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Coffee mug honing. 326

No Life Club Posts: 1,193
Coffee mug honing.
« on: May 24, 2019, 02:49:52 PM »
For many years now, even a few decades, I've carried a diamond hone in my wallet for those rare occasions that I may have to sharpen my pocket knife while out in the middle of nowhere. You know, one of those red plastic little paddle things made my Eye-Lap and called a model L I think. I cut off most of the red plastic handle and fits in the zipper compartment of my wallet with the P38 and Victorinox quattro. And I have done so on camping trips, maybe a fishing trip or two, on a worksite. But for some years now, most of my knife sharpening has been done on the bottom of a coffee mug. You know, that unglazed ring on the bottom of a mug. Pure ceramic.

When I was a kid, I lost count how many times I watched my dad at the morning breakfast table do that. He'd finished his breakfast, and downed the last drop of his coffee, and he'd take the mug and turn it over on a napkin and then takeout his little Case peanut and give the blades a light touch up to start the day. Mom would just shake her head at what she thought was very bad form, but dad's little knife was always razor sharp. 

I can't remember when I started to imitate the old man, but off and on over the years I've done it. Little by little, my use of my Eye-Lap diamond hones tapered off to only used once a while. For whatever reason, the SAK steel seems especially suited the coffee mug honing. I prefer a fine grade ring of ceramic, like on a freebie mug I got from a bank, or the mug from a boat sales place in Annapolis Maryland. The bottom of the soup bowls from IKEA seem to work well too after a light sanding with 600 paper to smooth them out a tad. My little SAK of the day gets light coffee mug honing at the start of the day if needed, and it's a good feeling to know you have a fresh edge in your pocket. Maybe about 30 to 40 seconds, and a five or six strokes on each side if it's already in decent shape. If it's got a bit dull, it may take a minute to two to get it back. If it's been really neglected, a few minutes.

I find the ceramic coffee mug to be easier on the knife than the diamond hones or stone sharpeners. If not careful, diamonds can really wear down a blade in a few years if your not careful or get too aggressive with them. Coffee mugs seem to be a kinder gentler means of sharpening.

And it's a nice way to start the day, with a cut of coffee, or a nice tea, or even some hot chocolate from Switzerland, and then use the empty mug to make sure your SAK is as ready for the day as you are.  :tu:

Don't get too serious, just enough will do.
Zombie Apprentice Posts: 12,771

Nix us

******** * *
Re: Coffee mug honing.
« Reply #1 on: May 24, 2019, 02:56:18 PM »
 :tu:

I've done that when I haven't had a sharpener handy. I think it was an old Army Sergeant who showed me the coffee cup/glass trick. He was probably also the first one to recommend using your leather belt as a strop, too.
No Life Club Posts: 3,408
Re: Coffee mug honing.
« Reply #2 on: May 24, 2019, 02:58:18 PM »
I’ve done that a few times. Top of car windows work well, too!

Some sharpening snobs will yell at you, just ignore them. It worked well for your father and now for you.

Tradition is a wonderful thing!!




Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
No Life Club Posts: 1,821
Re: Coffee mug honing.
« Reply #3 on: May 24, 2019, 03:42:41 PM »
I've done it when it was all I had. Another trick is to roll down your car window and use the top of the glass.

Jeep the SAK of the auto world or is it SAK the Jeep of the Knife world?
Full Member Posts: 163
Re: Coffee mug honing.
« Reply #4 on: May 24, 2019, 03:45:07 PM »
I've tried both mug honing and leather belt stropping but never had any success with them. Could anyone who knows how to suggest a tutorial/how to video?   
Jr. Member Posts: 72
Re: Coffee mug honing.
« Reply #5 on: May 24, 2019, 03:58:29 PM »

I've used the coffee cup at work a few times to put an edge back on co-worker's knives after watching them struggle with the most basic cutting tasks. I use the back of an old leather belt at home to strop for a quick touch up or I'll use the pant leg on my jeans if I'm out and about.

Semper Fortis
No Life Club Posts: 1,193
Re: Coffee mug honing.
« Reply #6 on: May 24, 2019, 06:52:33 PM »
I've tried both mug honing and leather belt stropping but never had any success with them. Could anyone who knows how to suggest a tutorial/how to video?   

Theres a a lot on youtube coffee mug sharpening.

Don't get too serious, just enough will do.
No Life Club Posts: 3,556
Re: Coffee mug honing.
« Reply #7 on: May 24, 2019, 07:59:49 PM »
I always go back to my Spyderco sharpmaker for the SAK sharpening, but a coffee mug could be a handy skill when that's not available.  Good tip, and definitely gonna give that more practice.  :cheers: 
Global Moderator No Life Club Posts: 2,379
Re: Coffee mug honing.
« Reply #8 on: May 25, 2019, 09:23:24 AM »
Like It - Never Done It - Gotta Try It !!!   :tu:
Absolutely No Life Club Posts: 6,247
Re: Coffee mug honing.
« Reply #9 on: May 25, 2019, 10:51:38 AM »
Like It - Never Done It - Gotta Try It !!!   :tu:

Wot he said.  :iagree:

Lovely post by the way - I love little stories like this... while I'm drinking my coffee  - it's civilised!  :like:

Sr. Member Posts: 338
Re: Coffee mug honing.
« Reply #10 on: May 25, 2019, 12:42:24 PM »
I use a coffee mug at work when I've left my Victorinox ceramic pocket sharpener at home. It works ok, although I prefer the sharpener as none of our mug bottoms are neither particularly fine nor uniformly smooth.

The best mugs for sharpening are made of fine bone china. They work as well at the Vic sharpener does, if not better.

I've also used smooth flat river stones while out on the job. You can get a fast result this way, but it's often coarse. Best for emergencies. It helps if you can finish the edge by stropping it on a post or something afterwards.

Missing my dear friend Don Federico Cortés, His Lordship, the Boss.
Zombie Apprentice Posts: 16,854 I'm not a pessimist, I'm an experienced optimist!
Re: Coffee mug honing.
« Reply #11 on: May 25, 2019, 04:47:00 PM »
I have done the coffee mug trick occasionally. I have a nasty habit of not touching up the edge frequently enough, and find myself having to use a more aggressive abrasive. Having said that, it does work well as a finisher after setting the bevel on something coarser.

I went to a family BBQ last summer, and my brother's knives were like flat spoon  ::) I had no sharpener on me, and my brother had no sharpeners or oilstone of any kind. I set about reprofiling the edge of one of the knives on a concrete fence post, then tidied it up a little with the bottom of a mug. It wasn't a perfect job, but in less than 90 seconds I'd got it back cutting again. Not shaving sharp, but good enough for the task at hand.



The cantankerous but occasionally useful member, formally known as 50ft-trad

 

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