Files for knives?

Hey, i am kind of a novice when working with knives, i hope to learn more, but, can someone tell me if i can get my knife honed on a regular file without ruining it? it is already edged, i just need to make it a bit sharper because it ha gotten dull.It is a Smith & Wesson Extreme Ops just in case you want to know.

Posted by PyroManiac96 9 years ago


Sharpening knifes and similar tools

On the weekend a friend of mine asked me if I could get his 2 fishing knifes ready for the season.Being a nice guy I agreed as they were so blunt that you could sit on the knifes edge without even getting a scratch.Did just the usual, you know, cleaning it first, grinding a proper angle back on it with a very coarse stone, sharpening from a 300 grit down to a 1000 grit and then of course polishing and removing the burr.Was quite pleased with the result and decided to bring the finnished knifes back to my friend....There are several ways to check if a knife is sharp.Most know the newpaper cutting thing.Some dare to try if the knife i able to shave some hair off.And a few actually know that it is enough to check if it won't slip of your fingernail.My friend however was used to knifes that I would consider to be piece of steel with a rounded edge...Of course he had to try to run his finger down the blade and before I could stop him....He said "Feels nice and smooth but I think you ruined the edge with your polishing!".I only said "Get some bandaids before you check your finger and reconsider."Lets just say about 10 seconds after his test he started bleeding like a pig.He actually managed to get the cut about 5mm deep :(We agreed that it would be best to keep these knifes in the boat and to put a note on them so he won't check their sharpness again.There are tons of tutorials and videos showing various ways of sharpening a knife that can be used as a general reference.But if you already know all the basic while still struggling a bit to get the edge and sharpness you desire:The most important thing to know is what type of steel is used in your blade.I don't mean the grade or composition, just the difference between stainless steel and old style steel that is able to rust.You never want to sharpen a stainless steel blade with a stone that is well used on normal steel.If in doubt clean it out!The reason behind is that you cause the steel that is able to oxidise or rust to be worked into the stainless steel surface.In the worst case this can cause rust spots or smalle pits in your sharpened edge.When it comes to restoring the edge of a well worn knife some beginners and so called expert struggle to keep the angle and edge itself even and straight.Tools to overcome this are available, like these guides for a diamond stone on a stick where you cplamp your blade in.There are also "trolleys" that hold your blade at a fixed angle on the stone by means of small wheels.Both have their uses but also a lot of limitations, especially when it comes to the rounded parts of a blade, like the tip or filet knife that is generally curved a bit.Special knifes like the old Kukri knifes have a curved part that goes to the inside, these are a true pain with normal grinding and honing stones, so I will leave them out here, but feel free to ask in the comments if you need more info.The best way I found for restoring a rounded knifes edge without special tools is by using a long diamond file.Preferably with a quite long handle and not too wide.Like with the guide tools the key is to cheat your way through ;)But unlike most guide tools you will still keep the same angle in the curved parts ;)Here are the basic tool required:Long handled diamond fileSome wooden block or similar to get work platforms of different heights (lego blocks work too)A long enough clamp to secure your blade on the block(s)For the last you can also make a screw clamp like a hinge to hold the blade in place.You want to knife to be secured so it won't move and so that you can reach all parts of the edge with the file.Depening on what side you work on or what you prefer the file will rest with the handle either above or below the knife.With the length of the handle you can adjust the required angle, preferably in the 20-25° region.For the straight parts of the blade you work in overlapping sections.Rest the handl so it aligns close to the knifes handle and move the file along the knifes edge.It helps to use a permanent marker on the endge to visualise where you take material off and to check the work area creates a parallel area in the painted bits.When you see some material removed move the handle of the file a bit further towards the pointy bit and continue to create the parallel boundaries.Kepp going back and forth along the straight part of the blade until there is only a tiny area left on the edge where the marker stays visible.For the rounded tip part you place the handle so you can follow the curve on the knife at the same angle as on the straight part.Most knife have this area badly neglected once well used so you might end up with a slightly wider area where material is removed.Once the edge is all reduced to the same slim marker line it is time to repaet the process on the other side at the same angle you used before.Don't be too scared to see in a close up that your edge is not perfectly even or straight, a few imperfections will be buffed out in the next step.To finnish the edge and smooth it out you use a flat stone or diomand plate of similar grid to the file, for example 300.If you do this step right you won't even need fancy guides or tricks after doing it a few times.The key from now on is keep an even angle that matches your initial angle to restore the edge.The old masters were right here to use stones that are either secured tightly in a wooden frame or "clamped" down by a leather strap.Apart from needing a perfectly clean and flat surface on the stone and movement will cause a more or less rounded edge again.Every use one of these fancy chesse slicers that work like a potato peeler?You wanna do the same with your knife on the stone.With the stone in front of you start at the far end and move the blade down like you want to cut a thin slice of the stone.Always with the edge towards you like cutting something off, never the other way around.If you don't mount your stone too high you will notics that it is quite easy to use your palms as a guide to keep an even angle throughout a cutting stroke.To find the right angle you again cheat with a marker.But no matter what type of stne or diamond sharpener you use: use lube!!The coarse types usually are fine with water, diomand anyway, finer or so called "oil sones" require honing oil.Do a few strokes and check the marks you left on the marker.Adjust until you get about the same work area cleaned as in the previous step with the file.You will soon see that there are now uneven areas which cause a wobbly outline on the marker.Continue with this grit until you get a nice and even outline.For the rounded tip area you do it similar but with a slight twisting motion.It can help to do a few dry runs on a piece of cardboard to find the right twist.Simply place the rounded part on the cardboard at the approx angle for the sharpening.Now move the handle so the edge follows the curve on the cardboard - the circular motion you need to get from the straight part to the tip is the "twist" you want during the sharpeing of this area.Again, once satisfied do the same on the other side.Now it is time to decide if you want to keep the angle all the way or if you prefer a beveled edge with a slightly wider angle for actual cutting edge.The later is good for knifes that see a lot of abuse and hard work, the first for everything that needs to be really sharp.I prefer sharp so lets continue with this and if you can't figure out how to get a second agnle on the edge ask me in the comments ;)Depending on the quality of your blade you now need to work your way up the grid.If your edge (the part with marker left) is more than half a mm wide you might want to keep going with 300 grit until no marker is left and the edge develops a slight bur on the other side.From now on cleaning the blade and stone every few minutes is a good thing!Rinse it off, wipe it off, flush it off, whatever works best to keep it clean.If you go to 600 grit you will clearly see the difference in the work area.The scratches buff out an the surface becomes smooth.You keep doing the same slicing technique but only do as many strokes as required to get a slight bur throughout the edge on the other side.You will feel it when you move your finger along the side, one feels smooth, one feel very rough.Areas that stay smooth indicate that there is either still material to be removed or that you created a small dint while sharpening - the marker will tell you.Once you get a bur with just a few strokes you know the edge is there.Time to move the next higher grit you have available.From here on you might need to use oil instead of water and depending on the type of stone you will need to leave some slurry on the stone - check the manual ;)Either way the procedure is still the same: Slice a thin piece off until you get a bur.Then do the other side until both are even.Assuming around 1000 grid is the usual max on a hobby level and that you don't have any finer stone it is now time to take of the bur on the edge.No matter what you try there will always be some but created when sharpening.A lot can be prevented and smoothed out though.To do this you reduce the pressure during the last few strokes and turn the knife around often.When you get to the point where a single stroke causes a bur and another single stroke on the other side inverts the bur the knife is almost ready.Polishing a knifes edge can cause a bit of bluntness.For obvious reasons it is best to sharpen to the honing point where a 5000 - 20000grit wet stone is used, but these are quite expensive and require special care.In other cases like our example here you need to make the best out of it:Get some sturdy old leather like some belt.Use proper glue and clamps to glue it onto a really flat piece of wood.You want the smooth side glued and the rough side of the leather facing up.Prepare the leather with some kitchen knife that is need of sharpening anyway by placing it almost flat onto the strip with the edge facing away from you.With good pressure move the blade toward you.You will have to do this several times to align the fibres in one direction only.Now get some metal polishing paste or if nothing else polishing wax for metal - the fine stuff for the wax type please.Rub it in and work in with the kitchen kifes the same as bafore, always in the same direction.You will create a bit of a mess but that does not matter for now.The leather will become more and more smoth on the surface until it appear quite even.Clean the excess off and grab the real knife.There is now enough lube and polishing material in the leather to last quite a while.Start with the knife as flat as possible, again the edge facing away from you when you move the knife in a slicing motion towards you.Do this for a few minutes and you will see that the sharpened edge becomes shiny where it goes into the knifes body.Once all is polished increase the angle slightly and repeat.In a perfect world the polishing should now go almost to the last bit of the edge, only leaving a very thin rough line.This last line is the critical bit.There are two ways to deal with it, pressure or time.If you keep the last used angle but increase your pressure the blade will go deeper into the leather and the polishing should reach the front of the edge.In the other case you slightly increase you angle but only use very little pressure, more like letting the knife rest on the leather while you move it along.In either case you check the edge often with your finger and once it feel really smooth throuout you stop.Turn the knife over often during this last step as even with the polishing you create a slight bur.Only repeated turning and using as little pressure as possible will remove this last bur on both sides.If you know think your knife is still not sharp enough than you might just have a very cheap knife... ;)

Posted by Downunder35m 10 days ago


Knife Honing

Would anyone be interested in an instructable on how to hone a blade to have a razor sharp edge? I have been working on my honing ability and I have gotten very good at it. I have a 4-inch knife that I can use to cut through a 1/2 - 1 inch peace of wood. I will put up vids of stuff that I cut as soon as I can find my camera.

Posted by Pat Sowers 11 years ago


Knife sharpening at i3detroit

I attended a free i3 class on how to sharpen and hone your knives (I was the new kid with the hat) and I took some video. I will do a more through writeup in the ible when I get around to it, but when I do, who do I credit/link to? Also I learned a lot at the class, thanks guys!

Posted by The Ideanator 8 years ago


where to learn about programming and electronics?

Ok so i want to start learning about programming and electronics (wiring, soldering, circuits, etc). where do you guys learn ur stuff from with the exception of college? i need any books, websites, etc that you used to hone ur craft so i too can learn. thanks

Posted by leader1 9 years ago


Objective-oriented Contests

On Instructables, contests have tended to had very limited specifications beyond a general theme they work to. I propose this trend be broken in favor of something a bit more actively competitive: hold contests where the objective is set and have people compete to meet that stated goal as set by the contest host. The parameters that entries would be judged upon would be laid out in the briefing, as would any material or cost limitations. Holding competitions in this manner would entice people to competitively build something to meet the requirement the host sets and to do their best to hone their project to succeed in the relevant parameters. I think this would be a nice change from the chaotic randomness of current contests where there isn't much competition among entries, besides wooing people for votes to win finalist positions.

Posted by OrigamiAirEnforcer 1 year ago


Kala Summer Youth Art Program 2015

Hone your child's creative energy at Camp Kala this summer! K-12 artists engage in hands-on art activities while working in a professional studio environment. Days include a mix of studio time and outdoor exploration. Class sizes are small so everyone receives individual attention from Kala's fabulous teaching artists and assistants. This summer we offer a number of vibrant classes, from science-themed mixed-media to mold-making sculpture exploration for youngsters, as well as drawing and printmaking studios for high schoolers. Each week concludes with a celebration and gallery exhibition of artwork made throughout the week. Discover new creativity this summer at Camp Kala! Visit our website, kala.org/campkala, to explore class descriptions and find the week that's right for your child! Location: 2990 San Pablo Ave Berkeley, CA 94702 Phone: 510-841-7000 ext 203 Email: jamila@kala.org Website: kala.org/campkala Dates: June 15 - July 31 Cost: Varies Hours: 9am-3pm Financial Aid: Available Ages: 6-9, 7-11, 9-12, 12-17 Early Enrollment Discount ends March 1st! Enroll now to save up to $50/week!

Posted by eauger 3 years ago


Save the Crucible

Those in the Bay Area may already be familiar with the myriad classes The Crucible offers.It's where I learned to weld. It's where many of my friends have learned fire arts, glass fusing, and other really unique skills you can't get anywhere else. And I plan on further honing my led and el wire skills with their classes. It's an awesome environment with great, patient teachers and an enormous workspace.Plus, have you seen their fire ballets? And the Fire Arts Festivals? Amazing!!But now the Crucible is in trouble! They need our help!The Crucible has already been awarded two years of funding, but that is about to be taken away due to proposed budget cuts. Here are some ways you can help:Sign their petitionCheck out City Council Meeting on Tuesday October 21st! 6:00 pm at Oakland City Hall Council ChambersContact a Council Member and let them know how important the arts are to you!Other ways you can support The Crucible:Join The Crucible as a member; or step up to the next level when you renewCheck out their fundraising events and gala performances like Dracul: Prince of Fire, our next fire ballet fundraiser in JanuaryTake a class or workshop and bring your friends!Check out what our members have done with the Crucible already! Steel Necklace Giant Fractal Pie Wood Bowl

Posted by scoochmaroo 9 years ago


Light-activated lamp, cries out "Me too!" when other lights are turned on

Disclaimer: I have little-to-no electrical experience, but want to use this rather involved project as a starting point to hone my abilities and technical know-how. Any non-basic terms I use are based purely on assumed naming schemes. I only have fuzzy notions of what things like photovoltaic cells or flux capacitors are, but I'll write as if I know them perfectly, just in case I'm actually using the terms properly. If this post starts a thread that can answer all aspects of how to get this done, I'll update it as an instructable for others to learn.IntroI'm looking for some guidance. I have a plan to modify one of my lamps to brighten and dim based on the amount of light hitting it: Essentially, if I turn on a larger light, this lamp will turn on as well. As this is still simply an idea in my head, though, I plan to make it rather complicated and feature-rich.FeaturesTwo main settings for the light: Absolute and Relative. When in Absolute mode, the lamp will turn on and off based whether or not the amount of light hitting its photosensor surpasses the necessary threshold energy level (TEL). The TEL will be adjustable by the use of a small dial, so that as the TEL approaches 0, the lamp turns on regardless of any additional light, and as the TEL approaches Infinity (or, at least, the maximum amount of light the photosensor can detect), the lamp turns off. Of course, I'd plan on primarily keeping the TEL at the level at which the lamp only turns on when I've turned on another light in the room, but there are times when I'd want the lamp to be independent of other lighting.When in Relative mode, the light would brighten and dim based on the relative amount of light hitting its photosensor, so that the more lights I have on around it, the brighter it gets. I'd like to be able to use the same dial from Absolute mode to calibrate the relative brightness of the lamp, but that may be overly complicated for the amount of benefit it provides. Additionally, it would be interesting to invert this relationship, so that as less light hits the photosensor, the brighter the lamp gets. A next step could be to layer the exterior of the lamp with solar cells so that it can not only activate based on its environment, but actually power itself (at least partially) based on its environment. This is not as important as any other features.IssuesI plan on developing this post with a diagramed model of how this would work, but first I'd like to iron out a few issues:-How does a photosensor detecting light export information? -Assuming the photosensor exports electricity, what does the sensor need to be hooked up to in order to become meaningful? -How would I set TELs, and how could I set TELs with a controllable dial?-How would I swap between Relative and Absolute modes? How could I add a switch in to do this easily?-How would the lamp's own light effect the photosensor if the photosensor was positioned on an opaque lampshade?-Has anyone else done this, or something similar, so that I could look to those projects as a model?-What else do I need to know?I'm not specifically asking for someone to answer every question for me, but I would greatly appreciate it if I could be pointed in the right direction towards resources that would help me figure out the technical aspects of this project. With the small amount of experience I have, I'd expect to have to do a lot of reading.Thanks for any responses!

Posted by nckswt 9 years ago


Hyper-mile!

I'm afraid you're going to hear more than a few bits of money-saving advice from me! I'm a self-proclaimed Queen of Tightwaddery! We've been honing our skills at our house since I quit my job 3 years ago. I was determined to be a stay-at-home mom, and discovered that by being careful, I could save as much as I was bringing home, and be happier doing it! Hypermiling is one way we save money. The term "hypermiling" is new to us - we read about it in Reader's Digest a few months back. Some hypermilers go crazy and take risks. In our house, we've chosen a few things we can do to improve gas mileage without risking our lives or ticking off other drivers. Here are a few that anyone can do:1. Watch your speed. Driving 75 on the freeway might be legal, but it uses a lot more gas. Keeping it to 65 (or better yet, 60) can save 2-3 miles per gallon or more.2. Avoid accelerations and braking. While this might sound like using cruise control, it goes beyond that. You want to make your speed changes gradually, a) allowing your vehicle to stay in the highest gear possible when accelerating (lower rpms), and b) taking advantage of momentum (coast, don't brake, whenever possible). So if you see a stop sign ahead, stop accelerating sooner and coast. Perfection would mean coasting to a stop without needing the brake (but consideration for drivers behind you usually prohibits this!). See how close you can come! When accelerating, do it gradually, allowing your vehicle to shift earlier (let up on the gas a little to encourage the shift). If you see a slow-down or big curve ahead, ease up and leave room so you don't have to hit the brakes.3. Get the lead out - of your vehicle, that is. I improved the gas mileage on my van about 1-2 mpg by taking out the back two (unused) seats! Don't use your vehicle as a storage unit!4. Check your tires. Under-inflated tires will cost you a mile or two per gallon. There are lots more ways to improve your mileage and save money. Google "hypermile" or "ecomodder" and learn specific things you can do with your make and model of vehicle.Do the math - you might be surprised how much you can save. Here's an example, using a 20 gallon gas tank and 20 MPG:You can drive around looking to save 10 cents a gallon on gas. Assuming you find cheaper gas without burning a lot of it while looking, you'll save $2.00 on a fill up. OR you can apply a few of the principles listed above. I improved my van's gas mileage doing only those things by about 5 mpg. 5mpg x 20 gallons is 100 extra miles I can go on a tank of gas. At 20 mpg, that's a 5 gallon savings - at $3/gallon, that's $15 per fill. (That's like finding gas 75 cents per gallon cheaper!) How many times do you fill in a year? You do your own math and see the savings! My husband drives a lot and is squeezing 41-44 mpg from his car rated for about 33 mpg. With all his driving, he figures he's saved about $175 per month over the last 3 months.All this hypermiling has made us very aware of how much driving a mile costs. Now we look at every trip out in dollars and cents. If you had to pay $2 to run to the store and back, would you still do it? (If you're going for a gallon of milk or a dozen eggs, tack the $2 in gas onto that item - is it worth it?) We've started combining trips, planning ahead to avoid extra trips out, carpooling, using the car instead of the van when we can, etc, etc, etc.Awareness is the first step. Try it and see!

Posted by treep1 10 years ago