1. Welcome to the New & Improved BladeForums. New software info here. Please report problems in Tech Support, and read existing threads before posting! - Spark
  2. I've changed the default forum style to Flat Awesome based on feedback. Don't like it? Click here to change how the forums look Feedback on this is welcome here.

Making a ceramic sharpener?

Discussion in 'Shop Talk - BladeSmith Questions and Answers' started by jaymeister99, Jun 28, 2012.

  1. jaymeister99

    jaymeister99

    812
    Sep 14, 2010
    I was hoping to add a chef's knife and maybe a carving set to my next batch.

    But I also want to add a matching sharpening steel (actually ceramic). I found some Alumina Ceramic rods for sale. Anybody ever try making a sharpening steel with ceramic?
     
  2. Mahoney

    Mahoney

    768
    Mar 8, 2006
    I've got a cheap one that is really just a 1/2" diameter ceramic rod glued into a hole in a wood handle. it works OK but leaves an edge comparable to what you get off those "crock stick" sharpeners, which is pretty much what it is.... It would not be hard to make a prettier version...but an alumina ceramic rod is not a steel...a smooth steel burnishes, alumina is a fine abrasive, and those steels with the vertical ridges scrape. Depending on the steel the knives will be made of, a smooth steel might be better to refine the edge.
     
  3. Stacy E. Apelt - Bladesmith

    Stacy E. Apelt - Bladesmith ilmarinen - MODERATOR Moderator Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Aug 20, 2004
    As Mahoney pointed pout, A true "edge steel" is to straighten the burr and refine the edge. It does not sharpen the blade.
    A ceramic rod is a fine abrasive rod that grinds down the edge and makes it thinner, thus sharper. Most knife supply companies sell the plain rods in 1/4 to 1/2 inch sizes. Ebay is full of them. The advantage of a round rod over a flat abrasive stone is that it only contacts the edge in one place. This also tends to leave a scratch looking finish on the edge. They are good for touching up a knife before doing some cutting, but using the belt sander set at dead slow with a 400-600 grit belt will produce a better edge.....or use a stone.
     
  4. jaymeister99

    jaymeister99

    812
    Sep 14, 2010
    I know its not necesarrily a sharpener, its to remove the burrs. But its called a sharpening steel, or honing steel, sharpening rod, chef's steel, and probably a half dozen others I haven't heard.

    Its going to be a set with a carving knife or a chef's knife, so it needs to be a "sharpening steel" style. I was planning on using Elmax or S35VN to make the knives to go along with it. Anbody use a regular steel "sharpening steel" rod on S35VN or Elmax?
     
  5. mete

    mete Gold Member Gold Member

    Jun 10, 2003
    S35VN won't work well with a 'steel' as it's not the type where you do the burr thing . For my EDC ,a Sebenza S35VN, I sharpen freehand with a 1200 grit diamond rod to give a very fine serrated edge which I think works very well for that purpose. A ceramic rod would do the same.
     
  6. Stacy E. Apelt - Bladesmith

    Stacy E. Apelt - Bladesmith ilmarinen - MODERATOR Moderator Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Aug 20, 2004
    If making if for a stainless steel knife, the ceramic rod with a matching handle will be fine.
    I understand the reason you used the word "steeling", but it is actually sharpening with a ceramic rod.
     
  7. Fred.Rowe

    Fred.Rowe Dealer / Materials Provider Dealer / Materials Provider

    May 2, 2004
    Not a hand held burnisher, of course; but this is how I filled the bill when I needed a sharpener for a set of kitchen knives.

    For me, the main thing was setting the sharpening angle to match the edge grind and of course making it cute.

    [​IMG]
     
  8. jaymeister99

    jaymeister99

    812
    Sep 14, 2010
    That is awesome! What did you use to make the actual sharpening pieces and how did you set em in there?
     
  9. Fred.Rowe

    Fred.Rowe Dealer / Materials Provider Dealer / Materials Provider

    May 2, 2004
    I took apart an old handheld sharpener, one of those with the strap that protects the knuckles, removed the carbide strips and used CA glue to spot glue the two pieces at the correct angle, 24 degrees. I then set them in place in the drilled hole and poured two part clear casting resin in the hole.
    All three blades in the set carry this sharpening angle. It took just a little work to put it together and I figure it will extend the useful life of the blades by years because the users will be sharpening with the correct angle.

    Fred
     

Share This Page