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Discussion Starter #1
I think I've just finished a quest that started when I was 14, the quest for a razor sharp knife. I've bought all kinds of doodads that made my knives sharper, but not razor sharp. I bought some different cheap knives, tried sharpening steels, tried the Lansky, bought a belt sander with numerous grits up to 600 and a leather belt with white rouge. Tried polishing wheels and cardboard wheels and I couldn't make them work. Two months ago I broke down and bought two Knives of Alaska, the Muskrat and the Alpha Wolf. The Muskrat is razor sharp, the Alpha Wolf is pretty close, but not razor.

My Spyderco Endura was getting a bit dull and my interest to achieve razor sharpness was renewed. I bought some finer stones for my Lansky and I bought a couple of diamond sharpening rods. The diamond rods worked pretty good on the Spyderco, but still not razor sharp like when I bought it. The Lansky serrated sharpener seemed a waste of money.

Since I had some "good knives" finally, I got a little more brave trying to figure out how to sharpen my older knives that I had given up on. I pulled out my old Old Timer skinner and after reading this forum and this website: http://users.ameritech.net/knives/index.htm , I decided to try the cardboard wheel again.

I don't know why I didn't figure it out the first time, but that cardboard wheel has done it. I almost wet my panties when I shaved the hair on my left arm with it. I got so excited, I started pulling out all kinds old knives. I had an old Buck folder which was never sharp, now it's a razor. I had an old Bowie, now razor sharp. I have almost no hair left on my arm.

Tomorrow I want to tackle some other knives, maybe get a different wheel for the serrated. The tips on these knives are scary sharp, but further down, they are not as sharp. Any tips or tricks anyone would care to share to get these blades sharper further down?

With the cardboard, the wire edge comes right off. I set up my magnifier and light, the edges look near perfect. Also, do you think this would work on the D-2 steel on my Alpha Wolf and make it razor sharp too?
 

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Nice to finally have sharp knives,huh. I've never used that wheel, but I've seen it used by a local knifemaker who also sharpens knives at shows. A lot of people when using a wheel or a belt to sharpen tend to change the angle they are holding the blade at as they move down down the knife. Sounds like you might have the right angle at the tip, but are perhaps a bit too acute towards the bottom.. I assume you're starting at the handle and moving the blade up the wheel. You should have no problem sharpening any steel using that wheel; including D-2.
 

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For a hunting knife, it is not as important to have a knife sharp enough to shave with as it is to have a knife with an edge that is capable of holding an edge for a long period of time.

I have a Sharpe that I bought at Kmart about 25 years ago.

Leather sheath and all was probably $8.00

When it was new, it was a very good knife, even if it did come from Japan.

The newer ones were made in Taiwan and are not of as good a quality of steel.

I was like you and tried to sharpen it and make it as sharp as possible.

I bought a machine to sharpen blades and after about 1 hunting season the machine was wore out.

About 7 years ago I bought a simple kit at Wal Mart called Smiths - it looks identical to the Lasky's.

After using it on that blade for about 6 hours with the hone oil and a lot of patience, I now have an edge that was better than the one that it came with from the factory. Even when it gets dull, I can sharpen it with just a couple of licks with the stones.

I believe that finding the right steel and finding the right angle for the edge makes more sense than just putting a fine edge on a blade.

I believe that I have field dressed and skinned more than 125 deer with that knife.
That is a lot of deer.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
The more I use the paper wheel, the more I learn about it. It still does one **** of good job, but there have been a few knives that were difficult to get sharp. I ran those on my belt sander/grinder with a 320 grit belt, it was like resetting the angle. Then they polish right out with a little rouge on the paper wheel. (I don't use the paper gritted wheel.)

My dad keeps using his old (30+ years) kabar hunting knife. Every couple of deer he has me give it a spin on the wheel. He's spoiled now. I bought him 2 new knives and sharpened them for him and he still uses the old one. (we killed, gutted, and butchered 7 deer this year, gonna have 400lbs of sausage!)

I've had mixed results using 1200 grit sandpaper glued on a mouse pad. One knife polished right back up to razor sharp, the other one I dulled. Looks like I need more practice on that one.

I also bought a slow speed water-cooled grinder a few years ago and never really used it for much. I took it to work and started playing around with some dull scissors. Now I've sharpened half the scissors at work. A local guy was charging $16 a pair to sharpen $16 nursery scissors. It was a lot cheaper to let me figure it out and gain some valuable experience. I also ran across a Tormek wet grinder the other day, super sweet. Gonna have to save up for that baby some day.
 

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I've got the Tormek. They are amazing. I got it mainly for sharpening chisels and hand plane blades, but it is great for knives also.

Chris
 

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I used to use my Buck lock blade to shave with, just to freak out the other sailors. All I used was the "Arkansas Marble" set.

The secret was to keep the blade and stone at the same angle the whole time and finish with a light touch. That's it.
 

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During trapping season Ill have a kife in my hand up to 6-7 hours in a day..Im still using a steel and stones to touch up my knives. I have grinders in my shop if I have to regrind an edge on one..One of the best systems Ive seen is the Dunn knife wheels. Most "good" knives can go from dull to razor sharp in about 1-2 minutes..
 
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