What's happening during stropping?
I'm under the impression that with our harder knives, there isn't much re-aligning of the edge. During stropping (or any touch up, with ceramic rods/etc), are we recreating the edge on a very small scale?
What does an edge-trailing stroke do that a normal leading stroke doesn't?
There's some abrasion happening, mainly. The reason you do edge-trailing is mainly so you don't kill your strop with your edge or your edge with your stone. The latter shouldn't happen if you're careful/skilled enough.
Removing the wire edge that folded and made it feel blunt
Other than what TK said nothing to really add
Logically I wld like to presume as follows:
1. After sharpening, the first stage of degradation is a fold due to contact with board or hard stuff.
a) ON the Strop, I suppose you can only do Edge training strokes. What happens is that the fold is "unfolded", giving an edge that is sharp but a weak edge which is prone to what some people calling metal fatique which will eventually break off. Just l;ike a paper clip fold and unfold adn it breaks easily...
b) IF you strop adn strop adn "fatigue it it enough.. it will break off.
c) When it does break off, I also assume that it leaves a slightly "rounded edge" but still thin enough. IF the compound used is abrasive enough, the may remove the roundedness or some steel and thus making 2 angles meet adn its sharp!
I personally prefer to hone it on teh smoothest rod I can find with teh Edge leading/ cutting stroke adn then followed strop on leather ( rough side)if so desired.
When I have to hone it on leather, INitially I would do it at almost 40 degrees angle adn hope that it breaks off and folded edge adn then followed on the desired angle( 15 degrees) and possibly back up to 20 degrees.. there about.
Hope this helps adn it does make sense (?)..
RGds adn Stay Sharp...
Very cool stuff. Thanks guys!