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Gatco Tri-Seps Sharpener


hovering overhead
Staff member
Super Mod
Oct 2, 1998
I've been really enjoying the various threads about sharpening/sharpening phobia of late, and wanted to post a brief review of my experience with this item so far.

I have a modest collection of nice knives and try to maintain a good sharp edge on them.

For the most part, I have been using the Spyderco Triangle Sharpmaker, and have found it very user friendly and effective for most circumstances.

I've been wanting to learn to freehand, something I did as a kid when I didn't worry about the cost of my knives, nor were the gadgets available. So, occasionally I'd work a bit with one or the other of the Spydie rods without the base. Didn't ruin anything.

I just got the Gatco Tri-Seps sharpener, which is essentially a mini version of the Spydie ceramic hone, though I am not sure of the actual grit. (It is the color of the medium grit hone. Has a similar triangular shape, and groove for sharpening hooks and other pointy things.)

I have found that this little hone (three inches of useable surface)is a great boon to my confidence in learning to "freehand" sharpen. I've been using it primarily on knives that are already in decent condition, but could be sharper. I approximate the angle, and try to make sure that I use the same one (more or less) on both sides. Most of the time I use it vertically and slice down the hone a la Spyderco Sharpmaker, but sometimes use it horizontally.

I have found the sharpener to be highly effective, and have found the best results when I use relatively light strokes.

{I've also purchased DMT Diafolds from Tim Flanagan and will report on those later on as I use them more. (Got the four available grits.)I've already used them a bit freehand, and also with the Spyderco Sharpmaker in the manner Joe Talmadge has promoted.}

If things continue in this manner, I'll be at least an adequate "freehander" yet.

I think retail on the Gatco is about ten bucks (though available for substantially less online). At that price, you can keep one at home, one in the car/gun bag, and one in the office.

Highly recommended.


Live Free or Die

[This message has been edited by Blues (edited 05 July 1999).]
Thanks for the info, Blues. Dexter said Spyderco made those Tri-Seps too, you know.

Do you think I can use the GATCO to sharpen the smaller serrations on my Military?

I don't have any serrated Spydercos.

However, two of the corners on the Gatco are roughly equivalent to the corners on the Spydie hones. The other is a more rounded curve rather than a corner.

I think you'll probably be okay, but someone that has your model (I have the plain edge Military) might be able to provide further info.


Live Free or Die

Titan, I think you can use the Tri-Seps for sharpening your Military's serrated edge. If this is the "doggie-bone" shaped sharpener, then yes it's possible.

Too bad they didn't come out with dual-grit versions, similar to a DoubleStuff. Man I love those ceramic files of Spyderco, as I do most of my sharpening freehand, unless I had to rebevel, that's where DMT comes in.

For general usage, the medium grit is good enough (gives the edge small tooth-like serrations). Been meaning to get one of those for my keychain, too.

James Mattis send me one of these with an oder for other sharpening stuff(Spyderco 204 and some eze-lap hones). I can see the allure of the Gatco, especially for quick touchups, when you don't want to set up the Spyde. The color looks like the medium, but it feels more like the fine.

I like my women like I like my knives: strong, sharp, well-formed and pattern-welded!
Are there any stores in the Southwest US that carries these? They're only $7 at KnifeCenter, but I'd just as soon buy it locally (if I can) than pay as much for shipping charges. A couple of knife and sports stores in the LA/Ventura area didn't turn any up. Thanks.