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TOPIC: Why sharpen to the factory angle?

Why sharpen to the factory angle? 8 months 5 days ago #16072

  • Citadel99
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So, new owner question. Why is there so much concern with sharpening to the factory angle? With a system like this that allows you to set the angle you want and quickly re-profile, why not sharpen all your pocket knives to the angle you'd like it to be and then just maintain?

Mark
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Why sharpen to the factory angle? 8 months 5 days ago #16073

  • KenBuzbee
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You are absolutely correct. I NEVER sharpen to the factory angle as I ALWAYS want a lower angle than commercial manufacturers tend to use.

The focus on factory angle (IMO) has two basis.

1. If you are sharpening commercially it's good practice (warrantee, mfg preference etc)
2. It minimizes the amount of work needed to sharpen a blade. Reprofiling always takes longer.

So, yeah, it's a frequent discussion. And totally irrelevant, to me ;)

Enjoy your WEPS.

Ken
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Why sharpen to the factory angle? 8 months 5 days ago #16074

  • leomitch
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Ditto for me! I always sharpen my knives for the first time on the WEPS, then I have the angle I want and I also know how to swiftly bring the edge back up to par when it needs it. The factory angle is simply of academic interest to me.
Good question!

Leo ;)
Never go anywhere without your knife!
Gibbs rule number 9

Leo James Mitchell
Last Edit: 8 months 5 days ago by leomitch.
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Why sharpen to the factory angle? 8 months 5 days ago #16085

  • Geocyclist
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I never sharpen to the factory edge. I have never heard anyone say they have had a "uniform" factory edge. I hear many people say they get factory knives sharp out of the box, but I never hear about the bevel being uniform angle tip to heel, and left vs right side.

If you don't know what angle you want trying to match the factory bevel is a good place to start.

If you sharpen for a business and time/speed is important then sharpening will take much less time if you go to the existing angle (assuming you are quick to dial in the existing angle).

If I like how a factory angle performs then I may try to "match" it in order to see what angle was originally set.

Having set many knives to 15 deg per side (and liking it) I messed one up just dialing in 15 deg. and pressing go. The end result was the bevel looked too acute for my taste. Lesson learned, on new knives I will match the factory angle to see what came out of the box. If there is a big difference in factory vs. desired angle I may be more careful changing the angle dramatically all at once.

Once final reason to match the factory edge with a marker is the see if you can. You don't have to sharpen to it, just see how close to factory you can get. With the marker trick you can then see if the bevel is even side to side and tip to heel. This "practice" of finding the factory angle has helped me improve my setups.
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Why sharpen to the factory angle? 8 months 5 days ago #16088

  • EamonMcGowan
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I have to agree with all the above. I rarely sharpen to factory specs. The one exception is my Houge. I went to low on that and found they did their homework and were right. For me most of my edc's are 20° per side. Benchmades I like 15°.
When I sharpen as a business I set it to 23° for two reasons. 1st not knowing how they will treat the knife I think is is a good happy medium. 2nd If I'm doing many knives in a row I just don't have time to keep resetting the bar. And if they come back I know it is 20° But I'm very specific, If I want 15°,20° or 23°...I always use my angle gauge. For me if I am trying to get as sharp as possible I have found the closer I stay to the desired setting, meaning resetting for each stone and staying as close as possible to the desired setting and getting to the edge of the edge using my loupe and well? when I slice through the air? The air bleeds! :woohoo: Lol just kidding but the are very sharp!!
The definition of insanity is to do the same thing over and over again and expect a different result?
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Why sharpen to the factory angle? 8 months 4 days ago #16090

  • tcmeyer
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I have about fifteen cheap pocket knives of varying parentage. I'll EDC each one for a couple of days, 'til it's lost the really keen edge. When I've gone through the whole batch, I cycle them through the WEPS with a standard setup for all. I used the same setup for any and all folding knives, until I got my not-so-cheap Spyderco recently.

1. All are clamped with their spines held flat on the upper locating key.
2. All are clamped with their bolster held tightly against the front face of the vise.
3. All are sharpened at the 20 degree detent on both sides.

Yes, this results in some heel-to-tip baising, but not enough to worry about. Yes the exact angle depends on the heel-to-spine depth.

This ensures that each knife is positioned perfectly for resharpening. After the first sharpening, no re-profiling is required. If a friend comes around with a folder I've done for him before, I know exactly how it should be clamped.

Unlike my other knives, the Spyderco is full-flat ground, with no flat surfaces to fix its vertical plane in the vise. For this, I have to carefully shim the left/right sides for matching angles on the exposed flats. Hopefully, Clay will someday offer an upgrade with the angle-adapting, self-centering clamp feature, as offered on the new professional rig.
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Why sharpen to the factory angle? 8 months 4 days ago #16091

  • KenBuzbee
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EamonMcGowan wrote:
The one exception is my Houge. I went to low on that and found they did their homework and were right.

I bet you could have done it with a micro bevel.

I have yet to find a modern steel that won't work at 24° inclusive. It's not the longest lasting angle but it cuts way better than 40°. I'll make that trade off any day.

Some of my best, though I took to 18° inclesive then put a 26° micro bevel on. Serious slicers, those. ;) They include a Bradley Air in CPM-M4 and a Roselli Astrid in UHC.

Ken
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Why sharpen to the factory angle? 8 months 4 days ago #16094

  • Citadel99
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Thanks for all the replies yall. I'm glad I wasn't way off track on this...

Mark
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Why sharpen to the factory angle? 8 months 4 days ago #16101

  • LeoBarr
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Talk of micro bevels Jon from Japanese knife imports often puts micro micro bevels on a blade so say onto of your 12Ëšput a micro bevel say of 16Ëšwith 5/6 passes very lightly with the finishing stone only and then put a micro micro bevel of say 20Ëšwit say 3 passes very lightly of the finishing stone just making that fine edge that little more durable .
Both these bevels will hardly be visible unless with a loupe .
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Why sharpen to the factory angle? 8 months 4 days ago #16104

  • KenBuzbee
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LeoBarr wrote:
Talk of micro bevels Jon from Japanese knife imports often puts micro micro bevels on a blade so say onto of your 12Ëšput a micro bevel say of 16Ëšwith 5/6 passes very lightly with the finishing stone only and then put a micro micro bevel of say 20Ëšwit say 3 passes very lightly of the finishing stone just making that fine edge that little more durable .
Both these bevels will hardly be visible unless with a loupe .

I LOVE that idea. I'll have to give it a try. Thanks brother!

Ken
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