What’s the Right Wicked Edge Progression for Me?

What’s the Right Progression for Me?

This is a common question we get asked a lot! Luckily, we have a few key points to help you figure out when you’ve hit your stopping point for sharpening and when you may want to add a few more steps.

Working Edge:

What’s a working edge? When someone says they want a tough, working edge on their knife, they’re usually talking about their every day carry that needs to be ready for any task they might encounter, whether it’s cutting rope, cardboard, or zip-ties. 

A working edge is usually finished with mid-level stone, either the 600, 800, or 1000 grit Diamond Stones. These stones leave micro-serrations on the edge, allowing this edge to bite in and cut through tough material. This finish is a favorite for us here at Wicked Edge when we’re working in the warehouse and have to cut through plastic, boxes, and tape. 

A typical working edge progression would be as follows:
100 Grit Diamond Stone > 200 Grit Diamond Stone > 400 Grit Diamond Stone > 600 Grit Diamond Stone > 800 Grit Diamond Stone > 1000 Grit Diamond Stone
Some people do some light stropping at the end of this progression. The soft leather strops slightly round the bevels of your knife, resulting in a more durable edge. To find out more about when and why you strop, check out this article.

Polished Edge:

A polished edge is pretty. It’s the knife you’ll see on Instagram that catches the light and makes you stop scrolling. It's the finish you'll want to put on your show piece. This more refined edge means that it may struggle with biting into tougher materials, but it’s an excellent finish for push cutting (think carving, shaving, chisels, etc.). 

Check out this article for more about the pros and cons of a highly polished edge and some tips for how to achieve it.

For the fastest polish:

If the highest grit you have is 1000 Grit Diamond Stone > 9-Micron Lapping Film > 6-Micron Lapping Film > 4-Micron Emulsion on Leather Strop > 2-Micron Emulsion on Leather Strop

If the highest grit you have is 1500 Grit Diamond Stone > 6-Micron Diamond Lapping Films > 4-Micron Emulsion on Leather Strop > 2-Micron Emulsion on Leather Strop

If the highest grit you have is 2200 Grit Diamond Stone > 6-Micron Diamond Lapping Films > 4-Micron Emulsion on Leather Strop > 2-Micron Emulsion on Leather Strop

If the highest grit you have is 3000 Grit Diamond Stone > 3-Micron Diamond Lapping Films > 1-Micron Emulsion on Leather Strop > 0.5-Micron Emulsion on Leather Strop

Remember, the more steps you have in your progression and the smaller the jumps are between grits, the more refined your edge will be. 

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