What's it going to take for me to be able to push cut a tomato?

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Mar 1, 2011
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This just seems to be the ultimate test of sharpness. I can get my blades sharp enough to push cut through newspaper. I can slice a tomato using just the weight of the blade with me barely supporting the handle and end up with a complete slice so thin that it is transparent. I watched the video where maxim slices a tomato standing on end touching it only with the blade. Well, I can get a tissue paper thin slice doing that too. But for the like of me I cannot get any of my knives to push cut a tomato. It doesn't matter if the tomato is fresh from the vine firm or so ripe it barely supports itself.

So here's my routine, since my blades are in very good shape to begin with I start with my Bester 1.2k. Then I move on to my 3k, 6k and 8k stones and finish with 1.0 and .5 micron stropping pastes and finish with an unloaded leather strop. Am I putting too much of polish on the blade, because they do come out clear and shiny as a mirror?

It seem to be a case of "I don't know what I don't know."
I can pass the tomato test finishing with 8k plus stropping on Cr2O3. I pass it a lot better if I go to 20k and strop on any of the 0.5 micron compounds (or smaller). Maybe you are rounding your edge on the strop? Dunno. I haven't even tried it on lower polish.
I can push cut a tomato after King 6000. Gives a little resistance at first, but it does cut instead of crush. Try it after the stone before the strop, you might as tk says be rounding the edge off just enough that it won't start the cut.
Also the stopping will polish your edge to a degree where the liquid sticks to the blade so tightly that it creates a vacuum. I suspect that the exact opposite is one of the main reasons why Shigefusa cuts so insanely well. The Shigis have a natural stone polish all the way down to the edge letting air and liquid pass and avoid the vacuum. Try to finish the blade to #3000 removing all the shiny stropped parts and just hone the edge on #6000 and try after that.

Thanks everyone's suggestions. It just seemed weird that I can slice through the skin with so little pressure. There's hope yet!
Tomato test is easy, use a corse stone and debur & polish. A 220 grit edge will pass a tomato test. Now to get a fine edge to pass that's a deferent story, what the boys above sounds good
I can push cut a tomato with an edge from a 2k stone, polished and deburred. I often do!