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Edge retention tests

Discussion in 'Knife Reviews & Testing' started by dkb45, Sep 10, 2017.

  1. dkb45

    dkb45 Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 16, 2012
    I was looking on KnifeNews last night, and links led to other links, and I came across an Aussie that has done a lot of semiscientific tests for edge retention, and I got fascinated. Lots of unexpected results, like 14c28n almost matching VG-10, and BD1 holding an edge not too far from 154cm. This is only one link, but he has a ton of these videos.
  2. knarfeng

    knarfeng senex morosus moderator Staff Member Super Mod Moderator

    Jul 30, 2006
    What edge angle has he put on the edge? He does not say and he does not say that it is the same angle as on all the other knives. What fineness of abrasive did he use? Was it the same as he used on all the other knives? The work sharp system essentially uses sandpaper. Sandpaper wears out over time. Did he use a fresh belt each time?

    Cutting on a hard surface throws off the test results. The amount of pressure placed on the knife edge as it hits the board varies from one cut to another. What one wants to do is set up a pair of boards, separated by about half an inch. Then cut so that the blade passes between the boards after cutting the rope. Then only the rope is being cut and the number of cuts becomes a uniform measure.

    Also, to me it did not seem that he was cutting on the same part of the edge each time. Again, throws off the test results.

    Interesting, but until he removes the variables, the results are not terribly meaningful.
    Spey likes this.
  3. RatbikeJim


    Nov 9, 2014
    All sharpened on a worksharp. Polished convex edge on all of them.

    Cant remember the edge angle but he keeps it consistent. Reality of life is stuff gets cut against a surface as often as not, he uses a wooden chopping board which seems fair.

    It's about as scientific as you'll get on youtube without paying a materials scientist actual money. In his other videos he's very open about the limitations of his method.

    Edit: worksharp not tormek. Though he does have and use a tormek.
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2017
    mbkingshane and Mo2 like this.
  4. dkb45

    dkb45 Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 16, 2012
    He has said he uses a Worksharp, I believe he uses the 17° setting on it, and the cutting board looks to be a standard wood cutting board, it shouldn't be damaging the edge much at all. He doesn't keep it in the same exact spot when cutting, of course, but he keeps it in the same area.

    I did say semiscientific, not dead on and precise.
    mbkingshane and Mo2 like this.
  5. Alberta Ed

    Alberta Ed

    Jun 29, 1999
    Interesting tests, though the relevance escapes me other than the theoretical aspect. As a serious knife nerd (which I probably inherited from my mother -- I still have her 6" long whittled wooden sword, dated 1913), I enjoy using and comparing various steels, from whatever-it-is in my SAK to the wonderful new powder steels. That said, in real life use, any steel harder than the substance it is cutting will do OK for most people who do not cut up yards of hemp rope. I could be happy with 420HC (Buck's, anyway), though I prefer S30V/S34Vn/CTS-XHP etc., and just about any high carbon steel.
  6. whp


    Apr 26, 2009
    I like this guy s efforts. I think he does try to hold some variables constant. The biggest variable that must be taken into account when making assumptions about the different steels is the different heat treatments of the blades tested. Of course grinds are also important.
  7. dkb45

    dkb45 Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 16, 2012
    He seems to try to put knives against each other that do have similar grind, obviously same is impossible unless you have a knife and all of the different steel variants of it (actually that would be awesome to see Spyderco models tested like that).

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