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Help sharpening my Tojiro.

Fri Sep 21, 2012 12:35 pm

hey mark

i bought a tojiro dp 210mm knife about 8 months ago, and have some trouble keeping it sharp and was hoping you could shed some light...
i use my knife alot (professional cook)

have been sharpening on both a kasumi and minosharp 200/1000 combo whetstones(and a messimeister ceramic steel), and i seem to get a good edge initially, but after a couple days it it has already lost it's edge

i''m assuming it's my knife sharping skills at play, maybe my ceramic steel is dulling the blade, should i grab a 5000grit stone to add to the process

please help shed some light

thanks mark

best grant

Re: Help sharpening my Tojiro.

Fri Sep 21, 2012 12:52 pm

Hi Grant,

It's hard for me to tell what's going on with your edge.

Using the stone you have will give you a toothy edge and toothy edges are good in that they act like micro serrations but this type of edge often doesn't last as long as a more polished edge because those teeth chip and bend and become frayed with use quickly.

My first suggestion would be to add a 4-6K stone to your routine. I think stropping your knife instead of using a rod will also give you a better edge and will also give the edge a longer life. Try those two things and let me know how it works. There are some other suggestions but I want to see if this solves it.

Re: Help sharpening my Tojiro.

Fri Sep 21, 2012 1:09 pm

1. You need a finer stone.
2. Stropping is almost mandatory for VG10
3. Deburr! Cut into an eraser or cork a few times after sharpening, then do some edge trailing on the stone. Tojiros can be hard to deburr.
4. Don't use a ceramic rod on a Tojiro. I did, and it micro-chipped my edge something fierce every time. You have to look close, but it's there.

Re: Help sharpening my Tojiro.

Thu Sep 27, 2012 1:01 pm

thanks for the help
just added a chosera 5000 grit stone to my cart

thinking about the f dick 2000 honing rod, other than the tojiro, i also have mac and shun knifes in my kit(have a messimeister ceramic now)

any thoughts on this


thanks again

Re: Help sharpening my Tojiro.

Thu Sep 27, 2012 2:20 pm

What don't you like about the Messermeister rod?

Re: Help sharpening my Tojiro.

Thu Sep 27, 2012 2:50 pm

I've sharpened a few VG-10 blades, including Tojiro's. I use a Bester 1200, Rika 5K and then a fine J Nat (Shobu, Takashima or Ozuka Asagi). I strop on a hard denim strop and it works well to deburr the edge, too.

Re: Help sharpening my Tojiro.

Fri Sep 28, 2012 3:36 am

it's not that i don't like the messimeister rod, it works well on some knives, maybe not the tojiro

but you wrote earlier about not using tojiros on ceramic rods?

Re: Help sharpening my Tojiro.

Fri Sep 28, 2012 12:09 pm

The reason you will vary rarely see me recommend any type of steeling or ceramic rod is due to the greatly unknown facts of what happens when you do use one. When two very hard objects come into contact with each other one is going to give way to the other and that's not always good when sharpening very hard steel.

In the case of a ceramic rod you are putting extremely high forces on a very small contact point using a object with extreme high hardness and rigidity. Add in that the steel on the knife is near maximum hardness and the elastic limits are much lower, this gives you a lower level of deformation and a higher chance for fractures to occur along the grain boundaries (ie. edge chipping)

Here is one example of a metal near maximum hardness sharpened on a ceramic hone.


As the story goes, VG-10 is a steel developed for use in the horticulture industry, they needed a steel that could get very sharp and hold its edge yet easy to maintain. Originally I remember it being noted that it was a chip resistant steel that was easily "steeled" back, all combined it was the reason I gave a few Spyderco folders a shot and found it to be all true. I think most often for kitchen knives it's taken to high in hardness causing unfavorable results when its actually better at a lower hardness.

As for sharpening, it really should be taken to a very fine grit such as 5-8k for a knife not cutting abrasive materials.

Re: Help sharpening my Tojiro.

Fri Sep 28, 2012 1:46 pm

After owning a tojiro and unfortunately it was stolen from me I always took my tojiro up to 8k and backed stropped on an iminishi 10k after soaking it a little and useing a small dmt stone to make a slurry that stone will get real muddy i mean real muddy and that always worked for me and all I ever had to do after that was strop or hit it with a boroscillicate rod from Handamerica. I never had any problems and it stayed on of the sharpest knife in my collection before it was stolen. I have a messermeister ceramic rod I would say around 1200 grit and rarely use it because it just easier for me to strop as it is the other but in a pro kitchen I can see how it would be hard to strop. The Handamerica rod straightens out the edge usually what happens to a knife that is sharpend properly is the edge bends over one way or the other and that rod would straighten out the edge without taking away the edge I had put on it. I hope I helped and for the record imop the suerio rika is one of the best 5k stones out their and I have seen my naniwa ss 5k look like it just came off a 10 k stone once again this is just my opinion. I hope i helped and if I didn't the others advice is also very sound advice. Peace jmbullman

Re: Help sharpening my Tojiro.

Fri Sep 28, 2012 4:57 pm

Yeah, the Tojiro VG10 is too brittle for a 1200 grit rod, you'd need a borosilicate rod(I don't hone my Tojiro on a rod, I just sharpen and strop it on a fine stone). The others will be fine on the messermeister rod, and I doubt the Mac or Idahone rod will be a notable improvement.
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