Sharpening is not the problem. Grinding the blade "Blank" from thin stock by hand without creating a recurve is the problem. GEC has grinding machines that can be adjusted for height and depth of grind for repeatable accuracy on hundreds of blanks. I'm just not a FAN of recurve blade styles especially on slip joints.Absolutely no problems sharpening the blade. I had a similar concern, but it got real sharp just fine. The angle of the belly made for a really, REALLY nice cutter.
Without a doubt so slight to be negligible, but it's there...as I've said I've seen others more pronounced that I had to pass on purchase. I'm just not a big Fan of a blade that can be FLAT that has a recurve....We all have our own ideas on this, and I'm sure I will get try to get this #86 for my collection.