Sharpening "Super" Steels -Venev Diamond VS Metallic CBN

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June 25, 2019, 07:25 AM
Sharpening "Super" Steels -Venev Diamond VS Metallic CBN
The CBN stones I bought did not have an aluminum plate. Owner of Practicalsharpening told me not needed, he's right.

Ya, I've looked at the Bess tester... I'm good with the Rizla test. Get an edge to crosscut/push cut, very very fine edge.
June 30, 2019, 10:49 AM
Originally posted by offgrid:
Well over 30 knives using the CBN stones. 30V, 35V, 90V, 110V, 4V, M4, M390.... The 110V and M4 are my knives, sharpened them a few different ways. The more I use the CBN stones, the more I like them. They do a fantastic job on the "Super" steels. The stones don't clog or build up, great feel....

Getting great cutting results with a simple polished toothy edge. 300 grit, 700 grit then .25 diamond emulsion on a Nano cloth strop. Really like this edge on these steels. On my M4 have stropped it to .025, silly fine edge. BUT, I know that very fine edge is going away fast. Still fun!

Mentioned in a above post I geeked out and ordered some Rizla+ cigarette paper for a standard test media. About out of arm hair! Learned about using the paper here.

Long Push cut I believe is plenty sharp for a "working" knife, EDC or kitchen, easy shaving sharp. Both my knives in 110V and M4 will easily long cut with a simple 300/700/.25 strop edge. You know I'm going to try the cross cut! Three knives have passed that with just a smidge of tear. My favorite knife, our 210MM Gyuto freshly sharpened, my Spyderco PM2 in M4 and one that surprised me a Zero Tolerance 0770CF in 35V.

The PM2's sure have a heck of a point on them, challenge to keep it.....

I finally got my Rizla papers to use as sharpness testers. I thought it was a little funny that they came from England labeled as a "Children's Toy"! ;-D
I would have never realized how good a test they were for super sharpness until I tried them. Thank you again for the recommendation! Just seeing your pictures I don't think most people realize how hard it is to cut such a thin paper cleanly. I've never smoked weed or loose tobacco so I had no idea about the papers. I didn't have any idea of how good a sharpness tester they were until I tried them at your recommendation.

It did remind me of a funny story. I used to be a pretty serious Armor Modeler and I was looking for fine screen to use as a vent cover on one of my Tank Models. After I couldn't find any fine enough at the hardware store one of my buddies suggested I check the local head shop for Bowl Screen. So we went to the local head shop and I walked up and asked the old half wasted psychedelic dude behind the counter if he had any brass bowl screen available. He said he did and asked what size I wanted. I held my hands out in a circle and asked him if he had any in 8 inch diameter...... His eyes widened and he looked up at me like I was a Prophet!! ;-D ;-D

Remember, this is all supposed to be for fun...................
July 01, 2019, 02:58 PM
Cool you got the Rizla papers! Makes a great test media. I've given a few packs away to other sharpeners. Hey bud, wants some rolling papers?!

Good story going into the pot shop.

This is the sharpest knife in our house, Watanabe Aogami #2. Just re-sharpened it. Sharpens easy compared to the V's. Shapton 500, Chosera 1000, Shapton 5K, 8K a few passes with 1/.10 micron strops. Silly wicked sharp. Fun Stuff!

Sure would like to have a knife like this in a super steel. Creely has offered chef knives in Rex 121, maybe I'll give him a call!
July 03, 2019, 06:53 AM
Here's another one! Sharpened this PM2 Maxamet for a friend. He asked for a polished edge, OK.

Matched the factory angle of 34 degrees. CBN 300/700/1500, Spyderco UF, Basswood strops 4/1 micron, Kangaroo strops .25/.10/.025.

Very fine edge, best crosscut test so far of any knife I've sharpened.

July 30, 2019, 03:10 PM
OK see if I can finally post one. I got burned by Photobucket so I just tried the image hosting site you used :-)

This is a 110V Spyderco Military. I used the Venev 3 stone 6 grit set + the 1200grit OCB diamond Venev edge pro style stone. Then Balsa stropped .75 CBN

It's a working knife so yes the tip is doinked a bit and it needs a little cleanup.

I easily could have stopped it 3 grades finer but I wanted to see how good an edge I could get relatively quickly. I love the Venev 3 stone 6 grit set. They are a bargain if you can use stones without the aluminum backing. The REAL star of ALL the different stones I've bought over the last year is the Venev OCB 1200 grit! Most diamond and CBN stones tend to leave random scratches for me. The OCB stone leave a smooth Mirror finish with very few to no scratches when I look at it in my Microscope. It's also about 1/3rd the price of the Metallic Bonded CBN stones. It left a MUCH more polished finish than the 2000 and 5000 CBN Organic stones I tried on another knife. If went to the 5000 CBN and then the 1200 OCB left a much higher polish finish. Grit sizes can be deceiving.

I've ordered the 800grit OCB Venev diamond and look forward to reporting on it. If it cuts fast enough it might be a great 2 stone combo for less than $100. We'll see. So far I've been disappointed with the CBN stones, especially as expensive as they are. I'll keep trying to get them to work better so we'll see. VERY Pleased with the Venev diamond stones much to my surprise. ;-D

Remember, this is all supposed to be for fun...................
July 30, 2019, 04:48 PM

edge looks great! S110V is not easy to sharpen, not a forgiving steel if you rush through a stone/grit.

I had the same experience with the 3000 and 5000 CBN stones. Wasn't happy with them for polishing. Why I bought the Spyderco UF, it works well followed by a pile of strops for a mirror finish. Going to resist the OCB stones, for now! For my own knives I do prefer a polished toothy edge.

I sharpened four knives yesterday, all 30V. Knives are hard use, mechanic friends cutting everything and anything. Did a dirtball simple edge. 300 CBN/1 Micron Basswood strop. Didn't quite pass the rip cut, almost. Great bite to the edge though. One of the tips looked like your tip! Hard use working knife, not going to grind it away to fix it.

I have 3 Nano cloth strops (.25, .10, .025 Emulsion) on aluminum plates I'm not using. Haven't got the hang of using them. Both Ken Schwartz and JendeIndustries swear by them for the finer microns. Yours if you want them.
July 30, 2019, 10:07 PM
Kind offer Offgrid! My Email is in my profile. Send me an Email and we can exchange addresses. I might have a thing or two you might be able to use also. :-)

Remember, this is all supposed to be for fun...................
August 04, 2019, 03:34 PM
Offgrid, Thanks for the Strops! I just got them out of the mail today. I'm looking forwards to trying them on my next knife. I really appreciate you sending them to me. PS you might check your P.O. Box in a couple days........ ;-D

Remember, this is all supposed to be for fun...................
August 06, 2019, 05:08 PM
Originally posted by djpaintles:
PS you might check your P.O. Box in a couple days........ ;-D

November 19, 2019, 09:20 AM
Sharpened a pile of knives over the weekend including my PM2 Maxamet. Once again very simple 300/700 grit CBN/1 Micron strop. Easily passes the cigarette paper rip cut test. I've been tempted to grind a sharpening choil on my PM2's, keep the bevel reveal perfect heel to tip.

Plopped down a deposit on a Creely Mako in Rex 121, look forward to messing with it.

March 06, 2020, 09:33 AM
Sharpening knives for others puts knives in my hand that I wouldn't know about... Sharpened this Survive GSO 4.0 in 20V. Fit/finish/balance very good, felt great in the hand. The swell in the middle of the handle mates up well in the hand. Like how the tang extends slightly. Believe it's reasonably priced for the steel, fit and the sheath it comes with. No comparison to my buddies other knife the Essee Laser Strike. The Essee felt like a tire iron. Sharpened the Survive matching the factory 45 degree angle. 300/700 CBN/1 micron strop. Rip cut cigarette paper. It's fairly thin behind the edge at .035, same as a Spyderco PM2. If it was my knife with the that steel, would take it to 35 degrees.

Aslo sharpened my PM2 in S110V, haven't sharpened it in quite awhile. I thinned the blade to .015 awhile back, sharpen at 30 degrees. Able to get it to crosscut, just barely. 300/700 CBN, 4/1 micron strops. The key I believe to S110V is staying on a stone longer then I normally would before moving on.

Fun stuff!
April 03, 2020, 01:36 PM
Sharpened this for a friend today, he asked for a polished edge. Not a super steel, Spyderco VG10. Still fun! Haven't sharpened VG10 in some time, very fast to sharpen compared to the V's. Sharpened at 32 degrees. 400, 1K Chosera, 4K, 8K Shapton, .4, .1 micron basswood strop. Easily rip cuts, barely cross cuts, tears a little. Very fine edge, not going to last long! As well as it took a polish doesn't compare to M4, the king of polish. If I put that fine of an edge on a super steels with CBN stones/ceramic polishing stone/strops, absolutely would cross cut w/o tearing. Fun to compare obtainable sharpness levels of different steels.

May 10, 2020, 08:33 AM
Recently picked up this 5" knife in 4V from sybo. It's replacing my 20yr or so old Fallkniven F1 I kept on my backpack. Wanted to see how fine of an edge I could put on it and still hold up relatively well, push things a bit! The thickness behind the bevel is thin at 15 thousands, which I like with a steel such as 4V. Blade is 1/8 thick. Started with 30 degrees. 300/700 CBN, 4/1 micron basswood strops. Careful just to raise a tiny burr, not over do it. Very fine edge, cross cut the Rizla paper. Proceeded to chop through a pine 1x4. Got some very minor chipping, feel the edge catch dragging it across my fingernail, high tech test right there! Was not quite able to rip cut the Rizla paper after, still a usable edge. Re-sharpened at 35 degrees. Unable to cross cut the Rizla paper, easily rip cut. Chopped through a 1x4, able to rip cut the paper again. Stop there for now.

Such a great time to be into knife with steels such as 3V, 4V, 20V, Maxamet.... Still waiting on the Creely Mako in Rex 121, look forward to it.

30 degrees

35 degrees

May 21, 2020, 07:05 AM
Received the Creely Mako in Rex 121. Fit and finish very good. Feels great in the hand for a small knife.

PM2 and the Mako

Out the box the Mako would not rip cut the Rizla. Read other reports on how to sharpen Rex 121, how the edge held up with various methods. I set the bevel at 30 degrees, simple 300/700 CBN/1 micron strop. Certainly interesting to sharpen it, feel the hardness of the steel. Not dissimilar to S110V, felt harder. Set the bevel, formed a very small burr on one side, flipped it over formed another burr. Normally I just use a flashlight to see the burr. Instead used a 30X loupe to make sure I had a complete burr and not too much. Remove most of the burr with the 300 stone, took quite awhile. A fair amount more time then S110V. Moved to the 700 stone getting rid of the burr and polish the edge further. At this point to edge didn't feel very sharp on my finger pads, huh! Stropped each side 5 times and the feel of the edge changed dramatically. Easily able to rip cut the Rizla, not even close to cross cutting.

Edge retention test. Cardboard IPSC targets, how many cuts until the edge will no longer shave. Shaving with a knife edge is subjective for sure. I've gotten many edges to tree top shave, edge is not touching skin. Edge lightly touching skin. Edge almost scraping the skin. Picked a mix of the last two. Cutting the cardboard used a push cut across the entire length of the blade. Made 60 18" cuts, still barely shaving. Able to rip cut the Rizla paper, not as clean as first. I'm out of IPSC targets, guessing could have gone a little further. Still tons of life on the edge. 60 cuts is a lot of cuts! Knife felt great in hand during the cuts. After the test I hand stropped it a dozen times on the 1 micron strop, edge came back almost where it started. Amazing steel!!

A little rough, but still cut.

Such a cool time to be into knife steels! The steels available, lots of options for CBN and diamond stones to sharpen these steels. Great appreciation for knife maker Gary Creely to offer a knife in Rex 121.

Going to have a local Kydex sheath maker whip me a up a sheath, will EDC carry the Mako.

When I get some more IPSC targets I'll post other test, Maxamet, S110V..... Guessing S110V will do a 1/3? 30V maybe 3-5 cuts?

Fun stuff!
September 09, 2020, 09:10 AM
Picked up this set of double sided Venev diamond stones awhile back. F80/150, 240/400, 800/1200. Sharpened several knives, all different steels mostly with the 150, 240, 400, 800 stones

The scratch pattern in each stone had a few deeper scratches. I went over them with silicone carbide powder on plate glass, just a few minutes with each stone, easy to do no big deal. Got rid of the random deeper scratches.

Comparing the Venev to the CBN stones putting cost aside. CBN stones give better feedback or feel. The Venev stones load up considerably faster. Need to be cleaned more frequently, clean them as I'm sharpening. Not so with the CBN stones. I use a 600 grit Nagura stone for cleaning either, simple and fast. CBN cut slightly faster. Comparing the grits. CBN 300/700/1500 and Venev 240/800/1200 about the same scratch pattern. I've sharpen at least 200 knives with the CBN stones, staying flat. Venev, so far so good. I prefer the CBN stones overall. Adding cost to the comparison. I paid $50 shipped a stone for the CBN's on a Black Friday sale from PracticalSharpening in Denmark. Gritomatic sells them for $120ish. For the current price I would buy the Venev. They'll cut any Super Steel very well. For my own knives I prefer a polished/toothy edge. I would not buy the set again instead would get 100/240, 400/800 and a Kangaroo strop/1 Micron diamond spray or emulsion. Be a great setup for a polished/toothy edge. For a polished edge comparing the Venev 1200 to the Spyderco Ultra Fine as a polishing or finishing stone before moving to strops, the Spyderco stone does a nicer job. If not going after a polished edge, I would not care about the random scratches of the Venev.

Venev 800/CBN 700 cleaned with the Nagura.

About a couple dozen passes with each on 90V

Rinsed each off, can see more build up on the Venev

September 09, 2020, 09:15 AM
Sharpened this Spyderco Lil Native this morning with the Venev 150, 240, 400, 800, 1200 at 34 degrees following the factory edge. First time handling this model. Cool little knife! Like the fact it has the compression lock. Spyderco is doing a run in 90V, might have to get one!

Lil Native/PM2

January 25, 2021, 07:18 PM
I sure wish Spyderco would do a Military in Maximet! I like a little larger blade and would really like to try Maximet after reading all of your results with it........

Remember, this is all supposed to be for fun...................
January 29, 2021, 09:02 AM

I came across this sharpening video for the Sandrin tungsten knives, and was wondering how well this method would work on super steels compared to stones.
January 29, 2021, 11:25 AM
Originally posted by Voshterkoff:

I came across this sharpening video for the Sandrin tungsten knives, and was wondering how well this method would work on super steels compared to stones.

Basically the same process but with organic bonded diamond or metallic bonded CBN Stones instead of diamond tapes and in a better sharpening system. Diamonds are the abrasive and are available in several different forms and sharpening systems.

Remember, this is all supposed to be for fun...................
March 26, 2021, 03:15 PM
Been neglecting my knives. Something about a mechanics vehicles! Haven't sharpen this PM2 Maxamet in a several months, still cut cardboard reasonably well. Hand stropped it a few times since last sharpening. It's my EDC.

It was no where near ripping the Rizla paper.

Edge is a very simple 300 grit CBN, 1 micron strop and a few passes .5 strop, good bite.

FYI- I sold the Venev Diamond stones to a friend. Sharpened quite a few knives with them. After going back and forth between them and the CBN stones. The CBN's are the cats meow!