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sharpening tools for dummies ...

Discussion in 'Sharpening Stuff -- Stones, Strops, and Systems' started by el_murdoque, Feb 2, 2018.

  1. el_murdoque

    el_murdoque Loaded Pockets

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    I need some advice. With my kitchen cutlery, I always used a steel rod for quick touch ups and a japanese wet stone when the touch up failed to get the blades sharp enough. This would get the blades sharper,
    but sooner or later, I have to give my knives to a pro to get them fixed. A knife returned from the pro of my choice will be hair poppin' razor sharp and a lot sharper than I can get it for weeks.
    I know I'm clumsy. My handwriting's bad. all the things that require the finest motor skills are not mine.
    My personal hell would be an apprenticeship in a watch maker's shop.
    So I know the technique and I have practiced a lot, but free hand with a stone is not for me - especially for small blades with a curve like most folding knives have.

    A quick read here told me that most people seem to favor the Spyderco Sharpmaker, the Worksharp machine and the Lansky system.
    The funny thing is, over here where I am, the Worksharp machine costs just 15 bucks more than the Spyderco Sharpmaker. The Lansky systems start at less than half of that.

    I've seen videos on all three and I feel that I might enjoy using the Lansky for sharpening my blades.
    Given that and the fact that it is the cheapest of options, I'm leaning towards that.

    Is there a reason why I should consider another tool?
     
  2. Caveman
    • In Omnia Paratus

    Caveman Loaded Pockets

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    If cost is a big issue, Lansky is by far one of the greatest starting points.
    You may find that it will work great for your use and never need anything else.
     
  3. el_murdoque

    el_murdoque Loaded Pockets

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    I guess I'll start there then and see where it takes me.
     
  4. Caveman
    • In Omnia Paratus

    Caveman Loaded Pockets

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  5. Tallboyjim

    Tallboyjim Loaded Pockets

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    I'm using the lansky (with really small knives admittedly- a squeak for example )nd it's not as straight forward as the YouTube led me to believe. And it seemed to take ages. There's a strong possibility I'm doing to wrong, and I'm as clumsy and as untechnically minded as they come but I struggled with it.

    I'd bet it's easy with kitchen knives though.
     
  6. Hangman
    • GITD Manix 2XL Owner
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    Hangman Loaded Pockets

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    Since you are using it for cooking knives, I would still recommend either the Worksharp or Sharpmaker. Simple reason is the Lansky needs to be re-located on longer blades. The biggest advantage of the Worksharp over the Sharpmaker is speed if you have to fix an edge or set a new bevel. I have used/tried pretty much every type of sharpener at one time or another, stones, paper wheels, Lansky, Wicked Edge, and many others, the real key is, and always will be patience.
     
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  7. The Sixth Beatle

    The Sixth Beatle Loaded Pockets

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    I'd advise AGAINST the worksharp if you've not got a steady hand; it's very easy to round the tip off a blade.
    For my kitchen knives (none of which are hugely expensive) I use a Lansky 4 rod turn box. For my decent knives I use water stones.
     
  8. el_murdoque

    el_murdoque Loaded Pockets

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    A Lansky system will arrive on my doorstep in the following days.
    I have a Güde santoku knife that is so dull it brings tears to your eyes not only when cutting onions and a small EDC blade (Byrd Tern) that can hardly wait. I will post results ...
     
  9. The Sixth Beatle

    The Sixth Beatle Loaded Pockets

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    A tip for the Lansky; run a marker pen down the edge of the blade, you can then see exactly where you're removing stock and how close you are to getting down to the angle you want
     
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  10. el_murdoque

    el_murdoque Loaded Pockets

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  11. el_murdoque

    el_murdoque Loaded Pockets

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    I received the Lansky system a couple of days ago. It has 5 stones with the coarsest looking like asphalt and the smoothest looking like marble.
    I already learned that patience is the key. My Güde Alpha became a lot sharper after half an hour's work.
    Then i tried my EDC Byrd Tern which has been pretty sharp already, so I started on the medium stone and switched to fine.
    I toyed around with the fine and extra fine stones for quite a while on the couch, watching Netflix.
    The results were what people call a hair poppin' razor sharp knife and a bald patch on my left forearm.
    So I redid the Güde, this time with patience. Same results.
    I realized that when you spend a few hours with the Lansky system, you really get a hang for the angle. The Güde is too long to get all of the edge in one go, but after having spent so much time sharpening it, I ditched the clamp and started working freehand with the stones, with great results.
     
  12. MedusaOblongata

    MedusaOblongata Loaded Pockets

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    As someone with zero freehand sharpening skills, I can get knives shaving sharp with a Lansky very reliably.
    Since I often like to rebevel knives I buy, the Sharpmaker is way too slow.
    I also have a Ken Onion Worksharp, and I've been able to rebevel knives very quickly and get a very good edge, but I've also messed some knives up with it (luckily, I was smart enough to practice on old junk kitchen knives).
    The Worksharp definitely works the fastest, but the Lansky is a safer way to ensure you don't do too much damage.
     
  13. aphex2k

    aphex2k Loaded Pockets

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    I find the myriad of Lansky videos on youtube all seem to contradict each other. Some say to use the oil. Some say the oil is just to clean the stones. Likewise, everyone seems to go a different direction - handle to tip, vice versa. Oh, and amount of times up or down.

    I got a Lansky 3 stone system. What I have found so far:

    The coarse stone is far to coarse (ya don't say?). I mean, most of my blades had a reasonable edge, so I went straight to the intermediate stone. I find going from handle to tip 12x then reverse. Once both sides are done, a moist microfibre cloth to wipe off. And repeat. I don't find I get burrs. I use a firm but not heavy pressure, and try to keep the pressure equal. Depending on the type of blade steel, test on a bit of paper. You will know if it's sharp. I have a couple of "bald spots" on my upper thigh where I've shaved (lol?). Then onto the ceramic stone. Fairly light, but again, consistent along the blade. 12x on both sides. Examine the edge, should start to look shiny and mirrored. Repeat a couple more times.

    I've just done my Para 2 this way and it's superb (for a beginner!).

    Hope this is of some use?
     
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  14. el_murdoque

    el_murdoque Loaded Pockets

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    I went with the videos Lansky have on their website. And I added a retired leather belt with a bit of polishing compound to follow the work with the finest stone, to pull off the burr and get a finer finish.
    The last time I was at it with the belt, I touched the blade while flipping over the knife - actually quite gently. Nonetheless, blood was gushing everywhere. I think I did a reasonable job, because the knife was dull when I started.
     
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  15. MedusaOblongata

    MedusaOblongata Loaded Pockets

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    I found that the stones don't get filled nearly as fast if I use the oil. Before my bottle of oil was empty, though, it cracked. Now I use 3-in-1 and it takes much longer before I have to clean the stones. I clean them by dabbing a drop of oil on and wiping on a paper towel until it comes off clean. With no oil, the stones fill up with dust and their efficiency is greatly reduced, till it takes 6 strokes to do the work that one clean stroke would do.

    The coarse stone is just for rebeveling and removing edge chips, not for touch-ups.

    I find if I don't burr a certain section of blade, that section doesn't get sharp. Creating a burr, then rolling it over, is how I know I'm done with that stone and then I move to a finer stone, and use it on one side until I have a burr, then switch sides until the other side is completely burred.

    *not an expert, just found what works for me*