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Recommendations for a production or readily available EDC knife with high performance geometry & cutting ability?

Posted by jloden 
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Ok, Cliff and the rest of you have convinced me I have seemingly have absolutely no idea what a truly sharp knife with awesome cutting performance feels like. grinning smiley

I'm in the camp that's been told for years that 10-12 dps edges are extreme performance grinds for high end kitchen knives. Now thanks to Cliff's forum and discussions / videos here I'm seeing knives with significantly lower edge angles doing rougher work than anything I've ever done with a knife with no issues, and I feel like I'm missing out.

I'm experimenting with lowering the edge angles for some of my "project" sharpening knives but I'd really like to try a tried and true performance blade. Sort of a benchmark for experiencing what's actually decent cutting performance. Looking for something that's got a good thin geometry, with great slicing & cutting ability, suitable for EDC. For me that means opening packages, mail, zip ties, cutting cardboard, maybe occasional cuts on wood and such. Not planning to punch it through any car hoods or airplane fuselages here, and I don't use my knives as screwdrivers and pry bars.

Recommendations on makes or models, someone who can do a quality regrind... hit me with any suggestions please.

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-Jay



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 07/01/2020 08:45PM by jloden.
Folder, Opinel.

Fixed blade, Opinel.

[www.youtube.com]

Robert Herder also makes those kinds of grinds as well.

A. G. Russell used to make a "modern" fixed blade that was a cutting geometry, the Deerhunter, but it was discontinued. It was

-thin stock
-0.010" edge
-full flat grind
-D2 steel

Lots of people do regrinds, lots of makers who are starting do it to get money before they really take off.
Quote
CliffStamp
Folder, Opinel.

Fixed blade, Opinel.

[www.youtube.com]

Robert Herder also makes those kinds of grinds as well.

A. G. Russell used to make a "modern" fixed blade that was a cutting geometry, the Deerhunter, but it was discontinued. It was

-thin stock
-0.010" edge
-full flat grind
-D2 steel

Lots of people do regrinds, lots of makers who are starting do it to get money before they really take off.

Thanks Cliff. Checking out the Opinel paring knife now. Any particular Opinel folder model # or are all of them recommended? I actually have one I got as a gift that's either a #4 or #6, can't recall offhand but I hadn't ever gotten around to carrying it. Good reason to go dig it up and rectify that.

Too bad the Deerhunter is discontinued (can't even find one on eBay) as that looks interesting. I googled it and on the first page of results was actually your review, hah. I'd only seen your stone reviews before, now I'll have to have a look through your knife reviews also.

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-Jay
Quote
CliffStamp
Folder, Opinel.

[...]

Well thank you Cliff, you just made my night three times over with that suggestion. I’d completely forgotten about that Opinel No. 6 I had, and now

1) It’s a knife I already own, took me 60 seconds to find it and it’ll go right into rotation.

2) That sharpened up very nicely and super easily. The existing sharpness was pretty meh but it took me no time at all on a soft/hard black Arkansas combo stone to get a nice edge on it. And now I feel artificially accomplished at sharpening today, haha

3) In looking for my Opinel I also finally found my long lost DC4 stone. I’d given up and replaced it but the newer version is a totally different ceramic for the fine side that I don’t like nearly as much as my old one. I tore half the house up looking for that for days and it turns up sitting right next to the Opinel, go figure.

This is going to be fun to use for a bit, it’s radically thin compared to what I’m used to and it took a pretty mean edge very quickly. Looking forward to it!

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-Jay
Quote
jloden
[
This is going to be fun to use for a bit, it’s radically thin compared to what I’m used to and it took a pretty mean edge very quickly. Looking forward to it!

and what you will find is that if you just thin the very apex just a little bit more than it comes.. then it will be great.

all the paring knives I just got sit around 0.008" this can be dropped to about 0.003-0.004 nicely

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It's not Cliff, its Dr Stamp
#kebabstickcut, it's a thing - make it happen
Quote
cKc
and what you will find is that if you just thin the very apex just a little bit more than it comes.. then it will be great.

all the paring knives I just got sit around 0.008" this can be dropped to about 0.003-0.004 nicely

Running them that thin, how do you find they fare with typical kitchen mishaps like hitting a plate or pot? I'm guessing it rolls the edge pretty easily that thin, but it's also very easy & quick to repair the edge?

I've currently got some Victorinox paring knives in the kitchen for utility tasks and they roll all the time too, but it's correspondingly easy to get them back in working order. I'm assuming the Opinel would be something along the same lines only more exaggerated at both ends.

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-Jay
the things that i find roll edges, don't care how thick your edge angle is. i carve wood with blades that thin, and cut on ceramic plates. its no issue on a blade the size of an opinel..

big diff between 1.5mm blade 0.5" height going to 0.003 and 1.5" blade 1.5mm going to 0.003

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It's not Cliff, its Dr Stamp
#kebabstickcut, it's a thing - make it happen
Quote
cKc
the things that i find roll edges, don't care how thick your edge angle is. i carve wood with blades that thin, and cut on ceramic plates. its no issue on a blade the size of an opinel..

big diff between 1.5mm blade 0.5" height going to 0.003 and 1.5" blade 1.5mm going to 0.003

That's pretty much what I figured, thanks Kyley thumbs up

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-Jay
jloden,
I have found the same thing, that things that will damage your edge will damage it regardless of the edge angle. For knives that will have steady impacts I recommend a serrated knife.

Cliff and Kyley convinced me years ago the benefits of thin, simple steels, just due to accidental impacts, and the way they wear, i.e. rolling/deformation vs chipping. They are easier to regrind, and therefore easier to repair if your edge does take damage. In the type of cutting I have now, a high carbide (M390) blade or medium carbide blade (S30V) would be fine and last a long time, since my cutting is light and clean (not having impacts to hard materials). The thing is that I get very good edge retention on simple steels because I run low angles(closer to zero) with high polishes, which favors my cutting style.

"I am still discussing issues of steels and performance at this stage." -- Cliff Stamp, May his memory be a blessing
"Life is GOOD", -- Stefan_Wolf, May His Memory Be A Blessing
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Quote
jasonstone20
I have found the same thing, that things that will damage your edge will damage it regardless of the edge angle. For knives that will have steady impacts I recommend a serrated knife.

[...]

Yeah... on which note, I now really wish we'd gotten serrated steak knives when we got married 15 years ago instead of the plain edge Heckels. Because I sharpen all our knives now (I wasn't really into knives or sharpening at the time) and it's a tiny bit painful watching my nice edges roll instantly hitting ceramic plates at dinner time.

On the plus side I get plenty of extra sharpening practice and it's encouraging me to find more efficient ways to maintain these knives grinning smiley

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-Jay
Update so far: I’ve been carrying the Opinel a couple days and using it side by side with other knives. I used it yesterday to point a dowel for a garden stake and cut some cardboard boxes. My thoughts in no particular order

- I was worried about carving wood with such a thin edge but the slicing ability definitely made up for a lot. Don’t think I’d want to try it on knotty hardwood just yet but I was pleasantly surprised.
- Cutting cardboard - no comparison. It went through the boxes like a laser beam compared to anything else I’ve ever cut with except a sharp utility blade. I was struggling to trim a flap on a box with my other knife, put it down and grabbed the Opinel, went through it like it wasn’t there.
- I pretty much hate the locking mechanism and deployment for carry. It’s slow, cumbersome, and hard to use a rotating lock with slippery fingers.

So far so good though on this trial, I’m really appreciating the wild difference in edge geometry for actual cutting tasks.

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-Jay
Quote
jloden

- I was worried about carving wood with such a thin edge but the slicing ability definitely made up for a lot. Don’t think I’d want to try it on knotty hardwood just yet but I was pleasantly surprised.

The key factor here is how you are cutting. don't prycut. meaning press in and side torque etc to force the cut. with a fine edge just press cut directly remove, and notch from a different angle and the blade is unlikely to have an opportunity to fail

- Cutting cardboard - no comparison. It went through the boxes like a laser beam compared to anything else I’ve ever cut with except a sharp utility blade. I was struggling to trim a flap on a box with my other knife, put it down and grabbed the Opinel, went through it like it wasn’t there.
- I pretty much hate the locking mechanism and deployment for carry. It’s slow, cumbersome, and hard to use a rotating lock with slippery fingers.
if it doesn't slide easily a little oil in there helps. i find the trick is not to try and grab the ferrule, but use the cut slot the same way you use a thumb stud on a folder. this may be harder with gloves

So far so good though on this trial, I’m really appreciating the wild difference in edge geometry for actual cutting tasks.

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It's not Cliff, its Dr Stamp
#kebabstickcut, it's a thing - make it happen