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Reprofile angles don’t match

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  • #55954
    Stew
    Participant
    • Topics: 1
    • Replies: 1

    Hey guys… first post.

    Got a WE pro pack 3 for Christmas. I have sharpened about 7 knives with varied success but I feel like I’m getting better.

    Did have a question, though. I took a cheap set of kitchen knives out of my RV to practice with. I decided I want to reprofile each one of them to 20dps. I have got pretty good at this, but once I’m done reprofiling the angles do not match when measured with my angle cube. One side may be 19 and the other 20.5, etc.

    My question is this… after reprofiling why aren’t the angles on each side equal? I know I have reached the apex as I am getting great burrs. Should I just adjust my arms to make the angles equal and reprofile again? I don’t care about removing too much material from these knives, as the set only cost 40 or 50 bucks.

    Thanks!

    1 user thanked author for this post.
    #55962
    000Robert
    Participant
    • Topics: 5
    • Replies: 187

    Hey guys… first post. Got a WE pro pack 3 for Christmas. I have sharpened about 7 knives with varied success but I feel like I’m getting better. Did have a question, though. I took a cheap set of kitchen knives out of my RV to practice with. I decided I want to reprofile each one of them to 20dps. I have got pretty good at this, but once I’m done reprofiling the angles do not match when measured with my angle cube. One side may be 19 and the other 20.5, etc. My question is this… after reprofiling why aren’t the angles on each side equal? I know I have reached the apex as I am getting great burrs. Should I just adjust my arms to make the angles equal and reprofile again? I don’t care about removing too much material from these knives, as the set only cost 40 or 50 bucks. Thanks!

    It’s hard to say without seeing before and after photos. Photos always help and many times I won’t even answer anyone that doesn’t provide photos. Most kitchen knives that I have seen have more acute angles than 20dps. Were the edges on both sides even before you started? I also wonder if something loosened up while you were reprofiling the edges.

    Next time you reprofile a blade, check everything periodically to make sure that you don’t have a lock screw or L-bracket nut loosening up. If they are loosening up, check the tips of the screws for burrs or something and sand them smooth. Also with the L-bracket lock nuts, you can sand the sides on some emery cloth on a hard flat surface. I sanded mine on day one no matter what they looked like. It’s just something that I have learned to do automatically without even thinking about it when I buy stuff. I never have a problem with my lock screws/nuts staying tight.

    Oh, welcome to the forum, Stew!

     

    • This reply was modified 3 weeks, 4 days ago by 000Robert.
    #55968
    MarcH
    Moderator
    • Topics: 62
    • Replies: 2363

    Something coming loose is quite common and very likely.  This must be checked for to eliminate this in the future.  If everything was tight and stayed tight through-out the sharpening process, we can look for another possible cause.

    The size the bevels appear, from knife side to side, are determined by the amount of sharpening effort done to the bevels.  To maintain the aesthetically balanced appearance from side to side takes attention to detail to keep your bevel work balanced and even. In general, it takes more time and effort to draw the burr on the first side of the knife when you sharpen it with the W.E., with the coarsest grit.  Then the burr seems to form more quickly and with less effort on the second side.  This is often a false result or an incomplete second bevel.  Usually you’ll have a burr at the tip, as expected but the lower edge of the bevel is unfinished and incomplete.  Keep working on the second side till the bevel heights appear complete, even and equal.

    By checking your guide rod set angle with each and every grit change it allows you to verify your adjustment features are staying tight and secure and angles are set as desired with each and every grit.  Also it helps to insure the actual outcome will reflect the expected set bevel angles.

    It’s up to the user to visually verify the bevel heights are staying even on both sides of the knife throughout the entire sharpening process.  The work you apply to the left side bevel can affect the right side bevel because they both share the knife edge at the top.  It’s a balancing act and it takes practice and attention to detail to keep these even.  That is even from side to side and even down the entire length of the knife.  These aesthetics can be tedious.

    Even if the bevels appear to be uneven in height, the knife can still be sharpened very well and perform exceptionally.  It’s just off aesthetically.  Probably only you will notice this.  You can correct it now if you choose to, if wasting steel is not a consideration or correct it later during a touch-up if your are more conscious of the steel used.

    Marc
    (MarcH's Rack-Its)

    #55972
    000Robert
    Participant
    • Topics: 5
    • Replies: 187

    When I am reprofiling a blade, I will scrub up/down going to the tip and back 3 times on one side. Then do the same on the other side – back and forth until I start raising a burr to keep the edges even. That is assuming of course that the edges already looked even to begin with.

    #56001
    Stew
    Participant
    • Topics: 1
    • Replies: 1

    I think I found the problem. Since I was re-profiling I just decided to set my sharpener to 20° on each side, assuming it was true. Problem is, the right side of my sharpener is 1.1° greater than the left side with everything being equal.

    My best guess is this is a variation in my degree bar. No problem, I just moved the right side in 1° and now I am within 1/10 of a degree.

    I basically took my finest stones, stuck my angle cube on the back of them, and then just laid them on the vice jaws. This is what revealed the difference. I’ll try another knife tomorrow and see if the problem goes away.

    By the way, do you guys constantly re-check your angle with the cube as you progress through the stones? Or do you just set your angles one time and go about your business?

    Thanks!

    #56002
    000Robert
    Participant
    • Topics: 5
    • Replies: 187

    I check the angles every time I change stones. Some people don’t though.

    #56147
    Joe
    Participant
    • Topics: 0
    • Replies: 27

    When I am reprofiling a blade, I will scrub up/down going to the tip and back 3 times on one side. Then do the same on the other side – back and forth until I start raising a burr to keep the edges even. That is assuming of course that the edges already looked even to begin with.

    I sharpened my first knife today on the WE130 from start to finish, its one of those old cheap “survival” knives that probably costs about $10. at the end one bevel is definitely skinnier than the other I was going for 20 dps, am I correct in saying that when you start out setting at a certain degrees you will need to re-adjust the rod every now and then because I am assuming the stone will be sitting on the shoulder of the bevel when you start?

    #56162
    MarcH
    Moderator
    • Topics: 62
    • Replies: 2363

    I would double check the set angles if you are changing the profile alot when you’re close to being done with your first coarsest grit.  This way, in the event that the amount of steel removed made any difference to your angle settings, after readjusting them you can do a little more stone work, to get the bevels where you need them to be.  That’s also when you should visually inspect the bevel heights and adjust them to look even, like you want them to appear.

    When reprofiling the knife edge you are reestablishing bevels, totally.  For a double bevel knife, it tends to be easier to reestablish the second side’s bevel and draw a burr after the first side’s bevel and burr were done first.  Because of the ease of profiling the second bevel it can result in uneven bevel heights.  The second bevel usually appears smaller.  Being aware of this possible situation helps you to know to look past the burrs and to the bevel heights.  It’s important to inspect if the bevels are well formed and profiled completely from the apex down to the shoulders.  Unequal appearing bevel heights may be due to the shoulders being uneven, also.

    It’s up to you to pay attention to bevel appearance all throughout the entire sharpening process to maintain them as you want them to be when done.  Then with each next finer grits you’ll have an easier time keeping everything looking as you want them to.  Different angle settings from side to side can also effect or cause the uneven appearance of the bevel heights.  This may be due to micro-angle adjusters coming loose.  More often then not, different bevel heights seen are simply due to incomplete or unbalanced stone work from bevel side to side.

    I do double check angles with each and every grit I use, making adjustments if needed.  This helps to keep the bevels set at the angle started with and throughout the entire sharpening process.  By making use of this practice it also helps to make sure that your micro-angle adjusters are locked tight and not shifting or working loose while sharpening.

    Marc
    (MarcH's Rack-Its)

    1 user thanked author for this post.
    #56163
    000Robert
    Participant
    • Topics: 5
    • Replies: 187

    I sharpened my first knife today on the WE130 from start to finish, its one of those old cheap “survival” knives that probably costs about $10. at the end one bevel is definitely skinnier than the other I was going for 20 dps, am I correct in saying that when you start out setting at a certain degrees you will need to re-adjust the rod every now and then because I am assuming the stone will be sitting on the shoulder of the bevel when you start?

    Sorry, our power went out at noon on Monday and just came back on. But Marc pretty much covered it. You just need to check what the bevels look like and see what your angles are using your sharpie. Then you can make a plan of attack.

    I sharpened my Kershaw Launch 1 for the first time early Monday morning. The apex looked good and the angles were close to 19dps. The right side was right on 19, and the left side was closer to 20. So I reprofiled the left side using up/down strokes starting with my 200 grit stone until I, “nearly”, reached a burr. Then I cleaned up the right side starting with the 400 grit stone till I reached a burr. Then I went back to the left side with my 400 grit stone and sharpened it till I reached a burr. Then I worked both sides with alternating edge-trailing strokes until I got the scratch pattern on the edges matching. I then progressed through my stones to a nice toothy 800 grit. I always make sure no burrs are left with a couple of edge-leading strokes before I move to the next grit, or at the end of the last grit.

    But I am kinda OCD about removing steel. I hate to remove any more good steel than I need to. So even if the edges don’t look exactly alike, I will use the knife and slowly bring the two edges even over time as I use/resharpen the knife if making them even right away would remove more steel than I want to. Unless I want to collect the knife. If I am collecting it and will not use it then I will bring the edges looking even when I reprofile them. And then mirror polish the edges the best that I can. But I will still try not to remove any more steel than I need to.

    #56167
    Joe
    Participant
    • Topics: 0
    • Replies: 27

    I sharpened my first knife today on the WE130 from start to finish, its one of those old cheap “survival” knives that probably costs about $10. at the end one bevel is definitely skinnier than the other I was going for 20 dps, am I correct in saying that when you start out setting at a certain degrees you will need to re-adjust the rod every now and then because I am assuming the stone will be sitting on the shoulder of the bevel when you start?

    Sorry, our power went out at noon on Monday and just came back on. But Marc pretty much covered it. You just need to check what the bevels look like and see what your angles are using your sharpie. Then you can make a plan of attack. I sharpened my Kershaw Launch 1 for the first time early Monday morning. The apex looked good and the angles were close to 19dps. The right side was right on 19, and the left side was closer to 20. So I reprofiled the left side using up/down strokes starting with my 200 grit stone until I, “nearly”, reached a burr. Then I cleaned up the right side starting with the 400 grit stone till I reached a burr. Then I went back to the left side with my 400 grit stone and sharpened it till I reached a burr. Then I worked both sides with alternating edge-trailing strokes until I got the scratch pattern on the edges matching. I then progressed through my stones to a nice toothy 800 grit. I always make sure no burrs are left with a couple of edge-leading strokes before I move to the next grit, or at the end of the last grit. But I am kinda OCD about removing steel. I hate to remove any more good steel than I need to. So even if the edges don’t look exactly alike, I will use the knife and slowly bring the two edges even over time as I use/resharpen the knife if making them even right away would remove more steel than I want to. Unless I want to collect the knife. If I am collecting it and will not use it then I will bring the edges looking even when I reprofile them. And then mirror polish the edges the best that I can. But I will still try not to remove any more steel than I need to.

    Are you also checking the angles and using a market at the start of each touch up session also? I’m assuming as you touch up a knife you’ll have to tweak the arms to keep the same angle.

    #56168
    000Robert
    Participant
    • Topics: 5
    • Replies: 187

    Are you also checking the angles and using a market at the start of each touch up session also? I’m assuming as you touch up a knife you’ll have to tweak the arms to keep the same angle.

    I log everything on paper and I usually take a photo of how I position the blade in the vise. But I do use my sharpie a lot. I have only seen that I need to tweak the guide rods when I am reprofiling a blade. Once the edges are properly profiled, sharpening them up should be a piece of cake.

    #56169
    Joe
    Participant
    • Topics: 0
    • Replies: 27

    Are you also checking the angles and using a market at the start of each touch up session also? I’m assuming as you touch up a knife you’ll have to tweak the arms to keep the same angle.

    I log everything on paper and I usually take a photo of how I position the blade in the vise. But I do use my sharpie a lot. I have only seen that I need to tweak the guide rods when I am reprofiling a blade. Once the edges are properly profiled, sharpening them up should be a piece of cake.

    I guess it takes a while before enough metal gets removed then because I would assume the angle on the edge would change eventually leaving the arms the same.

    #56170
    000Robert
    Participant
    • Topics: 5
    • Replies: 187

    I guess it takes a while before enough metal gets removed then because I would assume the angle on the edge would change eventually leaving the arms the same.

    It just depends on how much steel you need to remove. Once you have the apex of the blade profiled properly, sharpening it up should not remove much steel. That is assuming that you have no damage to the edge that needs fixing.

    #56171
    Joe
    Participant
    • Topics: 0
    • Replies: 27

    I guess it takes a while before enough metal gets removed then because I would assume the angle on the edge would change eventually leaving the arms the same.

    It just depends on how much steel you need to remove. Once you have the apex of the blade profiled properly, sharpening it up should not remove much steel. That is assuming that you have no damage to the edge that needs fixing.

    correct, I just meant over time, might take hundreds of sharpenings.

    #56172
    000Robert
    Participant
    • Topics: 5
    • Replies: 187

    I guess it takes a while before enough metal gets removed then because I would assume the angle on the edge would change eventually leaving the arms the same.

    It just depends on how much steel you need to remove. Once you have the apex of the blade profiled properly, sharpening it up should not remove much steel. That is assuming that you have no damage to the edge that needs fixing.

    correct, I just meant over time, might take hundreds of sharpenings.

    It just depends on what you need or want. If the edges are way off, you may decide to keep the edges close to their original angles and apex a nice asymmetrical edge. Personally, I have been planning on experimenting with asymmetrical edges anyway at some point since I can easily do that with my WE130.

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