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Baby Huey
08-18-2013, 04:27 PM
I have reviewed some of the older posts on sharpeners and do plan on getting an Edge Pro Apex set to start my learning on the sharpening of knives. I know that electric knife sharpeners are shunned by probably most users here, but I travel a lot with work sometimes for months at a time and need to have something user friendly for the wife as she would not take the time to learn how to set up a jig or to learn how to freehand.

That being said are there any decent electric sharpeners out there that put a good edge on knives? She uses a Wusthof Classic Block Set, but I am shopping for Japanese blades and am sure she will fall in love with those once the fear of them wears off. So maybe even one with the 15 degree bevel as well?

I am new here and just getting into studying up on the Japanese variety of knives so all recommendations would be appreciated. We both work full time jobs, she goes to school full time working on her Bachelor's, and we run a small home business so time constraints are limited and ease of maintenance would be a plus.

Thank you for your time and thoughts on this.

NO ChoP!
08-18-2013, 04:37 PM
The issue with electric sharpeners is the amount of material they eat. Any knifes lifespan will be greatly reduced if taken to an electric sharpener frequently.

Best recommendation would be a ceramic rod.

Noodle Soup
08-18-2013, 04:40 PM
ChefsChoice in one of the higher end models. They work great and do not remove all that much metal if you stay off the first stage until its really needed. For the average person, the edge they produce is light years ahead of what they been using.

Baby Huey
08-18-2013, 06:03 PM
I appreciate the info and will look into it. I may get it and duct tape the course slot so that task for when I am at home with a stone on the Edge Pro.

tk59
08-18-2013, 06:27 PM
Electric sharpeners can also jack up your profile pretty quick, if you're not very consistent with your stroke or if you're too tentative. Some of them can also overheat your edge.

Baby Huey
08-18-2013, 07:33 PM
I did not even think about it heating the blade up. I appreciate that and will have to think more on the electric as an option.

Justin0505
08-18-2013, 07:46 PM
Stropping is another option. A nice hard felt strop from Marko or a nice horse hide from Dave loaded w/ 0.25 poly diamond spray will, depending on the knife, keep an excellent edge going for months.

Much cheaper than some electric pos, and it will compliment your EP or waterstone setup vs being bannished to storage when youre home.

As much as i love and learned from my EP, Id actually recommend getting the strop setup first and see if you get into the freehand thing more than you might have expected.

Stropping good carbon is easy, fun, and almost magical how well it works.

CrisAnderson27
08-18-2013, 10:55 PM
Stropping is another option. A nice hard felt strop from Marko or a nice horse hide from Dave loaded w/ 0.25 poly diamond spray will, depending on the knife, keep an excellent edge going for months.

Much cheaper than some electric pos, and it will compliment your EP or waterstone setup vs being bannished to storage when youre home.

As much as i love and learned from my EP, Id actually recommend getting the strop setup first and see if you get into the freehand thing more than you might have expected.

Stropping good carbon is easy, fun, and almost magical how well it works.

For that matter some newsprint over a hard surface used as a strop can help maintain a well setup edge, and actually provides a excellent smooth, yet toothy finish for after your stones. Either of the above options (felt or leather) are excellent choices, but the newsprint is free, and if you live in a neighborhood like mine...magically renews itself every morning lol :).

I agree completely on stropping carbon steel being almost magical. I remember the first time I used newsprint after my stones. 'Whoooooaaaaaa' just about sums it up lol. Oh, and for the record...I now have four felt strops lol, loaded with .5u, 1u, 3u, and 6u diamond paste.

gic
08-19-2013, 12:32 AM
You know while I have "graduated" from the chef's choice, it's occurs to me now that using the course setting on the asian chef's choice model to put the first bevil on a knife I am going to make 15 degrees with a 20 degree micro bevel may not be all that bad an idea.

The point is when I "fix" all my friends (cheap) non j-knives (i.e. all of which seem to be made with 53-56 HRC german soft steel) to a 15 degree primary and 20 degree microbevel, I do the 15 using pretty course stones to start my progression and it is time consuming even with DMT plates

But now i am thinking while I'm gonna refine the 15 degree angle with stones of course before putting the final micro bevel on with a really fine stone does the first stage of a chef's choice really remove any more metal then i am doing when I reset the primary bevel?? It sure is a lot faster...

Baby Huey
08-19-2013, 12:34 AM
All great recommendations. I planned on getting a strop in the near future. I will look into it, but do not know who Marko or Dave are. Still getting to know the community. I appreciate everyone's advice and time.

Johnny.B.Good
08-19-2013, 12:45 AM
All great recommendations. I planned on getting a strop in the near future. I will look into it, but do not know who Marko or Dave are. Still getting to know the community. I appreciate everyone's advice and time.

Marko Tsourkan is a knifemaker who also makes/sells accessories (including a felt strop/base). Marko is a vendor here, so he has his own subforum. Here is a link to his website where the strop can be purchased: http://www.tsourkanknives.com/index.php/store/category/17-felt-strops

Dave Martell is is the founder of this forum. Dave is a professional knife sharpener, who also makes custom knives and sells stones/accessories on his website, here: http://www.japaneseknifesharpening.com/

Talim
08-19-2013, 12:56 AM
If you're just like everyone else on this forum, what will most likely happen is that you'll end up buying so many J-knives she won't have a problem finding a sharp knife in the house months at a time. And then the electric sharpener will just collect dust as you collect more stones and knives.

Justin0505
08-19-2013, 02:10 AM
Do you know if your sab's were made in France or China? Perhaps some pics?

If you've got the nice French ones, than another option could be a refurb to breath some new life into one of your old friends. Reduce the full bolster, regrind / thin behind the edge, possibly a new handle: it will be better than new. Dave Martell does such work as do many of the hobbiest makers. Don Nguyen just did perhaps the most beautiful sab refurb I've ever seen: http://www.kitchenknifeforums.com/showthread.php/12405-Don-Nguyen-Knives/page6
Yeah that top knife used to be an old rusty hunk-o-junk.

CrisAnderson27
08-19-2013, 02:38 AM
Do you know if your sab's were made in France or China? Perhaps some pics?

If you've got the nice French ones, than another option could be a refurb to breath some new life into one of your old friends. Reduce the full bolster, regrind / thin behind the edge, possibly a new handle: it will be better than new. Dave Martell does such work as do many of the hobbiest makers. Don Nguyen just did perhaps the most beautiful sab refurb I've ever seen: http://www.kitchenknifeforums.com/showthread.php/12405-Don-Nguyen-Knives/page6
Yeah that top knife used to be an old rusty hunk-o-junk.

When I first started reading your post, I immediately thought of Don. Such a BEAUTIFUL job! I hope to be seeing it here in a couple weeks in person :).

Seb
08-19-2013, 02:45 AM
This is why Global started pushing those water-wheelie, pull-through thingamebobs. Problem solved. Heck, I still have one and it does a serviceable job on my crapsteel beaters like Kiwis and such.

keithsaltydog
08-19-2013, 04:30 AM
This is why Global started pushing those water-wheelie, pull-through thingamebobs. Problem solved. Heck, I still have one and it does a serviceable job on my crapsteel beaters like Kiwis and such.

I never thought I would say it,but that might be an option.I wonder if it would work wt the Wusthof knives.If you want low maintainence go Stainless,there are some good Japan chef knives in the 85.00-150.00 range wt good blade geometry that will easy outshine the Wusthof's.

I would stay away fr. the electric grinders.Of coarse freehand skill on a whetstone will be be far better than than any pull through device.All you need is a Medium Stone to start & you can practice on the German knives.Jon Brioda's-knife sharpening playlist-are some of the best U-Tubes in english.Newspaper works for burr removal.

Baby Huey
08-19-2013, 10:12 AM
I will definitely check out the strops and watch some videos on freehand and make a decision. Time is constrained to say the least atm for learning curves.

Baby Huey
08-19-2013, 06:16 PM
What kind of spray would you recommend loading on the strop/s? Will probably get more than one to load different sprays if there are multiple kinds needed.

CrisAnderson27
08-19-2013, 06:24 PM
What kind of spray would you recommend loading on the strop/s? Will probably get more than one to load different sprays if there are multiple kinds needed.

It kind of depends on your stone progression really. I have a pair of 1200 and 8000 DMT plates (extra fine and extra-extra fine)...but I went ahead and picked up 6, 3, 1, and .5 micron sprays. Mostly I did this because I deal with more than one kind of knife on a regular basis. For my kitchen stuff, the newsprint is really all I need and more. Once a week or so I just lay a piece over my DMT plate (it sits in a walnut holder I made), and strop 5-10x each direction. The edge is immediately restored (unless somehow I developed a chip etc). I then test the edge by rolling the newsprint and cutting into it along the roll. It hasn't failed me yet!

Justin0505
08-19-2013, 07:09 PM
All sprays / pastes are not created equally. I've tried many different types from many different sources and
this: http://www.japaneseknifesharpeningstore.com/product-p/dudiasp1.htm
is far and away the best. .25micron polydiamond. The stuff Dave sells is different than any others I've tried: cuts faster and longer: very refined teeth, but doesn't over-polish easily.

Just start out with 1 abrasive and 1 strop and go from there. Newspring (phonebook paper works OK too) and some less mushy types of cardboard work well, but good leather or hard felt loaded with abrasive is just so much faster and less fussy. Both my girlfriend and sister use strops (just 1 each), and have been able to keep very functional edges on their knives for many months in between actual waterstone sessions.
You can get one of the ones that Marko or Dave sells that have a base with interchangeable magnetic strop materials, or you can save some money and get all crafty:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g9Smlj0fNnE

The whole idea is to keep it simple and not over complicate things for yourself or the Mrs.
Plus, no matter what you buy, you will end up buying more later when the addiction really starts to set in (and you have more specific requirements / wants)... so spend as little to start with as possible.

Baby Huey
08-19-2013, 08:51 PM
Would you recommend that I get an angle cube for freehand sharpening? At least to start and get the hang of the proper angles?

augerpro
08-19-2013, 09:00 PM
I just started to freehand and found the angle cube very handy

chinacats
08-19-2013, 09:27 PM
I don't think you will need it and if you do then only for the first few tries. That said, whatever works and in the video recently posted of Kramer sharpening he used a matchbook to show a decent angle...seemed to be a nice trick.

Good luck, it's easier than you think and you'll get pretty good faster than you think...just pick a method (this one (http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLEBF55079F53216AB&feature=plcp) works pretty well) and stick with it.

Cheers

CrisAnderson27
08-19-2013, 09:33 PM
I don't think you will need it and if you do then only for the first few tries. That said, whatever works and in the video recently posted of Kramer sharpening he used a matchbook to show a decent angle...seemed to be a nice trick.

Good luck, it's easier than you think and you'll get pretty good faster than you think...just pick a method (this one (http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLEBF55079F53216AB&feature=plcp) works pretty well) and stick with it.

Cheers

A matchbook, two quarters, turning the spine in descending halves from 90...lots of tricks out there.

Mrmnms
08-19-2013, 10:04 PM
There's nothing wrong with using an angle cube, I have one, but unless your really changing the angle or profile of a knife, it pretty much tells you what angle it wants to be sharpened at. If the edge starts to "catch" as you're gently pushing the blade on the stone , lower your angle a bit. Go slow and easy.

Baby Huey
08-19-2013, 10:05 PM
Will give that a shot, but as an old Pipefitter/Fabricator turned Inspector I am a little OCD about details....

chinacats
08-19-2013, 10:51 PM
Will give that a shot, but as an old Pipefitter/Fabricator turned Inspector I am a little OCD about details....

Then you'll have no problems sharpening. :biggrin:

Baby Huey
08-19-2013, 11:43 PM
Til I get the materials to practice and get the hang of it, does anyone know any good professional sharpeners in the Houston, Tx area? I just ordered a Konosuke HD2 270mm Funayuki/Gyuto. I heard they were acceptable out of the box, but also heard they do not show their true potential til sharpening. I am excited about my first J knife.

Crothcipt
08-20-2013, 12:30 AM
Welcome to the Deep end BH. You will never look at a kitchen knife the same.

Baby Huey
08-20-2013, 12:40 AM
I appreciate it.
Looks like I need to learn to swim quickly.

Crothcipt
08-20-2013, 12:54 AM
na just enjoy the ride. your pocket book will be empty most of the time too.

CrisAnderson27
08-20-2013, 03:07 AM
na just enjoy the ride. your pocket book will be empty most of the time too.

LOL!! Too true. Wait till he really discovers customs :).

Baby Huey
08-20-2013, 04:23 PM
I hope I picked a good one to start off with. Will probably pick up some ch cheapies to practice sharpening with.

Justin0505
08-20-2013, 05:48 PM
Those are popular knives, and seem to be very a very common first "real" j-knives that many folks start with. I've never used your exact knife, but have played with a white #2 version and I do own other semi-stainless blades at similar HRC, so I can say with fair certainty that you picked a good one.

OTB edges are very seldom sharpened to their maximum potential for low angle and high sharpness, which is for many reasons, not the least of which is to add some strength and durability (to the slight detriment of performance) in order to slightly hedge against the lowest common denominator of users.

You can almost always improve them dramatically with just a few minutes on strop of fine waterstone.
Use the "sharpie trick": color in the primary edge bevel on both sides with a sharpie:
(it will be a very thin line (fractions of a mm) and possibly slightly different on each side.)
-Easiest way I've found to do this is to lay the edge a the heel at a slight angle against the SIDE of the marker tip and draw the blade back across it with very light pressure. (do it for each side).

-Then take it to a fine water stone or strop and use "edge trailing" strokes (edge is pointed away from the direction of travel) to remove the sharpie.

- Use very light pressure (not much more than the weight of the knife)

- Start with a VERY acute angle so you are hitting an area actually slightly above your sharpie line, then gradually increase it so you creep down to the line and eventually the edge.

Just a few passes per side and you should take an "OK" factory edge to something probably sharper than you have ever felt before. You can experiment with setting new/ your own angles months later once it gets dull past what a strop or finishing stone can help.


Based on what you said about your background and your affinity for details, I could see you enjoying an angle cube, jewelers loop, and Edge Pro.
I was freehand sharpening for years before I bought my EP, but when I bought my first "good" knife which (which cost more than the sum total of all of the other kitchen knives I'd used up to that point), I was a bit intimidated to freehand it and the results I was getting where not fantastic (didnt help that it was made from tricky sg2 steel). The EP was a learning tool for me. It helped me to understand the effects of different angles (and compound angles) on cutting performance and edge retention, as well as different grit progressions and levels of polish. As I built my confidence and understanding, and started transitioning back to freehand, the EP was useful for setting an initial bevel that I could then follow freehand using the sharpie trick.

Bottom line is have fun with your knives!!! Don't stress too much about the process. You can experiment with your old Sab's if you want, but, as long as you take it slow and pay attention to what you're doing, it's almost impossible to screw up your new HD beyond repair.
Don't worry about taking it to a pro sharpener right away: there are only 2 in the country that I would pay / trust with my knives (Dave of Japanese knife sharpening and " J.Bro" of Japanese Knife Imports). Just think of them like a safety net: if you get "stuck" or feel like you've made a hole that you're not comfortable sharpening you're way out of alone, they can "make it better", but given your thoughtfulness and approach thus far, I'd bet that it will never come to that.

It's always fun to hear new folk's impressions for their first "good" knives so please keep us updated with your experience (pics req!), and ask questions if / when you have them.

Justin0505
08-20-2013, 05:51 PM
When I first started reading your post, I immediately thought of Don. Such a BEAUTIFUL job! I hope to be seeing it here in a couple weeks in person :).

just saw this post! YOU LUCKY F&@#! There damn well better be a forthcoming photo gallery and/or video.

CrisAnderson27
08-20-2013, 06:22 PM
just saw this post! YOU LUCKY F&@#! There damn well better be a forthcoming photo gallery and/or video.

LOL, I'll see what I can do :D

Baby Huey
08-20-2013, 07:33 PM
I appreciate the advice and will try to study up on the sharpening. I called them today to check on my order and it seems they are making a Saya for it. I assumed since this brand had the option to come with a Saya that it would be pulled from a box of pre-made Saya.

Von blewitt
08-20-2013, 08:21 PM
LOL, I'll see what I can do :D

Sorry to disappoint you Cris, but that Sab is currently crossing the pacific on its way down under :D

Justin0505
08-21-2013, 02:10 PM
Sorry to disappoint you Cris, but that Sab is currently crossing the pacific on its way down under :D

Then let me remind you Huw, you lucky Aussie SOB!: with great knives comes great responsibilities: PICS! / REVIEW!

CrisAnderson27
08-21-2013, 02:31 PM
Sorry to disappoint you Cris, but that Sab is currently crossing the pacific on its way down under :D

Damn the bad luck!!

Well, for me anyhow...congratulations to you!

:D

Baby Huey
08-21-2013, 05:56 PM
Was just informed that the company I bought the knife from is not a friend of KKF. I understand that these things happen, but would someone enlighten me a little more before I continue to do business with them if their business practice is in question? Did not mean to stir anything up, just liked the knife and could not find another place to get it.

Talim
08-21-2013, 06:40 PM
You can start here I guess.

http://www.kitchenknifeforums.com/showthread.php/1367-Moritaka-how-long

Baby Huey
08-21-2013, 07:48 PM
Read through a lot of that the other day. It explains a lot ty.

Crothcipt
08-21-2013, 08:57 PM
also utube knuckel heads has some history in there too. and always good for a laugh.