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Stripping isn't working.

Wed Oct 31, 2012 9:59 pm

My main knives are a Miyabi chef's knife out of MC66 (Hitachi's ZDP), a blue steel Nakiri, and an old Shun paring knife. I have maintained satisfactory edges using a combination 1000/4000 water stone. I thought that stropping would help maintain the edge and prolong the interval between sharpening. So ... I purchased your balsa strop set.
OK. I sharpen my Miyabi and after the 4000 it's slicing centimeter ribbons of paper of a sheet with ease, and smoothly. Then I strop on balsa with 1 micron diamond followed by stropping on a .25 micron board. The edge now tries to saw the paper. Stropping, as per your video I thought, really degraded the edge.
What am I missing?

BTW, the Global Minosharp was for my daughter who won't master water stones.

Robert

Re: Stripping isn't working.

Thu Nov 01, 2012 3:18 pm

Hi Robert,

This is always a bit of a guessing game since I'm not standing next to you and working on the knife with you. However here are some tips.

I'll assume you loaded the strop properly with a few spritzes of diamond spray and you shook the bottle before you sprayed.

There are really only a couple variables to stropping that you need to keep in mind. Try these tips and then let me know the result.

Light pressure: If you press too hard you will roll the edge. When I say light I mean 1/3 of the pressure you use when you sharpen. Kiss the strop with the edge.

Proper angle: I've seen people mess up an edge by stropping with an inconsistant angle. It's especially common when you start out. Consentrate on the edge angle as you swipe the knife along the strop. If you use light pressure and you mess this up the edge won't roll so that's another good reason for light pressure. Try hard to strop at the same angle you sharpen at.

Please let us know if this helps.

Re: Stripping isn't working. "Stropping"

Thu Nov 01, 2012 3:31 pm

If my stropping is as sloppy as my spelling, I sense a problem;-) However, using the stones I seem to keep a reasonably constant angle. I will try kissing the strop. I also try to maintain the same angle on the balsa that I maintain on the stone. That's correct, yes?
I also am assuming that even the 1.0 micron diamond is a finer "grit" than a 4000 grit water stone. Right? Thanks for your response and for posting to the forum.

Re: Stripping isn't working.

Thu Nov 01, 2012 3:52 pm

Hi Robert,

Yes the 4K Shapton is 3.68 microns so it's rougher thant the 1 micron strop.

Yes use the same exact angle if possible as you sharpen.

Re: Stripping isn't working.

Thu Nov 01, 2012 5:28 pm

Possibly a deburring issue, try pulling the knife through a cork a few time prior to stropping.

Re: Stripping isn't working.

Fri Nov 02, 2012 12:18 am

Yea that's a good suggestion.

Re: Stripping isn't working.

Fri Nov 02, 2012 1:03 pm

Also, another thing I see a lot of people do when stropping is as they get to the end of the strop they roll the edge into the stone by starting to lift the spine as they get towards the end at the start of the motion to remove the knife from the strop. It's a motion that's natural to most of us.

When we're going back and forth on a stone, we don't do it because our mind is saying "We're making a return trip, don't lift". But when it's a one way trip like a strop motion, we tend to lift as we get towards the end. Don't.

Hold the same angle all the way to the end, STOP with the knife still at the proper angle (or lower as I tend to do), and lift straight up.

Re: Stripping isn't working.

Fri Nov 02, 2012 1:59 pm

Do not lift at end of stroke, deburring with cork. OK - will keep working on it. Thanks.

Re: Stripping isn't working.

Wed Nov 14, 2012 11:29 pm

Update ... I think that stropping wasn't the problem and that I had somehow "buggered" my combination 1000/4000 stone. I will now be exploring replacing it. On to water stone research.

Re: Stripping isn't working.

Thu Nov 15, 2012 1:35 am

Nothing wrong with getting more stones... but I don't think that is the issue unless you have some severe dishing or something. Realistically you can sharpen on a cinder block, although maybe not paper shredding sharp. I would still maintain it is a wire edge issue. Are you able to create a consistent burr off the 1k side of your combo?
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