AMK 75 vs Tormek t4

Discussion in 'Shop Talk - BladeSmith Questions and Answers' started by Happychicken, Oct 12, 2019.

  1. Happychicken


    Nov 14, 2018
    Hi all I have made a few knives now for the kitchen and am super happy I started knife making. However I suck to the extreme at sharpening. So I went and bought a wicked edge system and I can get knifes sharp but it takes forever to set the second bevel.
    So I am looking at a faster system to get knives sharp faster. I am looking at tormek t4 and the AMK 75. I am heard a lot of good and bad about both. Wondering if anyone has experience with these and would recommend them.
    Most the YouTube videos on these seem more like infomercials then unbiased reviews.
  2. jll346

    jll346 Knife maker Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    May 29, 2006
    Why not use your 2x72 then finish on the wicked edge?
  3. Happychicken


    Nov 14, 2018
    When I use the grinder I mess up. And I have made some real bad mistakes. I realize using a guided system is a crutch but at this point I need some help
  4. AVigil

    AVigil Adam Vigil knifemaker working the grind Platinum Member

    Feb 17, 2009
    You have a wicked edge? That is a great system, it does take time

    I use an Edgepro and this is how I cut down the time.

    First be sure to grind your edge thin.

    I angle the platen forward the amount of degrees I want. Lets say 20 degrees.

    I hold the blade perpendicular to the floor, basically at zero degrees tilt.

    I use the space between the top wheel and platen to sharpen with a new 220 belt on slow speed.

    Make equal passes on both sides and since you are holding the blade a zero degrees it is easy to duplicate on both sides.
    Once you are close to raising a burr, or you raise a burr move I move to the edgepro that is set at 20 degrees and clean up and finish the edge.

    This will cut down a lot of time and you get to finish with a precision angle quickly.
    Tin.Man and jll346 like this.
  5. jdm61

    jdm61 itinerant metal pounder

    Aug 12, 2005
    LOL. Are knife makers the only people who seem to be incapable of answering a question as presented, or is it more common, but we are just better at it. :p

    There are a couple of recent threads on here from like 2018 where people talk about the AMK 75 and I am sure that you can find quite a bit out there about the Tormek products, but maybe more about the bigger machines.
  6. AVigil

    AVigil Adam Vigil knifemaker working the grind Platinum Member

    Feb 17, 2009
    It is due to experience. You do not have to buy more equipment if you can do the same thing with the equipment you already have.
    jll346 likes this.
  7. jdm61

    jdm61 itinerant metal pounder

    Aug 12, 2005
    But that is kind of like a guy asking about the BMW 310 motorcycle and you telling him that he should buy the 1000RR. His experience is not your experience. :D i have been making knives fro 13 years and I still don't trust my KMG for sharpening.
  8. AVigil

    AVigil Adam Vigil knifemaker working the grind Platinum Member

    Feb 17, 2009
    I did not suggest he buy anything so your analogy is a false one.

    He has a Wicked Edge Sharpening system those are very expensive. It would be nice for him if it could actually work for him in a more time efficient manner.
    What I shared may do that for him, it did it for me.

    BTW it is not your 2x72 that can not be trusted :D I have a Grinder in the box I made to be belt drive and that is far more ratchet then the KMG LOL
    Tin.Man likes this.
  9. jll346

    jll346 Knife maker Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    May 29, 2006
    Exactly! A 2x72 AND a Wicked Edge.... Doesn't get much better than that!
    I'm not afraid to admit. I do the dirty work with my grinder and clean up with my TSPROF.
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2019
    Tin.Man, Scaniaman and AVigil like this.
  10. Happychicken


    Nov 14, 2018
    Thanks I’ll try with my grinder again and use high grit stones on wicked edge see how i do there.
    Thanks everyone!
    jll346 likes this.
  11. coldsteelburns


    Aug 2, 2010
    What's the coarsest stone you have for your Wicked edge? This one seems like it would be a good choice for establishing an edge if you only want to use you Wicked Edge to sharpen:

    As Adam mentioned above, grinding your edges nice and thin, especially on kitchen knives, will make sharpening a lot easier and faster, and of course it'll also make your knives cut better. Generally, at least for kitchen knives, grinding the blade down to at least somewhere around 0.005" (five thousandths) at the edge before applying the final edge apex is a good thickness to aim for, and many go even less than that (on kitchen knives), but it depends on the purpose of the knife, its heat treatment, and so on.

    Grinding in a convex near the edge of the blade helps to thin it out while also keeping enough steel behind it to support its thinness. I like to do what they often do in the ABS, where you finish flat grinding the blade down to a certain thickness, say around .015", and then grind a convex at the edge and about a 1/2" or so above it, bringing the edge down to a burr. Then you can knock the edge off slightly with a stone or a finer belt and blend it all in while hand sanding. This way makes is very easy and quick to apply he final edge which I like to do on most of my knives, unless they are much smaller, such as neck knives etc.

    This isn't exactly addressing the specific question you asked, but you may find it helpful... or not :)

    My Youtube Channel
    ... (Just some older videos of some of the past knives I've made)
  12. Drew Riley

    Drew Riley Riley Knife and Tool Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Oct 17, 2007
    Do you have variable speed? If not, that’s probably where I’d spend the money. Slow things down and use some relatively fresh belts. I know a lot of makers say sharpen on “dull” belts, but you still want a “sharp” belt. Just one that’s had the grit knocked off a bit.

    Usually I’ll tilt my platen forward 15 degrees or so, then hold my knife perpendicular to the floor. If you use a rest, you can also hold your knife against a 123 block, or whatever else you have to keep the knife edge straight up.

    “Rough” it in one the grinder, take a pass or two on a buff, the make your final hone on your guided system.

    It may take some practice and a bit of trial and error, but you’ll get there.
  13. TILLER

    TILLER KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Jan 1, 2011
    I have the grizzly copy of a Tormek. I found that setting an initial edge was very slow with the stone wheel it came with.

    I bought a 200 grit CBN wheel for it, and that is pretty fast. Probably close to as fast as a belt grinder.

    I liked the 200 grit so much I bought a 1000 grit. I like it because I can get an edge with the 200, go to the 1000 grit wheel, keep the knife in the clamp, and have a very consistent angle.
    jll346 likes this.
  14. Happychicken


    Nov 14, 2018
    I am looking now at my knife in the kitchen and I don’t believe I ground it thin enough to begin with.
    Another question- will high grit belts mirror polish a knife or get close to mirror polish? I don’t enjoy the amount of time the wicked edge needs it just takes too long.
  15. AVigil

    AVigil Adam Vigil knifemaker working the grind Platinum Member

    Feb 17, 2009
    You can get a cork belt at a 1000 grit, then a plain cork belt with polish compound and that will get you mirror.

    The TORMEK being water cooled will be a better choice if you are in a hurry

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