Archive for the ‘Wicked Edge (WEPS)’ Category

Spyderco Stone Challenge

May 2, 2018

We recently started offering Spyderco Medium, Fine and Ultra Fine stone in 1×4″ and 1×6″ custom sizes for various sharpening systems. That is nothing major by itself, but it spurred a friendly challenge because historically, it was said that he Fine and UF were the same stone, only finished differently. I am of the mind that the Fine and UF are the same materials, and are formulated the same way, but use different sized abrasives (Fine is approx 2K while UF is approx 4K). This would explain the difference in finish as well as the cost for the stones. Konstantin from Gritomatic is of the mind that the stones are exactly identical in every way, including grit size, except there is a different surface finish/texture on the stone which influences the resulting scratches. So the gauntlet was thrown down to see if I could discern the difference between 5 fine and ultra fine Spyderco stones. The stakes are high, so we wagered a bottle of Russian Vodka vs. a bottle of Kinmen Kaoliang.

Before I continue, it must be said that both theories hold water. Natural stones such as quartz can be surface finished rougher or finer for different depths of scratch, which results in coarser or finer finishes. You see it with dressing sticks for tormek wheels, and is similar in action with raising slurry with diamond plates, and nagura or slurry/conditioning stones for synthetics. However, my stance is that regardless of the surface texture, the resulting scratches have always produced the same results under the scope despite their aggressiveness (as long a no other abrasives are introduced into the mix).

So we begin! The obligatory data info first – pictures were taken on a Dino-Lite AM4113T. There are bar measurements for 1mm at 20x and 0.2mm at 200x if you enlarge the photos.

I received 5 stones from Konstantin and was assured that there was at least 1 Fine and 1 UF in the mix. I did several “tests” to see if I could tell the difference before the scratch test. Now this is a little unfair since I have my own stones, cut and uncut, processed and unprocessed to compare to. So the first test was the thickness test. The Spyderco Fine is just a little thicker overall than the UF, so in theory, the thinner stones should be the UF. My results were as follows: Stones 2 and 5 should be Fine stones while 1, 3, and 4 should be UF. But of course, Konstantin would know this, so I could clearly not choose the cup in front of me.

So I took to the scope. First round was 20x pics against a control of my known stones. Results were interesting, and seemed pretty straight forward at first. Stones 1,2,4,and 5 were Fine while stone 3 was UF. But we knew Konstantin would know that I would use a scope, so he changed up the surface finishes to hide any immediate tells, so I could clearly not choose the cup in front of him.

Spyderco Fine Control 20x

Spyderco UF Control 20x

Stone 1 20x

Stone 3 20x

Stone 4 20x

Stone 5 20x

 

Onto the 200x, which would reveal even more secrets. Results were slightly different, with the 1,3,4 and 5 stones being fine and stone 2 being UF. Clearly this was starting to get dizzying…So I could clearly not choose the cup in front of me.

Spyderco Fine Control 200x

Spyderco UF Control 200x

Stone 1 200x

Stone 2 200x

Stone 3 200x

Stone 4 200x

Stone 5 200x

So seeing as the stones were lapped before I got them, and the control pics were different from what I was seeing, we lapped everything again – both my controls and the stones from Konstantin to see if that would even the field more. I spared you the 20x pics and jumped straight to the 200x. Results were 1,2,3 and 5 as Fine, and 2 and 4 as UF, so I could clearly not choose the cup in front of him!

Spyderco Lapped Fine Control 200x

Spyderco Lapped UF Control 200x

Stone 1 Lapped 200x

Stone 2 Lapped 200x

Stone 3 Lapped 200x

Stone 5 Lapped 200x

So enough games – it’s time to drink. Last test was the all out scratch test. I started off with a control 600 diamond scratch, and then make parallel scratches against the control stones. Each time I went to a new stone, including the on the controls, I reset the askew angle on the 600 diamond to erase all traces of the previous scratches so we could see a true finish. Here the results are a little more visible, ending with stones 2,3,and 5 being Fine and Stones 1 and 4 as UF. Quite a different story from the previous tests.

600 Diamond Control 200x

Spyderco Fine Control 200x

Spyderco UF Control 200x

Stone 1 Blade Test 200x

Stone 2 Blade Test 200x

Stone 3 Blade Test 200x

Stone 4 Blade Test 200x

Stone 5 Blade Test 200x

 

So in conclusion, I say the Fine stones are 2, 3, and 5, while the UF stones are 1 and 4. This was a tough test, to be honest. I’m glad we were able to have fun, I will post the actual grits from Konstantin when he reveals them.

Either way, it was better than getting involved in a land war in Asia. I think it’s time to drink some alcohol! Inconceivable!

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Jende Industries Stone Cutting

February 27, 2018

Jende Industries is the leading supplier of customized cut stones for the KME Sharpener, Hapstone, Edge Pro, TSProf, and the Wicked Edge.  It’s not hard to see why.  www.jendeindustries.com

 

Shapton Glass Stones for the Wicked Edge!

October 18, 2016

Shapton Glass Stones are now available for the Wicked Edge Precision Sharpener (WEPS)!  The full 10 stone lineup includes grits from 220 all the way up to 30K, and you can now make your own customized Shapton Glass Stone Paddles for the Wicked Edge.

Shapton Glass WEPS Stones

Shapton Glass WEPS Stones

The Wicked Edge Precision Sharpener is such a great platform, and anyone who uses one knows just how diverse the accessory stone options are. Shapton Glass Stones are some of the best sharpening stones in the known universe, and until now, the only only way to experience them was by using them in the full size stones. Now they have been brought together to make the WEPS even better! Be warned that there may be a small mushroom cloud that forms when you first use the stones 🙂

320 Shapton Glass WEPS Stone

The extensive grit range is unparalleled, and includes 220, 320, 500, 1K, 2K, 4K, 6K, 8K, 16K, and 30K grits. Our DIY Shapton Glass WEPS Paddles allow you to mix and match your grits to get the combos you need, and come attached to a Wicked Edge Paddle. If you liked the Wicked Edge before, you will fall in love with it all over again with the Shapton Glass WEPS Stones!

 

Jende Nanocloth Ultra Strops – Color Coded for Your Pleasure!

September 9, 2016

We are happy introduce Jende Nanocloth Ultra, our newest innovation in stropping mediums!

jende-nanocloth-rainbow-big

Jende Nanocloth Ultra Rainbow

  • The Jende Nanocloth Ultra is a synthetic stropping material that has no weave, so feedback is the same in all directions. Other weaved strops tend to have noticeable resistance change feedback variations, like a rug when vacuuming, which can make you second guess your stropping stroke.
  • The Honeycomb structure is very consistent. The shape allows the emulsions to fill up the honeycombs, keeping more abrasive on the strop and off your knife. The shape also fills up and beads on the surface, giving a snow-shoe effect with even scratches when stropping.
jende-black-nanocloth-plain-400x

Jende Nanocloth Ultra – 400x

  • The depth of the honeycomb has little compression – less than leather in general.
  •  Because of the depth of abrasive in the honeycomb tubes, differential pressure can be used to give the strop more or less aggression by adding pressure for more aggression, and super light strokes to just tickle the edge for finish stropping.
  • The color-coded Acrylic base allows you to instantly recognize the grit strop you desire to use, saving time and confusion.
  • Laser etched to ensure long-lasting and clear identification marks.
  • Works equally well with our Jende Poly Diamond Sprays, Jende Poly Diamond Emulsions, and our Jende CBN Emulsions.

We are offing a huge variety of sizes on color coded acrylic, including 210x70mm and 2×6″ Bench strops on 3/4″ thick acrylic blocks, and for a full array of guided sharpening systems, including the Edge Pro (EP), Hapstone Sharpener, KME Sharpener, and Wicked Edge (WEPS).  Stropping will never be the same again!

Diamond Films by Jende Industries

November 10, 2014

Abrasion resistant steels and ceramic knives are now an established part of the knife and tool world, and this requires diamonds in order sharpen them effectively. That’s why we are proud to introduce Diamond Sharpening Films by Jende Industries! We have 10 grits available, ranging from 80 microns to 0.5 microns (180 grit to 30,000 grit), and come in Wicked Edge Precision Sharpener (WEPS) size, Edge Pro size (1″x6″), 2″x6″, 3″x8″ and 3″x11″. They are also available with PSA and non-PSA backing.

2x6 jende standard set web

2″x6″ Diamond Films by Jende Industries

With a grit range that rivals that of some of the best sharpening stone series out there, our diamond films can handle profiling and repairs while bringing your edges to amazing heights of sharpness. Our films are also great for slip stone applications – they can be wrapped around dowels for sharpening serrated edges or the inside curvatures of turning tools, or used to polish the blade of old razors.

We’ve put together a few diamond film sets to choose from in order to get you started:

The Polishing Set includes one piece each of 15, 9, 6, 3, 1, and 0.5 micron films (1K to 30K grit), and is a comprehensive set that is geared toward general edge maintenance and regular repair work. Straight Razor honers will benefit greatly from this set, and those looking for shave ready knife edges will definitely impress!

The Standard Set includes one piece each of 45, 30, 15, 9, 6, and 3 micron films (320 to 6K grit), and is an “all around” set that can handle profiling and reasonable repairs. The 3 micron finish produces a mirror finish, and is “good enough” for most knife and tool applications.

The Coarse Set includes one piece each of 80, 60, 45, 30, 15, and 9 micron films (180 to 1,500 grit). This coarse set is meant for some more serious work, be it cleaning up scratches from belts or diamond plates, or for removing chips or reprofiling. The 9 micron film leaves a great “working sharp” edge that will hold up to abuse, and still do some serious cutting.

Finding Your Sharpening Philosophy

November 3, 2012

There is a HUGE range and variety of sharpening products and methods out there, and before going any further down the sharpening rabbit hole, forming  a sharpening philosophy can help you save time and money in the long run.

When you first embark on your sharpening journey and start sifting through the usual pile of information that search engines, Youtube videos, forums, and blogs (like this one! ) spew out, it can be very overwhelming. In reality, there are only two constants when sharpening: the first is that the answer to every question is It depends; and the second is that The more you know about sharpening, the more you need to know.

The next logical question is What do I need to know? Well, the answer is, of course It depends! I’m glad we got that cleared up. 😀

Seriously, though, it’s not about answering “how to sharpen” (which is the easy part since the actual rules of sharpening are quite concrete) – it’s about asking and answering What do I want to achieve when I sharpen, and how do I go about it? The answers to these 2 questions are what form the backbones of your sharpening philosophy, and will guide you toward making purchases that are best for you.

The first major categories to think about are these:

  1. Speed vs. Cost vs. Precision
  2. Mechanized vs. Manual Sharpening
  3. Guided vs. Freehand Sharpening
  4. Maintenance vs. Full Service Sharpening

There are more categories to choose from as you progress deeper down certain paths, but these are the most important factors in the beginning.

  • Speed vs. Cost vs. Precision

The saying goes “Good, fast and cheap – Pick any 2”. Speed generally costs more, as do more precise results. However, if you are on a budget, less expensive products will still generally work. This is the is one major category that every decision will always boil down to. There is no “wrong” answer – it is completely subjective, and the answer can change at any time given the circumstances surrounding the decision(s).

Take a more in-depth look at cost vs. speed vs. precision here.

The second category will more clearly define the path of your sharpening journey:

  • Mechanized vs. Manual Sharpening

There is a definite split in the sharpening world between Mechanized and Manual sharpening. Both have many options to choose from, and both have their  pros and cons depending on the type of sharpening you are doing, and sharpeners can find a comfortable balance between them. Generally speaking, mechanized is anything with a motor – a belt sander, stone or paper wheel, grinders, etc., and are easily the fastest methods and are more aggressive than non-mechanized approaches.

Manual Sharpening is further broken down into Freehand and Guided sharpening, which are similar in terms of the types of sharpening mediums they use. They include sharpening stones, various abrasive papers, sprays, compounds, and stropping mediums, etc.. (More on this in a minute.) But overall, Manual Sharpening’s speed is slower, but results are generally more personalized and the process is more Zen-like.

So once you’ve decided where you stand in terms of Mechanized vs. Manual Sharpening, you will need to go one step further:

  • Freehand vs. Guided

With Freehand vs. Guided Sharpening, there is the obvious increase in precision with guides that makes them very powerful and almost idiot proof sharpening tools, however, the speed, skill and freedom of freehand sharpening has a large appeal as well. Note that both Mechanized and Manual sharpening can done freehand, or guided with various jigs and guides.

The final category to consider is:

  • Maintenance vs. Full Service Sharpening

In this case, Maintenance Sharpening is for someone who has several knives that are kept consistently sharp, and would like to simply touch them up here and there, with no real damage to repair or major sharpening to be done. Full Service Sharpening is being able to perform all aspects of sharpening from making repairs to chipped edges, profiling new blades, and maintaining edges over time.

This is not a black and white category – there is an overlap of abilities with many of the products and methods. Most Maintenance-minded sharpening products and methods will perform repair tasks, and Full Service-minded sharpening products and methods are perfectly suitable for maintaining edges.

Conclusion

If you’ve taken these 4 categories into consideration, you should start to have a better view of what kind of sharpening you want to do, and which products and methods you may want to consider given the specific things you want to sharpen.

Your philosophy is not set in stone – it will change and develop as you continue on your journey  – don’t forget – the more you know about sharpening, the more you need to know. For example, there are more advanced categories to consider, such as sharpening for Aesthetics vs. Functionality, “True grit” edges vs. Polished Grooves – just to name 2.

Remember – It Depends!

IDRS 2012 – Oxford, Ohio + Meeting Nasty & Gary Nicholas Sass

July 23, 2012

Even though I already had tons of fun in Chicago, Austin, and at the sharpening party, it was finally time to do what I initially intended to do on this trip – and that is to go to the International Double Reed Society’s  (IDRS) annual conference, which was held at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. (I know it’s a geographic mess – but it’s a real place!)

Due to the 4th of July holiday right before the show, there was no rush to drive to Ohio, so I scheduled a couple of stops along the way. The first stop was at knife maker Gary Nicholas Sass’s place in Sharpsville, PA. Yes, I said Sharpsville. It does exist! Interestingly enough, there are still remains of the  locks that were once part of the Erie canal system in Western Pennsylvania.

Upon arriving, I immediately got inducted into Gary’s knife shop – I hit my head on the low door even though he warned me it was low 🙂 A couple of days earlier, we had discussed him making a custom Reed knife for me, and he had a prototype for me that was ground down from an existing knife to take a look at. With a minor adjustment or 2, the knife was ready to go. There was a traditional samurai sword wrap on the handle that consisted of Ray skin wrapped in a synthetic silk, and this traditional approach was one of the things that drew me towards Gary’s knives a few weeks earlier at the Blade show in Atlanta.

Gary Nicholas Sass

We also discussed the different customizing of the handle options, which included different colored wraps and wood.  Here are some of his handles which included the ray skin wrap, dyed giraffe bone, and several types of wood. The far right is a boar tusk. I doubt it would ever be chosen for a reed knife, but it did fit in the hand quite comfortably…(BTW, the second from the left was the reed knife prototype).

Gary Sass’s Reed Knife handle options

Unfortunately, the prototype reed knife sold at the show the first day, and all I have are some quick photos I took so we can tweak the knife even more to suite oboists and bassoonists. With the slight curvature, the bassoonists LOVED the knife for getting into the channels, but the oboists were not as thrilled about it since their reeds are just so much smaller. FWIW, I asked Gary to put that slight curve on it for the bassoonists, and it was interesting that the oboists responded like they did! It was a bassoonist who bought the knife.

Gary Nicholas Sass Reed Knife 1

Gary Nicholas Sass Reed Knife 2

After some other business discussion (which will be posted soon!) Gary took us to Quaker Steak for some of their famous wings. The pepper parmesan sauce was just too good!

After a wonderful lunch at Quaker Steak, we headed out toward Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. I was supposed to meet up with one of the super mods over at the knife forums, whose username is “Nasty”, but due to the storms that blew through OH, PA and West VA the previous weekend, our meeting was cancelled due to some cleaning up that needed to be done. There was mostly downed trees, but it was severe enough to cancel the local 4th of July celebrations. This setback would be remedied on the weekend, when Nasty and his wife came out to the university. But more on that in a little bit 🙂

We got to the beautiful Miami University campus, and started our normal setup routine, running into the usual suspects, including Ann Hodge of Hodge Products, Inc., who is one of my biggest retailers of the Jende Reed Knife and surrounding products. Her new display was amazing!

We bumped into Hanna Selznick, the “Oboe Fairy“, Robert Morgan of the Chicago Reed Company and inventor of the W.R.I.S.T, and Shawna Lake of Oboe Chicago.

I also ran into 2 new exhibitors – the first was Lisa Allen of Lisa’s oboe reedery, who also happened to be a fellow classmate and alumnus of The Boston Conservatory. She is now making oboe reeds full time. I couldn’t believe a fellow alum didn’t have my knife,  so I lent her my 15K Jende Reed Knife for a couple of days. She was happy 🙂

Lisa Allen of Lisa’s Oboe Reedery

I also ran into Robert Huffman, a long time “disciple” of mine who has sat at my table over the years observing, and absorbing the whole reed knife sharpening process. He’s a recently retired oboist of the US Army Band, and while he completely understands the sharpening process, his results were driving him to the point of no longer playing the oboe. Then he found the Wicked Edge Precision Sharpener (WEPS), which is an excellent guided sharpening system. Robert and I spoke about using the WEPS for reed knives several months ago, but when I saw him at the IDRS as an exhibitor FOR Wicked Edge, I was taken totally by surprise!

Wicked Edge Precision Sharpener for Reed Knives!

This was incredible news because I love my Wicked Edge, and Robert and I immediately went into the pros of using this system for reed knives – the most obvious is that it holds the angles for you. This is beneficial for repeatability, and for those players who might not have the dexterity needed for freehand sharpening on full sized stones, (which is the method I generally promote). For you double-reeders out there, I  also happen to be somewhat of an *ahem* expert on the Wicked Edge, although most of my you tube videos and blogging with the WEPS have been kitchen knife and shaving related. In fact, a few of us, including Robert, sat around watching some of my favorite shaving videos on one of the nights 🙂 Shave 1Shave 2, Shave 3 (#3 is not for the faint of heart!)

Back on track here – the good news is that you can use the same Shapton stones that I use, or their major competitor, the Chosera stones which are custom cut to fit the WEPS. The bad news was that Robert didn’t have them at this show…. We’ll soon remedy that, though!

Back at my table, Things were moving along as usual – lots of people dropping off knives for sharpening. This year was a little different because I brought an extra sharpening station for people to sharpen by themselves. In the past, there is just not enough time for me to “let” people sharpen on their own. I’ve seen more and more knives coming back for their yearly service in much better condition, which tells me people are getting results – no doubt a result of  the help from my Reed Knife Sharpening Book. 😀 It is also clear that more and more bassoonists are starting to get into sharp knives.

One of my self-sharpening visitors was oboist Aybegüm Şekercioğlu, from Turkey. She was very good at sharpening, and we had fun modifying my usual nickel and dime method of sharpening to using Turkish currency, which would help her students get good results when she returned home.

Turkish Oboist Aybegüm Şekercioğlu

In the middle of all the fun and noise, Nasty (the supermod from knife forums) and his wife paid us a visit at the exhibition hall. I was very excited that the meeting was actually taking place after all! With a little help from some friends and a small fortune in hush money, we got them in for a few minutes to show them what the IDRS was all about.

I showed Nasty my sharpening setup, and a few of the knives I was working on. We posed for the obligatory picture (otherwise it didn’t happen!) :

Nasty and Tom Blodgett

But then the real treat came when Nasty offered to give me a few pointers on my sharpening – it was an offer that I eagerly accepted. I like to learn from everyone, and it is clear from the footage below that Nasty truly is a master at his craft, and I walked away a better sharpener! 😀

We then headed into town for some lunch at Mac and Joe’s, Oxford’s oldest tavern, where we were able to talk in a quieter setting. Since we know Nasty and I are both respectful, but unmovable as far as our sharpening preferences, the conversation easily shifted toward life things such as our work and places we’ve lived. I can’t tell you more without having to kill you, but if anyone from the knife forums is driving through Ohio, it’s well worth stopping by to meet Nasty, who really isn’t so nasty at all. The only regret in meeting him and his wife is that our time was limited to just a few minutes at the show, and a quick lunch. This meeting was yet another amazing feather in the cap of this trip, though!

That was pretty much the peak of the trip! The next couple of days was full of sharpening, and showing off another reed knife prototype, this time made out of Bombshell Steel by Maestro Wu. It’s a single bevel, with the back side hollow ground. This one is left-handed, but there will be right handed ones available soon.

Maestro Wu Single Bevel Reed Knife -

Maestro Wu Single Bevel Reed Knife -1

Maestro Wu Single Bevel Reed Knife -2

Maestro Wu Single Bevel Reed Knife -2

Maestro Wu Single Bevel Reed Knife -3

Maestro Wu Single Bevel Reed Knife -3

Maestro Wu Single Bevel Reed Knife -4
Maestro Wu Single Bevel Reed Knife -4

 

With a quick wrap up of the table, and a 12 hour drive back to NJ, We made it back just in time for me to get some laundry done, grab that last slice of pizza, and head out to the airport.

This trip was a whirlwind 3 weeks, with so many great things happening. It already seems like an eternity since the Northwestern Summer Camp that started this whole journey off, and I can’t wait until next year’s trip!

2012 BLADE Show

June 12, 2012

The Blade Show 2012 in Atlanta, Georgia started off great! For some reason, the travel gods were favorable. On my 14 hour flight from Hong Kong, the middle seat in a row of 3 was empty and I received a free upgrade on my rental car!

I flew in on Thursday and first met up with Ken Schwartz and some of his family, and while enjoying the finer aspects of the Kao-Liang Liquor I brought and some Green Label Johnny Walker Scotch, we had one of the most intellectually stimulating conversations that ranged from knives to liquor, to salt, to bread, to music, to physics and ended with quantum mechanics.

I had a feeling that this was going to be a great blade show!!!

On Friday morning, Ken and I headed over to the Blade show and met up with Mark Reich (aka YTriech) for breakfast and it was just like old times! We saw some of Mark’s knives he had been working on, and we were blown away by the level of diversity in the blade styles as well as the handle materials and shapes. Mark said he wanted to explore and develop his own style more, but judging by the work I saw, he’s definitely developed some mad skills and the true characteristic of his knives has already begun to emerge.

After breakfast, we headed over to the show, where we met up with Clay and Kay from Wicked Edge as well as Ron, Mike and Carla from KME Sharpeners. The convention hall was organized much better this year – it was more open and less compartmentalized than last year’s show. There were LOTS of tables and vendor booths, and the place was a beehive of activity with everyone setting up and getting to see old friends.

I spent the day with Clay and Kay over at the Wicked Edge booth. Clay unveiled some of the improvements to the WEPS, which included paddles with built-in inclinometers. He also brought a more precise arm with a universal bearing joint that had no play and amazingly smooth action that was coupled with a mechanism for fine tuning the angles that literally blew me away.  I really liked the Wicked Edge before, yet somehow Clay made me like it even more! I can’t wait to get these modifications for my WEPS!

As promised, I brought my Shapton and Chosera Wicked Edge stones, and set up. When the doors to the show opened to the public, it was a mad house. The Wicked Edge booth swarmed with people trying to get in, and of course, the knife sharpening began. It was great to see Clay sharpening from the corner of my eye – he really is a talented sharpener, and everyone commented on how much they loved their Wicked Edge.

One knife after the other was handed up to us for sharpening I kept hearing CPM145, S30V, and S90V. While Clay focused on the using WEPS stock Diamond and Ceramic stones, I treated people to the awesome refining power of the WEPS Chosera 800 and 2K (due to the sheer number of people in the booth, I just did not have the time to take knives up to the 10K level.)

One knife in particular that I had fun with was a beautiful knife made by Nicholas Sass. While a lot of the knife makers I talk to generally don’t spend as much time sharpening their knives as they do making them, It was refreshing to hear just how adamant Sass is about his knives being sharp. It took a little effort to reprofile the hardened 440C (I think), but once he saw the resulting 2K Chosera WEPS stone edge, he was all smiles – He even came back with his girlfriend’s knife a little later! 😀

After an afternoon of non-stop sharpening on the WEPS, Clay, Kay, Ken and I hit the hotel bar for a drink – but not before Clay and Kay took a swig of the Kao Liang Liquor I had brought them J . We had a wonderful discussion about the future of the WEPS, and I can tell you that there are a whole lot of great innovations in the works!

On Saturday, I was eager to spend some time at the KME Sharpener booth. At last year’s BLADE show, I was really impressed with the quality of the KME, because they took all the faulty aspects of other guided rod sharpening systems and fixed them. In other words, there is no play AT ALL in the rod when sharpening, making the edge angle super precise. Another great feature is that the knife clamp rotates, which means you don’t need to worry about changing the position of the knife as you progress through the grits, and you don’t need to switch hands or be ambidextrous when you flip the blade over.

To be honest, I was so impressed with the KME last year, that I bugged them for a whole year to add the Chosera stones to their already versatile stone lineup, which includes DMT Diamonds, aluminum and silicone oxide stones and hard, black and translucent Arkansas stones. Ron finally caved in, and the Choseras for the KME finally made their debut!

When I got to the KME booth, Ron already had a few people gathered around him as he patiently demonstrated his sharpener and walked them through the sharpening process step by step on the KME. It was great to see Ron taking such care of his customers, and with his reading glasses nestled halfway down his nose, he had a rather grandfatherly feel to him (even though he’s not that old). While I already knew that Ron was deep down the sharpening rabbit hole, I could easily see in person just how much loves to sharpen, and how much he cares that others sharpen well, too.

Mike, Ron’s brother, was happy with the result of the Choseras, and we started playing around with some ideas of progressions. While he left off at the translucent Arkansas and progressed on the 2K, 5K, and 10K Choseras, I proceeded to sharpen his EDC from the ground up, first using the DMT Extra coarse, and then doing a full, 8 stone progression on the Choseras up to 10K.

As people filled up the booth, a ceramic knife came along for sharpening. Ceramic knives require the use of diamonds since they are very hard and abrade rather slowly. Since The KME uses 1×4” DMT diamond plates, I was eager to take up the challenge.

There were chips in the edge that needed to get removed, and after a few minutes, the chips were brought down, and I progressed through the rest of the DMT diamond plates. The customer was happy, and the KME was successful, as usual!

Ron, Mike and Carla had their crowd under control (I was actually getting in the way!) so I snuck out of the KME booth to spend some time walking around with Ken to see the exhibits. There were lots of knife makers, all showing off great work, and we stopped by a bunch of tables and booths including Stephen Fowler, and Travis Wuertz.

As usual, time flew by, and before we knew it, it was time to start shutting things down for the day. Ken and I packed up and said our goodbyes to Kay and Clay before heading out to dinner with Ron, Mike and Carla. Mark, and Ron’s old friend Kelly (who was at the booth with them all day) came out to have dinner with us at the Longhorn Steakhouse, and we had the best of times over a great meal. Mike was more than impressed with the 10K Chosera edge I put on his EDC earlier. After dinner we parted ways, but not before they agreed to come out to my next sharpening party (which is the 30th of June).

After Dinner, Mark, Ken and I went back to the hotel and spent the next few hours contemplating how to take over the knife world, and I gave Mark a few straight razor blades that needed new scales. He (we) got really excited about some of the materials for the scales that he was going to try. We ended well after midnight, and after a group photo, Ken and I went back home to get what seemed like only a few minutes sleep before heading out to the airport.

It was truly a great BLADE show!

Wicked Edge (WEPS) Tutorial – Lapping Chosera and Shapton Stones

May 14, 2012

In this Wicked Edge Tutorial, I take a deeper look into lapping the Shapton and Chosera WEPS stones using the diamond WEPS plates as well as the full size (3×8) Atoma Plates. You may remember that I briefly covered lapping the Chosera WEPS stones in the first Wicked Edge Tutorial, found here.

Enjoy!

Wicked Edge (WEPS) Chosera Stone Video Tuturials – Part 1 and 2 + a Shave!

April 22, 2012

Clay Alison of Wicked Edge Precision Sharpener (WEPS) recently asked me to do a tutorial on the Chosera stones for the WEPS, and rather than write up another of my famous long-winded posts, I tried my hand at a video tutorial.  We ended up with 3 videos 🙂

The first video is the introduction to Chosera stones, and touches on flattening/cleaning the stones, as well as adjusting angles to account for the different thickness between the Choseras stones and the stock WEPS. (Read more about that here). I also go through the 3 different strokes that I use on the WEPS – Circles, Scrubbing, and Sweeping, and show some nice microscope pictures along the way.

The second video is the actual sharpening of a 3.5″ Maestro Wu Bombshell Steel folding knife using the 400, 1K, 3K, 5K and 10K Chosera stones. It’s a bit long because I wanted viewers to see a “real time” version. Due to the repetitive nature of the process, there was editing on the higher grits, where you should have the idea of the process and the time it takes by then. I finished with the WEPS leather strops with one side loaded with Ken Schwartz’s .125 micron CBN, and the other side with clean leather. More microscope pictures are posted along the way.

The third video is the same Maestro Wu knife put to a straight razor shave right out of the WEPS. It’s not my most controversial shaving video (like these!),  but there are some good closeups and the music is nice! 🙂

A special thanks to Colin Brown of ModelMosa for the use of his studio, and to Trevor Joines (TVGUY101), my cameraman and video editor.