Sharpening Classes

Mike Davis

Mike
Corporate Member
Hmm .... the problem is I don't have a good reference for what "extremely sharp" is. In my defense :) after sharpening that way, I used them to cut 4 large mortises in hickory on my Barn Door project, mostly with only hand pressure.

Still it did take a while and if there's something I can add to the process get a better edge, suggestions are welcome. Really don't want to make a major change (like buying a grinder) but adding a step or two that will make a difference is definitely on the table.
I don't doubt the sharpness, just saying shaving is not a great test.
I can sharpen with 600 grit and shave. But I can make a much nicer edge than that.
 

Mike Davis

Mike
Corporate Member
What you have to understand is I'm not a sharp snob.
I like sharp tools, but only because they work better.
They should be sharp enough to work and no more than that.
 

Mike Davis

Mike
Corporate Member
I have sharpened knives for people and they would "resharpen" on 100 grit sandpaper.
They don't use a sharp knife, they use a saw.
 

Hmerkle

Board of Directors, Development Director
Hank
Corporate Member
I think the tomato test is adequate for kitchen knives.
Pocket knives are inherently abused and don't really need to be sharp.
Bad test - you can't (try) the sharpness of 10-12 knives on a tomato every time they are sharpened (every week or two weeks...)
 

Hmerkle

Board of Directors, Development Director
Hank
Corporate Member
I have sharpened knives for people and they would "resharpen" on 100 grit sandpaper.
They don't use a sharp knife, they use a saw.
there are two kitchen knives that I spent (a good amount of) time sharpening and was told by "the user" that they were not sharp.
When I re-sharpened them I left them with a little "tooth" and was told "They are MUCH sharper than the last time you did it..." Hmmmmmmm
 

Mike Davis

Mike
Corporate Member
The problem with a lot of classes is that unless the student has the exact same equipment in his shop, the class is little more than how to use the teacher's equipment. The best case would be for an experienced teacher to come to your shop and show how to sharpen on the equipment and accessories you already have.
If you understand sharpening you can use a tea cup to sharpen a knife. The sharpening system doesn’t really matter as long as you have coarse, medium, and fine AND know how to use what you have.

But, I agree you should learn with what you have and stick with it until you know for sure you need something else or something more.

I would not waste money on a Tormec for woodworking tools.
A professional knife sharpener would possibly need one.
 
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Hmerkle

Board of Directors, Development Director
Hank
Corporate Member
You should only have to test while you learn. Once you know… you know.
NOPE! not true - when you sharpen a kitchen knife you can do the same thing twice and get different results - you HAVE to test it.
 

Mike Davis

Mike
Corporate Member
NOPE! not true - when you sharpen a kitchen knife you can do the same thing twice and get different results - you HAVE to test it.
Set your bevels on both sides, work one side til you feel a burr all along the edge, work that burr back to the other side, DO NOT break off the burr, hone then polish. What's to test? If you are getting different results each time then you are not doing the same thing.
 

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