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Need a knife sharpener for a noob

Discussion in 'Knives' started by Koto, May 19, 2014.

  1. Donut
    • GITD Manix 2XL Owner

    Donut Loaded Pockets

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    I don't think that is true. Amazon carries them for around $15 each, shipped.
     
  2. bleh

    bleh Loaded Pockets

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    After getting a Lansky, I'd recommend that over the sharpmaker if you have more than Spyderco knives. The coarser grit stones the kit comes with made reprofiling my blades easier and after a little bit of time and practice, I have my knives sharper than they've been before.
     
  3. Doraemon

    Doraemon Loaded Pockets

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    But does it work with long knives? A reviewer said it wouldn't work on kitchen knives.
     
  4. thatotherguy

    thatotherguy EDC Junkie!!!!!

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    It always sends a shudder down my spine when I hear the infernal squeak of a carbide sharpener digging in. I had to deal with watching lots of people "sharpening" brand new $150-$200 Benchmades on carbide pull through sharpeners recently, and it killed me as a knife guy.
    Those things will destroy your blade in short order. I've seen people that have made their SAK blades into steel toothpicks by using those things, in a fairly short amount of time. They rip steel off the blade, so the steel is gone but the sharpness isn't really there either. A good stone or ceramic system will always produce a better edge (assuming you have practice) than pull through.
    I can't stop anyone from using them, but if you do I HIGHLY recommend staying away from the carbide (coarse) part and just using the ceramic (fine) part.
     
  5. bull_paqqy
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    bull_paqqy EDC Junkie!!!!!

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    Plus # on the Spyderco sharpmaker, that and a cheap smooth leather belt ( strop) hanging from a door handle. And you have a razor sharp knife. I have a Wicked edge pro that I rarely use ( takes to long to set up) I find myself going to the sharpmaker more often.
     
  6. Adahn

    Adahn Loaded Pockets

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    I like to test the sharpness of my blade with the back of my head. Sounds weird, most probably looking so, too, but it works and many pros like to do it that way. Put the blade at the back of your head, push it gently to your hair and try to "comb" yourself. If the blade is catching then it's sharp. Maybe not hair popping sharp, but more than enough for the paper test.

    Oh, and the problem with these 2-sided sharpeners is that when you pull it through you can never apply the same pressure on the whole blade which will create you something like a "serrated" blade over time. A stone or a sharpmaker gives you the chance to create a slight curve which is looking better but is even more importand with kitchen knives where you don't want to have areas in the blade that don't touch the surface as it wouldn't cut there.
     
  7. Cody_2ZZ

    Cody_2ZZ Loaded Pockets

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    I was taught how to sharpen freehand at a pretty early age, so my recommendation might not be the best for a complete newbie, but I would recommend an entry-level diamond combo sharpener like the Smiths field sharpener. With a little work on technique, you will get your knives to be as sharp as you want, and you'll have control over the edge angle and all that.
     
  8. Doraemon

    Doraemon Loaded Pockets

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    Thanks. I just realised all my previous sharpeners have also been carbide - the AnySharp and one by Buck. At least this Smith's has a fine ceramic option. I think they intend only for people to use the ceramic regularly, and reserve the coarse section for severely dull/reprofiling blades. I'm quite happy with the 16° setting now. I think it's pointless to strop kitchen chef's knives. Impressive yes, but it'll last maybe 10 minutes of cutting. Fillet knives, maybe.
     
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  9. dao

    dao Loaded Pockets

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    I'm also looking for my first sharpener. I'm debating whether to get the Spyderco Sharpmaker or this Lansky Turnbox mentioned here:

    The Lansky is about one third of the price and as mentioned it can be turned to alter the angle. But how does the performance compare? Also, I suppose I'll need to get a very fine grit rod or stone with both of them if I'll want hair shaving sharpness?

    Was playing with the idea to get stones straight away, but they're way too expensive. I like the Smith's Sharpeners Tri-Hone but can't get it for a decent price (or one I would pay anyway) over here.
     
  10. Adahn

    Adahn Loaded Pockets

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    dao I can shave hair off my hand (yes, I use the back of my left hand, not the arm) when I sharpen my knives to 600 or a bit better at 800 grit. If you want to be able to slice a hair you need a finer grit up to polishing, but that works best with non-stainless steels anyways. I was considering the turnbox as well, but now I just put the end of my sharpening rod on the table, "cut" into the stone while narrowing the angle, when it bites I take back some degrees and sharpen in this angle.
    After some times sharpening the same knife you can scip that step, but it's good to be sure.
    I sharpen all my knives like this, except the kiridashi shaped carbon steel working knives, these only get the diamond stone and the strop with chromium compound. Hair slicing sharp ;)
     
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  11. dao

    dao Loaded Pockets

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    Thanks. When talking about rods you mean the Spyderco Sharpmaker ones? So you would also recommend them?

    Whats the chromium compound? I'm planning to eventually get the green Veritas compound from Lee Valley's after reading the positive feedback on it.
     
  12. Adahn

    Adahn Loaded Pockets

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    dao Well, I actually mean a simple ceramic sharpening rod that you can use by hand, just like a honing steel. And the chromium compound is the green compound that you can buy, I've heard it's a bit more coarse then the red one. Also I've read there's differences for stainless or carbon steel, but for me the green compound was always working. We have it on job as a block for the buffing wheel but I put some in a little glass, warmed it up with a heat gun on low intensity and mixed it with sewing machine oil. This paste I spread on my leather strop (the first thing my job educator made for me back in '95. Gosh that makes me feel old(er).), on the other side of the strop I glued a piece of leather and on that a piece of 800 grit sandpaper.

    [​IMG]
     
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  13. dao

    dao Loaded Pockets

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    Adahn thanks for the details on the stropping. The green paste seems like a good choice and is cheap too. Still not sure what sharpener though... :confused: even the cheap ones are not that cheap for me to want to experiment.
     
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  14. Freman

    Freman Loaded Pockets

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    Just pop down to your local hardware store and buy a dual sided, medium and fine, stone.

    A medium stone will be coarse enough to sharpen a slightly dull knife without removing enough material to quickly damage your edge. Fine will polish it up well enough to be very sharp.
     
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  15. KHP126H

    KHP126H Loaded Pockets

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    I personally use the Lansky angle guided system. But I have been wanting to get a sharpmaker.
     
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  16. dao

    dao Loaded Pockets

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    Not a bad idea :) Although I don't expect hardware stores in my country to have quality stones for sharpening knives (that's why I didn't think about it myself). Also the medium and fine won't translate well and I won't be able to tell... hopefully they'll have grit numbers.
     
  17. edjo69

    edjo69 EDC Junkie

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    Agreed on the carbide pull through cheapies, they eat blade material. I have a few laying around and will only put cheap machetes to them.
     
  18. jlomein

    jlomein Loaded Pockets

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    i use the Sharpmaker at home, but is there a smaller and lighter system to pack into the outdoors? Someone posted the AG Russell Field Sharpener, but even that seems quite large for a pack full of other gear.
     
  19. Hangman
    • GITD Manix 2XL Owner
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    Hangman Loaded Pockets

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    if you want a field sharpener that is guided like the Sharpmaker, look into the Lansky 4 rod turn box (crock sticks), if you are OK with free hand or semi-guided Worksharp makes a nice all-in-one field sharpener that is complete with even a strop.
     
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  20. EFras

    EFras Loaded Pockets

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    I use a Arkansas stone. The one I have is just a basic bench set.
    It has a soft and a hard, and they're small, but I'm used to the size now, and can sharpen a kitchen knife on them.

    I had NO idea how to sharpen a knife... but I just practiced, and now I'm fine. I had a friend show me how he did his, and I just went from there.
     
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