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Old 01-11-2010, 05:16 PM   #11
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I probably will get the Lansky or Edge to try but on your advice I will try freehand too. If I get a Lansky, which model do you suggest? Which Spyderco stones would you recommend? Should I get an assortment?
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Old 01-12-2010, 12:24 AM   #12
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From the Lansky models, I'd get the standard one, and perhaps add a coarse diamond stone for quick reprofiling.

The basic stone set up would be coarse, medium, fine. For a coarse stone, I'd go with a diamond one from DMT, or even Lansky has some nice diamond benchstones. You won't use it much, and diamonds will do a quick job. For medium and fine, I'd go with Spyderco ceramic stones. Spyderco's Profile set is nice, as it allows you to sharpen several types of edges (plain, serrated, recurve, etc.) and they aren't expensive.

Later on you can add one of Spyderco's Extra Fine ceramic stones, the finish you get is amazing, really nice polish.

A tool you'll use a lot is a simple leather strop, charged with buffing compound. It's cheap and it's tremendously effective. It's almost all I use for daily edge maintenance.
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Old 01-12-2010, 12:47 AM   #13
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Forget the Lansky!! I just tried it and it does not work with the very steep angle of the Spartan.
lansky-vs-spartan-175.jpg   lansky-vs-spartan-176.jpg   lansky-vs-spartan-178.jpg   lansky-vs-spartan-181.jpg  
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Old 01-12-2010, 12:54 AM   #14
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Okay, JD is always talking shi'ite about he has this trick item, or he has that one, but we never get to see it. We have to take his word for it. I bet he doesn't even own those Nighthawks.

So, as you can see, I taped off the ends of my Lansky with black athletic tape to give a better purchase on knife blades. The Lansky is aluminum and I like the grip the athletic tape gives better than metal on metal.

Now, the Lansky has like 4 settings, but the "steepest" is 30 degrees. 30 Degrees is NOT enough to sharpen the Spartan.

As you can see, a little trick I learned directly from Benji Dale with Apex Sharpening Systems, is to drag a black Sharpie marker along the blade that you want to sharpen. This tells you if you are getting the full purchase on the area that you want to sharpen.

I chose a pretty aggressive medium coarse sharpening stone, so you could see the effects.

Bottom line: The angle is not steep enough to get full purchase on the angle of the factory bevel.

Hopefully you can see that all of the black Sharpie is not removed after about 3 minutes of "sharpening".

This one lone picture is the best of about 6 that I took and it's not that great.
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Old 01-12-2010, 01:00 AM   #15
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Thanks for the advice Franciscomv and for the trial JD. I may just stick to stones and just make the time. Just so damn little time to go around these days.
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Old 01-12-2010, 01:02 AM   #16
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Now, I have been a fixed blade knife fan for about a dozen years. I don't know HALF of what Francisco has forgotten, nor have I ever had the patience to learn to flat, free hand sharpen correctly.

As such, I have tried just about everything out there. Razor's Edge, where the guy shaves his beard with an splitting axe?? Yeah. EFF THAT "SYSTEM"!! What a piece of crap that is.

I tried a couple of other cheaper versions too. Neither stayed in the collection.

So, in my search for the best sharpener available, I stumbled across Benji Dale in little old Oregon and he showed me, personally, in his shop, the beautiful work that can be done with the APEX portable system.

Here are some pictures of the Spartan versus The Apex. Yes, the APEX was able to catch the angle and it was able to sharpen the whole belly, down into the recurve right at the fold point. The flat stone of the APEX can't make the curve, but I can easily make it with the round, ceramic that came with the kit.

I hope you can see, that after about 15 passes with the APEX, most of the black is gone on the edge of the blade, and that is without getting the APEX set up like I normally would. I was rushed because Fight Night is on, but I knew I could hit the angle quickly with it, so I went for it.

So, I would have ZERO problem recommending the APEX to sharpen this knife.
lansky-vs-spartan-183.jpg   lansky-vs-spartan-184.jpg   lansky-vs-spartan-185.jpg   lansky-vs-spartan-186.jpg  
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Old 02-07-2010, 11:22 AM   #17
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Default I'm happy with my Lansky

I was always a 'free-hand'. To be honest I think I liked the "Snob value"

Then my son put me onto Lansky. he works as a Supervisor in a meat works. Getting good staff is a killer. Trying to get teach them *HOW* to keep their knive's sharp bent his head.
Then he got Lansky and the morons have sharp knivefs
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Old 02-07-2010, 11:41 AM   #18
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Edge Pro makes the best sharpening systems on the market today. As I've said before, I don't like to depend on these sort of gadget, but the Edge Pro is a good one that doesn't have the same limitations other similar sharpening systems have. It's quite a bit more expensive than a Lansky or Sharpmaker, but well worth it, IMHO.

Thanks for the pics, JD. They are very useful!

PS: I told you that the Lansky's usefulness was limited to certain blade designs...
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Old 02-07-2010, 04:26 PM   #19
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I use the Lanskey system and I love it. I maintain my Buck Knives and Outdoor Edge equipment with it. I was never really good at freehand shapening myself seemed like I spent more time fixing my mistakes then actually getting an edge that way. I have been told by guys that you can't get a razor edge on a knife with Lanskey but I can take out my Buck folder and shave away with it. The only draw back I have run into with it is if the knife blade is over about 10" it hard to sharpen. Hope this helps...
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Old 02-11-2010, 03:57 PM   #20
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If you don't know free hand sharpening, I would pick up one of the Gerber folding pocket hones (springs coated with 500 diamond grit, designed to produce a 30 degree hone). They are pretty fast and I have used them on everything from old swords and ax heads to steak knives. Yes, I can free hand (and have for 45 years) sharpen to scalpel level with the best, but for long swords, machetes, and blades with curves, I am finding the Gerber sharpener hard to beat for producing a decent edge very quickly.

Last edited by superc; 02-11-2010 at 03:58 PM. Reason: spelling
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