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Sharpening folding and fixed-blade survival/multi-purpose knives with a kitchen sharpening-steel?

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posted on Mar, 8 2009 @ 10:55 AM
Any knife enthusiasts here that can explain the pros and cons of sharpening these kinds of smaller, non-kitchen knives with a standard kitchen sharpening steel vs. a diamond honing stone?

I just bought a nice Pro-Tech folder and was interested to hear your opinions.


[edit on 8-3-2009 by Dr Love]

posted on Mar, 8 2009 @ 11:15 AM
I use a diamond honing set simply because I find it very hard to duplicate the same edge with a standard kitchen steel. A kitchen steel will have a difficult time sharpening some tactical knives simply because the knife will be harder than a standard kitchen steel.

posted on Mar, 8 2009 @ 11:19 AM
A good steel will do a very good job of dressing a sharp knife however if it is dull you need to use a stone to bring the edge back. I have my grandfathers steel, he was a butcher. What he told me was to use the steel every time before using the knife that way the edge stays clean.

posted on Mar, 9 2009 @ 01:01 PM
Also wanted to get opinion on sharpening a combo edge. Do you just sharpen the whole blade the same way, or is there a trick to it?


posted on Mar, 9 2009 @ 01:04 PM
Can I ask a related-unrelated question.
I'm looking for a good knife -
With the regular survival bells and whistles.
Anyone point me to the right direction.
There are so many out there -

posted on Mar, 9 2009 @ 01:13 PM
I leave the steels to the butchers. I actually lost a razor edge on a good Trident kitchen knife by messing with one of these.

For my folders and fixed blades I use this Lansky system or a series of 3 '___' diamond stones

For my EDC or tool bucket I keep this little guy handy

posted on Mar, 9 2009 @ 01:20 PM
reply to post by spinkyboo

Check out the Gerber LMF II series. You can find one for about $70-$80. You can pay much more for other brands but this one is solid for the money.

posted on Mar, 9 2009 @ 01:21 PM

Originally posted by jibeho
reply to post by spinkyboo

Check out the Gerber LMF II series. You can find one for about $70-$80. You can pay much more for other brands but this one is solid for the money.

Great -
Thanks so much for the information.
Much appreciated.

posted on Mar, 9 2009 @ 06:00 PM
Sharpening knives is another world entirely.

I've used everything. Arkansas stones, ceramic rods, lansky, diamond stones, leather strops...and now I have a small belt sander which is the cats meow. I make my blades 'hair popping' sharp.

I bought this from Harbor Freight and the belts from Lee Valley.

Here's the real issue and solution. Making sure you have the same angle each and every time, starting from rough to micro finish.

I use a steel on my kitchen blades and do very well with it, but it took a long time to get to that point.

I'd suggest those stones from '___', like Jibeho suggested.

Take your blade and maybe a couple of pennies and lay your blade against that to see the angle. Coat the stone with water and slice away, trying to keep the same angle.

It takes time and is a mildly rewarding way to spend a few hours...especially when you go from 'hair cutting' sharp to 'scary' sharp. Find a good leather strop and compound for that razor edge.

For a serrated edge, use a small rat tailed file in fine/micro and lightly touch up those serrations.

Knife sharpening is a trade that you really do need to master, imho.

posted on Mar, 10 2009 @ 01:30 PM
reply to post by Dr Love

A kitchen steel does not "sharpen" a knife, per se. It merely straightens or realigns an edge that has been deformed microscopically under use. A steel does not remove any material. To really "sharpen" a knife, you need to remove a bit of material to get the edge geometry back. There are a lot of ways to do this.

The one that requires the least amount of skill is to use a "Sharpmaker" or a similar product, which involves clamping the blade at a specific angle, and moving a stone across it consistently. The most common method of sharpening a knife is probably "freehand sharpening", which involves simply holding a blade at a specific angle, and moving it across the stone consistently until the desired edge is achieved. You can use a lot of things to sharpen knives, stones, diamond stones, ceramic stones, sandpaper or even the bottoms of ceramic coffee mugs. The sharpening method that seems to be gaining in popularity in knife circles is the "mousepad & sandpaper" method of achieving a convex edge. A convex edge is superior to the traditional "microbevel" edge in almost every way, but it requires getting used to, and takes a degree of skill to attain. All sorts of videos and tutorials on knife sharpening are available on most of the knife discussion forums, as well as on several manufacturers websites.

A tip on sharpening: forget about those cheap chef knife sharpeners, or those plastic thingamabobs that supposedly allow you to simply draw a knife through it, making your edge sharp in the process. They will only damage your knife.

As for the best "survival" knife currently on the market, it would probably be Bark River Knife and Tool's "Bravo 1". It is the current issue knife for the USMC Force Recon units. It is a no-nonsense survival knife, with a 4.25" blade of A2 tool steel. Bark River has recently come out with a stainless "supersteel" version of the Bravo-1, in CPM-154. CPM-154 is Crucible Steel's powdered metal "super" equivalent of their well known 154-CM alloy.
Bark River makes a whole host of superb survival and bushcraft type knives, and they are all backed by unconditional lifetime warranties. You break it, they replace it- period.

Other knives on the market worth mention:
Rat Cutlery's RC-3 or RC-4. Randall Adventure Training is a survival school that focuses on real-world survival in South America. They have a line of relatively inexpensive, no-nonsense, heavy duty survival knives in 1095 tool steel. They were formerly associated with Ontario Cutlery, but have since parted ways.

Fallkniven's F1- the Swedish Air-Force's issue survival knife. VG-10 laminated steel and very respected.

Frost's Knives (NOT Frost Cutlery!) Mora 2000, inexpensive, but highly regarded. Moras are the "go to" knives in Scandinavia.

Busse Combat Game Warden or Active Duty. Busse's are expensive, and generally not the best finished, but they have the finest steel in the world (INFI) and are backed by unconditional lifetime warranty.

KaBar's new Becker line. Ethan Becker has been making heavy-duty survival knives with various manufacturers over the years. His latest collaborations are made by KaBar, and may be the best yet.

Chris Reeve Knives' Mountaineer and other "one piece" series. Chris Reeve has been making high-end survival knives for over 20 years. Including the "Yarborough"- which is issued to all US Green Beret's upon completion of their training. His "one piece" series knives are machined from solid bars of A2 tool steel, and are wonderful.

There are a lot of great survival knives on the market right now, with metallurgy and design better than at any other time in human history.

There are a lot of

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