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  • #49860
    Richard
    Participant
    • Topics: 14
    • Replies: 176

    Hey everyone! New to the WE world last month, watched a ton of YouTube videos before purchasing the Gen 3 and I’m glad I went that direction. Have bought a few more things since then and finished my first Henkel’s chef’s knife last week.  Not as good a turnout as expected but I’ve got plenty of time to learn.  I’ve had an EdgePro Apex for probably seven years and determined it was time to ‘raise the bar’ after learning of Wicked Edge.

    1 user thanked author for this post.
    #49861
    MarcH
    Moderator
    • Topics: 65
    • Replies: 2593

    Welcome to the Wicked Edge Forum,  Richard.

    Marc
    (MarcH's Rack-Its)

    2 users thanked author for this post.
    #49865
    Organic
    Participant
    • Topics: 17
    • Replies: 929

    Welcome Richard!

    Those diamond plates take time to wear in. I was also unimpressed with my first several edges. Now my setup allows me to get hair whittling edges every time. I could never do that before.

    4 users thanked author for this post.
    #49952
    Richard
    Participant
    • Topics: 14
    • Replies: 176

    That’s good to know because something happened today that made me wonder what I’m doing wrong.  Bought three new Henckle’s for Christmas and I’ve used them quite a bit but they’ve become dull so I whip out my WE Gen 3.  They come from the factory at 15 degrees so made sure with the Sharpie and got everything locked into place.  Began with a 400 grit stone and worked my way up to the 3.5 micron strop.  On every stone, I scrubbed vertically to get the burr then finished each edge with the recommended diagonal push from the heel of the knife all the way through the tip.  Stopped scrubbing with the 1600 grit stone and finished with the strops.  It just barely will cut paper.  So now where do I go to correct this?  Is it me or do the stones need more breaking in?

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    #49955
    airscapes
    Participant
    • Topics: 14
    • Replies: 344

    Richard , it took me about 8 knives and then some bar stock to get my stones broken in.  I didn’t do any of the Henckle’s until after that.. mostly worked on neighbors knives to learn 🙂  These did cut paper so probably not the stones.

    If you removed all the scratches from the previous stone and were able to raise a bur on both sides before moving on then, my guess as a new WE user myself, is that  you rolled over the edge with the strop,  dulling it.  Of the 6 or 7 knives I have  stropped (didn’t buy them until recently as I bought the WE 120), I dulled at least 5 of them and am still trying to learn how to do it correctly.

    Take your newly sharpened knife that won’t cut paper  and shine a bright light on the edge with the knife edge standing up like it is in the vices and the light at the tip shining at you.  I have found if you messed up the edge with the strop you will see shiny spots on the apex  where the damage is,  as you have polished the top of the bevel and made it rounded..

    An inexpensive USB microscope ( https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00XNYXQHE/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o07_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1 ) is a very valuable tool to see what you are doing and to know when you have removed all the scratches from the previous grit.  Before I move to the next grit, I mark the bevel with a Red marker and continue sharpening for a few more stroke.  Using the microscope on the high magnification setting, I check the knife on both sides over the full length for an red marker in scratches or along the apex.  If none is found and all the deep scratches from the previous stone are gone, it is time to switch stones.

    Also when you strop, you change your angle from 15 down to 13  (2 degrees less then your sharpening angle) to help prevent the roll over of the edge.  Due to all my failures, last one I dropped by 2.5 degrees..

    Hope this helps!

    • This reply was modified 3 years, 4 months ago by airscapes.
    5 users thanked author for this post.
    #49957
    Pinkfloyd
    Participant
    • Topics: 22
    • Replies: 205

    Richard,

    I too came from the Edge Pro, I have the Pro model. It is still a very good and capable sharpening system, but since i purchased the WE system that is now my go to sharpener.

    Airscapes,

    Very nice recommendations, advice. Sounds spot on

    2 users thanked author for this post.
    #49958
    MarcH
    Moderator
    • Topics: 65
    • Replies: 2593

    Richard, for the new users it’s often not one thing to single out, that you may be doing wrong.  First, as you know, the stones take time to break-in.  Then the stones will continue to give improved results as your technique and skills improve.

    Often, I believe the new user stops short of bringing the two knife sides together at the apex, that is “apexing the edge”.  I did.  After you feel you’ve drawn a burr on one knife side then switch over to the opposite side and draw that burr, too.  You still have be sure the burrs are done across the entire length of the knife edges, on both sides.  You must bring the two sides together at the knife edge.  Then you must make sure the edge is apexed across the entire edge length afterwards.  I accomplish this with alternating side strokes; left, right, left, right.  This alternating side edge work must be done long enough and well enough with each and every grit before moving on to the next grit.  Consistency and thoroughness along the entire knife edge length are key.

    Wicked Edges are made through this consistent, thorough, repetitious process, grit after grit.  Any short cuts in any step will short change your expected results.

     

    Marc
    (MarcH's Rack-Its)

    3 users thanked author for this post.
    #49960
    Organic
    Participant
    • Topics: 17
    • Replies: 929

    That’s good to know because something happened today that made me wonder what I’m doing wrong. Bought three new Henckle’s for Christmas and I’ve used them quite a bit but they’ve become dull so I whip out my WE Gen 3. They come from the factory at 15 degrees so made sure with the Sharpie and got everything locked into place. Began with a 400 grit stone and worked my way up to the 3.5 micron strop. On every stone, I scrubbed vertically to get the burr then finished each edge with the recommended diagonal push from the heel of the knife all the way through the tip. Stopped scrubbing with the 1600 grit stone and finished with the strops. It just barely will cut paper. So now where do I go to correct this? Is it me or do the stones need more breaking in?

    I think airscapes gave you some good advise.  It takes most users about 10-15 or so knives worth of experience before they get results that start to impress. I suggest you check out this thread with advice from experienced sharpeners for new WE users.

    3 users thanked author for this post.
    #50014
    Richard
    Participant
    • Topics: 14
    • Replies: 176

    That helps a lot!  Thanks so much.

    #50038
    Richard
    Participant
    • Topics: 14
    • Replies: 176

    What are your opinions on the number of alternating strokes?  I see the videos that Clay has put out and it doesn’t appear that he puts a whole lot of time into that particular phase but then I see comments and videos where guys are going as high as 100.  Is that really necessary?  Oh BTW, that microscope is the bomb!  Thanks for hooking me up with that link.

    • This reply was modified 3 years, 4 months ago by Richard.
    #50041
    Organic
    Participant
    • Topics: 17
    • Replies: 929

    I don’t count strokes when sharpening. I go by the results that I can see with the aid of a magnifying device (usually a loupe, but I also sometimes use microscopes). Once the bevels are looking like I want at a particular grit I will then do several (again, I don’t count) alternating strokes with decreasing pressure before moving to the next grit.

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    #50043
    airscapes
    Participant
    • Topics: 14
    • Replies: 344

    Richard, you just answered your own question!  Microscope and marker..

    When all the scratches from the previous grit are gone, you can raise an alternating burr (felt with your finger on each side) and all the new scratches are running in the same direction, it is time to move on.  It is not necessary to make single alternating strokes the length of the knife.  I will do 4-7 edge leading downward strokes heel to tip, over lapping over the length of  a 6″ chefs knife.  This was due to the fact I had scratches running parallel to the bevel attempting to do what you see Clay doing in the videos. Takes a lot of practice to be able to do a downward forward motion the entire length of the knife.

    When you are ready to move on, mark the bevel with red marker and do a few passes and them look at it with the scope from heel to tip both sides..

     

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    #50044
    Richard
    Participant
    • Topics: 14
    • Replies: 176

    This is getting complicated!  LOL

    Ok, just got back from Lowes and have 2 foot piece of bar stock.  So pretty much just back and forth with the stones?

    #50045
    MarcH
    Moderator
    • Topics: 65
    • Replies: 2593

    The bar stock is a good way to accelerate the stone break-in.  I suggest first you work with some junk or beater knives to learn how to clamp and position knives.  Also, how to set guide rod angles and lock the positions, and then how to employ the various sharpening strokes.  This way while gaining the muscle memory from practicing your knife sharpening and stone skills, you’ll also see first hand how the produced scratch patterns appear and the differences associated with each sharpening stroke. This is all part of the learning curve as you practice and develop your preferred sharpening technique.  Don’t miss this learning opportunity.  This way your killing the proverbial two birds with one stone.  Learning while breaking in the stones.

    Then, if you find after 8 or 10 knives that you think you have the hang of it and you’re ready to tackle a knife you care about, but you don’t think the stones are quite broken in yet. Then I’d take the stones to the bar stock to accelerate the stone break-in period.  To prevent possibly damaging a good knife.

    Marc
    (MarcH's Rack-Its)

    3 users thanked author for this post.
    #50046
    airscapes
    Participant
    • Topics: 14
    • Replies: 344

    The bar stock is a good way to accelerate the stone break-in.  Then, if you find after 8 or 10 knives that you think you have the hang of it and you’re ready to tackle a knife you care about, but you don’t think the stones are quite broken in yet. Then I’d take the stones to the bar stock to accelerate the stone break-in period. To prevent possibly damaging a good knife.

    @Richard,   What Marc describes is  exactly what I  ended up doing.  If you go straight to the bar stock you will not know when to stop.. you’ll have no frame of reference as to what constitutes broken in and what would be prematurely worn out!

    I think I reached for the bar stock after about 8 or 9 kitchen knives.  At that point you could feel that the center of the stones cut the knife one way and if you went to high or to low into an area that was not used much it felt different..  I could also see the scratch pattern was deeper when going to high or low.  I just worked the ends of the stones on the bar until I had an even sounding/feeling cut when transition from center to end..   Hope that helps explain it..

     

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