Help! How to sharpen RC-4

This is a discussion on Help! How to sharpen RC-4 within the Defensive Knives & Other Weapons forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I just recently purchased a Rat, or ESEE, RC-4 and tried to put it in my lansky just for fun but because of the full ...

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Thread: Help! How to sharpen RC-4

  1. #1
    Senior Member Array Hydrashok Glock's Avatar
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    Help! How to sharpen RC-4

    I just recently purchased a Rat, or ESEE, RC-4 and tried to put it in my lansky just for fun but because of the full flat grind it wobbles in the vise and mars up the finish. while im not too worried about the finish due to it being a survival knife i am worried about not destroying the edge due to improper sharpening. And help will be great. FYI i have the lansky deluxe kit. Thanks.
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    Array Bark'n's Avatar
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    Get yourself one of these... It has a carbide blade for truing up the blade angle and getting pretty sharp, a ceramic blade for honing and getting blade razor sharp and a tapered diamond coated rod for sharpening odd size blades, hooks and serrated blades.

    I keep one of these in my BOB (Bug Out Bag) and it works great. I sharpened all my kitchen knives razor sharp before putting it to use in my BOB.

    You can get one for $10 at Amazon here.

    Smith's Pocket Pal Knife Sharpener

    -Bark'n
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    These do work extremely well.

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    Senior Member Array Hydrashok Glock's Avatar
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    Ok im not trying to sound arrogant but i am nervous trusting a $160 blade with a $10 sharpening tool. I dk it might be me. I believe what everyone says about them but this is a self defense tool/ survival tool and i want it to be tip top which is why ive spent thousands in good gear and $50 on a lansky but if your saying they will do the job great then i guess it couldnt hurt to try.
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    Dude, I've trusted $300 Wusthof Kitchen knives to it.... No worries! My Kitchen knives was almost $700 for the set.

    Smith's have only been making knife sharpeners for over 120 years...

    I could sell you one of mine for around $70 if it'll make you feel better about using it on your RC-4

    Price is not always a good indicator of quality.

    I posted the contents of my BOB in a thread... If you do that math... I bet you'd find $1500 in that kit alone. And that's just part of my gear. I don't skimp on survival products.

    http://www.defensivecarry.com/vbulle...g-out-bag.html
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    Senior Member Array Hydrashok Glock's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bark'n View Post
    Dude, I've trusted $300 Wusthof Kitchen knives to it.... No worries! My Kitchen knives was almost $700 for the set.

    Smith's have only been making knife sharpeners for over 120 years...

    I could sell you one of mine for around $70 if it'll make you feel better about using it on your RC-4

    Price is not always a good indicator of quality.
    Touche' Note taken. Thanks for the info. Now the one question i have then is i put it in and tried to gauge the angle of the blade and it seemed to be over 30 degrees...will the smiths keep that angle?
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    Senior Member Array Hydrashok Glock's Avatar
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    Also the other thing is that since i do have the lansky...does anyone know how to use it to sharpen a full flat grind?
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    My dad has a lansky and it is nice that you can sharpen with various angles.

    I have always had problems using them. The clamp seems to always slip on me. I just have never gotten the hang of it.

    The smith pocket pal I believe puts somewhere around a 26 degree edge (but don't hold me to it). I'd have to look around for the box it came in, but I've had it for quite a while now so I may not be able to put my hands on it.

    My Wusthof''s can slice tomato's paper thin and my Benchmade, Emerson and SOG utility knives seem to hold an edge pretty well and quick to touch it back up with the Smith.

    However, if you are set on not changing the edge of the RC-4 then you may want to look elsewhere. For me, and I intend on getting the RC-3 MIL & the RC-5 before the end of the year, as well as the new folding Izula when it's in production. I'll have no problem if the Smith Sharpener changes the degree of edge on them.

    The good thing about 1095 steel is it's pretty forgiving and not difficult to put a new edge on it if you want a wider or narrower bite.
    -Bark'n
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    Senior Member Array Hydrashok Glock's Avatar
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    I am definatly with you on the izula folder....looks amazing. Im just a new knife guy, meaning that ive finally invested in several quality knives ie...rc-4, spyderco endura wave and others and i want to make sure you more expensive blades are ruined. thanks for the info and i will have to try one out.
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    VIP Member Array raevan's Avatar
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    Can you tighten the clamp so that it angles with the grind. On my RC-3 the flat grind goes all the way to the back of the blade, I suppose the RC4 does as well If the clamp can be set at an angle and you can put a spacer behind the spine, you may be able to keep the clamp from slipping or twisting. Just an Idea.

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    shim the blade in the lansky

    I use a 'strip' of pig skin, or thin leather around the blade before clamping to protect the finish. YMMV . As for the pocket sharpeners they do work very well.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gilliland87 View Post
    I use a 'strip' of pig skin, or thin leather around the blade before clamping to protect the finish. YMMV . As for the pocket sharpeners they do work very well.
    Great idea, the wife said to wedge something in there but I figured that woluld set the angle off but if I wrapped it it would keep even. Thanks
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    try getting a good set of stones, or a spyderco sharpmaker. a full flat grind should not be that hard to sharpen. 1095 is a tough steel and just takes a little more work.

    i would not put it through one of those Smith's sharpeners though. ya they are great for a bob, but not something you want to be using on a knife like this. the rc-4 is ground at about 40 degree inclusive. you want a 20 degree on each side. that smith's will not put the kind of edge on it that you are looking for.

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    Everyone thank you for all of the info....ive become enlightened to look outside my box and i appreciate all the help. any more info would be great.
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    I just use a 6" Norton Pike Crystolon Coarse/Fine(double-sided) pre-oiled stone. Always come out razor sharp for me. Been using the same type of stone since the mid 80's when my grandfather gave me my first one. I finally had to buckle down and get a new a while back. The Crystolon is their formula of a Silicon Carbide, so yes, the course side does shave the metal down well if you really need to.

    I also tend to sharpen differently then most, but it's worked for me for 25+- years. I sharpen in a circular motion holding the stone in place and the blade mobile, as opposed to a standard forward/back or away/towards motion on the stone.
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