Edge pro v. skilled sharpener?

CKTG has a large amount of Edge Pro products so we've dedicated a forum to questions on Edge Pro sharpening systems, accessories and techniques.
Pirendeus
Posts: 6
Joined: Sat Sep 01, 2018 11:13 am

Edge pro v. skilled sharpener?

Post by Pirendeus » Fri Sep 28, 2018 6:05 pm

How close in performance can an Edge pro get to a skilled professional sharpener? Obviously, the edge pro user won't have the same flexibility/knowledge as a skilled sharpener, but how close are the results likely to be?

User avatar
lsboogy
Posts: 1064
Joined: Tue Jun 05, 2018 1:23 pm
Location: Minneapolis

Re: Edge pro v. skilled sharpener?

Post by lsboogy » Fri Sep 28, 2018 7:04 pm

I've only used a knife done on an edge pro once, but it was quite sharp after being done to only 3K. I think it takes away a lot of uncertainty and encourages people to sharpen their own knives though, and if you get into it, you will probably end up like a lot of us.
I won't get one as hand sharpening is a zen thing for me. If you can find stones for them, I would guess it to work great - find ken123 if you want good stones for the thing - I'd bet he can line you up to get an edge that you don't feel going into your finger (or veg).

5698k
Posts: 118
Joined: Sun Mar 18, 2018 7:34 pm

Re: Edge pro v. skilled sharpener?

Post by 5698k » Sat Sep 29, 2018 1:40 pm

Following this.

MikeT
Posts: 24
Joined: Wed Jun 06, 2018 8:16 pm

Re: Edge pro v. skilled sharpener?

Post by MikeT » Sat Sep 29, 2018 9:03 pm

Peter Nolan favorably mentioned his recent purchase of and experience with an EdgePro Pro. I would love to get some details from him on freehand vs EdgePro.

nakneker
Posts: 1923
Joined: Thu Feb 22, 2018 8:37 am
Location: Taylor, Az

Re: Edge pro v. skilled sharpener?

Post by nakneker » Sun Sep 30, 2018 10:52 pm

I started buying Japanese water stones at the first of the year, I had started buying knives and naturally the stones followed. I did fine sharpening kitchen knives but really struggled on my every day carry knives and hunting knives. Basically the more curve the blade had the more difficult it was for me to get a consistent bevel along the entire edge. I ended up buying an edge pro, watched some videos and found success on my short curvy blades. You can get an extremely consistent edge to any level of sharpness you desire. It did take some practice but the learning curve was short. I’m like Isboogy, I enjoy free handing on the stones and have since gotten much better with my short curvy blades freehanding but if I’m trying to get a quality edge quickly the edge pro is hard to beat. All my friends started sending me there spydercos and such because they enjoy the edge too. I have a set SG glass stones I bought here and a couple cholera’s i like too. Ken selling a huge selection of stones for the edge pro too. It’s a fantastic tool IMO.
“The goal is to die with memories, not dreams.”

Radar53
Posts: 990
Joined: Fri Jan 27, 2017 2:44 am
Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Re: Edge pro v. skilled sharpener?

Post by Radar53 » Tue Oct 02, 2018 10:39 pm

There were numerous discussions about this topic on the old forum, so it might be worth hunting some of those down just to get more alternative views.

As per another thread, I come from an EdgePro background but started freehand sharpening about 18 months ago. I don't see it being an either or situation, but more of an expansion of techniques. Each method has it's distinct advantages and disadvantages and I'm certainly enjoying exploring both their similarities and differences.
Cheers Grant

Just because you're not paranoid doesn't mean they're not going to get you!!

Peter Nowlan
Posts: 1203
Joined: Tue Jan 31, 2017 12:05 pm

Re: Edge pro v. skilled sharpener?

Post by Peter Nowlan » Tue Nov 27, 2018 10:46 am

Hi. When I first started my Sharpening business I lacked confidence as a freehand sharpener to have people pay for sharpening, wasn’t sure how it work out so I got the EP Pro. I soon made Knives sharper than I’ve ever seen. This is 8-10 years ago now but I can assure you it’s a high quality, proven device. I rarely use it now except for recurves, bird beak paring knives, that type of thing.
Now I can get knives sharper freehand but that’s just part of it, there is a vast difference in the enjoyment level offered by the two methods but make no mistake, the EP makes knives very sharp, over and over again.

RonAZ
Posts: 238
Joined: Mon Jan 30, 2017 9:44 pm

Re: Edge pro v. skilled sharpener?

Post by RonAZ » Tue Nov 27, 2018 6:36 pm

Like others, I started on an Edge Pro and migrated to stones. Stones are faster and easier for me at this point, although it took time and effort to reach a basic level of competency. I still use the Edge Pro when I want to reset a knife edge to a specific angle, but this is rare. Most important for me is that I can feel and duplicate an existing edge grind with the stones but with the Edge Pro it's just set angle. I can also get more acute angles on stones and can thin a knife while it's awkward to impossible on an Edge Pro. Some repairs are better with stones. For example a tip repair but also things like a chip repair an a single bevel where you want to be able to feel and match the existing grind line. Nothing wrong with an Edge Pro, I've gotten really sharp edges and still pull it out on occasion, but stones work better for me 90% of the time.
Ron

Larrymuffett22
Posts: 3
Joined: Fri Jan 04, 2019 9:49 am

Re: Edge pro v. skilled sharpener?

Post by Larrymuffett22 » Fri Jan 04, 2019 4:09 pm

Hello, 1st time poster,
I'm a mechanic and can drill a hole right though the center of a broken off fastener for extraction, but I can't free hand sharpen to save my life. Except for utility blades at work. I use an edge pro and get free hanging hair cutting on any super steel knife blades, which are way harder to get this sharp compared to the softer steels on kitchen knives. After trying all kinds of stones on the ep I evolved to atoma diamond stones for reprofilling and apex setting, and glass plates with diamond paper and can easily get any type of edge I want easily on any steel.

David_R
Posts: 5
Joined: Fri Feb 15, 2019 11:06 pm

Re: Edge pro v. skilled sharpener?

Post by David_R » Sat Feb 16, 2019 10:09 am

Depends on the pro sharpener, the stones on the EP, and your technique. In my opinion, the EP will get you to a point where you can consistently get sharp edges sooner. Knowing how to sharpen on a stone means you can always have sharp knives by just having a single stone handy (maybe double sided).

There are too many variables to just compare them. Stone quality, how the EP is used, stropping or not, and other things. The EP is not a replacement for experience and knowledge. It just helps get you to sharp edges sooner and more consistently.

User avatar
ken123
Posts: 4523
Joined: Wed Jan 25, 2017 2:53 pm
Location: Northern California
Contact:

Re: Edge pro v. skilled sharpener?

Post by ken123 » Sat May 11, 2019 10:18 pm

There are skilled freehand sharpeners and skilled EP sharpeners and amateurs in both groups. Some of the more skilled ep sharpeners can discern nuances in stone effects more easily than many freehand sharpeners. Why? Because they are freed from angle control and focus on other nuances.

I use both approaches. Each has advantages. The ep teaches precision. Freehand allows for a little more variable technique e.g. varying bevel angles along a blade, hamaguri grinds etc.

Stone selection is wide with over 50 Nubatama stones, Japanese natural stones, Shapton and Chocera stones etc cut and available for the ep.

---
Ken

Radar53
Posts: 990
Joined: Fri Jan 27, 2017 2:44 am
Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Re: Edge pro v. skilled sharpener?

Post by Radar53 » Sat May 11, 2019 11:52 pm

Coming from 20+ years on the EdgePro, there are probably three beneficial things that I really noticed when I added freehand sharpening to my repertoire, just over two years ago.

1) ~ as Ken says above, I think the EP gave me a good insight into listening to what a stone was telling me. Sight, sound, feel, resistance, feedback etc.
2) ~ I wanted to learn to freehand ambidextrously. Sharpening using the EP is an ambidextrous activity by nature, and I think that having already worked on that, it gave me a good head-start into transferring the concept to freehand.
3) ~ for me, the EP is predominately a leading edge technique. Many of the instructional videos for freehand say, pressure on the trailing stroke & no pressure on the leading stroke. For me with freehand, I like to use pressure on the leading edge stroke, because I can feel the edge of the edge very reliably. (hahaha just because I could find the edge of the edge, doesn't mean that I could hold it!!). For just over 2 years now, I haven't gouged any of my freehand stones, because I can feel the point just before it's going to dig in.

These three things have helped my transition to freehand sharpening and I can now get good edges pretty consistently (ie cut phonebook paper & shave arm hair easily). I am happy to freehand sharpen all my Euro knives and many of my "lesser" JK's, as well as all the knives I get from friends and neighbours. However with my best JK's, I still use the EP, because at this stage that continues to be how I get my best edges.

Interestingly, as Peter Nowlan says above, I now enjoy freehand sharpening more than using the EP. Çomme çi, çomme ça, YMMV
Cheers Grant

Just because you're not paranoid doesn't mean they're not going to get you!!

User avatar
lsboogy
Posts: 1064
Joined: Tue Jun 05, 2018 1:23 pm
Location: Minneapolis

Re: Edge pro v. skilled sharpener?

Post by lsboogy » Sun May 12, 2019 3:34 pm

I've tried an EP, still have a Lansky kit, but I always like freehand sharpening. Maybe it's because I learned it when young from dad (Arkansas stones) and mom (Belgian bleu stones), but I learned to feel for angle rather than just use a tool. I'm sure a good tool can repeat better, but I find it more pleasurable to freehand. Plus, I tend to draw the final few strokes across the stone, just how I learned - I think this helps my edges especially on soft skinned veg (tomatoes etc).

Radar53
Posts: 990
Joined: Fri Jan 27, 2017 2:44 am
Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Re: Edge pro v. skilled sharpener?

Post by Radar53 » Sun May 12, 2019 10:04 pm

lsboogy wrote:
Sun May 12, 2019 3:34 pm
... I'm sure a good tool can repeat better, but I find it more pleasurable to freehand.
Hi there lsboogy. Definitely agree with you here & as I said I'm enjoying the zen of working freehand. A mate of mine was trained to sharpen freehand in Japan by Shibata-san and sharpens professionally and incredibly well. He has played around with the EdgePro and gave it away. He got me to sharpen one of my good JK's on the EP and was really surprised by the precision and sharpness that can be achieved.

My freehand skills continue to improve, but are currently those of a mere mortal. I aspire to the skills of the freehand Jedi Masters, but I have got to sharpen another 9,800 knives freehand, to get to that magical 10,000 figure required!!!

As per my earlier post that's why I still use the EP for my favourite JK's.

BTW I like the photo of the Series 1 Lotus Esprit - great car :D :D
Cheers Grant

Just because you're not paranoid doesn't mean they're not going to get you!!

User avatar
lsboogy
Posts: 1064
Joined: Tue Jun 05, 2018 1:23 pm
Location: Minneapolis

Re: Edge pro v. skilled sharpener?

Post by lsboogy » Sun May 12, 2019 10:46 pm

I love driving the thing - well balanced. Brit cars have that feel that no other country seems to have found. Cars are much like knives - what I can drive fastest and most confidently may not be the same as another person. Fastest car I ever owned was a 930/934 with dial a boost - but my track times at both Brainerd and Road America reflect my driving skill - the lotus turned quicker times every time I drove it.

Radar53
Posts: 990
Joined: Fri Jan 27, 2017 2:44 am
Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Re: Edge pro v. skilled sharpener?

Post by Radar53 » Sun May 12, 2019 11:24 pm

Yeah, motorsport is my other lifelong passion. Raced motorbikes in the '70's & rallied in the 80's, but just spectate now.
You might just enjoy this https://www.facebook.com/haydenpaddonwr ... 556956288/

Second Round of the Asia Pacific Rally Champs. Hayden Paddon is the driver & he did two years as a full time WRC 1 driver. His co-driver is a young woman who has come through the co-driver development academy & this was her first co-drive at this level. Absolutely faultless - she just killed it. They won the overall rally by some 5 minutes!!

Forget about the driving, I can't even process the pace notes. :lol: :lol: :lol:
Cheers Grant

Just because you're not paranoid doesn't mean they're not going to get you!!

Delphonic
Posts: 143
Joined: Thu Jul 04, 2019 6:40 pm

Re: Edge pro v. skilled sharpener?

Post by Delphonic » Fri Sep 20, 2019 3:32 pm

A distinction in edges that might aid in understanding this distinction between freehand and edge pro edges. A freehand sharpening will tend to make a slightly convex edge because you can’t control the angle freehand as perfectly as with the EP. EP edges?

Delphonic
Posts: 143
Joined: Thu Jul 04, 2019 6:40 pm

Re: Edge pro v. skilled sharpener?

Post by Delphonic » Fri Sep 20, 2019 3:32 pm

More perfectly triangular; no convexity/bowing on the two sides of the edge.

Delphonic
Posts: 143
Joined: Thu Jul 04, 2019 6:40 pm

Re: Edge pro v. skilled sharpener?

Post by Delphonic » Fri Sep 20, 2019 3:36 pm

I talked to Ben Dale, and he recommends more oblique angles then guys on here use. But the rationale is key: there’s EXTRA metal behind the slightly convex edge to support a several-degrees-more-accute edge when compared with the triangular perfection one gets with an edge pro edge.

Delphonic
Posts: 143
Joined: Thu Jul 04, 2019 6:40 pm

Re: Edge pro v. skilled sharpener?

Post by Delphonic » Fri Sep 20, 2019 3:37 pm

But, you can do a compound bevel on the EP, and maybe get the best of all worlds there, assuming you use great stones and have good EP technique.

Post Reply