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TOPIC: Have I been screwing things up?

Have I been screwing things up? 6 months 6 days ago #16075

  • leupold1
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I bought the WEPS about a month ago and have been sharpening everything in sight. I've added the 800/1000 stones and 5/3.5 strops. The results seem to be positive. I can easily cut paper with the end product (my wife's getting tired of bits of paper laying around), and I have worked on my brother's and nephew's hunting knives. Nevertheless, my experience and skill are still very limited. Additionally, I'm afraid I've been making a serious mistake and need some clarification on how to approach my sharpening.
When I get a knife to sharpen, my habit has been use a Sharpie to match the angle and then mirror that angle on the other side. I think, however, that I'm using the 100 grit stone too much. My thought was that I needed to raise a burr with that grit to ensure I was addressing the angle properly. In reading some of the posts, I think I'm too aggressive with the lower numbered grits. I've seen the videos and thought this was the proper procedure. What should I do? At what point should I be concerned about raising a burr? I have to admit that raising a burr takes a bit of time with the 100 grit, and there's quite a bit of metal on the base when I'm done.
So, at what point do you worry about a burr? What is the role of the 100/200 grit stone in sharpening? Do you check for a burr at every grit?
Thanks in advance for all the advice. Additionally, given the stones/strops I have, what would purchase next? I'm trying to slowly add to my knife sharpening materials, and am thinking about what's next in the progression.
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Have I been screwing things up? 6 months 6 days ago #16076

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Raising a burr for the first time is very important for getting the optimum edge. During the action of pulling up a burr, one uses some pressure to get it, but that is the only time pressure is necessary. Using too much force on the rest of the steps is counter-productive.
Once you have your initial burr and then the final edge you want, record all the info necessary in your notebook so you can easily go back and setup the knife again for a few swipes of the finer paddles to bring back the edge when it gets a little dull.
You have not screwed up. Remember too, the diamonds stones take a little time to break in and will give you better edges as you go along. Having said that, your edges will be very good right from the get go. ;)

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

Leo James Mitchell
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Have I been screwing things up? 6 months 6 days ago #16077

  • leomitch
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I missed this. No, you don't have to check for the burr at every stage, just the vital step one...and away you go. As for losing too much metal, the WEPS probably removes less metal than any of the other sharpening systems of note. as for what to add next, keep your eyes peeled to the posts here and you will see what others are recommending, plus it will depend on to what extent you intend to sharpen and polish. If you are like some of us we get down to polishing the molecules of steel in some cases. LOL!

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

Leo James Mitchell
Last Edit: 6 months 6 days ago by leomitch.
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Have I been screwing things up? 6 months 6 days ago #16078

  • leupold1
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I feel a lot better. Thanks for the reinforcement. Now, where do I go from here? What stone/strop would you recommend as my next step? The strops I used have polished the blade a bit, but when I reduce the angle by 2 degrees, I don't think I'm getting as much action on the edge. I certainly don't want to round over the apex, but the sharpened edge is not being polished as much as I would like or expect. Either I'm doing something wrong (probably), or I need to add something to my equipment. Thoughts? Ceramics? Higher grit?
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Have I been screwing things up? 6 months 6 days ago #16079

  • leomitch
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Ceramics do it for me, but stay tuned and I suspect you will shortly get all kinds of suggestions from the gang here.

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

Leo James Mitchell
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Have I been screwing things up? 6 months 6 days ago #16080

  • KenBuzbee
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leomitch wrote:
Ceramics do it for me, but stay tuned and I suspect you will shortly get all kinds of suggestions from the gang here.

Leo

+1 Leo! The base stones + 800/1000 + micro ceramics will get you most anything you'd absolutely need. Anything more is just our OCD running amok ;)

Ken
玉鋼
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Have I been screwing things up? 6 months 6 days ago #16084

  • Geocyclist
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As far as "too much metal" on the base this depends some on how much you re-profile. If you match the factory edge perfectly you should not have much, and should get a burr quickly. If you change the bevel dramatically expect some metal. But the next time there will very little. Assuming you keep the same angle next time you sharpen that knife.
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Have I been screwing things up? 6 months 5 days ago #16089

  • EamonMcGowan
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[quote Anything more is just our OCD running amok ;)
Ken[/quote]

You say this like it is a bad thing? Lol Just playing :P I think once a guy buys a WEPS he has just admitted out loud to the world that he is OCD!
The definition of insanity is to do the same thing over and over again and expect a different result?
An old Irish toast, May the wind always be at your back, may you always have work and may you be in heaven a half hour before the devil knows your dead. Cheers!
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Have I been screwing things up? 6 months 5 days ago #16092

  • KenBuzbee
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EamonMcGowan wrote:
Anything more is just our OCD running amok ;)
Ken

You say this like it is a bad thing? Lol Just playing :P

No judgement attached. ;) Just being real.

Some of us know we've gone a little nutty with the variety of stones we've acquired. For someone just getting started it's good to let them know they can get a terrific edge without a full set of Choseras AND a full set of Shaptons AND a full set of Atomas AND every possible strop material/grit combination. It can get a little overwhelming. ;)

Warning: Spoiler! [ Click to expand ]


Ken
玉鋼
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Have I been screwing things up? 6 months 5 days ago #16095

  • GibCurry
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leomitch wrote:
Raising a burr for the first time is very important for getting the optimum edge. During the action of pulling up a burr, one uses some pressure to get it, but that is the only time pressure is necessary. Using too much force on the rest of the steps is counter-productive.

Once you have your initial burr and then the final edge you want, record all the info necessary in your notebook so you can easily go back and setup the knife again for a few swipes of the finer paddles to bring back the edge when it gets a little dull.

You have not screwed up. Remember too, the diamonds stones take a little time to break in and will give you better edges as you go along. Having said that, your edges will be very good right from the get go. ;)

Leo

I'm still learning the difference between "thinking" I'm feeling the burr and actually feeling the burr. The WEPS made all my knives sharper than they had been but when I realized this difference all my sharpening took a keener turn.

I try to not go below the 400/600, for some reason I can't justify in this moment! And, usually, this is all I need to sharpen to the edge, find the burr and move on. But, for example, a Henckels pairing knife I've been working on right now. There's one section of it that refused to become sharpened.

Going back, I re-raise the burr to one side, then the other on the 400 of the 400/600. But, right in that section, I realized yesterday, that I thought I felt a burr but really it just wasn't there like the rest of the edge.

So, I dropped down to the 100/200 and started over. 100 - Raised a burr on both sides. 200 - same thing; both sides. 400 - Raised a burr on both sides. Moved on, merrily polishing up through the grit chart.

This time, that section was sharp.

So, I just needed to be more patient, alert and understanding of my process.....

.... not screwing things up -- gaining experience....

Recall... wisdom comes from experience. Experience comes from failure.
~~~~

For Now,

Gib

Φ

"Things work out best for those who make the best out of the way things work out."

"My goal is to be a good, practical knife sharpener. My dream is to polish molecules."
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