When Is A Ti Lite NOT a Ti Lite ? When Bagger Gets one !

Discussion in 'Maintenance, Tinkering & Embellishment' started by Wowbagger, Jun 23, 2016.

  1. Wowbagger

    Wowbagger Basic Member Basic Member

    Sep 20, 2015
    I have been threatening to go where no man has gone before. Again. The monster six was the first foray. Razelishous. That wet my whistle and got me thinking . . .

    I kept talking myself out of it because the dang thing is only good for one thing. Poking someone who is trying to take my life etc.

    I am obsessed with taking the Ti Lite into the land of peace and creativity or at least "constructive destruction".

    I have been drawn to the Ti Lite four knife of late because of the roundish, somewhat slender and SCULPTED handle. Some/most say it is UN ergonomic and so one of the ?many? reasons it is not a good or useful EDC. I'll buy that (well I bought two actually hahaha) but seriously I'm out to fool around with that knife and mod it to be more EDC BECAUSE I think the handle has a lot of potential in that department at lest for me.

    Case in point take a look at that Opinel right above it in the photo bellow. Hmmmmmm
    What don't I like about the Opinel handle ? It needs a bit of flat or rounded corner here or there to reference off of and improve twisting grip.

    What does the Ti Lite have ? You got it ! Similar shape to the Opinel but BETTER !

    For now she is stock and went to work today for the first time.
    Before it is all over the blade may get shortened. I like it at four inches but the law here says three is nicer. I used to EDC a four fixed no less concealed for most of the eighties into the nineties. Never was an issue / never got caught except once getting on an air plane and I just put it in my checked in luggage.

    Almost for sure the blade will get thinned. How much we will have to see. It could be as much or nearly as much as that Cold Steel paring knife. I don't need to be able to drive it through the side of a car or steel toed boot; just a card board box or lunch.

    The pointy point . . . ? ? ? . . . I was planning on rounding that some right off but now that I have been using this thing . . . I dig it like it is. For now at least. It does useful work as it is and that is . . . well . . . useful.

    It SEEMED in the catalog and YouTubes to be pretty darned long still.
    Now that i have it in hand it is about what I have been EDCing all year, every day and actually looks a bit demure next to the other dudes. Can a Cold Steel Ti Lite be "demure" ?
    I leave THAT for you to decide dear reader.

    OK enough for now.
    More later.
    At the very least I am pretty sure I will be thinning this thing out some and changing the scales to sculpted Ti without the round holes but with perhaps longitudinal grooves and or riffling texture. See the thread here on "what's your favorite knife designers".



    PS: Yes I will probably move this thread once I start moding the knife but for now it seems like it belongs in the General forum. Just comparing the Ti Lite to the other knives and other uses.
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2016
  2. Wowbagger

    Wowbagger Basic Member Basic Member

    Sep 20, 2015
    UPDATE !
    well mini update actually . . . been using it, did some food prep. Not too bad as is, unlike the SIX which is just too thick and angular. I will say that if you want to remove the stem out the end of a tomato THIS is your knife right here.

    I am really falling for the look of the bead blasted CTS-XHP once it gets some use. In addition the mirror lettering against this matt back ground looks so good it would hurt me to have to grind it off. Could it be this is a keeper just as it is ? ? ?
    But then again . . .
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2016
  3. G. Scott H.

    G. Scott H.

    Jan 9, 2006
    Damn! I love that Razelized 6! :thumbup::cool:
  4. Wowbagger

    Wowbagger Basic Member Basic Member

    Sep 20, 2015
    Razelized 6

    Yup. When ever I am out and about, in all the best places, and some one says "Gosh I wish I could cleave this frictional cohesive binder in two (nail)). I can say "Allow me . . . pardone while I whip this out" and Shazam the task is complete in the wink of an eye.

    :p :D
  5. Wowbagger

    Wowbagger Basic Member Basic Member

    Sep 20, 2015
    Moderator : If you will please move this to the Maintenance, Tinkering and Embellishment forum.

    The constructive destruction has begun.
    For a while there I didn't think I could stand to make myself grind off that nice bead blasted finish. It is a pretty knife as it comes from the factory.
    I used it a few more times including to do some food prep and it was the avocado operation that convinced me. That danged ridge down the mid line of the blade HAD TO GO !

    This evening after work I was ARDENT to get down to the shop and grind that obtrusive thing off. I felt no hesitation. I had no second thoughts; JUST GO !

    It had to go.

    I have more work to do to it but didn't want to over do it. Sorry Charlie Mike it probably frustrates you to look at this but . . . I don't have the machine or TALENT that you have for grinding so I have to take it slow.

    I am always surprised that I don't get showers of white sparks from this super steel. Just a few little spits; hardly anything. You would almost think I was grinding aluminum. Weird stuff.

    That's all for now.

    Last edited: Jun 30, 2016
  6. Czechmate


    Feb 24, 2011
    FWIW; Opinel handles can be easily modded and refinished to look and feel amazing. Plus; they're way cheaper than many other folders so modding them is win/win. :thumbup:

    Blade shape and handle mods all by me. :thumbup: I need to get more as I still have mod ideas LOL. :D

  7. Wowbagger

    Wowbagger Basic Member Basic Member

    Sep 20, 2015

    Well . . . thanks . . . but you are preaching to the quire. I studied high end, hand tool, woodworking for over a decade before focusing on knives.

    As far as the Opinel folder goes I appreciate it in theory, I have a few, but in practice I tees me off that at the first spritz of moisture, think I just sneezed near my Opinel, the pivot locks up and one has a "fixed blade". I need a knife that I can get caught in the rain with and it will still close.

    I know, I know, I can get on line and learn how to tune the pivot and FUTZ around with it but I just can't get excited about that. I even put some phosphor bronze washers in my shopping cart (I figure that would be the way I would go) but so far have not pulled the trigger. I probably will eventually just for the exercise.

    Then, I assume, once I get it tuned to be wet and close . . . once it dries out I have a Slop Master, a Wiggle Pro, a Rattle Waggle as far as blade play once the knife is bone dry. I'm probably wrong but my imagination has run away with my better judgement.

    Thanks for the photo. Looks like you have a nice body of work there.
  8. Wowbagger

    Wowbagger Basic Member Basic Member

    Sep 20, 2015
    I am not saying this is the best option but is one I am trying out.

    For this last week I have been using the Buck (110) belt pouch to carry the Ti Lite. Today I received a pouch that I ordered to use with the Ti Lite. It is an ammo clip pouch. The main reason I am making the change is that this ammo pouch has a metal clip on it so I don’t need to always use it with a belt. The clip is black steel and is super easy to remove if you don’t want it. There are codura cloth belt loops on the back of the pouch; vertical as well as horizontal belt orientation.

    I found that since the pouch is cloth and has not rounded out yet it is a little niggley to get the sharp edged quillian on the lower end of the knife shown to slide easily into the pouch. To facilitate the pouch opening up and to help the Ti Lite glide into it I cut two layers of plastic rubbing alcohol bottle and coiled them up to fit into the pouch.

    Temporarily or permanently time will tell. I used two layers to choke the space down around the knife so it rattles less in the pouch. Note the stepped part of the bottle has been preserved when cutting out the plastic and so helps funnel the knife as it eventually goes down into the smaller lower portion of the plastic roll.

    This pouch has a tag that says Made in America and was about then dollars with shipping.

    Also now that I have this pouch I won’t be trashing the pouch for my Buck 110 which is from the early eighties.





    PS: the knife handle has lost some paint from where it was rubbing inside the Buck pouch; on the lower end and on the side of one of the scales of the knife where it probably was rubbing on the back of the snap.

    I have hardly used the knife and have not dropped it so this paint loss seems premature and does not bode well for the near future.
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2016
  9. Wowbagger

    Wowbagger Basic Member Basic Member

    Sep 20, 2015
    That center ridge is OUTTATHEA
    Pretty much.
    Full flat ground OH YAH !

    The first side, tonight, I just took the diamond file to it. For like forever. It still could use some work to get it flat near the tip.

    The second side I went back to the power grinder with the white stone on it and made some more passes; dipping in water all the time. I was afraid the first time, the previous evening, of over grinding it but I took off a fair amount more to night then went after it with the diamond file and the results were better/ flatter and MUCH FASTER.

    It has been a long work day and I’m tired so I stopped before I did something stupid. I didn’t even cut my self while filing. I figured I would get a nick or two. That surprised me because I was really going to town for a while there.

    The file is basically brand new. A 250 diamond file. By its self it is not up to the job (unless you like marathons).

    I’ll do some more tomorrow and then start stoning out the scratches. We are talking major scratches here.

    Worth it though for the performance gain.

    PS: I wore the pouch all day. Worked on my feet all day. It can be made to rattle if I pay attention and make it rattle but just working the thing disappeared and I heard and felt nothing.

    PPS: It might look like I filed all the way to the edge but I did not. The factory sharpening bevel is still there stock. I have not touched it. Still quite enjoyably sharp from the factory.



  10. Wowbagger

    Wowbagger Basic Member Basic Member

    Sep 20, 2015
    OK today I got serious.
    I put die on the spine of the knife and all around the perimeter.

    I scribed a center line down the spine and set off from there marks one mm on either side. The blade thickness stock is 3mm. I ground the blade to 2mm blade thickness at the thickest area.

    Then I measured behind the edge. Where is that anyway ? I went with the top of the factory bevel and it was monstrous ! On the order of one mm (~ 40 thou).

    I ground behind the edge down to one half mm (~ 20 thou). For now.

    Then I reground and filed the middle area down to flat ground again.

    Sheesh when a person isn’t good at this, and I’m not, it takes a lot of work. Trial and error. I started all this with a light hand and finished with a heavy hand. Boy there is a lot of excess material on a Ti Lite blade and it’s good steel. I could not have done this without a white stone on a bench grinder.

    I’m getting close though. I can taste it. Or maybe I didn’t wear my filter mask enough. Anyway I can’t imagine taking the area behind the edge down to 8 thou. See the knife testing rope cutting test winners. Whooo that would be thin.

    I am anxious to get all these deep scratches off the blade. I was cutting up bunches of lettuce last night and the blade was squeaking at me as it cut through. Weird.

    Anyway these photos sure look a whole lot different than the last ones don’t they ?
    Yah right. But the blade sure is, in fact, a lot different. It’s going to be a truly useful EDC.



  11. Wowbagger

    Wowbagger Basic Member Basic Member

    Sep 20, 2015
    Today after work I ground the deep scratches out and smoothed the sides of the blade.

    First I used the big O’ DMT diamond plate 220 / 300. I only needed the extra coarse side (has the black dot on the yellow back ground) to get the deep scratches out. Got most all the scratches out. The DMT plate was cutting much finer and smoother than the 220 diamond file used in the previous post. Then I settled in on the Shapton Pro 120 stone to see if it was coarser or would leave a smoother surface and it was smoothing the surface from the DMT so I kept at it. Turns out that is about all I needed to get the knife smoother than about any knife I would get from the factory. By the way that fixed blade shown here I polished to a mirror many years ago. It is scratched up now from various things but it sure as heck came from the factory with more roughness than the majority of my Ti Lite has today.

    The stone is a Shapton Pro 120. Look at all the metal on it ! I had been going after the sides of the blade for quite a while at this point and had rinsed the stone under the running faucet many times. It just kept cutting, and cutting and cutting. :thumbup: I didn’t need to dress it on a diamond plate to get any glaze off. This blade steel is the CTS-XHP. These are great stones. :thumbup: It didn't seem to wear much at all. When I was all done I dressed / flattened it.



    There is a bunch to be cleaned up on the sides of the Ti Lite near the pivot and Cold Steel didn’t grind all the way back to the sharpening choil so that was fighting me today. I would need to go down to the shop and power grind it so I left that area unfinished for now.

    But pretty much all of the blade is quite smooth and usable and hair whittling so I’m going to use it a while before I go at it again. I'll even out the finish some with tiny hand held stones. I don't plan to mirror polish it just make it smooth.

    The blade is smooth enough that the bunches of lettuce aren’t squeaking at me any more.
    Before I started on it today the scratch pattern left on the blade from the diamond file was so rough I could easily file my finger nails with it. Really sharp and rough just like a file.

    That fixed blade is what I used to EDC way back in the day. So the Ti Lite has more belly and less pointyness than it. Or maybe not now that I look at the photo. In the hand they look different than this photo. Guess it is a matter of what you are used to.

    I sharpened the edge on the Edge Pro for the first time so it is pretty polished now.

    I know these photos suck and look just like all the other previous ones. Just use your imagination. :)


    Last edited: Jul 5, 2016
  12. Wowbagger

    Wowbagger Basic Member Basic Member

    Sep 20, 2015
    Cutting performance is meeting my expectations. :thumbup:
    Happy now :)
  13. ThePeacent


    Sep 15, 2013
    I've been following this thread with much interest.


    I really like your mods and stuff you do with your blades. Now, we've both created a monster with our TiLite 6, I wonder what's gonna be your next victim


    Anyways, keep them coming!
    You're so fun to read
  14. Wowbagger

    Wowbagger Basic Member Basic Member

    Sep 20, 2015
    Man that is one minimalist Ti Lite

    Probably a basic full size Griptillian. Thin the spine. Duplicate the scales / handle out of hollowed out titanium. Keep it sculpted, textured and thick but as light as possible.
  15. Wowbagger

    Wowbagger Basic Member Basic Member

    Sep 20, 2015
    I pulled the plastic pouch liners out today.
    The liners were starting to be pulled out by the quilion, which at first did not happen. It seems that the pouch has opened up from the constant outward force of them and now I can dispense with them as I suspected (hoped) would be the case. I can get the Ti Lite in and out easy with no silly plastic things now. I hope that continues to be the case.

    I could not hook the quillion on the pouch to open it at all as long as the liners were in the pouch. They were just too slick. Now, without the liners, I can use the deployment quillion again. Sweet ! Another down side was the sharp edges of the quillion were literally carving little curls off the plastic when I would put the knife into the pouch. I smoothed the quillion with a diamond file and scraped the curls off the plastic.

    Less is more.

    Not having the liners in the way frees me up to easily trade out the Ti Lite for my new Griptillion (when I get it) into the same pouch without the painted clip that I plan to do without.

    PS: I plan to put something in the bottom of the pouch to prevent the Ti Lite from chewing its way out but I haven't decided what to put in there yet.

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