What should I buy to practice sharpening on?

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spyderg
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Re: What should I buy to practice sharpening on?

Postby spyderg » Wed Nov 07, 2018 8:07 am

I always used to get the working edge not super shave sharp too. I found I really got the hang of it with Cruwear. Since then I find D2 to be an easy steel to sharpen as well. 1095 is a great steel in use and to sharpen as well. It might be one of the best to practice on as for me anyway, the edge lasting seems very dependant on how good of a job I do sharpening it. Whereas Cruwear for example just holds an edge forever even if I was a bit lazy with it. I only suggest a crapy steel for practicing getting a nice straight edge but if your issue is getting that shaving edge right, the “better” steels will be different to sharpen so I say get a decent steel and practice away.
If you're wielding the sharpest tool in the shed, who's going to say that you aren't...?

Eli Chaps
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Re: What should I buy to practice sharpening on?

Postby Eli Chaps » Wed Nov 07, 2018 8:11 am

Don't buy cheap junk to practice on. For one, some of those steels are so terrible that you can't get/maintain a decent edge and it will just frustrate you even more. For two, it is a total waste of money, no matter how little it is, it is a waste.

As said, I'd start with something in the byrd line. They are good knives in sharpening-friendly steels.

But, understand, regardless of the steel, the principals are all the same. Nothing really changes except maybe the sharpening media required. Maybe the first question should be, what sharpening gear do you have? What issues are your having? What technique do you use?

Maybe your next purchase should be toward sharpening setup rather than a different knife.

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Re: What should I buy to practice sharpening on?

Postby ThePeacent » Wed Nov 07, 2018 9:26 am

buy inexpensive but good, well heat treated steel:

Victorinox paring knives, Kershaw folders ar or under $20, Victorinox SAKs, Opinels, Cold Steel Kudu, Roach Belly, and Finn Wolf, CIVIVI folders, Moras and Hultafors, Kizer Tangram knives, ENLANs, HARNDS, and Sanrenmus, Byrds, KaBar Dozier, Ontario RATs or even the inexpensive Chinese Spydercos all have good reputable materials and are well built, inexpensive enough and make good knives on their own

good luck and I bet you'll soon become proficient!

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Re: What should I buy to practice sharpening on?

Postby knivesandbooks » Wed Nov 07, 2018 12:46 pm

I agree with Peacent.

Civivi in 9cr18mov
Ontaria Rat in aus8 or d2
Some of lower price Cold Steels in various steels
Byrd knives

Just becuase you're buying a knife to practice with doesn't mean you can't get yourself a good knife.

Also, Case knives should be good to practice with.
Most used lately: SE Jazz Delica, Police 4, Chaparral Titanium, Slsyz Bowie

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awa54
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Re: What should I buy to practice sharpening on?

Postby awa54 » Wed Nov 07, 2018 1:55 pm

Bloke wrote:
Tue Nov 06, 2018 7:11 pm
I'd buy a couple of Victorinox or similar paring knives and practice on them. :)

I'll second that suggestion, they will be useful in your kitchen, plus the blade size and profile aren't terribly different from a mid sized folder and they're under $10, so a serious screw-up isn't too costly to recover from.

Sharp Guy wrote:
Tue Nov 06, 2018 7:56 pm
GarageBoy wrote:
Tue Nov 06, 2018 6:58 pm
I want to pick up a Spyderco as a house chores knife and to learn to sharpen
Something not tiny, with a steel that deburrs easily (and is not a super collectable Sprint)
Sub $100? I'll probably get an edge pro at some point
If you don't already have one I'd look real hard at a VG10 Delica

More great advise, the basic Delica is an excellent catch-all folder, big enough to get lots done, but small and light enough to fit almost any pocket without being cumbersome.
-David

still more knives than sharpening stones...

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Re: What should I buy to practice sharpening on?

Postby phillipsted » Wed Nov 07, 2018 1:59 pm

SF Native wrote:
Tue Nov 06, 2018 10:33 pm
How about a mora? Realatively cheap but a good useable fixed blade. Personally, I just won’t buy garbage, it just encourages them to make more.

If you can wait a little while, that bow river would be perfect.
Being a long-time SpyderFanatic, I hate to recommend something outside...

But you might look at the Opinel blades, specifically the carbon steel models. These can get had for cheap ($10-$15), they are simple to sharpen and take an absolutely WICKED edge. Plus, if you buy a few of them, you can drop one in your glovebox, another in your tool kit, one in the kitchen drawer, etc. etc. I love them - simple and practical. And you won't lose sleep if you mess up the edge learning to sharpen them.

TedP

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Re: What should I buy to practice sharpening on?

Postby wrdwrght » Wed Nov 07, 2018 3:07 pm

You know that always-dull paring knife in your kitchen? That’s the one to practice on. You won’t make it worse. In fact, you’ll probably see incremental improvement in its cutting ability and thus know you’re going at it correctly.
Marc

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Re: What should I buy to practice sharpening on?

Postby Deadboxhero » Wed Nov 07, 2018 3:40 pm

Look up "kiwi brand knives"
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Re: What should I buy to practice sharpening on?

Postby Woodpuppy » Wed Nov 07, 2018 8:52 pm

And don’t forget one of the most useful sharpening tools - the humble black sharpie marker. Mark the edge bevel and start sharpening. The marker will tell you where you’re removing steel. Adjust angle for desired results.
:spyder: AUS8, M4, H1, VG10, 52100, HAP40, REX45, N690Co, CTS-BD1, CRU-WEAR :spyder:

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Re: What should I buy to practice sharpening on?

Postby UserNameBill » Wed Nov 07, 2018 10:15 pm

Opinel number 8 carbon.

Easy to sharpen, classic knife and inexpensive.
Dull men carry Dull knives. A Man is only as sharp as his Knife.

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Re: What should I buy to practice sharpening on?

Postby Tucson Tom » Wed Nov 07, 2018 11:55 pm

ThePeacent wrote:
Wed Nov 07, 2018 9:26 am
Roach Belly
Roach Belly ?? OK, I have to go investigate this!

That advice about the dull paring knife in your kitchen sounds right on. And I'll say it again. Thrift stores always have fairly decent kitchen knives at give away prices. You know, some big full tang wooden handled "butcher knife".

My sharpening education has gone through several phases (and I expect more to come). The first was absolutely not having a clue and being sure I was going to wreck anything I worked on. What I wrecked if anything was a diamond stone by using way too much pressure.

The next stage was having a general clue, starting to use a sharpie along with a magnifier and having the "Aha! moment" when i realized what the game was really all about. Light pressure, let the stone do the work. A micro bevel is really really a micro thing.

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Re: What should I buy to practice sharpening on?

Postby vilePossum » Thu Nov 08, 2018 2:56 am

Buy an opinel. Stainless or not. Size 7 or 8. If you can sharpen it consistently all the way to the tip you will be fine with most blades.

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Re: What should I buy to practice sharpening on?

Postby ThePeacent » Thu Nov 08, 2018 6:17 am

Tucson Tom wrote:
Wed Nov 07, 2018 11:55 pm
ThePeacent wrote:
Wed Nov 07, 2018 9:26 am
Roach Belly
Roach Belly ?? OK, I have to go investigate this!

Cold Steel has a line of very budget fixed blades that are amazingly tough and capable for the $, the Roach Belly, Canadian Belt Knife, Finn Bear, Pendleton Lite, Finn Hawk, and others :o
all based on traditional shapes and patterns with a steel that is very responsive to sharpening and blade shapes that make the task easy and are good to create muscle memory with the stone :cool:

Image

their paring and kitchen knives, the Kudu, and their Peace Maker models are all inexpensive and very good budget blades to practice on, and use everywhere or have as backups

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Re: What should I buy to practice sharpening on?

Postby GarageBoy » Thu Nov 08, 2018 11:42 am

Thanks - I actually am hesitant to use a lot of my knives because of my poor sharpening skills

I have a full Spyderco benchstone set, a stock sharpmaker, and I just picked up a norton combo stone. I also have a fine lansky diamond benchstone. I had a opinel I was practicing on, but at this point the bevel is convex from not being able to match the bevel freehand. The Byrd I had was better, as the stock bevel was wider. I always end up rounding off tips on the sharpmaker, or I'll hold short and end up short sharpening the tip.

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Re: What should I buy to practice sharpening on?

Postby Vivi » Thu Nov 08, 2018 11:46 am

GarageBoy wrote:
Thu Nov 08, 2018 11:42 am
Thanks - I actually am hesitant to use a lot of my knives because of my poor sharpening skills

I have a full Spyderco benchstone set, a stock sharpmaker, and I just picked up a norton combo stone. I also have a fine lansky diamond benchstone. I had a opinel I was practicing on, but at this point the bevel is convex from not being able to match the bevel freehand. The Byrd I had was better, as the stock bevel was wider. I always end up rounding off tips on the sharpmaker, or I'll hold short and end up short sharpening the tip.
You don't have to match the bevel 100%. Most of my free hand sharpened knives have some degree of convex to them, but they still get very sharp.

Don't let the tip slide off the rods of the sharpmaker if you are. That's how you round the tip.
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Re: What should I buy to practice sharpening on?

Postby JD Spydo » Thu Nov 08, 2018 12:24 pm

Especially to those that are getting their first Spyderco 204 Sharpmaker I fully recommend that you get the hang of using that sharpening tool by starting out with thrift store, garage sale knives and learn to sharpen at least 4 to 6 of those before ever trying it on a really high quality, premium knife of any make or model. Make your mistakes on blades you don't give a hoot about!!! Because until you get the hang of using the 204 Sharpmaker or even the 302 Benchstones of Spyderco's for that matter it is advisable to start out with "training wheels" so to speak.

Because when I got my first 204 Sharpmaker back in the late 90s I started out by sharpening a Buck model 119 fixed blade that I had owned for years. It was still in pristine condition until I put some really nasty marks on it by mistake. So since I was stupid in my first go-around I've since advised others to play it safe. Also I tell everyone to view that video that comes with the 204 Sharpmaker at least 2 to 4 times before ever even using it at all.

Now if you have a really old Spyder that you consider a "beater" I guess that would be up to your own judgment but you would be better off to make your mistakes where they won't come back to haunt you.

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Re: What should I buy to practice sharpening on?

Postby Zatx » Fri Nov 09, 2018 2:15 pm

Evil D wrote:
Wed Nov 07, 2018 7:38 am
I would just start out with old kitchen knives. I rushed into trying out folders too soon when I got my Edge Pro, my first try was on a kitchen knife, and I was so pleased with the results I moved on to my Para 2 20CP sprint and absolutely jacked up the bevel. I would stick with cheap knives for a while before moving on to expensive ones.
This is the exact thing I did as well including the identical model Para 2! I'm glad I'm in good company. After years of sharpening with every technique under the sun (and getting darn good with all of them), I have just recently moved to the Work Sharp Ken Onion with the Blade Grinding Attachment. I now get equally impressive edges with it, but now it takes me less than 10 minutes! Had I not taken the time to learn all I did on the stones, edge pro, hapstone, sharpmaker, and all the rest of the gadgets, I'm pretty sure I would mangle blades with this belt sander.

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Re: What should I buy to practice sharpening on?

Postby Crux » Fri Nov 09, 2018 2:48 pm

Buy a Spyderco Mule.
Can you find it and can it cut? :eek:

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Re: What should I buy to practice sharpening on?

Postby UserNameBill » Fri Nov 09, 2018 8:18 pm

“Thanks - I actually am hesitant to use a lot of my knives because of my poor sharpening skills

I have a full Spyderco benchstone set, a stock sharpmaker, and I just picked up a norton combo stone. I also have a fine lansky diamond benchstone. I had a opinel I was practicing on, but at this point the bevel is convex from not being able to match the bevel freehand... “

The Sharpmaker will get that bevel back to a nice crisp V in no time at all.

In fact I keep the sharpmaker locked and loaded when ever I and sharpening freehand on stones... if my bevel gets off I just give it a couple of minutes on the sharpmaker and try again... it’s all about learning and a sharpmaker is consistent in its bevel.. it will also tell you if your freehand angle is to steep or to shallow by looking at the scratch patterns. A sharpie and and loupe are your friends.. it doesn’t hurt to look after every pass or two.
Dull men carry Dull knives. A Man is only as sharp as his Knife.

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Re: What should I buy to practice sharpening on?

Postby JD Spydo » Fri Nov 09, 2018 9:12 pm

Like I said I can't stress enough that watching that instructional video that comes with the 204 Sharpmaker when you buy it new. You should watch it at least 3 to 4 times before doing serious work with it IMO. It's not rocket science or nuclear physics but there are tricks to getting the hang of using the 204 Sharpmaker. There is a skill set involved that takes a little practice. But that video is very well done and very informative. good luck


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