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Chasing that mirror finish

Discussion in 'Maintenance, Tinkering & Embellishment' started by erhodes, Apr 13, 2018.

  1. erhodes

    erhodes Gold Member Gold Member

    Jan 30, 2012
    So I have been using a kme system for a while now. I have the older set up of atonea and not the diamond plates that are coming with the system now. I have added the 4 strops and emulsions as well as the black Arkansas stone. I can get really close to that mirror finish but I can't seem to get it to the point I have seen on some of the knives here. I have been thinking about getting the chosera stones but don't know if they will help me out or not.

    What do you guys think?
  2. Mo2


    Apr 8, 2016
    What steel are you sharpening?

    Have you been keeping a close eye on your scratch pattern? Don't move onto the next grit until you remove the pattern from the grit before it. Different ways of doing this, but as long as it's uniform you should be good.

    One way to do it is start with one grit and do sweeping passes. This will show the grit go in one direction. Then on the next grit do up and down passes until you can't see the sweeping grit. And so on. Then once you get to the strops, they should be able to clean up the excess scratches, but there will always be some. Anyways that's just one way someone tought me. Also a jewelers loup or some kind of magnification is very helpful here.

    As for your stones, I dunno. Depending on the steel your sharpening and the results you want. I'm certainly no expert but others here can give you the right direction.
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2018
  3. Roikyou


    Sep 21, 2017
    if your using S30V/S35VN, equivalent steel or softer, you'll get a good mirror with the Chosera stones or lapping film's. The films are diamond but my experience with the films on 20CV will still be cloudy as your still working on cleaning up the scratch's

    That's my experience with KME, lapping files and Chosera stones. Maybe someone can chime in for higher end steels and adding a mirror.
  4. Stolenives


    Jul 12, 2017
    Just to add on a couple quick things already mentioned.
    A steel that’s LOW in vanadium, one of the most sought after carbide forming elements, will yield a fantastic (and easy to achieve) mirror finishes.

    Also skipping grits, or jumping too large of a grit rating also plays a considerable role.

    Another possible solution would be to do what you’re doing...finish wherever you may be..and then with your highest grit strop, do the process again and go through the descending grits.

    I promise you, the pictures you’re inspired by and those mirror finishes take much longer to achieve than what is rational than what putting on a precise edge on a knife. To get to the level you’re chasing you need to be so meticulous. Also look into diamond compounds that you load strops with, I get great results with ENDING at a 0.25 micron diamond compound

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