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  1. So you can't afford much for a Head Knife? Don't worry, get an Abetta for $11 or so shipped. Or don't. I saw this and said, "I gotta see this!", and I did. This is what I received. Please note the rather large ding around the tip. Because of the way the metal crinkled, it took a pretty good wack. The black marks could have been generated by what it ran into or vice versa. HorseLoverZ was good about it and another is on it's way, they didn't want the damaged one back, so I decided to repair it. The handle is a little big, but is fine for my Hulk Hands (they are not green though). A lot of folks would want that trimmed down, and there is plenty of wood to sand down. Looking at the blade, we see the ding of the century on the edge near the tip. Another important factor are the words Pakistan and Stainless rolled into the blade. They (whoever they are) are obviously proud of that. Pakistan and stainless are usually synonymous with (often) a 300 series steel, so I pulled out the magnet, and voila, it is Martensitic, which is a plus, probably 420, they have been using that stuff for years, either theirs or the Chinese stuff. Now, on a very good day, with the best 420 (even 420J2), the best technician, using the best furnaces, will only be able to get this steel up to HRc 55. I've ground J2, and this ain't J2. Realizing this steel is going to be in the neighborhood of HRc 52 or below, I decide to tread lightly. I passed-up a P120 belt as being too aggressive, and boy was I right. I put-on a P220 belt and proceeded to grind new bevels that eliminated the ding and a little more using a 10° bevel angle for each bevel (this gives a 20° included angle), which is kind of my standard head knife grind; screaming sharp. I pulled up a burr on the first pass. Surprisingly, it took about 3 minutes to do the full grind back at the slowest speed, no sparks; this is 420, Boy Howdy. The way things were going, if I ran up through the grits, I wouldn't have any knife left. So I put-on a 6000 finishing belt, made a few passes and stopped. I got out the trusty strop (the very one I made in another DIY) and worked for a minute on that with .5 micron green compound. No cleanup on the blade, just treated like a user. Here is the result. Not great, but not bad for $11 and a few minutes time. But does it cut?????? Yea, it cuts, keep the strop handy and it will last a little while before a re-honing. All in all, it's $11 delivered and a little time, even with the ding. Is this a good head knife, not by some margin. But this knife can and should be used to teach you to sharpen, hone, and strop. Out of the bag, it won't cut leather or darned near anything else for that matter. You can buy one of these, and learn. If in the learning process, you destroy it, or grind it all the way down, what are you out. Try some new sharpening technique, or just practice your skills. If you are not having fun and learning, try something else. Art
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