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tk59

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A friend of mine sent me his father's old carbon Sab in the off chance I could give it a little face lift. This is the progression...


Original (800x600).jpgReprofile_1.0 (800x600).jpg
Reprofile_1.1+bolster (800x600).jpgalmost done.jpg

You can probably see that some of the pitting is still there, some scuffs from coarse belts, etc and the f-ed up grind near the heel due to futzing around the the bloody bolster. Now that it's gone, I'll shave a little off that and fix the wavy grind. Other than that, you guys think I should make any other changes?

If you're wondering, there is no edge on it, but it cuts like a freaking laser. Slightly convex 50:50 grind but I had to remove a lot of metal to get rid of most of the pitting.
 

EdipisReks

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i wouldn't do much more to it. keep it as Sab as possible.
 

Wagstaff

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I'm supremely impressed... and cuts like a freaking laser is good to know. Kind of the point of the (tragically abused) thing -- good to know it still has some fight in it!
 

wsfarrell

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Looks good at this point. Unfortunately, you're giving me ideas I don't know if I can execute.
 

Benuser

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On some French knives you may find a flat part of about six centimeters from the heel, used for chopping, parallely to the board, with one hand near the tip and the other pinching lightly the upperside of the handle. Have you seen the remainings of such a flat part?
 

memorael

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nice work mate, the only reason I would never buy a Sab is the damn bolster. I tried sharpening one once and the bolster pissed the hell out of me.
 

99Limited

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What's the point of the bolster? Can you just grind it down?
 

HHH Knives

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That looks great. I wouldn't change it any more then you did. Looks like you fixed it up nice!
 

wsfarrell

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On some French knives you may find a flat part of about six centimeters from the heel, used for chopping, parallely to the board, with one hand near the tip and the other pinching lightly the upperside of the handle. Have you seen the remainings of such a flat part?
I just got a new old stock Canadian Sabatier from the '50s, and it has that flat part. I thought it was mis-ground. Good to know.
 

tk59

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ER: I've never seen or owned a new Sab so I wouldn't really know what a Sab is "supposed" to be. This knife is basically a completely reground knife. The handle has been ground down in every dimension, the bolster has been mostly cut off and the rest ground down and smoothed for a comfortable right-handed pinch grip. The spine and choil have been rounded. The profile is the result of my attempt at saving as much steel as possible with no consideration for the original design.
Benuser: I have no idea if this knife was once that way. When I received it, the edge profile was severely overground both in front of the heel and behind the tip. I have no problem putting such a flat area in, if you think it would be a good idea though.
wsfarrell: Are you saying you want to do some similar modifications? If so, I'd be happy to tell you how I did this. I'm not sure it was the best way but I'm pretty happy with the result.
99: You can grind it down but it's a PITA without some good grinding tools, unless you grind some every time you sharpen which is still annoying. Most of the used bolstered knives I've seen have a big bolster protruding out of the profile. Fixing that gets old fast.
 

EdipisReks

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ER: I've never seen or owned a new Sab so I wouldn't really know what a Sab is "supposed" to be.
the bolsters are awful, keep grinding that until you can't see it anymore, but you might want to flatten the profile out a bit. take a look at the blades here for reference.
 

tk59

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I don't think you mean I want to completely remove the bolster, do you? You just think I should remove the bottom two thirds of it, completely. Those do have a flatter profile toward the heel. Definitely something I considered and it will be a little flatter once I fix the grind near the heel. The problem is the overall profile on this knife is actually flatter. I would have to shorten the knife and remove quite a bit of metal in the heel area to replicate the Sab profile...
 

EdipisReks

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i was being a bit hyperbolic (i truly hate the bolsters). i would remove enough that it won't get in the way of sharpening during the likely remaining lifespan of the knife. i think the knife needs a bit of a flat section, at the heel. there really isn't any one Sab profile, but every one of them i've seen or handled has had a flat section.
 

ajhuff

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In school we watched a CIA video on sharpening and in the video they said bolsters are supposed to be ground off to allow for proper sharpening. Just a data point.

-AJ
 

EdipisReks

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In school we watched a CIA video on sharpening and in the video they said bolsters are supposed to be ground off to allow for proper sharpening. Just a data point.

-AJ
the bolsters have to be ground down over the life of the knife.
 

Benuser

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There really isn't any one Sab profile, but every one of them i've seen or handled has had a flat section.
If the flat section has disappeared I think you just should restore it if you're asked to do so. People who are used to German profiles will get their chopping movement to be stopped by it, and won't like it a lot.
 

Eamon Burke

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Well done, especially the handle. There are many Sabatiers, it's like the Sakai of France. My folks have a set, and the profiles are very different from this.
 

tk59

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...I think you just should restore it if you're asked to do so...
There's the rub. Every time I ask about preferences, he defers to whatever I "think would be good."
 

Benuser

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As the knife has undergone a lot of transformations before it has arrived to you, I guess we don't have to worry about authenticity. So, does the guy know and use the specific technique the flat section was intended for? If not there is no advantage in rebuilding the flat section.
 

tk59

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It's hard to say. He doesn't seem to be too familiar with knife related terms in general but I'll ask him and see what he says.
 

tk59

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Here are the final shots. I fixed the grind more or less, making it flatter), ground down a bit more of the vestiges of bolster and put a 5k + strop edge on it. Thanks for the input!
out the door lft.jpgout the door rt.jpg
 

Andrew H

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It looks as good as new tk!
 

Benuser

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How nice! I specially like the way you dealt with the bolster. Sorry about your strop...
 

Wagstaff

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That looks beautiful indeed -- especially given the "before" shots. I'm as impressed with the handle as anything -- looks as good as a "real" re-handle job. And the finger-guard attenuation looks really pretty, too. Of course the blade itself is rescued from no-tip and a recurve that made it barely functional before. It's born again.
 

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