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Thread: Knife sharpening vs Razor sharpening - skill carry over value?

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    Default Knife sharpening vs Razor sharpening - skill carry over value?

    Hey, im wondering what ur guys view is on the difficulty of razor sharpening/honing and knife sharpening. And how ur view about skill cary over value, like if u can sharpen razor you can sharpen knives, or vice versa. I belive that razor honing is alot more harder and more difficult, i know many knife sharpening who does great knives, but they all struggle with razor. And with knife sharpening, i mean world class sharpening, im not talking about stainless steel knives(which cant hold an edge at all) I know for a fact that many sushi chefs and so on does use 12k stones and much higher jnats, and then strop. But does all rules for razor apply for knives, like using magnification and such?

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    Senior Member Ernie1980's Avatar
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    Some of the skills carry over, some do not. They are VERY different tasks! I learned how to sharpen knives first, and had some trouble learning how to hone. Almost anyone can learn to hone, but you have to take the time to learn it properly. One of my friends here told me "you start honing where you would normally stop sharpening a knife" and that is very true but only the start. Everyone is going to give you different advice, but there are some things you will have to try to find out what works for you. Especially if you are an accomplished knife sharpener, you are going to have to watch some videos of razor honing pros like Lynn Abrams and Glen (gssixgun). You are going to have to be patient and expect some mess-ups. Practice on some old razors first!

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    Senior Member criswilson10's Avatar
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    For me, the only thing that carries over is the sound and feel of the blade on the stone.
    A razor is sharpened differently than a knife, which is sharpened differently than a chisel, which is sharpened differently than an axe. It's all sharpening, but different techniques, pressure, and angles are used for each. You just have to use the correct technique for each blade type.
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    My carryover was two significant learnings rom razor to knife:
    1. Set the bevel.
    2. Use a Waterstone.

    I'd used spiderco triangular ceramics on kitchen knives. It worked, but was very slow and on my harder knives it fatigued and chipped the edge.

    Now using a 4k Norton waterstone freehand under running water. It's superfast. Leaves a slightly convex edge which is very durable, slightly toothy (8k stone gives a polished edge, but does not warrant the extra time on my kitchen knives)

    Lastly, understanding what setting a bevel really means, changed my knife sharpening in that you understand that if the very edge of the bevel has not cleaned up, and the two surfaces have not met, that the knife will not and cannot be sharp yet.

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    Im sorry, i forgot to add to the post that i mean in terms of knowledge. Knowledge carry over. I belive if you have the knowledge and skills to hone a razor(setting bevel and everything) you then do have the knowledge to sharpen knives aswell. Ofcourse there are some differences, and the technique is obviously different, but that is only an small part of it, in my view sharpening is 70% knowledge, and the rest 30% is easly obtainble skills in technique, just takes a certain amount of hours practicing.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jamesalot23 View Post
    !,,,,,,,,,,,,in my view sharpening is 70% knowledge, and the rest 30% is easly obtainble skills in technique, just takes a certain amount of hours practicing.
    Is not obtainable skills,,, knowledge?

    You have progressed in honing/sharpening when reach the point where you see each razor/knife as an individual.
    Your carry over knowledge, are the skills you use to approach the task at hand.

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    The only carry over skill IME is the light pressure when sharpening/honing. Knives require quite the steady hand to keep the angles consistent.
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    Senior Member Steel's Avatar
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    I feel being able to hone a knife helped tremendously when starting to hone razors. Familiarity with stones, understanding grit and progressive honing, basic strokes, even pressure, light pressure, basic bevel setting, etc were all very helpful in honing razors for me. Those were all things I had a “leg up” on and more when starting to hone razors.

    On the other hand, the experience and knowledge I have gained honing razors has brought my and tool sharpening to a whole new level also.
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    What a curse be a dull razor; what a prideful comfort a sharp one

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    [QUOTE= Knives require quite the steady hand to keep the angles consistent.[/QUOTE]

    Very good point. I can sharpen a razor a lot easier than I can a knife because the correct angle is built into a razor, you have to hold the correct angle and do it consistently when honing a knife to get one really sharp.
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    A bit off topic,
    but the most significant carry-over I've experienced is from straight shaving back to DE shaving. After about a year of straight shaving, I find if I use a DE, the skill and knowledge gained from straights makes for sublime DE shaves.

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