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Raising a burr

This topic contains 12 replies, has 8 voices, and was last updated by  Expidia 04/25/2019 at 4:32 pm.

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  • #50254

    Chuck
    Participant
    • Topics: 4
    • Replies: 5

    I’ve been working with my WE120 and the basic stones that came with it for about 3 weeks now. I’ve read the manual many times and watched all the videos aimed at getting you started with the WE. I’ve bought some cheap knives to practice on figuring if I ruin anything it’ll just go in the garbage. Surprisingly I haven’t ruined anything yet but I have a question about raising a burr. Do I just do it with the first, course stone I use or do I do it every time I progress to the next finer stone? The manual leaves me with the impression you only do it once with the coarsest stone. Yet I’ve watched videos where they do it with every stone. I think some of the confusion comes from the fact that some video are older and art of using the WE is advancing. I just ordered an angel block and the 800/1000 stones but I don’t think I’m going to be going much finer.

    #50255

    Dwight Glass
    Participant
    • Topics: 0
    • Replies: 48

    Welcome to the forum chuck. I raise a burr with the first course stone I use.

    1 user thanked author for this post.
    #50256

    Pinkfloyd
    Participant
    • Topics: 21
    • Replies: 200

    Welcome Chuck,

    I only raise a burr with the first set of stones. First one side raising a burr counting the strokes, then raise a burr on the other side with matching number of strokes. Then go back to the first side and lightly remove that burr with one or two strokes, then the other side with one or two light strokes. Then a couple of alternating light strokes to finish, then move onto next higher grit with alternating strokes.

    3 users thanked author for this post.
    #50257

    airscapes
    Participant
    • Topics: 11
    • Replies: 198

    Chuck, the below comes from a private email from MarcH to me when I was getting started.  It was very helpful to me and really should be made a sticky or put in to the FAQ..

    Here’s a Youtube video showing three sharpening methods incorporated together.  The videos are supposed to be about using whetstones.  It’s a two video set.  In the first video, I linked, Tom discusses the whetstones but really only sharpens with the diamond stones. Tom utilizes good sharpening technique, IMO.  This is probably of the best technique explaining video I’ve ever found.  I have developed my technique utilizing some of his methods while emulating his style.  You’ll notice his technique is slow and deliberate. There is a lot of attention put on the placement and contact between the stones and the knife and the applied pressure.  You don’t see or here any slapping.  Nothing is erratic.  
     
    At around 5:15 in the video, Tom gets started with the circular stroke and explains its value and shows magnified results.
    At around 8:22 Tom switches to the scrubbing stroke and explains this well, also.
    At around 9:54 Tom progresses to what he calls the Wicked Edge sweeping stroke.  This is the sharpening stroke that brings out the even sharp knife edge by smoothing and bringing the two individual sides, the bevels, precisely together at the apex.  The apex or knife edge is the line of intersection of the two angled planes of each individual bevel.  The more precise and refined this line of intersection is, the sharper the knife will be.  
    This sweeping method can be done edge leading, or edge trailing, and in the directions both, from heel to tip or tip to heel.  The edge leading is down and onto the knife edge.   If you watch the video closely you’ll see how Tom’s finger tips are up above the knife edge, at the start of this stroke.   Be very very careful doing this stroke as you are bringing your fingers down against the exposed sharpen blade!  I utilize safety shields the entire time I’m sharpening, irrespective of my stroke directions.  They insure my finger tips won’t contact the exposed sharpened knife edge.  Again!!  One time was enough for me.
    The edge trailing stroke, up and off the knife edge I reserve for lapping films or stropping.
    I sharpen with every grit and every sharpening medium, (diamonds, ceramics, oil stones or whetstones) utilizing only the heel to tip direction.  I start each grit with up-down-up-down scrubbing to set the burr, working a portion of the knife’s length, one side at a time, but switching sides, back and forth, every once in a while, attempting to keep the steel removal even from side to side and to a minimum.  After I feel the burrs on both sides and visually inspect with the USB microscope, I utilize the alternating side, left-right-left-right, edge leading, heel to tip strokes, the sweeping method as Tom calls it.  I do not count strokes. You cannot do too many strokes.  I do work at first on smaller portions of the knife edge and elongate to overlap this work as I make progress.  When it feels sharp and even along the entire edge and the scratch pattern is uniform, visually, via the USB microscope, only then do I move on to the next finer higher grit.
    I repeat with the scrubbing followed with edge leading sweeping, always heel to tip, with each and every sharpening grit in my progression.  I choose not to change the direction of my strokes, as some sharpeners do, to help them see that they are obliterating the previous grit’s scratches.  I can see the difference in my scratch patterns with each grit, from the scrubbing strokes to the change in scratch pattern with the edge leading sweeping strokes, using the microscope. 
    When I finish with my last sharpening grit, I move on to edge trailing, (up and off the edge), sweeping strokes, still only from heel to tip, either for lapping films or strops, which ever I choose to use for that knife.   I always finish every sharpened edge with strops.  The more polish I’m going for the more strop grits I use in the stropping progression.”
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    #50258

    MarcH
    Moderator
    • Topics: 58
    • Replies: 1917

    Chuck, just through the nature of my repetitive technique, I raise a burr with each and every grit.  It just happens as a result of using the scrubbing strokes.  It’s not intentional it is just the results of my method and technique.  My progressive burrs are kept to a minimum by my alternating side method and my frequent visual inspection with the USB microscope.  The burrs are increasingly smaller with each finer grit in my progression.  By the 1500 grit the burr would be unnoticeable without the USB microscope.  I remove each burr by applying edge leading alternating strokes.

    I don’t look at the burr formation as a bad thing, rather an indication that I am correctly apexing the knife edge with each grit stone.

    Marc
    (MarcH's Rack-It)

    1 user thanked author for this post.
    #50259

    NorCalQ
    Participant
    • Topics: 32
    • Replies: 92

    Just to add… every time I move up in grit, I scrub one side to get rid of previous marks, check for the burr, then move to the other side and do the same.  After that, I switch to alternating strokes and don’t worry about the burr, until I move up in grit again.  Hope this helps and doesn’t confuse the issue.

    2 users thanked author for this post.
    #50262

    Chuck
    Participant
    • Topics: 4
    • Replies: 5

    Thank you to everyone that responded to my post, especially airscapes for the video link.

    #50269

    Expidia
    Participant
    • Topics: 39
    • Replies: 289

    Chuck, the below comes from a private email from MarcH to me when I was getting started. It was very helpful to me and really should be made a sticky or put in to the FAQ..

    Here’s a Youtube video showing three sharpening methods incorporated together. The videos are supposed to be about using whetstones. It’s a two video set. In the first video, I linked, Tom discusses the whetstones but really only sharpens with the diamond stones. Tom utilizes good sharpening technique, IMO. This is probably of the best technique explaining video I’ve ever found. I have developed my technique utilizing some of his methods while emulating his style. You’ll notice his technique is slow and deliberate. There is a lot of attention put on the placement and contact between the stones and the knife and the applied pressure. You don’t see or here any slapping. Nothing is erratic.
    At around 5:15 in the video, Tom gets started with the circular stroke and explains its value and shows magnified results.
    At around 8:22 Tom switches to the scrubbing stroke and explains this well, also.
    At around 9:54 Tom progresses to what he calls the Wicked Edge sweeping stroke. This is the sharpening stroke that brings out the even sharp knife edge by smoothing and bringing the two individual sides, the bevels, precisely together at the apex. The apex or knife edge is the line of intersection of the two angled planes of each individual bevel. The more precise and refined this line of intersection is, the sharper the knife will be.
    This sweeping method can be done edge leading, or edge trailing, and in the directions both, from heel to tip or tip to heel. The edge leading is down and onto the knife edge. If you watch the video closely you’ll see how Tom’s finger tips are up above the knife edge, at the start of this stroke. Be very very careful doing this stroke as you are bringing your fingers down against the exposed sharpen blade! I utilize safety shields the entire time I’m sharpening, irrespective of my stroke directions. They insure my finger tips won’t contact the exposed sharpened knife edge. Again!! One time was enough for me.
    The edge trailing stroke, up and off the knife edge I reserve for lapping films or stropping.
    I sharpen with every grit and every sharpening medium, (diamonds, ceramics, oil stones or whetstones) utilizing only the heel to tip direction. I start each grit with up-down-up-down scrubbing to set the burr, working a portion of the knife’s length, one side at a time, but switching sides, back and forth, every once in a while, attempting to keep the steel removal even from side to side and to a minimum. After I feel the burrs on both sides and visually inspect with the USB microscope, I utilize the alternating side, left-right-left-right, edge leading, heel to tip strokes, the sweeping method as Tom calls it. I do not count strokes. You cannot do too many strokes. I do work at first on smaller portions of the knife edge and elongate to overlap this work as I make progress. When it feels sharp and even along the entire edge and the scratch pattern is uniform, visually, via the USB microscope, only then do I move on to the next finer higher grit.
    I repeat with the scrubbing followed with edge leading sweeping, always heel to tip, with each and every sharpening grit in my progression. I choose not to change the direction of my strokes, as some sharpeners do, to help them see that they are obliterating the previous grit’s scratches. I can see the difference in my scratch patterns with each grit, from the scrubbing strokes to the change in scratch pattern with the edge leading sweeping strokes, using the microscope.
    When I finish with my last sharpening grit, I move on to edge trailing, (up and off the edge), sweeping strokes, still only from heel to tip, either for lapping films or strops, which ever I choose to use for that knife. I always finish every sharpened edge with strops. The more polish I’m going for the more strop grits I use in the stropping progression.”

    Thanks Airscapes for this informative post and the link to the Jende video.  Even after 100 plus knives I too was finding I was getting very sharp edges during certain sessions and yet other sessions I was very disappointed with my end result.  I knew it was of course it was always due to apexing.  There is a lot of info in these WE threads and also on Youtube.  But reading threads and watching too many videos seem to cause me to try and incorporate too many techniques.  If watched many users only raise an initial burr when first profiling an edge and then go onto each successive grit using the normal WE motions.

    Clearly after your post and his vid I will now switch my technique to raising a burr at the start of each grit.  I like they way he combined various stroking patterns after raising a burr with each grit.  It always ticked me off after I was finished many times I was already starting to lose my supersharp edge after the 1500’s and I used to have to drop back to the 800’s and progress on through the grits again, but staying longer this time with each grit.

    This change in technique for me will save me a lot of time.  I used to only raise that first burr thinking to raise a burr initially with each grit change was going to take me way too long with each blade.  Turns out its just the opposite.

    I knew it was not the strops (I do drop down 1.5 to 2 before stropping) and use light pressure so as not to roll over the edge.  I was losing my sharp edge by not appexing with each diamong grit change.

    1 user thanked author for this post.
    #50271

    airscapes
    Participant
    • Topics: 11
    • Replies: 198

    Thanks Airscapes for this informative post and the link to the Jende video.

    Don’t thank me, thank MarcH!!

    1 user thanked author for this post.
    #50272

    Expidia
    Participant
    • Topics: 39
    • Replies: 289

    Well, your post brought it to my attention, so you get the credit IMO.

    #50296

    Nicko
    Participant
    • Topics: 11
    • Replies: 53

    I raise a burr on the first stone, with scrubbing, then approx 50-100 strokes edge leading to get the scratches going the same way, then each stone  approx 200 alternating strokes , edge leading each stone progression, which is heaps, once the burr is there you’re just honing that edge right?

    I wear cut proof gloves now lol.

    I find this provides a really nice sharp edge, no loupe really necessary after the first stone to make sure I’ve got the marker removal correct. Although I can’t help myself and loupe anyway lol

     

    #50297

    Nicko
    Participant
    • Topics: 11
    • Replies: 53

    Tried the other stroke directions and scrubbing is best on the first stone, then edge leading is king IMO.

    2 users thanked author for this post.
    #50319

    Expidia
    Participant
    • Topics: 39
    • Replies: 289

    )

    Tried the other stroke directions and scrubbing is best on the first stone, then edge leading is king IMO.

    Thanks for your post.  Just a tip on scrubbing.  If you stay too long in one area like trying to  remove those tough to hit scratches near the heel you can easily scrub in a recurve.  I’ve done this to 2-3 blades already.  One Benchmade I had to send back to them to replace it.  luckily, Benchmade only charges $35 to replace the blade.  The Chris Reeve blade I scratched by not using spacers with an LAA is charging me $150 plus $17 shipping (ouch) and a 4-8 week turnaround time.  I really like the circular motion in the Jende video because it blends through the length of the blade.  I’ll start with a circular motion on my next session to get that first burr, but switch to scrubbing as soon as I raise a burr and then follow by the regular WE stroke. But now I’ll raise a burr with each grit focusing on one side and then the other rather than the regular stroke which removes the burr.

    • This reply was modified 7 months, 1 week ago by  Expidia.
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