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New Okapi will only sharpen with a ceramic mug

Discussion in 'Maintenance, Tinkering & Embellishment' started by KHarper, May 23, 2019.

  1. KHarper


    Jan 4, 2019
    I got a new Okapi Genet the otehr day. OF course it came with now edge, just a very blunt sort of "wedge" shaped edge that wouldn't cut anything but maybe butter. I used a Dremel chainsaw sharpener attachement to remove the excess metal, and then tried to sharpen it by hand using some old stones my grnbadfather left in the cellar and my diamond sharpeners. I couldn't get a decent edge on it. It was usable, but disappointing, and just didn't like to cut. But this morning i was just messing around I I decided to touch it up a little on the bottom of my coffee mug. It seemed to make it much sharper. I touched the edge again with the coarse and fine diamond sticks, and it got worse again. Tried the mug again, and it improved. Don't really get what's going on, unless it needs the micro-serrations to cut well. As long as it works, I suppose.
    I really need to get some real sharpening supplies though.
    Henry Beige likes this.
  2. Fanglekai


    Jan 7, 2007
    Get a Norton Crystolon stone. They're around $20. Set the bevels then refine the apex.
    jpm2 and peeples like this.
  3. Henry Beige

    Henry Beige Gold Member Gold Member

    Jun 1, 2015
    My Genet and one of my Biltongs came with dandy edges by Forty-Two Blades (Baryonyx). He grinds them higher and thinner than you might if left to your own devices.

    I have spent quite a bit of time trying to put edges on my other Okapis. After trying a lot of things without success, I got a pretty good shaving edge on my other Biltong, using the Work Sharp guided field sharpener. That is a 20-degree edge. The Baryonyx edge looks a little thinner than that; it is hard to say for sure, but the bevel looks a little bit wider.

    I am just learning my way around my Ken Onion Work Sharp. I will be curious to see what I can do with that. Now I will have to try a coffee cup, too, bearing in mind that they are not all the same.
    FortyTwoBlades likes this.
  4. DocJD


    Jan 29, 2016
    Well , at least there's usually a coffee cup readily available ! ;)

    I have a ground glass edge on a table top in my kitchen that works great ,too .
  5. evilgreg

    evilgreg Why so serious? Gold Member

    Dec 25, 2012
    I've been sharpening just about everything on coffee cups lately and really like the coffee cup sharpening system. I have one closer to me usually than anything else, and it sets up much more quickly than any of my guided systems (Edge Pro Apex, Sharpmaker, etc.).
  6. jackknife


    Oct 2, 2004
    I've been sharpening all my SAK's and other pocket knives on coffee mugs for years. It's ceramic sharpening at its best. Soup bowls from IKEA work well too.
    User27 likes this.
  7. AntDog

    AntDog Gold Member Gold Member

    Apr 3, 2001
    Whatever works. The only important thing is the results.

    However, I can tell you if you can get an edge with a coffee cup and not your stones, something’s wrong.
    r8shell likes this.
  8. DocJD


    Jan 29, 2016
    It's the caffeine ! :eek:
    USMCPOP, jackknife and d762nato like this.
  9. davek14


    May 30, 2009
    I like Okapi's, but the reason I don't have more than one is that I could never easily put a great edge on them like… say an Opinel or a Svord.
    Admittedly, since they are carbon steel, I didn't put a huge amount of effort into it, expecting it to be pretty easy. (since they are carbon steel)
  10. JPD1998

    JPD1998 Gold Member Gold Member

    Oct 18, 2004
    I've used a ceramic mug while on vacation, but I sharpen most of my knives with a ceramic rod.
    Even with my Okapi , I only used a ceramic rod and it's sharp.
    I only use stones if I have to re profile an edge. The Okapi probably could use a re profile , but I'm too lazy.
  11. jackknife


    Oct 2, 2004
    For whatever mysterious reason, Okapi's come with a almost cold chisel shaped blade. Way too much steel in back of the edge. I haven't seen an Okapi yet that didn't need a full re profile right from the factory. Why they do that I don't know. Look at any Opinel, Douk-Douk, Mercator K55, or Victorinox SAK, and you see a nice flat ground blade down to a thin edge that is easy to sharpen.
    lonestar1979 likes this.
  12. lonestar1979


    Mar 2, 2014
    I have few Okapis,but Opinel,Victorinox and mercator are better values for money,especially Victorinox which is perfect out of factory,have never seen a bad one.
  13. The coffee mug is likely leaving more of a thin burr or wire edge. That'll look & feel sharp for a short while, capable of shaving & such, but probably won't be durable for long.

    The Dremel might've also changed or damaged the temper a bit, if the steel near the edge got very hot. Could explain why the steel isn't responding normally to conventional sharpening. If so, the heat-damaged steel might take some time to sharpen away, after which the edge should respond better to a wider array of sharpening media, in addition to the mug.

    As mentioned, something is wrong if the edge isn't responding well to conventional stones, with the coffee mug likely just leaving more of a burr that would've otherwise been removed by more capable, clean-cutting stones.
    Last edited: May 26, 2019

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