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Sharp AND Pretty: The Emler Edge, Mike Emler Of Crazy Sharp

Posted by jasonstone20 
Sharp AND Pretty: The Emler Edge, Mike Emler Of Crazy Sharp
October 09, 2018 09:00AM
Once you have gotten the foundations of sharpening down, getting sharp edge is not a hard thing to accomplish, given no complications. However, when you are sharpening for a goal, like with straight razor shaving, you need more than sharp, you need sharp and smooth. This is one thing that I was able to see in person, The Emler Edge, sharpened by Mike Emler of Crazy Sharp. His edge's were sharp and pretty. I think that this is the desired edge for a midtech or custom knife, a mirror edge that still tree-tops hair and still retains slicing aggression. I can get sharp, in fact a high sharpness, but my edges are not always pretty. So how does one go about getting a sharp and pretty edge while retaining slicing aggression? Two answers: Tight grit progressions and making sure you have removed the previous scratch pattern completely. This sounds simpler than it actually is. It basically is polishing, with sharpness thrown in. Mike has video's on YouTube on his grit progressions, the techniques and stones he uses, but like almost anything, having the watched a demonstration and having the same equipment is not the same as being able to do it yourself. Normally, I can get a dull knife to tree-topping in about 5-10 minutes. To get a close to perfect polish on the edge, it takes double, triple, or even more time. So if you have a knife you care about, and want that show edge that is talked about often, feel free to contact Mr. Emler of Crazy Sharp, and get an Emler Edge, it will put a smile on your face. When I get a custom or midtech, I plan on sending it to Mike.

Instructions and materials for getting a freehand convexed polished edge:

Note: The bane of mirror edges is rouge scratches. This is cause by using XC stones, or coated diamond abrasives. Start at a medium grit stone, like a Fine India, Soft Arkansas, Spyderco Medium Ceramic, 800, 1k, or 1.2k Japanese Waterstones.

Materials:

Float glass, marble slab, or flat metal sheet
Wet/Dry SiC Sandpaper in grits P320, 600, 1000, 1500, and either 2000, 2500, or 3000 (whatever is available, I had 2500)
Finishing stone for micro-beveling (I used a Spyderco UF ceramic triangle rod)
Leather strop with compound (Stainless Green, I used Flexcut Gold compound)
Spray bottle of water or window cleaner
Magnifying Glass or Jewelers Loupe

Instructions:

Spray the flat surface with the water bottle until wet, then spray the SiC paper you want to use, front and back.
Press paper to flat surface.
Start on the 600 grit SiC, until the scratch pattern is even and complete. Make sure you keep the paper flat to the flat surface. Change to the 1000 grit SiC .Rotate the knife slightly so you can see a change in the direction of the scratch pattern. Sharpen until the scratch pattern is even and has completely removed the previous scratches. Repeat until you have finished with the 2k/2.5k/3k paper.
Strop edge until desired polish.
Micro-bevel with the finishing stone until desired sharpness is reached (alternating, light, edge leading passes).

"I am still discussing issues of steels and performance at this stage."
--Cliff Stamp

"Cause geometry cuts, .....steel determines the level and the duration"
--Roman Landes

"But in general, I'm all about high performance, Ergos, safety. That's why I've been accused of 'designing in the dark' "
--Sal Glesser



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 10/09/2018 09:33AM by jasonstone20.
Re: Sharp AND Pretty: The Emler Edge, Mike Emler Of Crazy Sharp
October 10, 2018 10:37PM
Blade Banter at Blade Show West interviews Mike:

[youtu.be]

You get to hear about the type of work he does and how much it costs, and there are some still photos in the video that show his work.

"I am still discussing issues of steels and performance at this stage."
--Cliff Stamp

"Cause geometry cuts, .....steel determines the level and the duration"
--Roman Landes

"But in general, I'm all about high performance, Ergos, safety. That's why I've been accused of 'designing in the dark' "
--Sal Glesser
Re: Sharp AND Pretty: The Emler Edge, Mike Emler Of Crazy Sharp
October 18, 2018 10:00AM
While on the subject of sharp and pretty edges, here is a BladeForums thread of sharpeners displaying their polished edges:
[www.bladeforums.com]

"I am still discussing issues of steels and performance at this stage."
--Cliff Stamp

"Cause geometry cuts, .....steel determines the level and the duration"
--Roman Landes

"But in general, I'm all about high performance, Ergos, safety. That's why I've been accused of 'designing in the dark' "
--Sal Glesser
Re: Sharp AND Pretty: The Emler Edge, Mike Emler Of Crazy Sharp
October 18, 2018 05:53PM
A mirror edge can also be achieved with the Spyderco Sharpmaker and a pasted strop. I used the Diamond, M, F, UF and a Flexcut Strop loaded with Flexcut Gold Compound. You do need to use the corners and the flats of the Spyderco Rods to get a tight grit progression and a mirror edge after stropping.

"I am still discussing issues of steels and performance at this stage."
--Cliff Stamp

"Cause geometry cuts, .....steel determines the level and the duration"
--Roman Landes

"But in general, I'm all about high performance, Ergos, safety. That's why I've been accused of 'designing in the dark' "
--Sal Glesser
Re: Sharp AND Pretty: The Emler Edge, Mike Emler Of Crazy Sharp
October 19, 2018 04:27PM
I just remembered I had a piece of fine crocus (FeOx) so I tried it out, cuts very fine and looks great after stropping, so maybe that can be a step after the 2k wet/dry paper if you can find some.

"I am still discussing issues of steels and performance at this stage."
--Cliff Stamp

"Cause geometry cuts, .....steel determines the level and the duration"
--Roman Landes

"But in general, I'm all about high performance, Ergos, safety. That's why I've been accused of 'designing in the dark' "
--Sal Glesser
Re: Sharp AND Pretty: The Emler Edge, Mike Emler Of Crazy Sharp
October 22, 2018 09:43AM
Using Japanese style waterstones, I have been able to get good results for a shiny and sharp edge. Using a 1k, 3k, and 6k, followed by stropping, then using a Spyderco UF, I have been able to get an edge that has a mirror polish and will pass a HHT 3.

"I am still discussing issues of steels and performance at this stage."
--Cliff Stamp

"Cause geometry cuts, .....steel determines the level and the duration"
--Roman Landes

"But in general, I'm all about high performance, Ergos, safety. That's why I've been accused of 'designing in the dark' "
--Sal Glesser
Re: Sharp AND Pretty: The Emler Edge, Mike Emler Of Crazy Sharp
October 22, 2018 07:12PM
Mothers Mag And Aluminum Polish is awesome for a final polish, close to if not the best I have used.

"I am still discussing issues of steels and performance at this stage."
--Cliff Stamp

"Cause geometry cuts, .....steel determines the level and the duration"
--Roman Landes

"But in general, I'm all about high performance, Ergos, safety. That's why I've been accused of 'designing in the dark' "
--Sal Glesser
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