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Optimal Sharpening Angle Chart/Database

Tue Aug 21, 2012 10:31 am

So I have this idea (and let’s not make this too complicated because it is designed to simplify life for those who use their blades regularly).

Every now and then, I will bring up my stones and edgepro and start a knife-sharpening session. It is easier for me to do several knives at one time, like on a crappy rainy day. I can concentrate, and have all the stones I need soaking and make just one big mess (as opposed to driving my wife nuts and having all my sharpening gear spread out in the kitchen daily).

But each time I do this, I start to ponder the best angle for each knife (like many of us on the forum, I have a bunch of blades).

I was thinking that I would keep a small book in my sharpening kit and record the angles I am using on each blade (I am mostly around 15 degrees on most knives). But then I thought, wouldn’t it be cool if there was a database or even a simple table where I could look up a blade and see what other users find to be the most optimal/useful angle?

For example, I know that there are a bunch of you out there that use Konosuke gyutos. Aside from attempts at doing really exotic low/high angles, I am guessing there is a range of angles within a few degrees where this knife really performs best in a kitchen environment. I know that there are exceptions based on thinning and the kitchen conditions in which these knives operate, but if there was a place we could begin recording sweet spots of sharpening angles for various knives and steels, this might allow us to develop some really interesting data.

For example, I sharpen my Moritaka at 14 degrees (which seems to allow it to perform very well). But was wondering if that is what the rest of the world does or if most others who are using this knife also find that that is a good angle or other their better angles based on collective experience? I grabbed my old 10 inch Sabatier, and was wondering what angle the rest of the sharpening world that actually OWNs this knife and sharpens this this knife finds to be a solid “working” angle?

Wouldn’t be cool to consult a chart where we could look up various blades and find out what seems to be working best for most users (or even see what the range of angles are)? Again, there could be various angles recorded for the same knife, but hopefully the chart would allow for a short comment by the user/sharpener about what works for them and why.

I know that questions are often asked about what angle for what knife, but to have it all in one place might be a useful tool.

Heck, maybe such a chart/database already exists (if so, could you kindly point me towards it)? If not, I think this could be very useful for us knife-heads.


Re: Optimal Sharpening Angle Chart/Database

Tue Aug 21, 2012 12:32 pm

...love the thought, but very complex......the diversity between personal preferences as well as applications / uses of the same blade is too diverse.... & then you have to content with the personalities involved.....mmmmmmm.....pass.....



Re: Optimal Sharpening Angle Chart/Database

Tue Aug 21, 2012 2:15 pm

C'mon, we can make it work!

No really, I know it could be complex, but that would be the cool think about it (it fails, if it becomes a too complex).

There are probably enough knives out there that many of us are using, and a posting of what is working (and what is not working, perhaps more importantly) by a knife owner that actually sharpens and uses that knife--particularly for edgepro types--could be a cool thing.

Again, I realize there is not a "perfect" angle for any blade, but would be really interesting to get some sense of what generally seems to work for each knife. For example, I have a few knives I'd like to really bring down the angle to something more acute than what I normally use. That said, I don't want to spend the time and put the wear on a blade that would take it well out of the range of what most people think works best for the blade.

Perhaps, maybe sharpening angle ex[erience by knife could be posted in one place so that one does not have to search all over various websites? That could be quite useful, no? Just think'n!

Re: Optimal Sharpening Angle Chart/Database

Tue Aug 21, 2012 6:17 pm

You would do better by Rockwell testing the blades.

As it is, it wouldn't work. And here's why.

Each blade is different.
Each heat treatment is individual to the blade.
Each steel batch of the same steel is different.
Each sharpening is individual to the knife.
Every sharpener has a level of experience with both sharpening and cutting....... its not something you can master in a few years.

Re: Optimal Sharpening Angle Chart/Database

Tue Aug 21, 2012 6:46 pm

How do you really know what angle you sharpen? 14 vs 16 degrees.... well..... tell me how if you really can make an accurate subtle difference out as small as this and then stick to it a whole sharpening session. In fact.. just teach me how to be closer to 15 than 20 and I will sharpen better.

Re: Optimal Sharpening Angle Chart/Database

Tue Aug 21, 2012 9:33 pm

This should be moved to the EP subforum because there is NO WAY a freehander will be able to discuss 14 degrees vs 16 degrees, lol.

Re: Optimal Sharpening Angle Chart/Database

Wed Aug 22, 2012 7:07 pm

I find it really hard to sharpen freehand at higher angles, say 15 degree. at lower angle I feel 1) more stable since the blade is laying down rather than standing, 2) the spine is closer to stone to judge distance, and 3) I am abrading a much wider bevel so minor variation in angle won't hurt the edge as much.

great idea. I think this may serve as a starting point.
http://www.knifeforums.com/forums/showt ... id/809833/
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