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Angle Recommendations for Wusthofs

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This topic contains 46 replies, has 8 voices, and was last updated by  Bill 08/10/2014 at 11:27 pm.

Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 47 total)
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  • #19539

    MarcH
    Moderator
    • Topics: 58
    • Replies: 1911

    Hi I’m a newbie to this forum. I just purchased a Wicked Edge System (Pro-Pac II) so I’m a newbie to WE too. Been wanting the WE for years. Up to now I’ve used a Norton Tri-Stone, a Sharpmaker, various Flat Stones (oil and water, both), and Steels. So my knives have seen the gambit. Now I’m trying to reprofile my edges. In the kitchen I use mostly Wusthofs, inexpensive and fairly decent because that’s what I have now. I figured I’ll spend the money on a excellent sharpener and sharpen what I have, instead of buying new knifes.

    I used the Wicked Edge, (first knife/first try) on a Wusthof Santuko 7″ Hollow Ground reprofiling it to 16 degrees per side. I feel the knife is very sharp for my first try. It cuts food very well now but my knife sticks to the cutting board slowing my knife skills down to a snail’s crawl. The blade just won’t rock or slide on the cutting board any longer. Any suggestions or insights? Is it the blade, the angle, the cutting board or me? I’m using some sort of plastic and corian boards.

    I can’t find any Reference Source for Factory Spec Blade Angles for Wusthofs. I emailed Wusthof Customer Service and got no reply. I have 8 Wusthof knives needing reprofiling. (Santuko (2), 6″ & 8″ Cook, 3″ Paring, 4-1/2″ Utility, 2 Dreizacks 16cm & 20cm) Any suggestions on what angles to use is apprecicated.

    Marc
    (MarcH's Rack-It)

    #19540

    wickededge
    Keymaster
    • Topics: 121
    • Replies: 2906

    Welcome to the forum and to Wicked Edge! I’m confident that the reason your knives aren’t sliding across the board for you is that your edges are very toothy due to the newness of your diamond plates. As you use the kit more and more, that toothiness will diminish. For now you should spend more time with your higher grit stones, especially your ceramics and also your strops. Using those will refine the edges giving you better performance. Most Wusthofs I’ve worked with seem to do best at around 20 degrees per side. Having said that, thinning the blade down to 16 degrees per side is a good start because you’ll improve cutting peformance. You’ll probably find that your edge retention isn’t great, so you can start adding micro-bevels until you hit the magic angle that balances performance and edge retention for you and you’ll benefit by having thinned the shoulders. Here is an example of what I mean:

    You’ve already re-profiled your Santoku to 16 DPS (degrees per side). Now remount the knife in the same position and set the angle to 17 DPS. Do 10-20 light strokes per side with each side of your ceramic stones. Clean the blade off, lower the angle to 14 DPS and do 20 light strokes per side with each of your strops. Take the knife out and test it out. You’ll be well on your way to the kind of experimentation that will allow you to tune your knives to your specific needs. If you find that the edge retention isn’t satisfactory, then remount the knife and repeat the procedure, increasing the angle by 1 DPS. Keep repeating this until you are satisfied.

    -Clay

    1 user thanked author for this post.
    #19547

    Josh
    Participant
    • Topics: 89
    • Replies: 1670

    ^ this is great advise above. Sounds like your edges are very toothy and are biting into your cutting board.

    #19553

    Leo Barr
    Participant
    • Topics: 26
    • Replies: 812

    How do you mean sticks?
    I have a couple of knives which are supremely sharp and they stick into the end grain board I use if I push too hard but I am quite happy with that since on the whole little pressure is needed to cut.
    The main knife that does this is an Honyaki Nakira vegetable knife which is around 10˚ per side and finished on a Chosera 10K.

    #19554

    MarcH
    Moderator
    • Topics: 58
    • Replies: 1911

    I forgot to mention, I did not strop the Santuko. I thought stropping was for when you wanted a mirror looking edge. I didn’t realize you should strop an everyday use kitchen knife. I was just excited to use the WE and use the knife sharp; dinner-time. Do you suggest I strop every knife I sharpen?

    I’m doing a Forschner 6″ boning knife now. I just finished the fine stones. I spent much more time with each stone today. Especially the finer ones. I was reading the paper that came with the strop paste. I may hold off stropping till I can get an alcohol spray bottle. Do you strop first at the same angle you profiled the knife or drop down a couple of degrees as the paper suggests right away for the first strop?

    I’m going to remount the Santuko and go back and spend more time with the finer stones before I strop. What does it do when you said to set the angle to 17 dps, as the last step before I strop? Now after reading the strop instruction sheet I see where your suggestion to strop at 14dps comes from.
    Thanks for your help,

    Marc

    Marc
    (MarcH's Rack-It)

    #19555

    MarcH
    Moderator
    • Topics: 58
    • Replies: 1911

    It just stays put when I make the first cut down through the veggies. I’m use a sliding, rocking motion say for chopping celery sticks or onions. The knife just grabs the board and won’t slide.

    Thanks,
    Marc

    Marc
    (MarcH's Rack-It)

    #19556

    Leo Barr
    Participant
    • Topics: 26
    • Replies: 812

    Sounds like the toothy ness is the culprit as other have said also the board may need resurfacing especially if it is synthetic.
    still it sounds like you are on the right track !

    #19557

    Geocyclist
    Participant
    • Topics: 25
    • Replies: 524

    I agree completely with Kyle. I have a Wusthof santuko. Took it first to 15 dps. The edge retention wasn’t great, the edge rolled too easily. I resharpened to 20 dps and it does much better. This knife is so thin to begin with I didn’t notice much difference. I pro chef might, but not me.

    I believe Kyle’s advice to strop was to take away some toothiness. With my Wustoffs I do a set of ceramics after the diamonds then done. If your stones are not broken in you will get a more toothy edge.

    #19559

    MarcH
    Moderator
    • Topics: 58
    • Replies: 1911

    I’m sitting here reading the forums trying to figure this out. I used the knife to prep dinner. Besides being toothy it feels as though I’m pushing the knife through the food. Not like it’s sliding through. Being my first try I’m having to learn what to do and the terminology. Is it possible the blade steel is to thick or wide to support 16dps. Do I have to take this 16dps bevel all the way through the blade metal till it meets the flat of the blade? Right now my 16dps bevel is on top of the old manufacturer’s bevel like a second bevel.

    Thanks,
    Marc

    Marc
    (MarcH's Rack-It)

    #19683

    Spagery
    Participant
    • Topics: 1
    • Replies: 30

    My guess is that your angle is too narrow and it makes the blade want slice deep into the board.

    I would suggest a wider angle to create a working edge on your kitchen knives. It think it will help the blade to rock on the board instead of trying to slice into it.

    18 – 22 degree is recommended for kitchen knives, Maybe try to put a larger angle on one and see how it feels on the board.

    The wider angle will also give you the added benefit of durability. An edge that will hold up longer to use in the kitchen.

    Or you could switch to a wood or bamboo board instead of the plastic. But stay away from glass of course.

    #19686

    Mark76
    Keymaster
    • Topics: 179
    • Replies: 2760

    All above is great advice. I would follow Clay’s instructions. In addition, you could simply try to put a 20 dps bevel on your knives. Most German steels are quite soft and I wouldn’t recommend much more acute angles.

    Molecule Polishing: my blog about sharpening with the Wicked Edge

    #19733

    Spagery
    Participant
    • Topics: 1
    • Replies: 30

    As a cook in restaurant kitchens I know the feeling of the Cutting Board bite, and I dont like it. It slows down the speed of your prep. I much prefer when the blade can slide freely on the board.

    In some places I have worked they sharpen the house knives weekly by a sharpening service. And the guy that does it uses belt sanders i think. It makes what we call a Wire Edge.

    Its a really sharp edge for a couple of days in the kitchen and then it rolls over and you have to put a steel to the knife. When you steel the knife you are basically putting a micro bevel on it so the edge is not optimal.

    I dont like the wire edge knife. Because they bite into the boards and because they deform too early and then they need to be sharpened again. This is probably good business for the knife guy because his edge does not last up to kitchen use and you have to have it redone every week or so.

    But its a waste of steel and its a hassle.

    Usually we keep around a norton tri stone and we use it to sharpen any of our better knifes. So ive done some free hand sharpening for years before I got the wicked edge and I was never good at free hand but I could do it.

    Putting the knife to the stone is much better because you dont end up with the wire edge and then its much more durable and stays sharper longer.

    I think this has to do with the Leading Edge strokes on the stones instead of the Trailing Edge strokes that the grinder or sanders would make.

    But the wicked edge could also make a trailing edge depending on your own technique. If you want it could also do a leading edge finish to the blade.

    Iam going to do some testing soon to see if the Leading Edge vs Trailing Edge bites into a cutting board differently to test out my theory.

    #19742

    Spagery
    Participant
    • Topics: 1
    • Replies: 30

    I just finished sharpening two Identical forschner 10 inch chef knives.

    Both with a progression from 100 grit up to 1000 grit. @20 Degree’s But one of them I sharpened with the traditional trailing stroke method. And the other I sharpened all the way with a leading stroke technique.

    The difference between the feel of two edges edges is very noticeable on the cutting board. The trailing stroked blade bites into and drags at the board. While the leading stroked edge is very smooth, it glides along the board with much less grab.

    In the kitchen we tend to do a rocking and sliding motion with the chef knife. At the same time we are bringing the knife down to the board we are drawing it back and forth in a slicing motion.

    The bite into the board is not desirable in this cutting motion and a wire edge gives a very different feel when doing work with the knife on a board.

    I think what is happening is that the trailing strokes of the blade with the stones is drawing out the metal into a thin wire edge.

    And the leading edge strokes are instead cutting back the metal to reveal the true edge.

    Usually the true edge is hidden under the wire edge.

    And when the wire edge folds over, which it does very easy… you have to align it again with a sharpening steel. And after you do that a few times you end up with steel fatigue on the edge and it goes dull faster.

    Here is a graphic I pulled off google that I can use to explain what I think is going on.

    We know that when we sharpen on one side with the wicked edge we are making a burr and then we switch to the other side and finish off with alternating swipes with the paddles. A wire edge is basically a very sharp and straight burr. The wire wants to cut deep into the cutting board and it grabs onto it and we feel friction and dragging as the wire slices through the board.

    As opposed to a true edge where the blade does not slice deep into the board and it instead glides along the surface with less friction.

    I think that too narrow of an angle and the trailing strokes with a stone is what creates and forms the wire edge.

    #19744

    Leo Barr
    Participant
    • Topics: 26
    • Replies: 812

    You write some very good sense here I should like to add that certainly when using bench stones (whetstones) it is useful to know how the knife is used to cut ; for instance a yanagiba (sushi slicer) is designed for pull cuts from the heal to the tip so the scratch pattern should direct forwards & upwards towards the spine from the blade so the scratches lead the edge through the medium . Conversely say a vegetable knife may be pushed more from tip to heal so the scratch direction is more suited in a backward direction. I admit I have not yet finished a knife in this way but the science behind it seems logical .
    As I write this I am trying to check in my mind that this is the correct way round but it would seem logical that the medium would tend to help lead the knife down the scratch pattern . A knife that is to be used either way cutting forwards or backwards should have a vertical scratch pattern.
    I hope I have understood this correctly and please anyone that is familiar with this and says I have the scratch pattern direction the wrong way around please correct me on this discussion since I think this is a valuable tweak to finishing a knife and could easily be done on the WE certainly for chefs knives.

    #19752

    Geocyclist
    Participant
    • Topics: 25
    • Replies: 524

    Thanks for making this simple test Spagery. I am surprised no one has does it already. Your results make sense.

    I have always done edge trailing because it is required for stropping, so I took this one method and tried to master the hand eye coordination aspect. That being said, when I am ready to move to the next stone I do some edge leading strokes, then a few more edge trailing, then change stones. I do this up to the 600 diamonds, then don’t do it any further. I really don’t know if it does any good or if stopping it at the 600’s makes the edge better or worse. It does make sense that if I had a wire edge, a few edge leading strokes should take it off.

    Having had some problems with some S30V blades I “de-stressed” the edge to deform any wire edge and/or week steel the sharpen into good steel. I get the knife set in the vice, start with the 100’s until a get a burr on both sides, then run an old ceramic stick perpendicular down the edge a few times. I then go back to the 100’s, get a burr again and carry on as normal.

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