• Happy Hannukah, Merry Christmas, and Happy New Year to all of you! Thanks for your continued support and I hope that your holiday season is a blessed one.


Jul 25, 1999
My name is Jeff and i'm new to this forum and am absolutly hooked.
I love knives as sharp as possible.
I have a lanskey system and can get a good edge(on small knives), but i'm obsessed with getting them as sharp as when they are brand new.
How do you do it?
I Need help with large knives as well.
I can't seem to get very good with a stone.
any advice please.
Do you pratice with a cheap blade till you get the hang of it?
Thanks in advance
I develop a burr with 400 grit belt on a belt sander eyeballing the angle, then I buff the burr off with with a power buffer and whatever rouge I can get my hands on. But since my power tools are in Skagway I use some bench stones from Smith that I've had since the mid 70's. I'm buying different sharpeners like the Gatco Tri-Seps and DMT to try it out. So far I don't like the 'new' stuff so I go back to my bench stones. I can get it razor sharp with stone and scarry sharp with power tools

"A knifeless man is a lifeless man"
-Nordic proverb

Welcome to BladeForums, you won't regret it. Now here goes.

You mean you're not able to restore your knives to factory edge? The first thing I do when I get my knives is to sharpen them because I never like factory edge. I'd suggest you look at Joe Talmadge Sharpening FAQ here http://www.bladeforums.com/features/faqsharp.html .

Basically what you need is to develop a burr first, then go from there. Do not flip side if you can't feel the burr. This works for your Lansky rig or whatever benchstone you use. And yes, practicing with cheap, old kitchen knives is wise, especially if you have expensive knives. The only drawback: more expensive knives use better steel, so you might feel a little bit unfamiliar when you first sharpen your better knives.

One important note is that smaller angle will produce sharper but more fragile edge, and vice versa.

Thanks for the replys
not sure what the burr means, sorry if I sound stupid.is DMT a diamond type stone?
most of my questions will probably be answered in the FAQ file.
thanks again.
Jeff S,

Check your email. I couldn't get the pictures to copy for some reason in the first email so I forwarded an old email addressed to another member to you. It's on how to form a burr. Even though it is for power tools the concept works with bench stones and a leather strop.

I have some DMT pocket sharpeners that form a burr real easy you might try them.

"A knifeless man is a lifeless man"
-Nordic proverb
I know of some who have put (very) few dollars into a tiny bench belt sander just to sharpen knives -- as described above. It works well if you understand the technique. Many custom makers rely on it.

But as I've said elsewhere and often, all that is required is a reasonably flat rock and the sole of one's boot or the back of a legal pad as a strop. Get with someone who knows how and sacrifice the five minutes it takes to learn how to do it without the latest miracle sharpener.

If you are in the southwest and want to come by I'll teach you gratis -- and in five minutes. I may even be able to give you your own brick -- a fine stone that is usually available at a very reasonable price.

Desert Rat

Desert Rat
I do live in the southwest(Tucson,Az).
after reading the FAQ I do understand sharpning better and cant wait to try to get the knack of it without lanskey sys.
I feel stupid for not knowing, but thats how you learn.
If you really want to practice sharpening get a lawn mower blade at Wal-Mart and a decent bench stone, and practice, practice, practice, practice, and you will eventually get the hang of it. Do you have the deluxe lansky set? Even if you don't, those stones are still useable(without the rods-those rods bend to easily). I highly recommend getting a sharpmaker though. It has lots of good pointers on how to sharpen just about anything....
Another thing to practice with is try to sharpen a Quarter, just half of it. And just use a med stone, nothing else.


I use the Edge Pro and it is a snap getting a blade as sharp as you want it! It is quick, simple and you can put on whatever degree edge you want to, including the original edge that the blade came with. As far as grits are concerned you can go with 100 up to 4000 grit. I love mine!

The Lansky system should serve you well on just about any size blade; however, you may have to move the clamp for longer blades. I recently used mine to reprofile the edge on my HI 18" WWII khukuri with great results. Follow the tips in Joe Talmadge's sharpening FAQ using the Lansky and you can't go too wrong.



Hi Jeff S. this is Jeff C.

For an example of sharpening that will make you green with envy (and make you want to buy Spyderco) see Joe Talmadges case study on making a straight razor out of a folding knife that he posted a while back on the Spyderco forum:

(I put the link in two different ways, in case one method didn't work).

A good way to find kitchen knives to practise on is to go to a Goodwill store. Look for top quality brand names. Forschner, Henkels, Case, Flint Vanadium, Spyderco, MAC,...etc. These will take very good edges easier than most sheath knives or tough tactical folders. Almost any kitchen knife that says vanadium is a good candidate. If it says molybdenum or vanadium & molybdenum (as many Japanese knives will) it will be very tough to sharpen. Nameless stainless steel is usually very hard or very soft. In my area Goodwill charges $0.95 to $1.95 for large kitchen knives.

The kitchen knives that will take the sharpest edges are Spydercos (if you can find non-serrated) with MBS-26 alloy, MAC with AUS-8 alloy and Flint Vanadium.

"Defense against knife attack:
Option 1. If you have a gun shoot him."
Look for an e-mail soon including an invitation to let me show you.

Desert Rat

I know the problem most people have with Lansky and that is failure to completely regrind the blade to one of the Lansky angles.

Grind a back bevel of 15 or 20 degrees with the coarse stone completely. That means that a light swipe on either side of the blade will push a burr to the other side. Then clean up the back bevel on up to medium grit. At that point you can put the final edge using 20 or 25 degrees with the finer stones. When you're finished, the edge should be significantly better than factory new. Once you have the back bevel done, it takes very little time to maintain the edge.

Understand that factory edges are usually applied by a person at a grinder by hand. The original angle is unlikely to match one of the Lansky preset angles exactly.

Take care.

Knife Outlet

hey Jeff maybe i can help you out,?
I am 15 years old and have been sharping since i was 8. I probably don't know as much as alot of the guys in bladeforums (mainly because they have been knife adicts longer

but i have found a sharpening process that is very effective and works out great for me. I use a Arkansas stone about 8 inches long by two wide. i think it is medium grit? I use vegitable oil on the stone so the stone won't get plugged up with metal. I can free hand smaller blades pretty accuratedly...big blades on the other hand are tough. when you get toward the end of the blade(past 3 1/2 inches) there is alot of reverse leverage and the end of the blade is hard to control. NOt being able to control the end of the blade makes your bevels less consistent. For big blades get a big metal clamp paper clip.you can adjust somewhat to get the angle you want by slidding it further down onto the blade. Clip it on the back of the blade and use it as a guide. Pull so that you can hear the clip touching the stone but not pushing down hard. If you push hard it could throw your bevel off. After you get your bevel made on the blade use a ceramic rod to bring it to a razor.
This method has worked you me. It has gotten my knives to a very scary razor egde.
once you have the bevel made on your blade there is no need for the stone after that unless you chip the blade or you want to change the bevel. Your ceramic rod will bring the blades to the scary sharp you want.
Just my method, i hope you try a bunch of ways and find out what works for you
I think this was posted here before. With the search function diabled I can't find the original post. I wish I had a search feature for my bookmarks

> Knife Sharpening

"A knifeless man is a lifeless man"
-Nordic proverb
Steve, when it comes to sharpening be wise in your purchase because a person can invest a lot of money into sharpening equipment, and this will cost you a lot of money. I personally have invested a lot of money in sharpening equipment myself in the quest for the ultimate edge. I personally have had success with Spyderco crocksticks and Norton waterstones. But to me getting the perfect edge is perfect angle control which would be something like a Lansky or Edgepro Apex that use rod guides to control the angle. I prefer the Edgepro because to me it is just made better than the Lansky. I am going to post an URL to Steve's Knife Site which has a lot of information on sharpening and links to manufactures of sharpening equipment. Thanks, David http://www.ameritech.net/users/knives/index.htm
Although all the sharpening rigs have their advantages and disadvantages, you should be able to get a pretty scary edge with all of 'em.

The best thing to work on is technique -- create a burr, learn how to feel for it, learn how to grind it back off, learn what kind of edge angles and finishing grits work best for you, etc.

I heartily recommend the Razor Edge video. It lets you actually see how an expert sharpener does it. And seeing it is different than just reading about it. I don't follow the Razor Edge system precisely, but I do follow the fundamentals.

Typically, the way I sharpen is:

1 - Thinning bevel. Bevels mean to thin the edge out, they greatly increase performance and ease-of-sharpening. I'll go down to 15-degrees per side for these. I don't go all the way to a burr, just get the bevels pretty close to the edge.

2 - Actual edge bevel. This is the actually cutting bevel, it'll be a few degrees greater than the thinning bevels. Because I did the thinning bevels first, when I start with the actual bevels, the burr gets created quickly.

3 - Go to finer and finer stones. In actuality, I usually don't go all that fine. My everyday knives, I like to be at 300-ish grit or less. That gives them much better slicing performance over the typical 600+ grit many people finish with.

4 - Finish the bevel off. Sometimes I do this with a quick stropping. Other times, I do it by raising the angle another couple of degrees, and taking one or two very light strokes down the stone.