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Paper wheel sharpening vs stones

Wed Oct 02, 2013 6:40 am

I've been reading about various sharpening techniques, and I stumbled across this method: http://www.bladeforums.com/forums/showt ... ant-to-you

Uses a bench grinder with paper sanding wheels. Here's a video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-jUbaZOQ-fQ

Now I'm wondering why this hasn't caught on more. What's the benefits of using water/diamond/glass stones and hand sharpening? Not only is the paper wheel technique faster, it's *cheaper* than picking up an entire set of nice stones.

Only cons I can think of:
  • complete beginner can chew off too much of the blade
  • moving the blade too slow results in heat buildup which will detemper the steel
  • pressing too hard may lead to chipping?
All those cons are mitigated with experience.

What are your thoughts?

Re: Paper wheel sharpening vs stones

Wed Oct 02, 2013 7:10 am

If all you want is a edge that cuts then wheels, belts, or powered stone grinders will all do the job. They will also remove more steel than needed and you will never reach the same level of bevel control or sharpness that hand sharpening can produce.

I use grinders all day every day if anyone tells you they won't remove too much or any more than hand sharpening they are blowing smoke up your.....

Hand sharpening on stones will always rule because you have the ultimate control.

Re: Paper wheel sharpening vs stones

Wed Oct 02, 2013 5:53 pm

The paper wheels have their place. Some use them exclusively with good success. But they aren't really suited to the type of sharpening spoken of here. But if you want to give them a go get a 1725ish RPM motor or grinder. I use the slotted wheel for serration repair / sharpening, finishing chisels and such. As Jason says freehand sharpening is the top of the mark for most.

Re: Paper wheel sharpening vs stones

Thu Oct 03, 2013 1:34 pm

Using a bench grinder to sharpen a knife is among the most dangerous things you can do.

Ask any knife maker what the most dangerous tool in the shop is.....almost every one will tell you it's the bench grinder (buffer).

You loose concentration for a split second, the wheel (spinning at hyper speed) grabs that blade and throws it across the room. If you're in the path....you loose flesh.

Re: Paper wheel sharpening vs stones

Fri Oct 04, 2013 6:30 pm

A wheel puts a hollow grind on a knife. Hollow grinds do not have enough steel to support the edge and will roll and chip much faster and easier than standard V bevels convex grinds.

Re: Paper wheel sharpening vs stones

Fri Oct 04, 2013 7:03 pm

Stephen Corley wrote:A wheel puts a hollow grind on a knife. Hollow grinds do not have enough steel to support the edge and will roll and chip much faster and easier than standard V bevels convex grinds.


Isnt a hollow similar to an arch? Which has the least amount of material for the strongest structural support?

Re: Paper wheel sharpening vs stones

Fri Oct 04, 2013 8:10 pm

Well its tough to say how much of a concave you get on a 2MM or less edge using an eight inch wheel. In my experience its not an issue using the paper wheels for knife sharpening.

Re: Paper wheel sharpening vs stones

Fri Oct 04, 2013 9:48 pm

With a paper wheel, I'd almost think you'd get a convex grind unless the wheel had a very aggressive and very well dispersed abrasive. The paper wheel would depress as you push into it.....no? That would give a convex edge if it did.

Re: Paper wheel sharpening vs stones

Fri Oct 04, 2013 10:12 pm

The wheels are pretty hard. There isn't any give to them. Since very little pressure, edge to wheel, is used edges stay pretty flat. You could convex an edge using the wheels but there are easier ways for sure.

Re: Paper wheel sharpening vs stones

Sat Oct 05, 2013 1:47 am

Stephen Corley wrote:A wheel puts a hollow grind on a knife. Hollow grinds do not have enough steel to support the edge and will roll and chip much faster and easier than standard V bevels convex grinds.


Completely false, you would need to be grinding a bevel that's 1/2in wide for this to take effect.
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