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Help! New user with angle issues . . .

Recent Forums Main Forum Techniques and Sharpening Strategies Help! New user with angle issues . . .

This topic contains 29 replies, has 6 voices, and was last updated by  MarcH 03/10/2018 at 7:17 am.

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  • #45281

    Expidia
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    • Topics: 28
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    On my new 2016 WE300 I sharpened my first knife last night.  A large Wusthof kitchen knife from an old set I still have.  My angle cube was still in transit, I leaned a 1000 grit stone on the blade and to my untrained eye it looked to be a factory bevel of around 19 degrees.  I ran the stones from 100 through 1000.  Then this AM I googled Wusthof to see if they show the proper angle for “their” blades and it did show its supposed to be 14 degrees . . . Rut Row!  So this AM I set the selector lever at 14 and ran all the stones again.

    Then this afternon I prepared a Wusthof 3.5 inch paring knife to sharpen and I had to use the low angle adapter so the stone would hit the blade and not the vice.  I set the angle degee lever to 14 degrees and ran a few stones from 400 to 1000.

    UPS rang my bell a few minutes ago and delivered the angle cube.  I set the knife back up on low angle adapter to double check what angle i had sharpened it at figuring I screwed up by not adjusting the angle for the added height of the low angle adapter.

    I think I was right about screwing up because I zeroed the angle cube on the base and then put it onto the a 1000 grit stone and it was reading 9.50 with the WE 300 angle indicator on 14.

    I had to move the indicator all the way back to a reading of 20 degrees in order for the angle cube to read 14.  Am I on the right track to have to keep it on 20 degrees to get an angle of 14 with this thin small blade.  My 1500 grit stone also came today so I went back over this knife for awhile with the angle cube reading it 14 degrees.

    What say you?

    • This topic was modified 9 months, 2 weeks ago by  Expidia.
    • This topic was modified 9 months, 2 weeks ago by  Expidia.
    #45284

    Organic
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    • Topics: 16
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    The angle marks on the wicked edge are calibrated for blades that sit something like 5/8 inches above the clamp (I always forget, so don’t quote me on that). The markings will be inaccurate for all other situations. This is why the angle cube is essential if you want to know what angle you are actually sharpening at.

    Just because a manufacturer says their blades are sharpened at a particular angle does not mean that they are actually sharpened at that angle in reality. Most people have no way of checking these claims and have bought into the marketing hype that more acute angles are better. Acute angles can be good for kitchen knives and knives intended for delicate work, but you might find that a more obtuse angle holds up better over time especially on knives intended for harder use cases. It can be interesting to try different angles on the same knife just to see what geometry works best for that knife.

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    #45285

    MarcH
    Moderator
    • Topics: 53
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    The only thing I use the WE angle bar increments for is to indicate I’m going wider angle or narrower angle when I move the rod ends.  I always use a zeroed digital angle cube to determine the relative angle.  The WE angles scribes, like Organic stated are just a rough guide.  This angle indicator is based on a particular size knife mounted in a particular configuration.  These angle scribes should not be used to profile a knife when a precise relative angle is wanted.  Always use the zeroed digital angle cube when in that situation.

    I too have found the same situation Organic has seen that factory specified bevels don’t usually relate to real world measurements.  The only knife I ever sharpened that matched the printed factory specified bevel is a “Shun” knife at 16 degrees bevel angle per side.  Expidia your experience is the same as I had and many others before and after me.   It’s a good lesson you’ll never forget.  Now you have it you’ll never sharpen without the angle cube.

    Marc
    (MarcH's Rack-It)

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    #45317

    sksharp
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    You said “large Wusthof” I take it that it’s a chefs knife and if so the angle you sharpened at would be 16 or 17 deg. approx. if the bar was set at 19 deg.

    #45320

    Expidia
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    • Topics: 28
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    Yes, im sure you are correct on that angle being the knife is big and mounted high even on the lower holes.  Now that I have my angle cube, I’ll do it again but first check some of the other larger knives in the wusthof set to check their factory bevels.  Their website says they are ground at 19 degrees, but as others have already said rarely in the real world do the factory edges match what a company says their angles are cut at.

    below is what the knife looked like before I started it.  Looks like I had it too far forward anyway.  Had a pretty bad edge to start from the chefs choice sharpener.

    • This reply was modified 9 months, 2 weeks ago by  Expidia.
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    #45336

    Expidia
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    IMG_5205

    Update now that my angle cube is here.  The Wusthof factory edge angle posted on their site is 14 degrees.  So I used another knife from the set to see what their angle actual is.  I followed the steps the members have shown me and ran the magic marker along the apex followed by a light brushing off with the 1000 grit stone (the 1500 has the glass platen on the other side and the angle cube is of course magnetic).

    I’m going to re-proile it anyway at some point and these are my knives but I have not made a decision as to what angle I’ll re-profile at yet.  If I was doing someone elses I would re-profile at the factory setting unless they wanted to see different performance out of their knife.

    I know its been suggested that I don’t learn on a knife with a blade this thin yet and I have not attempted this one yet, but I would like to learn and gain experience on this this old Wusthof set which I don’t care about.

    One thing I can see right away though when I do get to re-profiling this particular knife is that I found it to be 14 degrees . . . but the stone would hit the jaws so it looks to me my only choice its to use the low profile adapter which I have.  This knife is already set at the top holes and I could probably set it up a tad higher and clear the jaws but being that I already have the LPA wouldn’t this be the way to go?

    Or I could widen the angle to say the 16 degree area which would clear the jaws.  Is this what the experience members do is to re-profile a thin blade by widening its angle a little enough for it to clear the jaws?  Pics attached to give you a better idea of where I am with this.

    *I also just received the advanced alignment guide.  But thats seems to me a tool that I use to record exactly where each knife is set (for clamping in the exact same spot) once I get it where I want it.

    P.S. thats not blood on the walls. Don’t want to scare any potential WE buyers away . . . hahaha . . . Its from my red tool chest rubbing against it when it was pushed further back.

    • This reply was modified 9 months, 2 weeks ago by  Expidia.
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    #45342

    MarcH
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    Just to be clear on my understanding.  You wrote the factory spec is 14º per side. Did you actually clamp the knife in the Low Angle Adapter so the stone does not hit the vice, apply the sharpie and determine the actual bevel angle?  If so what was that measured angle when the stone removed the sharpie directly on the factory bevel?

    I prefer to read the digital cube when it is more centered and even with the bevel.  That is when the gauge is even with the knife edge and the stone is placed with an equal amount of it’s length above and below the knife edge. It probably doesn’t make a big different but you have the gauge held way high above the knife edge.  I suggest you find a method and placement to do your angle reading that you will utilize the same positioning consistently every time you take the angle measurement while sharpening that knife.  Consistency is key when using the Wicked Edge.

    Marc
    (MarcH's Rack-It)

    #45347

    Expidia
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    Just to be clear on my understanding. You wrote the factory spec is 14º per side. Did you actually clamp the knife in the Low Angle Adapter so the stone does not hit the vice, apply the sharpie and determine the actual bevel angle? If so what was that measured angle when the stone removed the sharpie directly on the factory bevel? I prefer to read the digital cube when it is more centered and even with the bevel. That is when the gauge is even with the knife edge and the stone is placed with an equal amount of it’s length above and below the knife edge. It probably doesn’t make a big different but you have the gauge held way high above the knife edge. I suggest you find a method and placement to do your angle reading that you will utilize the same positioning consistently every time you take the angle measurement while sharpening that knife. Consistency is key when using the Wicked Edge.

    Yes on the clamping of the knife and measuring the angle which read 14 degrees (which even the slide level on the angle selector was at 14 degrees for this style knife).  The stone touching the jaw was very close, so I moved the stone up a little higher to measure the angle so it would not hit and that was the picture of the angle cube reading. It was the same 14 degrees when I measured lower and just ahead of the jaw.  This was the setting that removed all the marker on the bevel.

    I realize consistency will be the key to measuring the initial angle or seeking to change the edge to a new angle and holding the stones in the same position and using the same stroking motions.  I think if I went to a 15 degree initial re-profile on this style knife the stone should clear the jaw.  I’m trying to avoid using the LAA and would prefer to change the edge a degree or two wider so as to keep the action of this knife set pretty close to the factory edge.

    This was just a test set up now that I have the cube and it shows me how indespensible using the cube and the advance alignment guide to record each sharpened knife’s position after my final set up . . .  especially for future touch ups after a new edge is Wickied In (cute huh?).  The first knife I tried (as mentioned above) I used the WE300’s angle selector and it was somewhere around 20 degrees to get me a 14 degree edge. Then the members (such as yourself) clued me in that I always need to use the angle cube and a marker as those settings will be different with each knife and my first knife I attempted  was so big and high. Most importantly I learned here that most factory edge specs don’t often match up to the actual bevel they put on their knives . . . who could ever known that?

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    #45348

    Pinkfloyd
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    Expidia,

    I think 14 Deg for a German steel knife is to acute of an angle. Wusthof site says they use X50CrMo14 at 56 HRC.

    I think that steel would perform better, last longer at a higher angle.

    If it was me i would sharpen at 18 or 20 Deg, then put a micro bevel at 20-22 Deg.

    Just my opinion.

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    #45349

    sksharp
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    I’ve sharpened a couple sets of Wusthof and Henckel’s and sharpened them at the angle specified from the manufacturer. No complaints from the owners in fact they said the knives were not nearly that sharp when they were new, which is my standard, better than new. There is more to steel than just the rockwell hardness as well so don’t poo poo a particular steel because it’s not at 65 rockwell. The pro Wusthof and Henckels are around 57 rockwell and have worked for a lot of people for a very long time and they are also hardened and tempered differently than most steels. The first set I did about 6 months ago and were Henckels. The owners told me a couple weeks ago that the knives were doing fine without any fall off in performance. I did spend some time showing them how and how often to use their steel which is something a lot of people give up on because the knives they are trying to steel aren’t sharp enough in the beginning for steeling to be effective. It’s pretty easy to show someone what to look for and how to steel a knife once the knife has been sharpened properly.

    The one angle I do question Henckels on is the 10 deg. angle they proclaim on their Santuko. I’ve found those to be at around 12 or 13 deg. approx. but the other knives were not far off, especially comparing to EDC’S and inexpensive kitchen knives.

    The one thing I do on almost all the knives I do anymore, and was done on these as well, is a micro bevel at +2 deg. in most cases with either the last stone in my progression or with the micro ceramic stones. This does change the effective cutting angle at the edge to 16 or 17 deg. and might help with retention some but I find that knives with a micro bevel are much easier to maintain with a steel, much more forgiving.

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    #45351

    Pinkfloyd
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    sksharp,

    Sorry, did not mean to imply that German steel was inferior. I have Messermeister and love em. I chose to sharpen mine at 18 deg, micro at 20 . Blade seems to hold up much better for me now. Except when wife tries using chefs knife as a pizza cutter on stone Ugh! There went a lot of sharpening for naught.

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    #45352

    Expidia
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    Thx for those tips above.  I’m not locked into a set edge I just figured I’d start out with what the manufactuer produced the knife with.  Then try the 18-20 edge with the suggested micro bevel.

    Where does this Wusthof set’s steel (pic) fall in grade of its hardness and or quality?

    • This reply was modified 9 months, 2 weeks ago by  Expidia.
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    #45354

    Expidia
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    And can someone comment on the quality of this Global set as to its grade of steel?

    Thx

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    #45358

    MarcH
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    • Topics: 53
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    These are both very good quality, well made production knives with great reputations and reviews.  I would be happy to sharpen and use both the Wusthof and the Global Knives.  They’ll give you many years of good use and enjoyment.  Honestly, there is not a thing bad I would say about either brand.

    When I got into the fancier super hard steels and custom forged knives that for me is all luxury and ego.  I am lucky and fortunate enough to be able to afford some.  I still own and use my Wusthofs.

    I would say these knives are made of fairly comparable steels.  The Global being Japanese I would expect to be probably a little harder but not that much harder.  I believe they are both hard steels or moderately hard steels I would say 56-58 on the Rockwell Hardness scale, (based on past experiences and not researching or looking up the values).

     

     

    Marc
    (MarcH's Rack-It)

    • This reply was modified 9 months, 2 weeks ago by  MarcH.
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    #45360

    Expidia
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    Wow, turned out my first (correctly done) Wicked Edge on my large Wusthof chef knife (the one I almost turned a chef knife into a butcher knife edgewise on my first go around :o).  Thanks for all the tips from the various members as your help and fine tuning saved me from a lot of mistakes trial and error wise, if I had only the youtube user made vids on how to use the WE.

    The pic of the finished edge and catch it just right was tough to take with my iphone, but I’m amazed how polished the edge turned out.  It really started taking shape after the 1,500 grit stone.  I was going for the 14 degree factory edge re-profile.  Marked the edge and found 14 degrees with the 1000 grit stone and a few light passes on both sides removed it.  Rechecked the angles as initally the right side was at 13.5 and the left side was at 14.30 degrees.  I dropped the selector switch to 16 degrees to allow for some micro adjusments of the WE300’s micro adjusters (great feature) and got both sides equal around 14 to 14.05.  Then I went from 100 through 1,500 on the stones turning  (or reversing) each grit occassionally to try and break in more of each stone’s surface.   Its only a chefs knife and I was not looking for a mirror edge (but thats what I ended up with) as I went a little further to break in more of the accessories.   I continued on to the 6 mu DLF on the other side of the 1,500 handles and then the 5 mu and 3.5 mu strops with the emulsions.

    What an amazing system.  And thanks to all for your guidence and tips.  Sample section of edge attached.

    • This reply was modified 9 months, 2 weeks ago by  Expidia.
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