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Recommendation? Controlled Angle Sharpening Systems

Discussion in 'Maintenance, Tinkering & Embellishment' started by Deinos, Jun 2, 2018.

  1. KME

    14 vote(s)
  2. Edge Pro

    8 vote(s)
  3. Wicked Edge

    23 vote(s)
  4. tsprof

    6 vote(s)
  1. Deinos

    Deinos Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 7, 2016
    Looking to move on from my worksharp guided system and find an all in one sharpening solution with precise, repeatable results. I am ok at freehand, but really want that "perfect edge." So, I am looking for some advice from you fine, veteran knife sharpeners.

    Which sharpening system would you recommend, why, and how much of your preferred kit is "enough" (i.e. base model, vs extra stones, vs super deluxe kit, etc).

    To give you an idea of what I have:

    Most of my folding knives are ffg and spyderco. Fixed blades vary. I have a couple Bark Rivers, so the system needs to easily handle convex. Sizes range from 2" to 5".

    Thanks for the advice!
  2. aquaman67


    Jan 27, 2012
    Of the 3 you listed I’ve only used the Wicked Edge.

    The Edge Pro just seems awkward to me.

    I like being able to set the knife and forget it. Without having to flip it over.

    I recommend the 2017 Gen 3 vise for Spyderco’s on a Wicked Edge.

    The clamp is slotted to let you firmly hold FFG blades.
    Deinos likes this.
  3. Mo2


    Apr 8, 2016
    Edge pro. I also have kme which is nice for flat blade stock in a clamped system otherwise I prefer non clamped. Wicked edge is too expensive and kme can do every thing it can do.

    Ffg in a clamp system doesn't always work well cause the clamps won't hold it even.

    I'm getting a hapstone m2 soon with metallic bonded diamond stones. It's basically an edge pro on steroids and also can use kme stones iirc which I also have a bunch of.

    Check out gritomatic who is a vendor here. They carry a huge assortment of stones for a few of these systems. Specifically bonded diamond and cbn stones.

    A video I found that's helpful on the subject
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2018
    Deinos likes this.
  4. trailhunter

    trailhunter Gold Member Gold Member

    May 15, 2018
    You should add the tsprof as an option.

    Mo2 and Deinos like this.
  5. Wowbagger


    Sep 20, 2015
    I don't know about convex. Probably use a powered leather belt with diamond for all I know.
    The reason I went with the Edge Pro is it handles small and thin blades without some clamp thing getting in the way. It is small, light and portable. Easy to put in a drawer or out of site.

    Unlike my hand tool woodworking edges with which I write the angle on the blade in magic marker and vary the sharpening angle a degree or two according to the wood I am working (yes it makes a difference). For my knives I know where I want them from experience and just go by behind-the-edge-thickness and then most every thing is sharpened (or reprofiled ) to about what I want by eye and how it worked last time.

    So as far as angle it is a rough estimate and I repeated it simply by using the magic marker technique to be sure I am right on the edge when resharpening. You can get an angle cube and use it on the Edge Pro but I don't. One accessory worth getting is the stop collar for the vertical post.

    I looked at the Wicked edge but it didn't seem to handle small knives well and conversely long knives are hanging way out there in space and need some kind of support and the support seems questionable as far as flexing.
    The Wicked Edge takes twice as many stones and as far as I have seen there is no way to compensate for individual stone wear when working through a progression of stones.

    In comparison the area one is sharpening on a long blade on the Edge Pro is very rigidly supported directly below the edge because one shifts a long knife under the area of the Edge Pro that is doing the sharpening.

    I have the Chef Knives To Go set up with the Shapton Glass stones in 220, 500, 1000 and 4000.
    These work with most alloys. For the high vanadium alloys get the diamond stones according to what kind of edge you like; toothy vs polished. I have my own work around and I won't go into that here.

    I like highly polished edges but not perfect mirror because all my knives are users and the perfect mirror gets some scratches in use. Why polished ? I do a lot of push cutting and carving like cuts on harder material.

    The Edge Pro creates this level of polish for me with out hardly trying and the edges are, every single one, easily hair whittling by just going through the motions. I NEVER STROP.
    What do I mean hair whittling : I pick out a hair while it is still in my arm. I take the edge to it and carve little curls off the hair without severing through it.
    Hahaha . . . if I accidentally over do it though as I bring the edge near my arm all the hair pulls them selves out and jump off my arm before the edge gets to 'em.
    Boy does my arm look weird then. I try to not over do it but it happens. :) :D

    Here is the woodworking edges off the Varitas jig shown. I show them because they are easier to photograph.
    Here is the equivalent quality of edge but I can't photograph it with my iPod. Sorry.
    Seriously great edges though. I couldn't want better ! ! ! !

    This is an A2 woodworking edge sharpened on the Varitas brand jig (not for knives but I wish).
    The Edge Pro edges look this good and get just as sharp and durable ! ! !

    Here is an attempt to photograph the knives (these are old photos)
    940-1 in S90V and Para 2 in M4 alloy

    Benchmade 710 in M390

    Edge Pro Apex. No regrets !
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2018
    Mo2, Deinos and Blues like this.
  6. Deinos

    Deinos Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 7, 2016
    Thanks for all of the advice so far!

    Have not heard of that one. Added to the list!
  7. trailhunter

    trailhunter Gold Member Gold Member

    May 15, 2018
    nice, always feels good to know something else is out there. Check it out on YouTube, search for tsprof k02, statesllc.com is a US dealer
    Deinos likes this.
  8. Wowbagger


    Sep 20, 2015
    The two other Wicked Edge dudes are pretty quiet.

    ? :
    • Compensate for stone wear in say a four non diamond stone progression ?
    • Clamping long (10"+) some what flexible blades while removing significant edge damage (pressing very firmly on the stones ) ?
    Deinos likes this.
  9. steff27

    steff27 Basic Member Basic Member

    Feb 8, 2013
    I voted Wicked Edge.

    In 2016 I wanted to try my first guided system (not counting the sharpmaker). I decided againt the Wicked Edge then, because of the reports of problems with full flat ground, tapered blades. I bought an Edge Pro with the small knife attachment, an Atoma 140 diamond stone for reprofiling and a collar to adjust for varying stone thickness. I was able to consistently produce very sharp edges, more so than free hand before, but I always thought there must be something better. Things I was not satisfied with:

    1. The stock waterstones are not fast enough for reprofiling for my taste.
    2. The movement felt often "jerky" to me, especially with my weak hand. But then I'm not the most talented when it comes to fine hand work.
    3. The collar to adjust for varying stone thickness (due to wear on waterstones or using diamond stones and water stones) should be part of the base system. I don't know how one would work without it, unless using a single grit only per knife/sharpening session...
    4. It was hard for me to get the tips of drop point blades right, because the way one (or at least I) works with the Edge Pro one doesn't see the contact point of stone/edge and it was hard for me to feel how far I had to tilt the stone around the belly until I hit the tip.
    A couple months ago I read here that there is a new Wicked Edge model with a newly designed clamp that works for full flat ground, tapered blades and decided to invest in a Wicked Edge Pro with the newest clamp. I also considered a KME and a Tsprof, but the Wicked Edge won for me because of the availability of the system plus a wide array of accessories from multiple online shops in Europe. Especially important for me was a full progression of diamond abrasives, which I wanted for the modern vanadium carbide loaded PM steels.

    I use the following stones that came with the Wicked Edge Pro: 100/200, 400/600 and 800/1000 diamond stones.

    In addition I bought the following accessories:

    1. 50/80 grid diamond stone (proved to be overkill in retrospect, never form an burr with that stuff and think hard before using it on an expensive knife!)
    2. 4u/2u leather strop (used often)
    3. 1500 diamond/glass plate paddle with 6u diamond lapping film
    4. 1u/0.5u balsa strop (used seldom)
    5. angle cube
    6. advanced angle guide
    7. Tormek small knife holder SVM-00 (works great)
    8. longer guide rods (for use with Tormek small knife holder)
    9. A can of compressed air to get the diamond/metal dust out
    Points of critique:

    1. The fine angle adjustment screws come loose if I don't check them regularly during sharpening
    2. How the fine angle adjustment works runs somewhat counter to the repeatability that is otherwise a strength of the Wicked Edge. But this is a very minor gripe that can easily be worked around by setting it once and there should rarely be a reason to change it.
    3. One of my 600 grit diamond stones has some surface irregularity. I'm currently skipping the 600 grit for this reason until I have a replacement
    Comparison to Edge Pro:

    1. I have zero problems of producing a sharp and very pointy point on drop doint blades, since it is visible where the stone is hitting the edge during sharpening.
    2. Much faster to change grits.
    3. Edges that I produce look more consistent, because the blade is clamped
    4. For the first time I can easily measure the edge angle I'm producing.
    5. Repeatability. I can easily just resharpen at the same angle or change it by half a degree etc. On the Edge Pro I would aim for an angle between 30 and 40 inclusive and then maintain on the Sharpmaker. Now I maintain on the Wicked Edge most of the time.
    6. The Wicked Edge comes stock with a full progression of diamond stones now, which I prefer for modern blade steels.
    7. Resulting edges on the Wicked Edge with stock stones are rough compared to the stock stone set of the Edge Pro. But there are enough finer stones, lapping films and strops readily available from Wicked Edge to get finer edges.
    8. With the help of the Tormek small knife holder, it is easier for me to sharpen small knives. It was easy to sharpen a Victorinox Classic! I wouldn't attempt that with the Edge Pro.
    To put that into perspective: I have invested almost three times as much in the Wicked Edge as I have in the Edge Pro. But for the first time in the last 7 years, I'm not looking for a better way to sharpen.

    Regarding long, flexible blades: The longest flexible blade I have reprofiled was a cheap kitchen knife with at least a 10 inch long blade. I do that by stabilizing the blade with one or two fingers on the opposite side of the blade that is getting sharpened. I'm satisfied with the result. I have also had zero problems with clamping full flat ground, tapered blades.
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2018
    Deinos likes this.
  10. steff27

    steff27 Basic Member Basic Member

    Feb 8, 2013
    Regarding convex edges on the Wicked Edge Pro: Change the angle in 0.5 degree steps, which is just the push of a lever. Put on mutiple bevels that way, and smooth the transition afterward with strops.
    Deinos likes this.
  11. bonzodog

    bonzodog Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 3, 2011
    I’ve owned an edgepro and wicked edge ,the kme with diamond stones works best for me.
    Deinos likes this.
  12. Bladegunner


    Jul 28, 2016
    My vote is for Wicked Edge tried the other systems including the TSprof never could get even bevels on knifes don't like the clamping system. The Clamp on the WE works perfectly everytime. Clamp in the blade set both angles and you got a perfect edge.
    Deinos likes this.
  13. Wowbagger


    Sep 20, 2015
    By the way here is a good vid on using the angle cube on the Edge Pro (in this case the Pro Pro). I don't use an angle cube as I said but here you go :
    Fixall likes this.
  14. Wowbagger


    Sep 20, 2015
    And further more . . . if I'm elected I promise to . . .
    oh wait . . . wrong speech . . .

    Be careful ! Some of the lovely alloying elements in our blades; are NOT GOOD to breath such as cobalt (let alone the abrasives). Water is your friend because it keeps the dust from becoming air born.

    Yes I have experienced that but only of late. None until recently. I always wondered why Josh used so much WD-40 on his. Probably to prevent this. I would go for something dry so hopefully I don’t get slimed while I am putting the Edge Pro away in it’s nice portable bag. I won’t remember to wipe it off every time, don’t want to waste paper towels on this and I have dedicated cloth rags I use to mop up any water etc that I wash and reuse (not going to subject them to oil). There are three rags each dedicated to specific grit ranges so I don’t cross contaminate while I’m working. How’s that for anal ? Used mostly for my wood working tools (I’m way more into those than my knives if you can believe that).

    Edge Pro dudes : for the jerkies try this : Finish Line (brand) Dry Lube. I haven’t yet but that would probably work well.

    I agree. The way to work without it is to magic marker the edge every time between stones then readjust until one is sharpening on the edge.

    See magic marker above.

    This is one weak point in the Edge Pro but some of it is how the knife maker grinds the blade. It appears that the angle is changing out on the tip because the bevel is looking larger in area but some of it is because the steel behind the edge is thicker near the tip than the rest of the edge. At least this is what I like to believe and I’m sticking to it.

    In any case the knives cut like crazy near the tip and I don’t experience the edge rolling over so on a user that’s good enough for me.

    . . . and or the knife maker changes to a steeper bevel back near the pivot for forceful chopping or heavy cutting. I’m not saying it is all that conscious of an effort on the knife maker's part but it does work out that way in fact.

    And finally one of the very last knives I sharpened was my Para2CamoS30V and the bevel looks pretty darned consistent on that one; I just followed the stock sharpening bevel.

    I can appreciate a better result from the WE I’m not disputing that. I do think it is kind of comical in some ways that to be able to sharpen grand dad’s slip joint EDC one has to buy as an added expense :

    Longer guide rods (for a smaller knife ?).
    A small knife ADAPTOR . . . from another company yet . . . what ? (I can and do sharpen said small knives on the Edge Pro with no small knife adaptor though it makes it easier). Be sure to take off the white plastic stop from the metal stop plate.

    and finally, finally :

    . . . what ?
    That blade configuration is THEEEEE most common knife out there.
    Kitchen knives . . . right ?
    I was looking at the Bowie Knife thread and the ORIGINAL was just that. Later they got all hollow ground and swoopey.

    . . . so Wicked Edge forgot to consider how to hold the most common knife design out there. Or they couldn't seem to come up with a sound solution so they just blew it off ?

    Or more likely . . . they got caught up in the high end hollow ground, looks good in the magazine pictures (and it’s easy to clamp) market and didn’t want to think too hard about actual user knife sharpening.

    huh ? huh ?

    I want to like WE and I want an all metal, built like a battle ship sharpening jig like the Varitas jig that I posted for my woodworking tools. That sucker is BUILT ! ! ! Brass and metal and has two clicks on it to vary the angle by a consistent amount for producing a secondary bevel and for other uses.
    . . . but
    when it comes to Wicked Edge I can’t help but smirk and scratch my head and chuckle a little bit . . .
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2018
  15. wade7575

    wade7575 Basic Member Basic Member

    Apr 3, 2013
    I have had many systems over the years including a KME and Tsprof,I have 2 Tsprof's and they just fine I have never have any problems with uneven bevel's with it,to me it's the best system on the market because it allow's me to be able to sharpen pretty much anything I want because of the different clamp's.

    My problem with the Wicked Edge is not that it's not a good system my problem is you have to buy 2 stone for it every time you want to buy stones for it and also the stone selection is not as good and that is also the same problem with the KME stone selection sucks because there are not as many stones to choose from.

    I never cared for the idea of the edge pro mainly because a lot people complain about having to switch hands they use the guide rod in when they flip the knife over.
  16. EdgePal


    Nov 7, 2004
    Class 1.
    Systems that clamp both the knife and the wanted angle give 100% flat edges - they can not do anything else and there is no differance between them in that function.
    Wicked Edge, TSprof, EdgePal, KME, Lansky, DMT Alinger and Gatco are class 1.

    Class 2
    Systems that have fixed angles - but the knife is not fixed (locked) in the tool - dont give 100% flat edges becouse of the fact that the knife is hand hold.
    Edge Pro, Spyderco V sharpeners and similar are class 2.

    Class 1 and two can not be compared with eachother becouse of that class 1 use the law of fysics, class 2 dont.

    Class 3
    Sharpening where the sharpener are laying on a table and the knife are moved by hand along the sharpener.

    Class 4
    Both the sharpener and the knife are hand hold during the sharpening process.

    Those classes can have functionclasses, as
    A, special parts in the system that can make true convex edges in wanted degrees.
    B, special parts in the system that can make the convex sphere in wanted degreea.
    C, constructed in that way that both side of the edge can be grinded at the same time.
    D, asjustble for different blade width abd the protractor shows tye correct degrees.
    E. The clamp can clamp both flat en threeshaped blades
    F. Can grind facetts that can be smoothen out to convex edges.
    G, special tools are not needed for clamping and adjusting
    H, special tools are needed for clamping and adjusting the tool.
    I, the tool have a built in true protractor.
    J, the pivot can be moved in 3 dimensions. 2 dimensions, 1 dimension.
    K, this tool can only be used with special sharpeners made byggde tool maker.
    L, this tool can be used with any sharpener of your choose.
    M, built in fine adjusting of the angle.
    And so on.
    This list will be long...

    Sharpening systems looks similar for some people - but there is very big differances between them.

    There is simpler tools and very advanced tools - the question is what your needs are - and what you like to be able to acchive with the tool.

    Most people do not need very advanced tools. They can use simpler tools and learn to use them properly - and they will be very happy with the result.

    The after market are important to understand. What can the tool I by really perfom - and what extra equipment need I by ti the tool so I can do what just I want to do? And - to what price?

    Last edited: Jun 3, 2018
    Justin.P likes this.
  17. Wowbagger


    Sep 20, 2015
    As the sixties consciousness investigators (OK . . . hippies) said : "It's good for your head man".
    This is also partly what Tai Chi is about. DO NOT UNDERESTIMATE Tai Chi for physical (and mental) therapy. Do it with each hand dude.
    But yeah . . . it's a little weird at first . . . so's sex and you like that right ? ;) :)

  18. Wowbagger


    Sep 20, 2015
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2018
  19. Wowbagger


    Sep 20, 2015
    But yeah . . . I'm an awful speller and hate proof reading. I kind of like physics though.
  20. Deinos

    Deinos Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 7, 2016
    Wow... some incredibly detailed information so far guys. Thanks! Catching up on what you wrote. Think I am definitely leaning clamped system. Just need to determine cost and how much system i really need.

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