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TOPIC: ZT 0550

ZT 0550 2 years 4 months ago #3071

  • BassLakeDan
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KAI under their Zero Tolerance Brand is offering a very interesting series of folders designed by Rick Hinderer. It is hard to argue with the value these knives represent. Only thing is, I can never understand, how after all the effort they have put into this product line they have just gone brain dead on the factory edge that they put on them. Basically you just get a bevel, it is up to you on your own, to turn it into a cutting tool. Here is the factory edge:



Here is after a session on the WE: (note: as is my practice on EDC knives I do not re-profile them, I follow the original factory angle less 1/2 degree, so therefore you see some remaining factory score lines at the base of the bevel. The method to this madness on my part is that I want to remove only the minimal amount of metal, as my EDC knives will be resharpened many times over their life. The whole subject of metal removal and blade life is probably best left to the subject of some other thread on the forum, no point to try to deal with it here...



Handsome enough, I think. And certainly a very functional piece of cutlery:

Last Edit: 2 years 4 months ago by BassLakeDan.
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Re: ZT 0550 2 years 4 months ago #3072

  • jendeindustries
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Nice photos!

The factory edge doesn't look so bad, IMO - of course the WEPS edge is much better... :whistle:

You can really see the depth of those remaining factory scratches, even though they don't interfere.

I'd like to take you up on the question of factory angles - I have no issues with matching the initial factory angles, but as more of a sharpener than a knife nut, I must ask - are the factory angles the "best" angles?

As a sharpening nut, I see fantastic makers who, while they put every ounce of effort into what kind of steel, the heat treatment, and the fit and finish, simply sharpen the knife without any/much consideration as to the geometry and refinement levels.

Any thoughts?
Tom Blodgett
Jende Industries, LLC

My Blog: jendeindustries.wordpress.com
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Re: ZT 0550 2 years 4 months ago #3073

  • wickededge
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Great pics and really nice work BassLake! You're right about the ZT line, excellent value, great knives. I'm sort of in the same boat with Tom about sharpening - I tend to tinker a lot with my knives and try to find the perfect geometry and finish for a given blade for a given purpose. I usually reprofile the knife to as low an angle as I think the steel can support for the intended usage, then I evaluate its performance for a bit. If it doesn't hold its edge well, I add a micro-bevel and try again. For my taste, there is a broad spectrum of edge quality coming from the better production houses; Spyderco and Kershaw do a good job with the geometry and a decent job on the finish. Spyderco seems to have it dialed in a little better. With the Kershaw blades, I find the bevels are ground pretty well but don't always actually meet so there are sometimes flat spots along the edge right out of the box. Benchmade seems to be the worst of the medium end production knives for edge geometry selection and execution. Oddly, Strider knives usually sport pretty terrible edges. Emersons are getting better each time I get a hold of a new one. Chris Reeves knives are usually great right out of the box.
--Clay Allison
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Re: ZT 0550 2 years 4 months ago #3075

  • BassLakeDan
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jendeindustries wrote:

The factory edge doesn't look so bad, IMO -

I'd like to take you up on the question of factory angles - I have no issues with matching the initial factory angles,

Well although the factory edge does look OK as far as angle and point, I can tell you that it was what you sharpening experts call, I believe, 'only butter knife sharp' - I could put my fingers firmly against it and be in no danger whatsoever! I can assure you that that is not the case now! The S35VN takes a fantastic edge, it's shame that ZT passed on the opportunity to deliver it to the customer that way. Just one of those little mysteries in life I guess. Perhaps an attorney was involved somewhere along the line;)

Also FYI the factory angle was, I estimate, best I could measure, about 18, which I surmised was A-OK for my intended use. I set the WEP at 18.25 (using my flat screw mod ;) and went at it!
Last Edit: 2 years 4 months ago by BassLakeDan.
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Re: ZT 0550 2 years 4 months ago #3076

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wickededge wrote:
... I tend to tinker a lot with my knives and try to find the perfect geometry and finish for a given blade for a given purpose. I usually reprofile the knife to as low an angle as I think the steel can support for the intended usage, then I evaluate its performance for a bit. If it doesn't hold its edge well, I add a micro-bevel and try again.

For my taste, there is a broad spectrum of edge quality coming from the better production houses; ..

Thanks for your comments Clay! Tell you what: I will drag off two topics from this and post them later in the general forum for all to comment on. I don't want to clog up the Knife Photos with a long technical discussion here, I am sure you would prefer that the Knife Photos has just mostly photos. I propose setting up a topic on "Production Knives -Your thoughts on Sharpening vrs Blade Life" and "Production Knives- Your experience with out of the box Recent Factory Edges"

I think that customs and knives intended for safe-queen vaults should be excluded from discussion. You have a Mirror Polish topic area already for that.

I have some pic of a factory edge on a CRK seb that i will post later to day that exactly make your point (no pun intended!) about inappropriate factory edges. Will also, later today, drag off and post the two new topics. SO see you guys later tonight, right now we are all off to the lake to enjoy our day.. :)
Last Edit: 2 years 4 months ago by BassLakeDan.
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Re: ZT 0550 2 years 4 months ago #3077

  • JimMitchell
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Have fun at the lake!!! Your ZT 0550 looks awesome! Great pics. Looking forward to seeing your other photos later.

Can't wait for my WEPS to be delivered.
Jim
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Re: ZT 0550 2 years 4 months ago #3097

  • mark76
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And here is the ZT 0550's big brother: the 0560.



I got it last weekend. I had it on pre-order from a US store for more than half a year and then my local dealer suddenly had it in store. :cheer: Thanks Dan for your tips on stores that had it in store!

It is a great knife, very well built. Only that edge... Fortunately I now have a WEPS and I reprofiled it at 20 degrees and polished it up to 10K Choseras. Perhaps a bit overkill, but now it cuts paper like butter.

I agree with Clay. I am always surprised by how dull Benchmade knives are. Compare that to Spyderco's, which are usually a lot sharper (sharpened at higher grits, but also more acute angles). I don't have a Strider knife, but the two Chris Reeve knives I have are perfect in every respect, including their edges.
Last Edit: 2 years 4 months ago by mark76.
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Re: ZT 0550 2 years 4 months ago #3113

  • martinlind
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nice knife, ive just got me a ZT mod.0200
martin
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