's getting there and eventually I've learned a couple of things:

    1. it's not difficult to learn how to keep the wrists locked and move the arms&shoulders
    2. the above is the key to keep a constant angle when sharpening
    3. some people said to keep the stones in water&dishwashing liquid. Didn't work for me, only cold water
    4. those stones I'm using are small, so had to make a support out of hard foam, it makes a differerence!
    5. light strokes on the stone did nothing, seems to me that a good amount of pressure is required
    6. to "get the burr" on the medium stone I've to stroke the blade backwards only
    7. while with the fine stone I start with good pressure backward strokes, followed by both directions strokes with lighter pressure
    Andrea "Gattonero" Cattolico, head mechanic @Condor Cycles London


    "Caron, non ti crucciare:
    vuolsi coś colà dove si puote
    cị che si vuole, e più non dimandare"

  3. #83
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    Default Re: Keeping sharps sharp - a foray into knife-sharpening

    yeah, that french guy is really fun, i have been watching all of his stuff lately. he does the jacques pepin omelette for one.

    I also have been surprised to find it takes more pressure than the experts on the videos say. ive been putting quite a lot of pressure on the trailing stroke. it took my 3rd session to be able to get a "feel" for the steel and the angle and such. Now my knives have that glossy thing going on the edge. sexy. and the cut test works pretty well when i try. My challenge now is how to keep an edge. its so good for the first 3-4 knife uses, then the razor edge gets lost. short of pulling out the 5k stone and honing, i guess one has to allow for dulling of the edge. my honing steel just doesnt seem to restore the razor edge well enough.
    Matt Zilliox

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

    Quote Originally Posted by Octave View Post
    As per TT's infinite wisdom: voila, a thread about knife sharpening.

    What do you all use? How often? Hits and misses along the way?

    Personally, my household keeps the knife game simple: 1 Shun Usuba, 1 Shun Duba, a New West Knifeworks Santoku and an Opinel paring knife. Minor redundancy but it's knife if you've got two people working.

    For sharpening, we exclusively use Japanese waterstones. We have two, one of which is double-sided. The first is an ara-to (estimated around 750 grit), while the second is a double-sided naka-to (!4000 grit) and shiage-to (~10000 grit). Every 3 months all of the knives get the full treatment. It takes about 15 minutes per knife, so I tend to throw on a good podcast or at least make sure someone is around for entertaining company, as it's quite repetitive work..

    In the past I've owned synthetic stones and an electric sharpener, and neither got the job done as well as waterstones. They're simple to use, hard to f* up and last ages. We've had ours for 3 years now (so, about 12 rounds of 4-5 knives...) and they're not even 10% worn.

    For in between the proper sharpening sessions, we keep a honing steel around that's used probably once a week per knife.
    My goto is a Moritaka Gyuto 270mm, and I maintain it with a JNS 1000/8000, (<1000, if there is any significant material to remove first)
     

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

    What do you guys think about dual-side Arkansas stone?
    I've a friend going to US in a few weeks and I may just pull the trigger on this, the brand seems one to be trusted

    (40 bucks on Amazon)
    Andrea "Gattonero" Cattolico, head mechanic @Condor Cycles London


    "Caron, non ti crucciare:
    vuolsi coś colà dove si puote
    cị che si vuole, e più non dimandare"

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

    Quote Originally Posted by Gattonero View Post
    What do you guys think about dual-side Arkansas stone?
    I've a friend going to US in a few weeks and I may just pull the trigger on this, the brand seems one to be trusted

    (40 bucks on Amazon)
    In contrast to Japanese artificial stones, American Arkansas stones are cut right from the rock. The original source, with the best flint veins in the hills of Arkansas, was Norton, and they still have most of the best mines and the best stones. Unfortunately, they can be over $100 for a high quality stone, but it's like nothing else. Even theirs are not as good as they used to be -- I have some from four decades ago when they were very even in quality and literally translucent. Today they can have streaks of impurities and generally more contamination from other stone, so that they aren't quite the same stones.

    Those comments apply to the hardest stones. The best were, and still are, specifically black hard Arkansas. Anything you see that isn't labeled as all three will be a softer, less hard, less fine alternative. It can still be a good stone but not that superfine stone for the perfect final edge.

    The market is currently full of stones that are either composite Arkansas (similar to Japanese stones, made from ground-up Arkansas stone in a resin matrix) or poorer quality stone. I've had some that I could literally carve with a kitchen knife, others that would notch if you simply hit them at the wrong angle with a knife, and some that either lost their flatness quickly or were soft enough or coarse enough to not deserve the name. Recently I bought a collection of Preyda stones and found them useless. I'd almost say that if you want the real stone that justified the price, you'd have to pay the price -- an 8x2 stone, even only half an inch thick, should run north of $100. Smaller pocket knife stones (4x2 or equivalent size) should run around $70 or so. It should feel like glass that has been very lightly etched.

    One step back from the black hard Arkansas is the white hard Arkansas. It should be a lot less expensive and should be good for most purposes. Just be sure it doesn't have weak veins in it because they will quickly notch. And it should still feel like frosted glass -- very flat, little or no texture, with a bit of abrasiveness.

    For coarser stones, I'd go to composites or use silicon carbide paper on a glass plate. For more affordable finer stones, I'd go to ceramic. Overall, I'd look at Japanese stones if you don't mind the extra maintenance they need. Ceramic is a particularly good compromise because you don't need to use oil and you don't need to resurface ceramic regularly. I'm more in a state of using extra-fine 3M abrasive paper (actually a plastic sheet) with fine-micron abrasives, taped to a glass plate. Then I use a ceramic to finish off.

    Specifically to answer your question, I'd hold out for Norton-brand hard black Arkansas or white Arkansas stones, don't get dual-sided stones because often lesser quality stone is used with only one good surface (the bad surface is glued to the inside). You can wear into them a couple millimeters and suddenly find a void or weak vein. For any other stone, there are plenty of options available internationally that are as good as what you're likely to find in a natural American stone.
    Lane DeCamp

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

    Thanks for the help.
    I am not familiar with Arkansas stones, surely the cheaper ones ought to be some hit and miss.

    Eventually, I ended up with a cheapo "sharp pebble" as a starter: I can mess around and even damage it, and it will be only £35 lost. When my honing skills get better, I'll get a decent stone.
    So far, that cheap one is working ok, I can get the "slice paper-thin a ripe tomato" on all my knives, and with some work I could get a blue steel Higonokami to shave my hair. Not bad for a total beginner.

    I also got two ceramic rods, for the quick work, and made two stropping pads. Man, the latter made all the difference there, with the Herold black paste the edge comes up better than a generic "green oxide" paste. And since I got carried away, I got everything in a recycled box, plus I made a pouch for the small ceramic rod & stropping pad.



    Andrea "Gattonero" Cattolico, head mechanic @Condor Cycles London


    "Caron, non ti crucciare:
    vuolsi coś colà dove si puote
    cị che si vuole, e più non dimandare"

  8. #88
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    Default Re: Keeping sharps sharp - a foray into knife-sharpening

    Quote Originally Posted by Gattonero View Post
    Thanks for the help.
    I am not familiar with Arkansas stones, surely the cheaper ones ought to be some hit and miss.

    Eventually, I ended up with a cheapo "sharp pebble" as a starter: I can mess around and even damage it, and it will be only £35 lost. When my honing skills get better, I'll get a decent stone.
    So far, that cheap one is working ok, I can get the "slice paper-thin a ripe tomato" on all my knives, and with some work I could get a blue steel Higonokami to shave my hair. Not bad for a total beginner.

    I also got two ceramic rods, for the quick work, and made two stropping pads. Man, the latter made all the difference there, with the Herold black paste the edge comes up better than a generic "green oxide" paste. And since I got carried away, I got everything in a recycled box, plus I made a pouch for the small ceramic rod & stropping pad.



    You are out of control ;) Agreed, it took me many tries and a few different methods to settle down.

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

    @josh: when I went to my parents in February and rummaging in the tool room (where a box full of spares for my Fiat 500 was unhearted, but this is another story) I found some 1" Obeche wood strips and scraps of 1" leather from the time when we had dogs. Couldn't leave'em there
    The pouch was the excuse for a trial on some 1000D Cordura, I got to use that fabric to make a bespoke basket-bag for a colleague. Yes, I like sewing.
    Andrea "Gattonero" Cattolico, head mechanic @Condor Cycles London


    "Caron, non ti crucciare:
    vuolsi coś colà dove si puote
    cị che si vuole, e più non dimandare"

  10. #90
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    Default Re: Keeping sharps sharp - a foray into knife-sharpening

    oh, thanks for the reminder, im overdue for a sharpening
    Matt Zilliox

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

    if you buy knives from an artisan, they will usually offer to sharpen them for life on their wheel. The knives cost a lot to start but like many things if you invest well they end up costing you almost nothing. Such a pleasure to chop vegetables with a decent sharp knife. You have to be careful though.
     

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

    Quote Originally Posted by Gattonero View Post
    @josh: when I went to my parents in February and rummaging in the tool room (where a box full of spares for my Fiat 500 was unhearted, but this is another story) I found some 1" Obeche wood strips and scraps of 1" leather from the time when we had dogs. Couldn't leave'em there
    The pouch was the excuse for a trial on some 1000D Cordura, I got to use that fabric to make a bespoke basket-bag for a colleague. Yes, I like sewing.
    Nice. HAHA I own two sewing machines....one works.

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