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Thread: Sharpening wide bevel knives

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    brianh's Avatar
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    Sharpening wide bevel knives

    So, Dave has my Kochi carbon 240mm kurouchi gyuto (http://www.japaneseknifeimports.com/...-wa-gyuto.html) for sharpening and I don't want to keep bugging him for learnin' me on wide bevel knives. He's going to do the full treatment on it and fully sharpen from the kurouchi down. I'm new to wide bevels and am not sure I completely understand what it takes to maintain the edge. I have Dave's basic 500-1200-5k stone setup and some strops. When the edge needs a touch-up sharpen, can just the edge be sharpened on this setup as non-wide-bevel knives, or is a WHOLE bevel sharpening required each time from the kurouchi down?

    And that being said, what additional stones do you guys recommend as a bare minimum for sharpening the whole bevel? I've been reading and watching stuff on Youtube, even saw one guy do this on marble and sandpaper.

    thanks

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    brianh's Avatar
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    Hmm, too broad a question? Anyone have any resources for learning more?

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    Senior Member ChuckTheButcher's Avatar
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    I have never owned a wide bevel gyuto and am actually looking at buying one right now. I would assume that you don't want to just sharpen the edge. With any knife if you just sharpen the edge the angle will get very obtuse over time.
    All normal people love meat. If I went to a barbeque and there was no meat, I would say 'Yo Goober! Where's the meat?'.- Homer Simpson

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    Double post

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    brianh's Avatar
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    That's what I was thinking, and Dave confirmed the same. I just wish I could find more videos and such on sharpening one of these and if there is a stone setup that works for most, especially with a kurouchi finish, if that even makes much difference.

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    Quote Originally Posted by brianh View Post
    That's what I was thinking, and Dave confirmed the same. I just wish I could find more videos and such on sharpening one of these and if there is a stone setup that works for most, especially with a kurouchi finish, if that even makes much difference.
    Whether the knife has a kurouchi finish or not matters not at all, as you aren't going to be touching the side of the blade.

    What might make a difference is if the blade is san mai construction and you want to preserve/recreate the kasumi finish of the blade road. Most synthetic stones will not create a contrast between the hagane (core) and jigane (cladding). Usually you need a natural stone to do this. (Dave maintains that the King 800 is one of the few synthetic stones that will produce the contrast.) You don't need the contrast to have a well-performing knife, it just looks nice.

    Regardless of the type of stone, the technique is the same: put the blade road flat on the stone and grind away, putting pressure on the blade midway between the edge and the shinogi line. Grind until you are almost hitting the edge, working both sides alternately. You've now thinned the blade. Take the blade road to whatever grit finish you want. (A natural stone will be around a 6000-10000 grit polish.) The first time you do this you may not get a completely flat blade road, but over time you will get there. Of course, you can work until it is flat, but you are going to lose a not insignificant amount of steel (and life) from your knife.

    Finish at the usual fifteen degrees. The edge bevel is probably going to be very narrow, which is normal.

    Hope this helped.

    Rick
    “Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge.”

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    Yes, it did, Rick! Thank you. Shouldn't the blade road be slightly convex?

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    Quote Originally Posted by brianh View Post
    Yes, it did, Rick! Thank you. Shouldn't the blade road be slightly convex?
    On single-bevel knives like debas and yanagibas, yes. On a double-bevel knife, not so much, and actually the blade roads OOTB are slightly concave, rather than convex, because they are ground on wheels.
    “Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge.”

  9. #9
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    Really helpful, thank you. I need to learn more about which stones will generally help preserve the kasumi finish. Dave did mention he'd likely use the King 800 on my Kochi and might have some stone suggestions after sharpening. I also have a Takeda nakiri which I believe will need the entire blade road flattened when sharpening?

  10. #10
    Canada's Sharpest Lefty Lefty's Avatar
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    Rick is a wealth of knowledge.
    09/06

    Take a look around at: www.sharpandshinyshop.com

    Email me at: tmclean@sharpandshinyshop.com

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