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Thread: Grit progression of the stones I have (FYI)

  1. #1
    Spyderco Forum Registered User jackknifeh's Avatar
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    Grit progression of the stones I have (FYI)

    Here is a list of the bench stones I have and have decided to stick with (almost). DMT X, C, F, E, Spyderco fine, Spyderco UF. I have a Shapton glass 8k bench stone on order. But, I have the 8k Shapton glass for the EP to use for this confirmation for myself. The only real confirmation I was looking for was between the DMT Ef and the Spyderco fine grit stones as far as progression. I wanted to judge by the scratch pattern and NOT the grit identifiers like fine or extra-fine grit because the stones were a diamond and a ceramic material. So I started with the DMT fine grit stone and progressed in the following order:
    DMT fine (F), 25 micron
    DMT extra-fine (E), 9 micron
    Spyderco fine, 6 micron (according to the unified grit chart on CKTG.com)
    Spyderco UF, 3 micron (according to the unified grit chart)
    Shapton glass 8k, 1.84 micron

    As I worked on the bevel after each stone I looked at the scratch pattern with a 30x and 60x loupe. The scratch pattern got better using the stones in the above order. I only used the above mentioned identifiers (not microns) of each stone to decide which to use first, next, etc. I only used my eyesight and the loupes to judge the scratch patterns. Then I went back to the paperwork to check the micron of each stone. As I said the only thing I wanted to absolutely confirm in my own mind was that I should use teh DMT extra-fine BEFORE the Spyderco fine grit if I wanted to use both. This was because they have seemed to be very close in performance in the past. What I have determined (in my mind) is that when I want to use all of these stones I'll use them in the above order regarding the DMT E and SP fine. However, they are close enough in scratch pattern that I can eliminate one in the progression. I could use the DMT F then (DMT E or SP F) then the Spyderco UF stone. Then the Shapton glass 8k stone.

    All this really shows is the numbers and grit descriptions can be used to determine progression. I just did this paying close attention to confirm my belief about the DMT EF and Spyder fine grits (on the same blade). This is obvious when looking at the microns but Spyderco doesn't advertise the microns of their stones I don't believe. I got that info from the Unified Grit Chart on the chefsknivestogo.com site. I'm not 100% sure but I think this chart is established by comparing performance in some cases as well as the advertised grits and microns by the stone manufacturers. When shopping for a set of stones and deciding on grits/microns we can skip stones sometimes. Most will agree the more stones the better for the best and easiest progression but for one reason or another some want as few stones as possible to get the results they want. Most of the time this is to save money but some peole just want FEWER stones. So in this scenario you only need the DMT extra-fine or the Spyderco fine grit stone. I'm not saying this because this is the Spyderco forum but if I needed to choose I'd DEFINATELY select the Spyderco fine stone and not use the DMT extra-fine grit stone. Then comes the UF stone. I just got this stone (for the second time) a couple weeks ago and once again am extremely happy with it's performance. I had one and sold it a couple of years ago to fund some other stone to try. Now I got another one. I've done that quite a few times over the past 2 years or so and lost more money than I care to think about. But, I have a set I like through using them and not advertising and reviews. There are plenty of other "sets" but this is what I'm happy with.

    I just ordered the 16k Shapton glass stone for the EP. If I like it enough I may get the bench stone later but I believe that's getting compulsive.

    Jack
    My Manbug. (ZDP-189 shaped like Jester blade with red bone scales (11-12-2013)). This was previously the VG-10/G-10 w/bolsters Manbug. Knife nickname: FrankenManJester or FrankenJesterBug.

  2. #2
    Spyderco Forum Registered User razorsharp's Avatar
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    16k is nice.... Especially when you finish with a 0.25u strop - gives me Consistent hht4 edges . The Shapton glass finish on its own is also scary
    -Travis
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  3. #3
    Spyderco Forum Registered User jackknifeh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by razorsharp View Post
    16k is nice.... Especially when you finish with a 0.25u strop - gives me Consistent hht4 edges . The Shapton glass finish on its own is also scary
    Just because I ordered the 16k EP stone doesn't mean I'm dumb enough to order a Shapton glass 16k bench stone. Well, not today anyway.

    About the HHT. Whose hair are you using? From what I've read in the past two weeks about the HHT there are lots of variables. Especially when testing something as precise as not only cutting or not cutting a hair but how does the hair behave within the pass/fail boundaries. From what I've read your HHT4 could differ greatly from my HHT4. The way to get as consistant feedback from this test is to use the same hair and always doing the test yourself. Supposedly Bob's hair may be good to use in this test but Frank's hair is no good. So, when you find out Bob's hair is good you are supposed to sneak into his house while he is asleep and cut off enough of his hair to last you a long time and many HHTs. When YOU have the same type hair YOU get given results and they tell YOU the condition of an edge. So when YOU get a 4 using the HHT you have an idea of the condition (sharpness) of the edge compared to when YOU get a 2. OTOH, if I were to do the test using Bob's hair and the same edge I may get a different number because my hands shake more, you are more gentle than me when performing the test or any other issue that may effect the performance and result. So the summary is your results tell you something but my results may not tell you the same thing about the same edge. Does this make sense? Is this how you understand the HHT? I plan on trying to use this test in the very near future so I am trying to get as much info on it so I can judge the feedback and results. When the amount a hair "vibrates" is the difference between a 3 or a 4, that's pretty precise IMO.

    Jack
    My Manbug. (ZDP-189 shaped like Jester blade with red bone scales (11-12-2013)). This was previously the VG-10/G-10 w/bolsters Manbug. Knife nickname: FrankenManJester or FrankenJesterBug.

  4. #4
    Spyderco Forum Registered User jackknifeh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by razorsharp View Post
    16k is nice.... Especially when you finish with a 0.25u strop - gives me Consistent hht4 edges . The Shapton glass finish on its own is also scary
    Quote Originally Posted by jackknifeh View Post
    Just because I ordered the 16k EP stone doesn't mean I'm dumb enough to order a Shapton glass 16k bench stone. Well, not today anyway.

    Jack
    Razor, IF IT'S NOT TOO MUCH TROUBLE would you stop saying good things about stones I don't have? I've been sitting here looking at the 16k Shapton glass stone struggling with myself. I decided to wait for the EP 16k before deciding. Boy, do I have will power or what? Yeah right.

    Jack
    My Manbug. (ZDP-189 shaped like Jester blade with red bone scales (11-12-2013)). This was previously the VG-10/G-10 w/bolsters Manbug. Knife nickname: FrankenManJester or FrankenJesterBug.

  5. #5
    Spyderco Forum Registered User razorsharp's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jackknifeh View Post
    Razor, IF IT'S NOT TOO MUCH TROUBLE would you stop saying good things about stones I don't have? I've been sitting here looking at the 16k Shapton glass stone struggling with myself. I decided to wait for the EP 16k before deciding. Boy, do I have will power or what? Yeah right.

    Jack
    http://instagram.com/p/eQ-mnFx6yU/
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    -Travis
    Come chat with us on IRC

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    To the sharpening junkies: SHOW THOSE EDGES!
    [COLOR="#696969"][SIZE=1]Spyderco Knives- Tuff- Southard- Caly 3.5 Superblue- Dragonfly H1 SE- Resilience
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  6. #6
    Spyderco Forum Registered User chuck_roxas45's Avatar
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    I vote for EvilD's hair.

  7. #7
    Spyderco Forum Registered User jackknifeh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chuck_roxas45 View Post
    I vote for EvilD's hair.
    Sounds good. Give me his address. I'll use his hair for the Hanging Hair Test while he is sleeping. Hope he doesn't have doberman's. Or a pistol.

    Just got my Shapton glass 16k stone for the EP in the mail. I have been fighting with myself about getting the 16k bench stone. I woke up this morning with a black eye and a busted lip. I don't know if the "get the stone" guy or the "better wait" guy won the fight so I still don't know what to do. Judging from past experience I should just buy the damn thing and save myself the struggle. I'm afraid the banker (evil woman in the house )would find out. What then??? More struggle.

    Can't try the 16k on the EP yet because Jackson (grandson) is right here and he likes to help. I don't think it's wise to let him play with my knives until he is 4 years old. Four months to go. He's growing fast. Just yesterday we were changing diapers it seems.

    Jack
    My Manbug. (ZDP-189 shaped like Jester blade with red bone scales (11-12-2013)). This was previously the VG-10/G-10 w/bolsters Manbug. Knife nickname: FrankenManJester or FrankenJesterBug.

  8. #8
    Spyderco Forum Registered User jackknifeh's Avatar
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    I wanted to use my new Shapton glass 16k stone for my Edge Pro and I wanted to give it every chance it deserves. So, I used a post by MadRookie a month or so ago about "chasing the mirror". I think that's the term he used. I used my D'Arbonne #53 with CPM-M4. I started with the Shapton glass 500 grit and put an 18 deg per side. I apaxed the edge with the first stone rather than trying to save steel. I didn't want anything like that to effect the results I was looking for. BTW, what I was looking for was if I thought the 16k stone is worth it. I read the reviews which are all positive. Just wanted to see it myself. So I apexed the edge and continued through the 1k, 2k, 6k, 8k and finally the 16k stone. Per MR's post I decreased pressure on the last few strokes with each stone. I also continued using the same stone after I was relatively sure the scratch pattern from the previous stone had been replaced with the pattern of the current stone. I also DID NOT HURRY. Each stroke was slow and focused. In addition to looking at the scratch pattern on the bevel after each stone I did the best I could to see any difference in the edge. With a 30x and 60x loupe I couldn't see much difference in the difference in the edge smoothness after the 6k stone. I did slice phone book paper after each stone and the knive sliced through the paper a little easier each time. Everything went just like it is supposed to when thinking of progressing through a set of stones. Also Murray Carter's 3 finger test went just like it is supposed to also. After the edge is apexed without a burr my skin was grabbed by the edge and it was hard to slide my fingers along the edge. After the 16k my skin slides along the edge like it was ice. Very sharp and very smooth. Arm hairs pop off. Haven't tried the HHT yet. Waiting to get some of Evil's hair.

    Final opinion: The 16k stone does as promised. The edge felt smoother than after the 8k which in itself produces a very scary edge. I have to say, and this is 100% true, my knife was as sharp or sharper after this process than any knife I've sharpened AND stropped. It glides through phone book paper. Of course just for poops and smiles I used the .25 diamond spray leather strop. I did 6-10 strokes on each side using about half the weight of the blade. The knife now glides even smoother and easier throught the paper. There was no burr to begin with prior to stropping so I know there was no straightening or flipping any burr. Did I degrade the edge retention by stropping? I don't know and it's not a concern I have. The reason for no concern is because the knife is so sharp without stropping I am confident I never need to strop again. But, if I do want to strop to gain that little extra sharpness even if for a shorter period of time I can to that as well.

    The thing that prompted me to go ahead and get the 16k stone now is me starting to sharpen straight razors. According to what I've read an 8k stone is the beginning of the grit range to be used on a razor that has been properly honed to begin with. In addition to that, stropping is performed by every straight razor sharpener (honer) whose writing I've read. I am hoping to be able to get the "stropped" shave ready edge using only stones and push strokes. Time will tell if this proves to be possible (for me). For a straight razor though edge retention is not the primary concern. As sharp an edge as possible that will last for one shave is the goal. After a shave everyone seems to strop the edge again anyway. Some even re-strop the edge before the next shave even if they stropped just after the previous shave. I'm wandering again. The Shapton glass 16k stone does what it is advertised to do as do all of the Shapton glass stones that I've used. Right now the finest grit bench stone I have is the Spyderco UF. I LOVE the edge it produces. I did order a Shapton glass 8k bench stone recently with the hopes of refining an edge free hand. The UF stone is supposed to be about 3 micron. The Shapton glass 8k is 1.84 micron. The 16k Shapton glass is .92 micron but I have no intention to buy the 16k bench stone. I've been considering it but decided against it. OTOH, I have made no firm decision to hold to that intention.
    My Manbug. (ZDP-189 shaped like Jester blade with red bone scales (11-12-2013)). This was previously the VG-10/G-10 w/bolsters Manbug. Knife nickname: FrankenManJester or FrankenJesterBug.

  9. #9
    Spyderco Forum Registered User razorsharp's Avatar
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    Instead of 16k bench stone, get a 30k ep stone . I'll he tone at some stage. So verdict is your have the shapes edges you've had? I love the crisp sharpness
    -Travis
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  10. #10
    Spyderco Forum Registered User Evil D's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chuck_roxas45 View Post
    I vote for EvilD's hair.
    I'm bald lol

    I did have a huge beard up until about a week ago. Now I just have a huge goatee.

    SHARPEN IT LIKE YOU LOVE IT, USE IT LIKE YOU HATE IT
    ~David

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  11. #11
    Spyderco Forum Registered User jackknifeh's Avatar
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    Here is a list of results from performing a Hanging Hair Test (HHT). You must hold the hair at the tip and cut toward the scalp end to get reliable results. This test is used for testing or evaluating straight razor edges as you are honing a razor.

    The farther down the list the result is, the sharper the edge. This list came from an email I got from Larry at whippeddog.com.
    Below is from Larry ==========================
    - No cutting, catching... just smoothly slides on blade edge.
    - Tip of hair vibrates mildly.
    - Tip of hair vibrates wildly.
    - Hair is whittled, but not cut thru.
    - Hair cuts in two, but with definite resistance and pulling.
    - Hair cuts in two effortlessly with no resistance. The hair touches the edge, and is cut.

    As a blade gets sharper and sharper, I can tell where in the sharpness spectrum it is by the above range of behaviors.

    Remember, not all hair will act as above. REmember, you have to start with a great edge. When you do, whatever the hair behavior, that behavior is the definition of a successful HHT ... FOR THAT HAIR.

    Does this help?

    Thanks,
    Larry
    Above is from Larry ====================

    This is me again.
    Here is a funny thought. I have tried to whittle a hair before and NOT been able to succeed because the hair would just cut instead of whittle. I thought this was because my hands weren't steady enough or it was my fault. I still think this may be the case. But, according to Larry's list maybe my edge was sharper than needed to whittle a hair and fell into a sharpness level higher up on the list (sharper).

    One thing that seems extremely important is that different hair gives different results. We can't use "Evil D hair" so now let's all go around cutting off our family and friend's hair in search of good HHT hair.

    Jack
    My Manbug. (ZDP-189 shaped like Jester blade with red bone scales (11-12-2013)). This was previously the VG-10/G-10 w/bolsters Manbug. Knife nickname: FrankenManJester or FrankenJesterBug.

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