Sharpening the Scandinavian

Discussion in 'Edged Tools' started by littlecanoe, Oct 12, 2019.

  1. littlecanoe

    littlecanoe Tinder Gatherer

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    Hello.

    I’m new to BC and was pleased to find others who like Scandinavian knives. A few years ago I scratched the itch to build a few knives after a gentleman gave me a fairly basic blank to scale. That project turned out decent results.

    Since I lost no digits in the process I began looking at the Scandinavian design. The single bevel appealed because of my limited skill at sharpening. My reasoning? “Surely I can keep that nice wide single bevel on the stone for a sharp edge”. I’ve enjoyed the process and have complete six blanks. However, getting “that edge” is elusive. I can get a moderately sharp edge but can take it no further.

    If anyone can suggest tricks or tips I’d sure appreciate it.
     
  2. central joe

    central joe Wait For Me!! Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    A slight secondary bevel will help a lot. joe
     
  3. Damian1690

    Damian1690 Scout

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    Try stropping it, too.
     
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  4. batmanacw

    batmanacw Bushmaster

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    Keep it flat and on the coarsest stone you have until you get a burr that moves side to side as you sharpen. Then work your finer stone or stones.

    Once I clean up to a zero grind I'll raise the angle on a fine stone to about 15° per side, 30° degrees included, and do 3 per side, 2 per side, 1 per side. Then I strop with black compound. You can do green too but not necessary.

    If you take the full edge to a burr along the entire edge on your coarse stone you will literally not be able to avoid getting it shaving sharp.

    The micro-bevel is a must in my book. You will only have to take it back to zero every so often.
     
  5. Jacob

    Jacob Guide

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    @littlecanoe
    I’ll second what Batmanacw said. Usually when someone has trouble with that grind I suspect it’s because they’re not removing enough material initially. It takes awhile with such a wide bevel. Give it hell with your coarse stone until you think you’ve done enough, then grind a bit more, then move onto finer grits and lighter pressure.

    good luck
     
  6. littlecanoe

    littlecanoe Tinder Gatherer

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    I’m taking it in.
    Thanks and any more insight is welcome!
     
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  7. Line Dawg

    Line Dawg Scout

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    I'm with @central joe. I seem to to get my Scandi knives sharper with a secondary bevel. The edge is less likely to roll also.
     
  8. TAHAWK

    TAHAWK Guide

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    A "Scandinavian" knife might refer to as traditional Scandinavian (Norwegian, Swedish, or Danish) knife or a knife made in one of those countries. Then we have the "Scandi grind" - a geometry that British bushcrafters decided in the 1980s was the ideal for bushcraft, despite what Scandinavian and Finnish makers told them. Those makers will make whatever sells, but prefer a secondary bevel. The forum that crowned the "Scandi," Britishblades.com, died some years ago or you could go read the moderator of their Scandinavian forum, "Trond," trying to explain why, on balance, the Scandi was inferior, giving up, and resigning. (I have two Trond customs, secondary bevels and all.) I try not to argue about matters of faith, so apologies to anyone I unintentionally offended.
     
  9. littlecanoe

    littlecanoe Tinder Gatherer

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    From what you guys have passed on I need to consider whether or not I’m removing enough with my course rocks. Adding to what’s been said I’ve watched some videos on sharpening Japanese “flat” blades. I’m thinking that a technique adjustment is in order. I’d certainly like to master a single bevel first but will definitely consider a slight secondary bevel.

    For those who add the secondary bevel; do you blend the line at the second bevel or leave it?

    Also, I realize that my stones are not level. Is there a reasonable technique for leveling stones?
     
  10. Damian1690

    Damian1690 Scout

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    Also, take a sharpie and color the scandi bevel completely. As you sharpen, you will see where the marker is worn off. That will tell you exactly where you are grinding off steel. Make adjustments from there and make sure you color it again.

    I don’t know what everyone else does, but what I did with my Pathfinder knife was put a 20* angle on each side, like a typical pocket knife. To me that made it cut better. But then again, I’m an oddball
     
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  11. Damian1690

    Damian1690 Scout

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    And yes, there is a way to flatten the stones. I’m sure YouTube would have some helpful videos.
     
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  12. mongo1958

    mongo1958 Supporter Supporter

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    I have flattened stones by aggressively rubbing it on a new brick. New bricks are very hard, rough and flat.
     
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  13. anrkst6973

    anrkst6973 Supporter Supporter

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    Paging @A Seedy Lot . A guy who knows something about sharpening stones and how to maintain them. ;)
     
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  14. littlecanoe

    littlecanoe Tinder Gatherer

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    Thanks for the suggestions and feed back. I've evaluated my technique and have made some changes. I believe that ill go with the glass/marble slab with sand paper and change my technique. I now realize that technique and non-planar stones contribute to rounding of edges.
     

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