Sharpening Stainless

Discussion in 'Sharpening Station' started by dandeezd, Jan 2, 2019.

Help Support Kitchen Knife Forums by donating:

  1. Jan 2, 2019 #1

    dandeezd

    dandeezd

    dandeezd

    Member

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2018
    Messages:
    11
    I'm going to begin to learn how to sharpen – using a King 1K/6K combo and a diamond plate (not sure the grit off the top of my head). Before I try on the nicer knives, like my Gesshin Ginga 210 stainless, I was thinking of practicing with a couple globals, and a stainless set of VG-1's that we have. From what I've read, sharpening these things by hand, or trying to, might be more trouble than it's worth. Am I better off just jumping right onto the Ginga, being careful, or trying to pick up a cheap carbon somewhere to get technique down? Or even if I can't get the Globals and VG-1s super sharp, would they at least give me some practice with technique?
     
    linecooklife likes this.
  2. Jan 2, 2019 #2

    MontezumaBoy

    MontezumaBoy

    MontezumaBoy

    Senior Member

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2013
    Messages:
    957
    With the exception of a few san mai and the odd 52100 my knives are stainless (high hardness) ... assuming (big assumption) you have your basic technique down my $0.02 is avoid the softer stainless knives and just jump onto the Ginga (which I have also personally owned and sharpens very well on diamond plates and a 1K/3K from Jon/JKI I owned (can't speak to the King though). At least for me the diamond plus a synthetic 3K (JKI splash-and-go) are all I use and the diamond (JKI as well) was a game changer. Start on the 6K side if you just want to baby step it with the sharpener trick (Jon/JKI vid's) to get a feel for it and make sure that diamond isn't really rough I have the 1K and 6K by Jon. I rarely go above 3K on my stainless knives BTW ... just sayin ...

    Reasoning for not going with softer steels are stones will likely get plugged/filled quickly which can be frustrating & slows things down a bit. If you are at all worried about your Gina just tape the blade to within 0.25" of the edge with Gorilla tape (good stuff) to protect them but that is up to you.

    You may want to call Jon/JKI or PM him ... very busy guy but he is ALWAYS helpful ... my $0.02
     
  3. Jan 2, 2019 #3

    PappaG

    PappaG

    PappaG

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2016
    Messages:
    137
    I would just dive in with your current knife.
    However, having been in your exact position, you can get a cheap knife to get your over what I call the "mental" hump of your first attempt at sharpening. It will probably be easier, mentally, to get a cheap knife and work on the motion of sharpening.
    However once you get over the "mental hump", you will tell you self "Damn, I should have just started with the Ginga".....
    Just my 2 cents.
     
    M1k3 likes this.
  4. Jan 2, 2019 #4

    ianbiringer

    ianbiringer

    ianbiringer

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2017
    Messages:
    93
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    I’d say practice on the cheaper knives. Yea, it’ll take a while to raise a burr, but that’s good since you’ll be training your body to move correctly while you do it. Then you can be astonished when it takes like 2 min to sharpen the Ginga.

    Edit: I mean, you could certainly just start in on the Ginga, but personally I felt that I got better at sharpening so quickly at the beginning that I’m glad I waited a bit and didn’t take any extra steel off my good knives in the meantime. Whatever you decide is going to be fine, of course, and I totally understand the opposite opinion.
     
    M1k3 likes this.
  5. Jan 2, 2019 #5

    MontezumaBoy

    MontezumaBoy

    MontezumaBoy

    Senior Member

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2013
    Messages:
    957
    Sorry to the OP ... didn't pick up on the very first statement "I'm going to begin to learn how to sharpen" ... my bad ....

    Have to agree with ianbiringer ... start with the globals until you 'get the knack of it' and follow Jon/JKI's vids on YouTube ... make sure you don't use a knife with a bolster to avoid hitting the edges of the stone and also make sure you chamfer the edges of your stone ... lots of fantastic info in Jon's vids (& others) just follow the basics for a while. Then go for it with the Ginga ...
     
    M1k3 likes this.
  6. Jan 2, 2019 #6

    M1k3

    M1k3

    M1k3

    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2018
    Messages:
    40
    Start with whatever knife you feel comfortable with. Get yourself a wine cork (draw the edge through it a few times after you deburr). Watch JKI (Jon), Korin, Murray Carter, Peter Nowlan, etc. videos on YouTube. Be patient. Don't just use the middle section of your stone.

    EDIT: Consistent angle holding is your #1 priority. Everything else is secondary.
     
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2019
  7. Jan 2, 2019 #7

    Benuser

    Benuser

    Benuser

    Supporting Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2011
    Messages:
    5,155
    For practicing best is a simple carbon steel. Raising the burr, chasing it, getting rid of it.
    In Europe I would suggest the Herder Buckels breakfast knife in C75 carbon steel.
    https://media.knivesandtools.com/Ex...ert-herder-buckels-v2017-rh0403.450.02-01.jpg
    Very thin behind the edge, no thinning needed before reaching the edge. Stainless tend to be very abrasion resistant, so thinning will take a lot of effort. Long before you can even think about simple sharpening.
    The Globals are by far the most frustrating to sharpen on stones. Hard to raise a burr, hard to get rid of it once you managed to raise it. There's some plasticity in the steel, so unexpected burrs may pop up after a while. No fun.
     
    Nemo likes this.
  8. Jan 2, 2019 #8

    Nemo

    Nemo

    Nemo

    Senior Member

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2016
    Messages:
    3,256
    I also dislike sharpening Globals. Slow to raise a burr and very frustrating to get rid of the burr. If anything, it will discourage you and make you think that sharpening is harder than it is.

    Being so thin, the Ginga should be pretty easy to sharpen. But if you are in a position to do so, getting a cheapish carbon knife to learn on is pretty good advice.

    Edit: some King stones are sold as being for "carbon steel only". I have never used a King stone, so I don't know whether this is a real problem or if it applies to your combo stone, but it might be worth exploring.
     
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2019
  9. Jan 2, 2019 #9

    M1k3

    M1k3

    M1k3

    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2018
    Messages:
    40
    I have the KDS 1k/6k combo. The 1k side I haven't had any issues with it loading on cheap stainless or VG-10. The 6k side does load some but nothing extreme.
     
  10. Jan 2, 2019 #10

    Nemo

    Nemo

    Nemo

    Senior Member

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2016
    Messages:
    3,256
    Thanks for the update.
     
  11. Jan 2, 2019 #11

    M1k3

    M1k3

    M1k3

    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2018
    Messages:
    40
    No problem. I don't know about the kw65 version or hypers though. They may or may not exhibit that problem.
     
  12. Jan 2, 2019 #12

    Pensacola Tiger

    Pensacola Tiger

    Pensacola Tiger

    Founding Member

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2011
    Messages:
    5,816
    Learning requires timely feedback. You will not get that with the Globals or the VG-1 knives. Set them aside until you have learned to sharpen your Gesshin Ginga, and then use them as a "challenge", but don't try to learn on them.

    If you are loathe to learn on your Ginga, get something like a $50 Dao Vua from CKtG.
     
    Brandon Wicks likes this.
  13. Jan 2, 2019 #13

    Migraine

    Migraine

    Migraine

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2018
    Messages:
    205
    I'd just start on your nice knife. Or like someone said get a cheap carbon since simple carbon steel is the easiest to learn basic techniques on.

    So long as you go by a good guiding source and don't act like a complete maniac I think you're very unlikely to end up with problems.
     
  14. Jan 3, 2019 #14

    Ruso

    Ruso

    Ruso

    Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2013
    Messages:
    1,289
    Sharpen whatever you can lay your hands on. You wont remove burr properly, your edges will not be even, but you will get somewhere.
    The most important is to practice, practice, practice! Sharepn the cheap stainless, sharpen your friend’s and relative’s knives just keep it going. Muscle memory is all.

    Another tip is to watch Jon’s videos (Japanese Knife Imports). Get few dozen knives under your belt - rewatch the same videos and do it again.
     
    M1k3 likes this.
  15. Jan 3, 2019 #15

    dandeezd

    dandeezd

    dandeezd

    Member

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2018
    Messages:
    11
    Lots of good responses here. Thanks everyone. I watched Jon's videos a while back, but never got around to ordering stones, hence the delay in me learning to sharpen. I certainly plan on rewatching them before giving it a go. I think there was a thread recently on some cheap carbons, so I may check that out again to see what's out there if I want a practice knife. Keeping the cost down if I go that route hopefully because I'm looking to get my next knife (240 gyuto), likely something of the Gengetsu or Kochi variety. If I can't find a cheap enough carbon to my liking, I'll might start with the one of the VG-1s or Globals to at least get the motion down on the stones. Might also try the tape trick Montezuma suggested – would standard duct tape work? Would only worry about the gluey residue it might leave, but I would think that could be washed off...
     
  16. Jan 3, 2019 #16

    gman

    gman

    gman

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2014
    Messages:
    56
    duct tape is extremely gluey. use painter's masking tape.
     
  17. Jan 3, 2019 #17

    MartinT

    MartinT

    MartinT

    Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2018
    Messages:
    26
    Location:
    USA
    +1
     
  18. Jan 11, 2019 #18

    mikaelsan

    mikaelsan

    mikaelsan

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2016
    Messages:
    138
    Might be slightly off topic, but I don't understand why people has such a hard time with the globals, I sharpen my brother's and it's one of the easier knives to sharpen that I do like one a year. Don't know if it's just that those coarse grained stainless steels might be happy with my jnats
     
  19. Jan 11, 2019 #19

    Nemo

    Nemo

    Nemo

    Senior Member

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2016
    Messages:
    3,256
    It might be the stones, I guess. On Choseras, the steel feels gummy and as I mentioned is relitavely abrasion resistant with a peristwnt burr.

    Or maybe it's the sharpener? Most of my knives are carbon steel now so it could be that I'm just a litle too precious...
     
  20. Jan 13, 2019 #20

    vicv

    vicv

    vicv

    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2013
    Messages:
    164
    Very often a problem can lie in too fine a stone. I know a 1k stone is the gold standard beginner recommendation for a low grit stone here. 1k is actually quite fine. I'm not sure what your diamond plate is. I'd recommend a Norton crystolon coarse/fine or if you want to stick with a waterstone then a king 300 is an awesome stone. You will not then get the frustration of seeing nothing happen on your 1k stone. I know for me was very frustrating. The way I learned to sharpen free hand is to use a ~300 grit stone and get a perfect edge with that consistently every time on every knife. Then when I had that ability I moved onto a finer stone. Once you can shave arm hair without touching your skin consistently it's time to move onto a ~1k stone
     
  21. Jan 13, 2019 #21

    Benuser

    Benuser

    Benuser

    Supporting Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2011
    Messages:
    5,155
    Not that abrasion resistant that a Chosera cannot deal with it. When I had no coarser stone I've thinned a G-2 with an 800 (+/- JIS 1.2k). Clogging is no problem if you keep the stone wet enough, as I have been taught here.
    Raising the burr and deburring was always my biggest problem with them, but quite possible I would try a very different approach if I had to sharpen a Global again.
     
  22. Jan 13, 2019 #22

    Nemo

    Nemo

    Nemo

    Senior Member

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2016
    Messages:
    3,256
    Thinking back, this makes sense. I think I may have conflated "abrasion resistant" with "difficulty raising a burr".
     

Share This Page