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Freshening kitchen knife edges. . . .

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  • #55112
    Expidia
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    • Topics: 47
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    I’ve asked this here myself in the past as to what stones and progression users use to freshen an already profiled and sharpened knife.

    Since I’m home cooking more than ever since past March I found 6 of my 15 various knives on my rack have lost their sharpness.  When they can’t pass the “sticky thumbnail test” I know its time to re-sharpen them.

    What really worked well for me was to use my notes of the angle I originally used on a particular knife and mount it in the WE.  I then started with the 400 grit using the normal heel to tip strokes I did 30 strokes on each side.  Wiped the edge with a paper towel and did 30 strokes with the 600.

    Then I switched to the 800 for 30 strokes and then the 1,000.  And thats it.  I stopped right there.  Even though I have more grits and strops I’ve found with kitchen knives stopping at 1,000 leaves you with a super sharp somewhat toothy edge thats ideal for cutting and slicing.  It was nice to finish each so quickly.  Now they are all back to passing the sticky thumbnail test again where you lightly rest the blades edge on your thumbnail and move it towards the tip of you thumb.  If it slips when doing this test on 3 different areas of the blade tip, middle and towards the heel then it’s time to re-sharpen.  If it sticks then it’s still plenty sharp for your average kitchen needs.

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    #55115
    tcmeyer
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    • Topics: 37
    • Replies: 1957

    Coincidently, today I sharpened a half-dozen of my Grizzly knives and two of my kitchen knives.  One of the knives needed for me to start out with my 400 grit stones, but the rest all were good with the 800’s.  Now that I have the 2200-grit stones, I’ve been ending with them.  Most are very short blades, so 15 strokes is enough, even where the edge is a bit wonky.  And even with the extra two stones, it doesn’t take long to run thru the 800 /1000/ 1500 / 2200 sequence. With 2″ blades, 10 strokes each were all that’s needed, so it goes pretty quickly.

    I also sharpened a skeletonized Walther knife that I’ve had for quite a few years.  There’s not much steel left behind the edge, so it’s relegated to opening envelopes.

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    #55120
    Expidia
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    • Topics: 47
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    Two of the kitchen knives were from the 3 knife Shun starter set I bought last year.  They have lifetime free sharpening and I already sent them back 6 months ago as a tiny tip on the mid sized one had broken off.  They sharpened all 3 and repaired the tip.  I’m not surprised that a tip broke as they use VG-Max steel and it seems very brittle as this is the second time a tiny piece of tip broke off and both times I don’t remember how I possibly snapped it off? Takes at least 3 weeks round trip plus shipping, so I figured I’m done with sending them back and I finally work up the courage to sharpen them myself.

    A google showed Shun uses a 16 degree angle, so I profiled them at 16 starting with the 400’s.  Surprisingly I raised a burr in a short period of time.  I was expecting hard steel to take a lot longer.  Brought them up to the 1,000 grit and stopped.  These knives at 16 degrees don’t show much of a bevel, so it did not take me very long including the re-profiling as compared to sharpening my collection of Chris Reeve CPM S35VN folders or Benchmade, Spiderco etc.

    #55121
    tcmeyer
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    • Topics: 37
    • Replies: 1957

    In my experience, the difference between quality kitchen knives and their lower cost competition lies in the thickness of the blades and thin blades really need to be made of high cost steels.

    Small (narrow) bevels, especially at low angles, are sure evidence of a blade that is very thin at the shoulders.  Very thin blades are a pleasure to use in the kitchen.  They also sharpen easily as there’s very little steel to be removed as compared to thicker blades.  Unfortunately, where the steel is very hard, it can also be quite brittle, tending to chip rather than dent when subjected to high forces.  “High forces” can be applied by pressing too hard to an edge on a cutting board.  If the force applied shifts to one side or the other, bits of the edge can be made to break away.

     

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    #55166
    Expidia
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    • Topics: 47
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    Exactly.  Well said TC.

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