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Tuff Grind Marks! Help!

Recent Forums Main Forum Getting Started Tuff Grind Marks! Help!

This topic contains 12 replies, has 5 voices, and was last updated by  NorCalQ 12/14/2018 at 9:06 am.

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  • #48522

    NorCalQ
    Participant
    • Topics: 30
    • Replies: 74

    No doubt I am new to WE and appreciate all the posts to learn from.  I’ve been diving into my first practice blade and am enjoying it already.  I do have a  question.  I’ve been progressing up the grits from 200 to 1K and all has been great.  I’ve been making sure I have a good burr at all points along the way.  When I switched to leather strops, I am finding it difficult to work out the grind marks.  In hand sharpening, I’m used to going from 1K to 4K to 8K to 15K, then to stropping.  By that time I get a pretty good reflection from the green compounded strop.  Am I expecting too much, too soon, as far as grind marks being tuff to get rid of…I mean, I’ve read that new diamond stones take a while to break in, before they start to mellow out.  Is that the case here or am simply not working out the marks along the way?

    That said, I’m still getting an extremely sharp edge…just not a pretty one…yet.  Thanks.

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    #48523

    Toxophilus
    Participant
    • Topics: 2
    • Replies: 4

    I seem to recall that when using the strops (depending on the thickness of the strops) using them may cause a steeper angle?  You may want to try using a bit of sharpie on the blade and strop that section to determine what kind of contact you’re getting on the blade.

    1 user thanked author for this post.
    #48524

    MarcH
    Moderator
    • Topics: 55
    • Replies: 1597

    NorCalQ, you are correct on both counts.  The new not yet broken-in stones will scratch rougher then when they are broken in.  During break-in loose diamond stones are shed and the high stones get knocked off or knocked down.  The broken-in stones yield more consistent, even and predictable scratch patterns.

    Also as you progress up through your grits from coarser to finer, each new grit should be used long enough to obliterate the previous grit’s scratch pattern and replace it with the current finer grit scratch pattern.  When done correctly, long enough and with enough attention to detail, by the time you reach your finest sharpening grit, in your case 1K. the scratch pattern should be very fine.  Of course this will improve as the stones are broken in.

    Normally we recommend that you reduce the sharpening angle by 1-1/2º to 2º more accute, to use the strops.  The thought here is the softer strop medium rolls over the knife apex and may have a tendency to round off the sharpened edge.  The lower angle helps to prevent this from happening.  Also stropping is done with more applied pressure than the sharpening finger pressure.

    Marc
    (MarcH's Rack-It)

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    #48525

    NorCalQ
    Participant
    • Topics: 30
    • Replies: 74

    Thanks for the replies!  Also, a friend of mine had a couple of 3 or 4 year old ceramic stones from WE.  They are a different color combo than the ones currently sold and are the 1200/1600 and the 1.4 micron and .6 micron combos.  I couldn’t pass them up as he wanted 1/2 what he paid for them and they are NIB.  I’m wondering if anything has changed with them, besides the color and will they be OK to use with my new WE130?

    I thought the added ceramics would give me a better grit progression than what I have right now…right/wrong?  Thanks again.

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    #48526

    MarcH
    Moderator
    • Topics: 55
    • Replies: 1597

    These same ceramic stone grit pairs, Superfine-1200/1600 and Microfine 1.4µ/0.6µ are still available from W.E.  The difference today is the plastic handles have a slightly different diameter bore hole corresponding to the slightly larger diameter guide rods, included with the latest model WEPS sold.  This change was to improve the tolerance between the rods and paddles to decrease the slop and improve the angle control precision.  The older paddles will still work with the newer guide rods.  If they fit too tightly, a bronze gun barrel brush run through the paddle bores will widen the hole enough to allow them to slide appropriately.

    I prefer to use one pair, microfine, or the other, superfine, not both.  The grit and it’s related scratch pattern do not follow an intuitive sequence seen with the diamond grit stones.  There has been discussion on this forum suggesting how these ceramics should be used, (i.e., what order), to derive the best benefits.  Also the break-in period for the ceramics is much longer than that of the diamond stones, before you’ll see them reach their full potential.

    It is recommended to use the ceramic stones dry and not to lap them with any lapping stone medium.  Some users suggest rubbing the grit pairs together lessens the break-in period.

    Marc
    (MarcH's Rack-It)

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    #48527

    NorCalQ
    Participant
    • Topics: 30
    • Replies: 74

    Ah…thank you for that.  I’ll have to get a gun barrel brush.  I was wondering about changes.  I thought maybe the height of the stones might differ, but I’m sure I’ll be able to make them work somehow.  I guess that’s good news.

    Is it difficult for others to get all the 1k marks out, going straight from stones to the leather strops included in the PP1?

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    #48528

    Organic
    Participant
    • Topics: 16
    • Replies: 761

    The paddles have been updated in appearance and manufacturing consistentcy, but the stones are the same. These will go well after your 1000 grit diamond stones. If you’re after a prettier edge then you should get some diamond lapping film to use before the strops.

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    #48529

    NorCalQ
    Participant
    • Topics: 30
    • Replies: 74

    Prettier would be nice, but I’m just wondering if it’s normal to not be able to get the 1k marks out with the 5/3.5 micron diamond leather strops or should I be able to get them out?  Just want to get it clear in my head, what I’m going for.

    #48530

    MarcH
    Moderator
    • Topics: 55
    • Replies: 1597

    Is it difficult for others to get all the 1k marks out, going straight from stones to the leather strops included in the PP1?

    I  really believe when you’re stones are broken in and you gain some more experience and develop and employ good technique you’ll see that you’ll have an easier time polishing a 1000 grit with the strops to a very polished edge.  Realize it may take some effort with the strops.  More than just a few swipes to either side.  It also may take a four or six grit polishing progression with the strops.

    The PP1 will yield exactly, the same fine results, as any of the other WEPS models, when the appropriate effort and attention to detail are expended.  All the vice system does is hold the knife vertical and rigid.  After that it doesn’t matter whether you’re using the WE100 or the Gen 3 Pro.  As long as you are repeatedly applying the succession of abrasives to the knife edge with the same precise angle, grit after grit, you won’t see any difference in the edge sharpness or polish from the least expensive vice set-up to the most expensive.  It’s all about technique and attention to detail.

    Marc
    (MarcH's Rack-It)

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    #48531

    NorCalQ
    Participant
    • Topics: 30
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    Got it.  I’ll keep working with what I have until I get the results I want.  Again, I’m already getting an edge sharper than I did free hand, with stones, so ya…I’m happy.

    1 user thanked author for this post.
    #48532

    tcmeyer
    Participant
    • Topics: 33
    • Replies: 1728

    I think that it’s too early to expect scratchless results with stones which aren’t broken in.  In fact, I’m not sure it’s reasonable to expect the 5/3.5 strops to entirely remove the scratches from 1000-grit stones, regardless of the “break-in” status of the stones.   Strops or other soft media don’t remove metal like stones or other abrasives.  Their effect is more of a “rubbing and polishing,” and therefor can’t really be expected to remove any of the deeper scratches.  If you’ve ever used a wire-brush wheel to clean up the surface of a rough piece of iron or steel, you’ve noticed that there are no sparks or scratches left in the surface.  Instead, rough areas are “rubbed out”, with high spots being flattened out.  Strops work the same way.

    Unless you’re going for an  aesthetically flawless finish, this sequence of progression should produce an extremely sharp knife, depending on the steel and the included angle.  Scratches, unless they are quite deep and show damage where they hit the apex, don’t necessarily affect sharpness or performance.  The objective of stropping is to polish the bevel facets and to remove roughness along the apex.  The bevel facets greatly affect the degree of friction felt as the edge moves through the material being cut.  Residual scratches from earlier grits only reduce the level of polish by a very small percentage of the area touching the thing or critter that you’re disassembling.

    I would suggest that you not focus on achieving a scratch-free finish until you’ve had time to develop your techniques and to break-in your new stones.  Meanwhile the ceramics will help to bridge the gap and to move you toward your goal.

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    #48533

    Organic
    Participant
    • Topics: 16
    • Replies: 761

    The break in is a dramatic difference that you will be able to see when it has happened. I first noticed it on knife number 7. The stones have gradually improved from that point as well, but that was when it jumped out at me the most.

    I would expect a 1000 grit edge stropped with only one pair of strops to be shinny, but frosty looking and not a mirror.

    2 users thanked author for this post.
    #48536

    NorCalQ
    Participant
    • Topics: 30
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    Cool! Both great news.  I’m def still learning techniques, so it’s good to know that at the same time, I’m breaking in my stones.  With hand sharpening, I never went from 1k to strop.  Only way I got a mirror finish was to go thru the grits, working up to at least 8k, so I know they’ll be limits to going from 1k to strops, regarding the finish.  That said, it’s good to hear it is the same with WE stones.  Thanks again.

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