M2 steel....Hard to sharpen?

Dec 25, 1999
I have a Benchmade stryker in M2 and can not get the thing sharp. I've tried for days and have baisically ruined the knife trying to get it sharp with stones and the Lansky sharpening system. I'm frusterated beyond belief and am wondering if M2 is hard to get sharp? Also any tips on sharpening in general would be good also. People say you have to practice to get good, and I have a lot. I've read everything I can find on sharpening knives to and nothing helps. Please tell me some tips you more experianced people. Thanks for your help.


M2 is relatively more difficult to resharpen than say ATS-34, but it is not otherworldly difficult. In fact I used my Lansky to resharpen my first M2 knife (AFCK). Now you have to elaborate more on your story. How far did you go, did you manage to raise a burr? Work on one side only and flip over when you have raised a burr on the other side. Do not flip over if you haven't feel it yet. Other thing I'd like to point up is that it is quite probable that your angle is too high (big angle). What angle did you use on your Lanksy? What stones did you use? Do not move on to the next finer stone if you haven't raised a burr.

It is a Stryker and has a tanto blade. Don't work on the tanto edge until you finish with the primary edge. Work on each edge separately. This is to prevent rounding of that tanto angle. For general sharpening tips, I recommend reading Joe Talmadge Sharpening FAQs. You can get there by clicking the Links button on the upper right side of this window, and click on FAQs.
i found M2 to sharpen up much easier than ATS-34. use one of the middle angles with your lansky. like frantium said, made sure you raise a burr before moving to the next stone. also, don't try to grind the stone into the metal. use some pressure, but let the stone do the work. reading joe talmadge's FAQ should help quite a bit as well. let us know how you do.
I'm guessing that you are not getting to the edge, but working on a 'back bevel,' changing the angle of the cutting edge. If that is what is happening, it will be a while before you start to get a sharp edge. But, once you get that edge, it will be a niiiice one.
I have found the M2 in my Nimravus Cub to be easier to sharpen than ATS-34, able to take a keener edge, and hold that edge longer than ATS-34. However, it did take a while to get the sharpening angle to where I wanted it, and I was using the Sharpmaker 203. So, by biggest sharpening recommendation would be to just be patient, and keep working it.

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