Strop recommendations? Also, diamond hone?

Discussion in 'Other Skills' started by GingerBeardMan, Aug 6, 2019.

  1. GingerBeardMan

    GingerBeardMan Tracker

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    I'm seeing a fair number of these online, but I dont know enough about them to make a particularly informed decision about their quality.

    In the past I always just used an Arkansas stone as I thought strops were a razor only thing (I've learned the error of my ways now haha). What would you recommend or what do you use? I am planning on getting rouge (white and red) and the black oxide stuff.

    Also, I've never used a diamond hone, and my mentors always told me they were just expensive gimmicks. Then again, they also told me strops were only for razors and a machete should be dull, so I'm thinking it's probably time to address some areas of potential ignorance. Do you use a diamond hone, and is there anything it does that your whetstone doesnt?
     
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  2. CSM1970

    CSM1970 Supporter Supporter

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    Diamonds will speed up the task but do basically the same thing as a stone. The stone is much less expensive. The diamond hones seem to wear out faster for me, too. Stropping is just like sanding wood. You need to strop with coarse, then medium, then fine if you want a polished edge. You can get the burr of and have a functional edge with just coarse compound. The green stuff is very fine and will be very slow if you do not preceded it with coarse and medium compounds. There Are really few short cuts to good sharpening. A machine can be faster but may take off more metal, thus shortening the life of the blade.
     
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  3. Oldyeller

    Oldyeller Tracker

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    I use the knives plus strop, I tried making my own first but I got frustrated trying to load the polishing compound and decided to buy one.I just go straight from my Smiths tri stone set to the strop.

    https://www.knivesplus.com/KP-STROP12-STROPBLOCK.html

    The first time I tried making one I used heat from my soldering stations heat gun, heat didn't work well for me at all, I kept ending up with globs of compound.Next time I'll probably try cutting it with mineral oil or something instead.
     
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  4. Sandcut

    Sandcut Sed ego sum homo indomitus Vendor

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    I've been using DMT diamond stones since the late '80s. I can't tell you the last time that I used a natural or carborundum stone on a knife. I use them on axes and stuff in the garage, but nothing that I'm picky about.

    The DMT two-sided, folding stones are awesome! You can get a blue/red (coarse/fine) stone at Home Depot for $20 bucks. The first one that I bought lasted over 10 years. Get a green/orange (X-fine/XX-fine) also and you are set for just about any sharpening needs that you may have. I don't even bother to strop after using the orange diamond stone. It polishes the edges more than you really need for all but the most delicate carving/wood work. If I'm only looking at making feather sticks and batoning, you won't need to go finer than red.

    If you're using diamond stones on good knives, spend the extra money and get the DMTs. The 3 for $10 diamond stones that you can get at gun shows and Harbor Freight are wonderful for axes and stuff you don't need a fine edge on, but I find them too coarse to use for finish work on knife blades. If I have a new knife that needs reprofiled, then I'll use these on a knife.

    Just understand that diamond stones cut faster than natural/carborundum stones typically. You can sharpen in a hurry. If you aren't very experienced with sharpening, stick to natural stones because they are slower. You can really screw up a knife blade quickly with a diamond stone if you don't know what you're doing.
     
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  5. Mikewood

    Mikewood Supporter Supporter

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    You can make several strops from an old belt, a flat piece of wood and some epoxy. Just glue them together with the rough leather side out and rub the compound on and go to town.
    Scrap 2x4 or pallet wood and a belt will make 4-6 strops of different sizes.
     
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  6. riokid87

    riokid87 Scout Banned

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    I like the dmt combo diamond too in my pack for sharpening to reestablish an edge. Ez pressure, you don't need to push hard and doing so can shorten diamond stones life.
    The blue/red (325/600) is handy. Light weight, flat, needs no oil, cuts the hardest alloy steel, and it won't freeze and crack on you. Seldom need the 325 unless I'm changing the angle or have damaged edge.
    But I strop and use ceramic sticks many times between needing to stone the edge.

    I made my cloth strop. 4" wide flat board as long as you want but 8" to 12" works. Glue one layer of cotton fabric to it, overlap on side because where you cut the cloth it will fray. Denim and used pillow case work well. Rub a little chromium oxide ( green ) on it. Don't need to get it hot and goop it on.
    I use a denim one for my knives and pillow case for my razor. I also use a Norton waterstone for my razor. I've tried equivalent grit diamond but for the razor whe Norton works best.
     
  7. SilverFox

    SilverFox Scout

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    I have a set of Arkansas stones that are at least 30yrs old. The coarse stone is concave from use. I have a Harbor Freight 4 side diamond stone (200, 300, 400 and 600 grit) that I use a lot, cost was about $13.00. I also have a handheld Smith diamond stone for use in the field. I use a belt from Goodwill as a strop. I added a clam shell(dog leash) clip to it to hold it steady when stropping. Never use any compound on it other than smoker's toothpaste. I have had the tube for about 6 years and will get at 10 more years out of it. My knife's are all shaving sharp. Not sure I need them any sharper. People who know me always want to borrow my knife because its always able to get the job don't with minimal effort
     
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  8. Paulyseggs

    Paulyseggs Supporter Supporter

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    I've got a shoebox full of stones.

    I use the DMT stones that look like a butterfly knife or the credit card size plates.

    I also use sandpaper on this thing clamped in a bench vise. I'm learning convex so I'm not too sure on if this is good or not. HTB1QqUMbdbJ8KJjy1zjq6yqapXai.jpg

    I've stropped on strips of dusty cardboard.
     
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  9. MiddleWolf

    MiddleWolf Guide

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    As for strops, a nice long belt from the thrift store. Most men's belts have a finished and unfinished side. Some jeweler's rouge if needed and have at it.
     
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