Noobie sharpening | Carolina Shooters Club

Noobie sharpening

Discussion in 'Knives and Knifemaking' started by CardiacColt68, Aug 30, 2016.

  1. CardiacColt68

    CardiacColt68 Well-Known Member

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    I'd like some advice and guidance on sharpening some knives. I've got a couple decent Benchmade folders and some good fixed blades that will all need sharpening and touching up. I have zero clue what I am doing other than searching here and on a few blade forums. I'd like to buy a couple good books as reference tools. I know the internet exists, but I like a good refernce library. Any recommendations would be aprreciated.

    And then I need to buy some tools for sharpening. My inclination is to buy the Spyderco Sharpmaker and practice on some old folding knives and kitchen knives first. Then when I get to the point that I am competent with that maybe buy some stones and strops.

    I know there are some smart knife people on here. Fire away and guide the ignorant.

    Thanks.
     
  2. Bunsen

    Bunsen Registered Member

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    I'm interested in this as well.

    I do have the Spiderco Sharpmaker and have been pleased with it's performance.

    Somebody more knowledgeable can speak further on this, but the one thing I found with the Spiderco is that the bevel on your knife needs to be 30 degrees or less, so that you can actually sharpen the edge the pre-set 40 degree angle for sharpening.
     
  3. Geezer

    Geezer Lifetime Member Lifetime Member

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    Here's what I did...I have a buddy that can sharpen the heck out of a knife and he enjoys doing it. I just give them to him and he gives them back, with a Band Aid.
    I spent a lot of money on sharpening tools and stones and never did get the hang of it. I have a set of these that I can keep a useable edge on my pocket knives and kitchen knives.

    [​IMG]
     
  4. fieldgrade

    fieldgrade Hall of Shame

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    I have dad's and grandad's stones. I also bought a Lansky kit, and sold it before I used it. I'm not good with stones either. I have a small collection of old fixed blades and folders, but I carry a Kershaw folder I paid $30 a couple of years ago and it's still sharp. I figure if it gets dull I'll buy another one for $30.
     
  5. Just Keep Swimming

    Just Keep Swimming Hall of Shame

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    I don't have the patience to sharpen my own knives (nor the skill) so I just send them to @pinkbunny and they come back perfect!
     
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  6. Geezer

    Geezer Lifetime Member Lifetime Member

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    I have several of the Glock Model 81 field knives. I gave one to my buddy and he brought it back and it's scary sharp. It's been in the door pocket of my truck ever sense. The edge looks like a mirror. My other buddy says, "Steve will get it sharp enough to shave....and then fool around with it for another hour."
     
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  7. pinkbunny

    pinkbunny Club Subscribed Club Subscribed

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    Personally, here's what I would do:

    Get an old belt or leather sling. Get some jewelers rouge(https://www.amazon.com/Forney-60202...6&sr=8-1&keywords=amazon+jewelers+rouge+white). These are meant to be applied by something spinning fast, so either just rub at it repeatedly, or heat it up with a candle or lighter, then apply.

    Get some tension on the belt, and put the blade flat against the belt, then lever up to about the width of two pennies at the spine. Start stropping. Make sure to strop away from the leather, never cut into the leather. Do about 50 strops each side.

    This will bring your edge back, as long as it's not too dull. If it has become too dull, or chipped, you will need to put a new edge on the knife. If you want, I can give you a tutorial with stones or a belt sander.

     
  8. Catfish

    Catfish 'Murica! eh? Club Subscribed

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    I got a HF belt sander after visiting pinkbunny's workshop. I can use to sharpen anything from a pocket knife to a brush axe. Great investment and super easy to learn.
     
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  9. ikarus1

    ikarus1 Well-Known Member

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    Get that leather strop kit from amazon and it'll shift it into another realm
     
  10. pinkbunny

    pinkbunny Club Subscribed Club Subscribed

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    I've used the leather strop, it's pretty good. My worry though is that I have a tendency to leave it on, which can stretch it out.

    I prefer:
    http://www.supergrit.com/products/products_belts-misc
    Get the felt belts, say, 4, in case 2 break.

    Then, go to two different levels of rouge:
    http://www.knifemaking.com/product-p/la820.htm
    http://www.knifemaking.com/product-p/la810.htm

    That will make your knives sublime.
     
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  11. WNC Seabee

    WNC Seabee Lifetime Member Lifetime Member

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    Or, send that Kershaw in for their free sharpening service....

    https://kershaw.kaiusaltd.com/warranty
     
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  12. fieldgrade

    fieldgrade Hall of Shame

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    Interesting. Reading that it sounds like they will definitely sharpen it if returned for warranty service. I wonder if they will sharpen it just because...
     
  13. beamernc

    beamernc Club Subscribed Club Subscribed

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    Buy one of these. http://www.kmesharp.com/

    We bought my son one for Christmas a couple of years ago and now everyone brings their knives to him to sharpen. He not only gets them sharp enough to shave, he makes the hair jump off. Once the knife is sharp then keep it stropped. There have only been a couple of cheap knives that he could not get sharp.
     
  14. CardiacColt68

    CardiacColt68 Well-Known Member

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    Lots of good thoughts. I like the just strop them to start plan. Is there any books that will talk about using stones? It might take a while, but I'd really like to learn this craft. My machete is going to need some love soon too.
     
  15. Catfish

    Catfish 'Murica! eh? Club Subscribed

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    Definitely. I tossed the 80grit belt it came with into a drawer and use 400-2000 grit belts plus a strop with rouge. I havent tried the felt yet.
     
  16. pinkbunny

    pinkbunny Club Subscribed Club Subscribed

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    https://kershaw.kaiusaltd.com/faq
    Anyway, to answer your original question, you were wanting to know books you can buy to give you a good reference about sharpening knives. In my opinion, there aren't any. Main reason being, that sharpening a knife is a lot like driving a car. After awhile, you can feel through the steering wheel, or see in your peripheral vision, where you are going wrong, and correct it. Sharpening knives is a lot like that. Seeing is better than reading about it, and you can need to develop the touch.

    You should be able to know how to feel an edge with your fingers, sharp or dull, and not cut yourself. Be able to feel burrs, chips, which parts are sharp, and which aren't. You should be able to eyeball an angle, and know how to modify it when you need to. Look into HEMA sometime. People trying to recreate how swords and daggers and shields were used, based off 14th-19th century manuals. However, they only give a glimpse into it, and a lot of it is guesswork and trial by error. This is the same way, I don't think a book would be enough. Go to a thrift store, get some cheap knives, and test out sharpening on them.

    Just remember, some knives, no matter how good you are, won't take a great edge, so don't get discouraged. Specifically, Chinese knives with a spotty temper, or the knives that someone "sharpened" before, either with a angle grinder/dremel, or one of those harsh carbide pull throughs.

    Some good places to check out:
    <--check out all his stuff. He also has an excellent DVD on sharpening.
    <---this guy is a professional deer hunter in Japan. Has tons of information about sharpening knives
    <---Good tutorial on belt sander sharpening, check out his videos, and also read his comments in the videos, where he mentions how he has refined his technique since making that video(switching to felt pads, and what stuff he buys)
     
  17. CardiacColt68

    CardiacColt68 Well-Known Member

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    Great info. I'm going to avoid all power tools for now. I am pretty sure I could screw up a blade quickly with power. Thinking slow and steady. I'll have to see how many old, dull knives I can dig up.
     
  18. thrillhill

    thrillhill Guest

    The book below really helped me a lot. As mentioned upstream, it will not teach you how to sharpen. But it certainly helped me get my mind right, and was very good at illustrating some of the nomenclature that is thrown around in videos and on forums.

    It's an older book, but it spoke in terms I could absorb.


    https://www.amazon.com/Razor-Edge-B...-1&keywords=the+razor+edge+book+of+sharpening

    "Universally recognized as "The Bible of The Cutting Edge", this book belongs in the library of anyone who is serious about sharpening. Written by Guinness world record holder John Juranitch, it contains all the knowledge and insights gained during his more than 40 years in the sharpening industry. The 145 page book is crammed with photos, illustrations and cutting edge secrets you won't find anywhere else. Its 14 chapters cover topics like how to choose a knife, sharpening theories and applications, steeling, using a hone and much, much more. You'll get answers to the most asked questions. You'll learn the truth about common myths like why you should never use oil on a hone. And you'll get the insights necessary to put a great edge on knives, axes, fish hooks, arrowheads, chain saws and other tools. It's a history, a handbook, a reference manual that is the simplest, most complete way to give yourself a razor edge on sharpening."
     
  19. ikarus1

    ikarus1 Well-Known Member

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    80 grit works great on your lawnmower blades and old rusty axes
     
  20. WNC Seabee

    WNC Seabee Lifetime Member Lifetime Member

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    Yes, they will. I've had it done with great results.

    They're simply using their warranty process to handle the logistics.
     
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  21. chiefjason

    chiefjason Vendor Vendor

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    My set up for when I get serious. Add a section of 800 grit wet/dry sandpaper and a piece of cardboard with jewelers rouge rubbed in to finish. Normally, I just use the strops, sandpaper, and cardboard. Unless the edge is really dull.


    [​IMG]
     
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  22. flivver

    flivver Club Subscribed Club Subscribed

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    Man, that "patron saint" video was awesome. I wish I had that guy's demeanor. So calm and unhurried... And when he wrapped the knife at the end, he did it with a lot of care and respect for what the knife meant to the owner. Good stuff!
     
  23. fieldgrade

    fieldgrade Hall of Shame

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    I'm thinking I'd just pack it in a $6 priority mailbox and send it to them when the time comes. Do you pay return shipping? If they pay return shipping that seems like the deal of the century.
     
  24. flivver

    flivver Club Subscribed Club Subscribed

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    I don't recall for sure if they pay the return shipping, but I think they do. A couple of years ago, I boxed up about 6 of the Kershaw knives that I own, and sent them all back at once. All were returned nicely sharpened, and one even had a spring (or whatever makes the flicker flick, as it were) replaced.
     
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  25. WNC Seabee

    WNC Seabee Lifetime Member Lifetime Member

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    they pay the return. as I recall, it took about 10 days.
     
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  26. CardiacColt68

    CardiacColt68 Well-Known Member

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    I think Benchmade does the same thing, but IMO it would be nice to be able to sharpen blades. I have enough knives I could live without a couple for a week or two, but I'd like to be able to touch up an axe and machete eventually. And what happens when BLM overtakes the post office? Can't rely on those guys! :eek:
     
  27. CardiacColt68

    CardiacColt68 Well-Known Member

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    Ordered the Razor's Edge book a strop and some compounds. Will strop my EDC folder amd read the book next week. Then maybe pick out some stones or a sharpener and go to town on some cheap dull stuff.
     
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  28. 29

    29 Former member

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    I picked up a piece of stone used to remove headgasket material /find high spots on blocks/heads......then finish on a wet stone from Lowes.....works fine for day to day pocket knifes as well as touching up cheap kitchen knifes......as for books etc.....I have no clue.....trial and error was a bit frustrating but makes for a better retention of the information :)
     
  29. chiefjason

    chiefjason Vendor Vendor

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    If you are going to use a sharpening guide with your stones I'm no help. But if you are going to learn to sharpen by hand, learn to feel and hear when it's right. I can hear when things are right and can certainly feel when it's wrong.

    If you are starting with dull knives, just go to an aggressive stone and re set the edge. I resharpened 4 knives last night and hit every one on a coarse stone a few times before moving on.
     
  30. bigfelipe

    bigfelipe I'm told I'm pretty awesome... Lifetime Member

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    Can't rely on the post office now...
     

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