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My Sharpening Gear and some stuff I've used

Discussion in 'Sharpening forum' started by Taylor, Nov 30, 2018.

  1. Taylor

    Taylor Professional Craftsman Founding Member

    Currently for basic sharpening, my lineup is:

    DMT XXC (120 grit)
    Geshin 600 Grit Splash n Go
    The diamond 6000 Grit stone from JKI

    With Single Bevels, I start with the Geshin 600 Grit then move on to: (I don't run in to many single bevels in Reno, NV)
    Geshin 3000 Grit Ceramic Stone
    Geshin 8000 Grit Stone

    For Straight Razors:
    I start at the 3000 Grit
    Move on to the 8000 Grit
    Move on to a cheap natural Chinese 12000 Grit stone

    I finish all of these on a chromium loaded leather strop, while using a 40k leather strop for the straight razors.

    Stones I've also used:
    King 1000 Grit (cheap and dishes fairly fast, but if you want to learn you can't beat it)
    Atoma 140 (Very aggressive to start, but doesn't last as long as the DMT XXC, and not as flat)
    Geshin vitrified 800 Grit Diamond Stone (Amazing stone that lasts forever, but not for the beginner since flattening is pretty much out of the picture)
    Geshin 2000 Grit Stone (Love this stone as well, but wanted to bridge the gap, and not use a 2k and 4k when polishing)
    Geshin 4000 Grit Stone (Love this stone too, it's slow to dish and removes steel fast, but lightening my plastic travel box, the 3000 Grit helped me cut from 2 stones to 1)
    Diamond 1000 Grit Stone from JKI (wears much faster than the 6k, but that is to be expected. Needed a faster cutting stone for the work I do, though the edge it leaves is perfect if that's as far as you want to go)
    Geshin 400 Grit Stone ( Fast cutter, but dishes quite fast. Really anything this grit is going to dish at a high rate unless it's diamond, or at least dishes too fast for me lol)
    DMT XC (at 220 Grit it does a great job, but if you're looking for something fast cutting, you might as well step up to the 120 grit and make your life easier. Take this with a grain of salt, as I don't find myself polishing knives very often, and removing 120 grit scratches (depending on blade material), can be a **********)

    After all of this, and 20k knives sharpened, what it comes down to is technique. Learn how to maintain a consistent angle. Make sure you raise a consistent burr across the entire edge. Doubly make sure you flip the burr, and not just part of it, and then use lighter and lighter pressure flipping the burr back and forth. Do this with each stone, and after each stone it should grab easily in to your finger pads. I use the strop at the very end with trying to use as little pressure as possible, and finally drawing through a hard felt pad.

    The biggest mistake, is raising your angle to gain faster results (something I have to remind myself not to do).

    Advice - think of the angle measured as from point of contact of blade to stone (so perpendicular from the edge as it touches the stone. This changes with the curve of the blade) . My eyes are good, so even when I think I'm getting the tip done correctly, I can stop, look, and see that I haven't touched it. Then work on that spot specifically to even out the bevel. So, when in doubt, physically look at what you're doing. If you can't see, then feel, but keeping track of what's going on is critical.

    I'm sure there are plenty of people that are better sharpeners with less experience, but I have learned a thing or two. Just don't be afraid to try it out. You won't damage anything beyond repair by trying freehand out (unless you're trying it out on a belt grinder lol). Thanks for giving this a read, and have fun putting the steel to the stone, and more fun putting that steel to use!

    As you can tell, I use a lot of JKI stones. I feel they provide a lot of feedback, which allows you to feel how much metal is being removed at one time, and helps me feel a little more of what's going on at the edge.
  2. Jim

    Jim Old Curmudgeon Founding Member

  3. Toothpick

    Toothpick #2 since day #1 Founding Member

  4. cheflarge

    cheflarge Founding Member

    My brain hurts!!! :D Very informative & well written. Well done. Thanks.....
  5. Taylor

    Taylor Professional Craftsman Founding Member

    You're welcome! I sometimes forget how many I've done, as I zone out when I really get into it. Mind you, most of these are around the level of Victorinox if I'm lucky, though every once in a while something unique comes across my stones. I think the greatest part is when someone in their 80's watches me go at it for hours, and then has to stop me and tell me how impressed they are for going old school.

    You are very welcome!

    I appreciate it :) I have to reread things a few times to make sure my brain doesn't start on a completely random tangent, but you can thank my mom and every English teacher I've come across for pounding writing skills into my head (I'm just surprised I listened).

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