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TOPIC: Hit a plateau and want more

Hit a plateau and want more 2 months 2 weeks ago #17963

Hi fellow sharpies,

I have owned the WE a couple months. I have sharpened my knives, friends knives, ex-wives knives and have touched up many of my knives after putting an initial WE on them. I suppose I have sharpened or touched up about 50 knives. I have several choseras and they give me a mirror polish. The edges I am getting are extremely consistent from length to length of the knife; they are repeatable because I am recording the settings; I get a mirror polish if that is what I am after, I can cut paper - three to ten inches per swipe; but I can see the edge has some minor unintentional faceting (sp?) and I can see the WE has potential to get knives even sharper than what I am achieving.

I have the Pro2 kit as well as choseras starting from 800 and running up to 10K. I use the angle cube and I have the bars for referencing switching between diamond and Chosera paddles.

Bottom line is that I have never gotten as good and as consistent results as I am now getting with the WE. However, I know I can do better. I cannot shave arm hair - but admittedly - I don't use a razor so I might not be able to shave arm hair with foam and a razor.

I have a great USB magnifier, the best stones, pretty good technique as far as I can tell or maybe this is where I can improve. The guys I see on the you-tube videos are achieving far better results as they are push cutting paper, shaving with their sharpened knives, etc.

How can I move to the next level? Are their videos you can recommend or do I need to upload pictures to get good advice or are there common errors at mid skill level, etc.

Thanks in advance for your help you fine WE forum contributors.

Signed,

Mr very good but not awesome knife edges
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Hit a plateau and want more 2 months 2 weeks ago #17965

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Wicked Edge sharp knives wrote:
I cannot shave arm hair - but admittedly - I don't use a razor so I might not be able to shave arm hair with foam and a razor.

I have a great USB magnifier, the best stones, pretty good technique as far as I can tell or maybe this is where I can improve. The guys I see on the you-tube videos are achieving far better results as they are push cutting paper, shaving with their sharpened knives, etc.

How can I move to the next level? Are their videos you can recommend or do I need to upload pictures to get good advice or are there common errors at mid skill level, etc.

what do you mean that you "cannot shave arm hair"? are your mirrored edges not able to? You should be able to shave arm hair pretty easily from the 200-400 plates on if your technique is correct.

Shaving w/ a sharpened knife is kind of "the next level" if you want to go that far. I have never done this, but I do sharpen straight razors semi-frequently and I shave with one myself from time to time. I sharpen these on the WEPS up through 10k grit choseras and then, most of the time, go straight to the .125 CBN on roo. This yields an edge that is wonderful for shaving with, however, I am still in pursuit of that "perfect edge" for shaving with. Next up I will be playing around w/ lapping films probably.

As long as your technique is consistent you should be good. Question: why are you seeing multi-facets on your edge if you are only sharpening a v edge? The only time I noticed this was when I was using the old arms and changed my sharpening direction (going from edge trailing sweeping passes heel to tip -> edge leading passes from heel to tip). This has to do with how you hold your paddles since there is a little play in between the paddles and the rod (as per other threads recently).
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Hit a plateau and want more 2 months 2 weeks ago #17967

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If i had to guess Mr very good but not awesome knife edges haha, maybe you're not fully reaching the edge when you switch to the waterstones(multi facets) Or maybe youre pressing too hard when you strop and rounding the edge when youre going for that shine. Try laying all your stones that you use flat on the table in progression shoulder to shoulder and stare at it for awhile.maybe get a swat.Shaving with a knife is difficult, shaving with convex shears is harder
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Hit a plateau and want more 2 months 2 weeks ago #17969

Thanks for the reply!

Nope, I can't shave arm hair but I am not sure that is a good test anyway since there is probably variation in the thickness, rigidity, etc. from person to person. Also, I shave with an electric razor so I could be going about the arm shaving test incorrectly.

The multi-facets are not always visible and very subtle. If I hold the blade so light glistens off the blade edge, and I slowly turn the blade, sometimes I can see very subtle changes in the reflection that shows me the edge is not perfectly straight. Also, even though I use the angle cube when switching to the choseras, on a couple of my recently sharpened knives with S30V steel, while the choseras hit the tip of the knife edge, they did not strike the bottom of the edge - I could still see non-polished sharpening scratches at the bottom of the edge.

I think I need to reexamine how I am holding my paddles to reduce variation and I probably need to get a little more in the mode of double and triple checking my angle cube.

Again, thanks for the feedback.
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Hit a plateau and want more 2 months 2 weeks ago #17970

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Wicked Edge sharp knives wrote:
Thanks for the reply!

Nope, I can't shave arm hair but I am not sure that is a good test anyway since there is probably variation in the thickness, rigidity, etc. from person to person. Also, I shave with an electric razor so I could be going about the arm shaving test incorrectly.

The multi-facets are not always visible and very subtle. If I hold the blade so light glistens off the blade edge, and I slowly turn the blade, sometimes I can see very subtle changes in the reflection that shows me the edge is not perfectly straight. Also, even though I use the angle cube when switching to the choseras, on a couple of my recently sharpened knives with S30V steel, while the choseras hit the tip of the knife edge, they did not strike the bottom of the edge - I could still see non-polished sharpening scratches at the bottom of the edge.

I think I need to reexamine how I am holding my paddles to reduce variation and I probably need to get a little more in the mode of double and triple checking my angle cube.

Again, thanks for the feedback.

it's still a good test... as is slicing phonebook paper, as long as you understanding when slicing paper that the blade geometry has a lot to do with how well it slices (thicker edges don't do so well here, no matter how polished they are).

but if you can't get it to cleanly shave arm hair, then I believe you are doing something wrong. Go with 15-20 dps, and make sure you truly apex the edge the whole way when you get to the 400-600 grit diamonds. then you know you have a true, clean edge. then you can progress. You should notice a drastic improvement!
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Hit a plateau and want more 2 months 2 weeks ago #17973

I just watched your video on sharpening a Spyderco. I sharpened my Spyderco Paramilitary last night using foam in the vice jaws. In hindsight, I think the blade was deflecting when I was using more pressure with the lower grit number stones. That is why the top of my edge was polished and the bottom had grit marks.

Seeing how you were able to cut arm hair with only a 600 grit max., and seeing you have your own web site and sharpen knives professionally, makes me think I am doing something wrong. I noticed your paddle strokes were very deliberate and precise.

I will try your non-foam Spyderco sharpening method and pay more attention to technique. Arm hair does not fear me yet so I hope to change that.

Thanks again Josh!
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Hit a plateau and want more 2 months 2 weeks ago #17974

Josh, Dude!,

I watched your Spiderco video twice and payed attention to your paddle movement. I also used your clamping/angled knife method.

Guess what? My Spiderco Paramilitary 2 cuts my arm, hair. I am missing hair! I am going to get the chills outside cause I'm missing hair. I have a two inch bald spot on my forearm. This has NEVER happened before - EVER! I don't know if I can repeat it but I made it to the next level on this knife. It's a paper cutting bad boy as well.

My takeaways are: the clamping has to be rock solid; you have to work it until each grit thoroughly does its job, every stroke needs to be good (so slow down), and be anal about the angle cube and remember to back off two degrees and light pressure with the strops.

Arm hair fears me - as it should be!

Thanks for egging me on about the arm hair. You are DaMan!

Allen
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Hit a plateau and want more 2 months 2 weeks ago #17975

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Sound like you found your problem.

All I can add is:

I would not do a full flat ground blade until doing a few with regular square spines, to make sure you have the setting in the vise down.

Get a bur down the entire length, both sides with your 100's.

Better than the angle cube in this case is the sharpie marker. Once you raise a burr on both sides a single pass with one stone should evenly wipe away a sharpie mark. If not you are doing something wrong, and can see where. Check often.

My original primary angle set screws (to set the main angle, not the fine adjust) did not have the 4mm hex inserts. I could only tighten by turning by hand. I often had them come loose during sharpening. If these come loose results may vary.

I cut small pieces of phone book paper and check sharpness in the vice. I don't cut a long strip, just enough to see how it's going. I try to check all along the edge to see if I am missing a spot.

When the knife is out of the vice slicing phone book paper slowly is good. I can tell if i have a slight imperfection as that one spot on the edge will snag the paper in the same place every time.

Next stop: whittling hair. :silly:
Last Edit: 2 months 2 weeks ago by Geocyclist.
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Hit a plateau and want more 2 months 2 weeks ago #17977

Hi Geocyclist,

Are you a big-time bike rider? The peddle kind or the motor kind?

You gave me much good advice in just a few sentences. I already practice religiously some of your tips and some I can work on incorporating more regularly and maybe one thing that it is a total blind spot for me. What is the fine angle adjust you are referring to? I have the newer arms in my pro pack two. I only adjust the combination hand tighten/hex adjuster screw. Do I have a big hole in my game? I know I should reverse the slider bar because the detents are only half degree adjustments but am I missing an entire adjustment regularly performed by most?

Whittling hair might be a hundred or two hundred knife sharpens away from my current skill level...... But, it is good to have a new goal. If I were to try a facial shave at this point in my sharpening maturity on the WE, based on the bloody results, they would call me scar face. Children would run from me and the gory spectacle would even test a mother's love.

Thanks again!
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Hit a plateau and want more 2 months 2 weeks ago #17979

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Glad you are getting better results. And welcome to the forum.

I am a road and mounter biker, the pedal kind. I would kill myself on a motorized bike.

My name came from the first forum I ever joined years ago, Geocaching.com. I was big into geocaching back then and wasn't on any other forums. When I got into knives and sharpening I just decided to keep the name since I already had the email account and since all the cool names like wicked edge sharp knives were already taken. B)
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