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I have many skills, a bit of knowledge and smattering of talent.........knife sharpening falls into none of those......help a brother out. Login/Join 
E tan e epi tas
Picture of cslinger
posted
So like I said I can’t sharpen a knife properly to save my life. I mean I can caveman my way into sharp rock but really sharpening a knife......not even close.

Can anybody give me some pointers on both techniques and gear??? Like I was thinking of trying something other then stones like a SpyderCo sharpener but without any skill or technique I imagine it won’t matter much.

I can’t sharpen knives, shoot a bow or do any carpentry that is beyond functional so any help is appreciated.

Like the famous fictional cop once said...”a man’s gotta know his limitations”. So help me with mine.

Thanks all.
Chris.


"Guns are tools. The only weapon ever created was man."
 
Posts: 3707 | Location: Nashville, TN | Registered: July 25, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
My common sense
is tingling
Picture of Kravashera
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See this thread:

The Sharpening Thread

There is some good advice and some good videos on traditional hand sharpening. I would definitely recommend something like the spyderco sharp maker or lansky turn box as a starting point. Either of those will be easy to use, even with no skill, and will help build consistent repetition and angle knowledge needed for stone sharpening.



“You can have peace. Or you can have freedom. Don't ever count on having both at once.”
- Robert Heinlein
 
Posts: 828 | Location: Valley of the Sun, AZ | Registered: February 03, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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What type of blades are you trying to sharpen? What type of grinds- Convex, flat grind, chisel ground?

My most consistent edge is using 3M wet/dry sandpaper and a mouse pad to make a convex edge. It's easy to maintain and really sharp.

With more concentration I can get a great edge using the Spyderco Sharpmaker. It just takes a little more effort.


____________________________________________________

The butcher with the sharpest knife has the warmest heart.
 
Posts: 11311 | Location: Bottom of Lake Washington | Registered: March 06, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
E tan e epi tas
Picture of cslinger
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Thanks guys.

I am just learning about ground types etc.


"Guns are tools. The only weapon ever created was man."
 
Posts: 3707 | Location: Nashville, TN | Registered: July 25, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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A Spyderco Sharpmaker is a good compromise for someone with basic dexterity (all you have to do is hold the blade vertical while you drag it down the rods).

If that's a challenge, CKRT used to make a sharpener that's the opposite of a Sharpmaker. It held a cylindrical rod in a vertical position, with a plastic guide that fitted around the rod above a spring. The guide held the knife at the correct angle and you just pushed the whole affair down the rod. The spring pushed it back up. Repeat on both sides of the blade as necessary. Even the most uncoordinated could keep the appropriate angle. Inexpensive, too. They're probably to be found on ebay.


__________________________
"Sooner or later, wherever people go, there's the law. And sooner or later, they find out that God's already been there." -- John Wayne as Chisum
 
Posts: 529 | Registered: September 20, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Murray Carter is well respected. I just grabbed a video and in less than a minute he's talking about sharpening on a cinder block and finishing with newspaper.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5stV_1kID-U


____________________________________________________

The butcher with the sharpest knife has the warmest heart.
 
Posts: 11311 | Location: Bottom of Lake Washington | Registered: March 06, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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It’s pretty hard to beat the Lansky system. I’ve used one for about 30 years now. Combine it with a steel or crock sticks for the occasional tune up. The Sharpie marker trick will change your life.


----------The weather is here I wish you were beautiful----------
 
Posts: 4449 | Location: southern Mn | Registered: February 26, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
The Constable
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I've got an old Lansky system that I used occasionally on hunting blades, but was never really happy with how long it took to really get a blade sharp.

I bought the bench stand, in the past I simply held the knife and the guide, as well as a few new stones, FINER than the old ones I have been using.

The bench mount is the game changer for me. That and using the magic marker trick. The new Arkansas stones probably helped too.

My recently acquired Dozier is now so sharp I can shave hair or do figure 8's on a sheet of newspaper!
 
Posts: 5911 | Location: Craig, MT | Registered: December 17, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
His Royal Hiney
Picture of Rey HRH
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Murray Carter is a good source for instruction.

Here's my advice on the basics of sharpening.

A sharp knife is when the edge is made up of two planes on either side of the blade meeting at a straight line.

Angles for pocket knives generally go 15 degrees per side. Less than 15 degrees and the knife slices easier but the edge wears out relatively sooner. Greater than 15 degrees and the edge lasts longer but harder to slice. The goal is to have a perfect line where the two bevel planes meet along the edge. You get this by creating a consistent angle. To create the consistent angle, you'll have to hold the knife steady as you sharpen it but you also have to adjust as the blade curves up to the point.

Sharpening is done at the coarsest stone. How coarse a stone you initially use depends if you have to take out any chips on the edge. The coarser the stone, the more material will be taken out per stroke. Let the grit do the job meaning exert enough effort for the grit to cut into the steel. Too much pressure and you're just wasting energy and gouging the knife and, if you're using diamond plates, dislodging diamond bits. As you go to subsequent finer grits, use lighter pressure.

You stay at the coarsest stone until the knife is sharp: bevel angels are flat and consistent along the edge and the two bevel planes meet at a line. Use black marker along the sides to see that you're hitting all the way to the edge and along the bevel. Us a 20x loupe to look at your edge.

When your knife is sharp at the coarsest stone, then you go to one or more finer grits. Murray uses only 2 grits plus a final honing on newspaper. The purpose of the finer grits is to refine your bevel and the edge. They smoothen the bevel sides and remove any wire edges or burrs. Remember, lighten up the pressure to let the grit do the work and to now gouge the work you just did.

Lastly, you clean out any remaining wire edges or burrs. Some use a hone, Murray uses newspaper, some use a strop. Others do I I do, I run the edge against a wine cork. The cork is soft enough to not ruin the edge I made but it is draggy enough to remove any wire edges or burrs. Then I use a strop for final conditioning using the least pressure. I'm just letting the bevel glide across the strop.

That's it.



"It did not really matter what we expected from life, but rather what life expected from us. We needed to stop asking about the meaning of life, and instead to think of ourselves as those who were being questioned by life – daily and hourly. Our answer must consist not in talk and meditation, but in right action and in right conduct. Life ultimately means taking the responsibility to find the right answer to its problems and to fulfill the tasks which it constantly sets for each individual." Viktor Frankl, Man's Search for Meaning, 1946.
 
Posts: 15001 | Location: Bay Area, CA | Registered: March 24, 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Little ray
of sunshine
Picture of jhe888
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Learn what you are trying do.

Learn about bevels, removing metal until you turn a burr at the edge, and removing that burr on the other side.

The most critical skill is maintaining a consistent angle against the stone. Some can do it by hand. A jig or fixture makes it easier.

Here some good basic information. The other chapters on this guy's website give further help.

https://sharpeningmadeeasy.com/knives1c.htm




The fish is mute, expressionless. The fish doesn't think because the fish knows everything.
 
Posts: 46496 | Location: Texas | Registered: February 10, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
I'd rather be hated for who I am than loved for who I am not
Picture of Ronin101
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I'm still working on it lol
 
Posts: 6681 | Location: Bismarck ND | Registered: February 19, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
The Constable
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Few days ago I saw a TORMEK (Thank's maladat) sharpener in action at a tool shop...Sharpening wood chisels.

90 rpm , 10" main sharpening wheel with a leather wheel for final stropping off to the other side.

They were using a very fine, almost ceramic feeling wheel to put a razor edge on the tools. The wheel is also bathed in water , so no overheating of the tool.

Neat to watch this in action. An entire sharpening system that unfortunately starts at $700+. The finest grit, Japanese water wheel is $400 alone!

Still...Very neat to watch this at work.

This message has been edited. Last edited by: FN in MT,
 
Posts: 5911 | Location: Craig, MT | Registered: December 17, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of maladat
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I think you mean Tormek?

https://www.tormek.com/

They are very popular amongst woodworkers. Something like that makes sense when you are using your edged tools constantly, and using them on material that dulls them quickly. In that context, where you want to bring multiple tools back from just starting to lose its edge to sharp multiple times a day, every day, a huge expensive machine that does a pretty good job in 30 seconds vs. doing a great job on a set of bench stones in 5-10 minutes makes a lot of sense.

I don't think it makes a ton of sense from the standpoint of the average knife user.
 
Posts: 4398 | Location: TX | Registered: January 24, 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
The Constable
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quote:
Originally posted by maladat:
I think you mean Tormek?

https://www.tormek.com/

They are very popular amongst woodworkers. Something like that makes sense when you are using your edged tools constantly, and using them on material that dulls them quickly. In that context, where you want to bring multiple tools back from just starting to lose its edge to sharp multiple times a day, every day, a huge expensive machine that does a pretty good job in 30 seconds vs. doing a great job on a set of bench stones in 5-10 minutes makes a lot of sense.

I don't think it makes a ton of sense from the standpoint of the average knife user.


Agreed on proper use. Would be great for a production shop, commercial sharpening service, etc.

But. That Timex vs Rolex thing. WOULD be a heck of a toy to have. Smile
 
Posts: 5911 | Location: Craig, MT | Registered: December 17, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Posts: 6091 | Location: 18 miles long, 6 Miles at Sea | Registered: January 22, 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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The Lansky system mentioned above works well. I've also used the Spyderco Sharpmaker with good results. It's a little easier for me to use on very small and very large blades than the Lansky.
 
Posts: 543 | Location: WV | Registered: May 30, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Tupperware Dr.
Picture of GCE61
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I've been using a KME Sharpening system and love it.

The fixture is solid and stable and allows the stone to maintain the angle you set. The fixture has graduated hashmarks which are numbered so you can reset the angle from knife to knife as is needed and it is repeatable using the scale.

I keep a small little "logbook" on every knife I sharpen to keep track of what the angle was, this makes touchups simple. This helps when you reprofile a blade with a different angle. Along with the little book I have a black sharpie in the case to color the edge bevel to see progress or determine a proper angle.

I've loaned it to friends who had never been able to sharpen a knife and they liked it so much they bought their own.
 
Posts: 2947 | Registered: December 28, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
The Constable
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I may start a separate thread. A friend has a Tormek T-4 on the way. He does a ton of woodwork and has all sorts of turning chisels, flat chisels, plane blades, etc to keep sharp. He sends them out when they really get bad but that resource just retired. So he has the T-4 on the way.

Within a few days I shall be using it. Just watched like ten videos on YouTube on them. Looks easy.

What a great opportunity....and nothing out of MY pocket for once.
 
Posts: 5911 | Location: Craig, MT | Registered: December 17, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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