Flattening a spyderco UF

Discussion in 'Hones/Honing' started by dodi, Mar 2, 2008.

  1. Hi,

    I'm thinking of buying the spyderco UF. The reviews of it as a finishing hone have been good, but I've read that this is a very hard hone.

    Do any of you know if they're are flat from the factory ?

    Assuming it isn't entirely flat enough from the factory, I'll need something to flatten it. I have found the UF for sale on axminster.co.uk, and they also carry some small DMT hones:


    at 61.5 X 19 mm (2.4 X .75 inches) - would one of these (the 1200 grit) be big enough for flattening the UF ? The spyderco UF is 200 X 50 mm (about 8 by 2 inches)
  2. No - that's too small to flatten the Spyderco. The spyderco is a great hone - but it's really, I mean REALLY miserable to flatten. Using the DMT D8C (325 grit) which is an 8X3" diamond hone as a lapping plate can take hours upon hours to get the thing flat.

    I'd go with .5 micron green chrome on a pasted paddle strop.
  3. Joel is right, the UF is a great hone and it is a pain to lap. They are supposed to be flat and you can contact Spyderco customer service if it isn't. That said, I lapped mine (also on a larger 325 DMT). It took many hours. If you do it, be sure to wear a respirator as the dust is kinda harsh.....

    And his comment on the pasted strop is also right, but some (okay, I) really enjoy honing and the edges I get. I support your going with the UF.

  4. I just received three Spyderco stones (the 302M, 302F and 302UF).

    All three see descent (flat) out of the box, but could use some work. I do not have a DMT (or equivalent) stone to lap them with so I am a bit hosed right now.

    Joel- a quick question....

    The biggest issue I have with these is with the fine (302F). It feels as if the stone is "gritty" when I draw a blade across it, as if there is sand on the surface. I rinsed them and I can't feel anything on the surface, but it definately is not smooth. I expected a very smooth, uniform surface but this is not close.

    The UF seems much smoother, but does exibit a small "gritty" feel as well.

    The 302M feels rough but what I would expect based on the consistancy of the stone.

    Do these stones require some sort of break-in or initial cleaning that I am unaware of? Would lapping help or would you recommend contacting Spyderco?

    Sorry to pseudo-hijack the thread..... :oops:


  5. Hi Allan,

    Not Joel but yes, you should either lap them or contact Spyderco Customer Service.... Again, DMT D8C is your best bet to do this.


  6. Thanks for the info. I found the shop also make their own diamond hones under the name Axminster, which are a lot cheaper than those branded DMT. The reason why I'm considering the spyderco uf is that currently I get better results with a hone than with my diamond pasted 4 sided paddle strop. But the hone I've got seems coarse as I can easily see the scratch marks when holding the blade to the light.
  7. What are you honing with now??

    The DMTs are nice for lapping because they are so flat. I don't know anything about the AXMINSTER. Are they extremely flat??


  8. +1.

    DMT D8C highly recommended. Use light pressure and water. I considered installing cable-tv in my bathroom when I lapped my set...
  9. I have a japanese waterhone labeled 800/6000 and an old barber hone, which is a charcoal grey stone, 6.5 X 1.5 inches. Using a slurry stone I made form a piece I cut off the end of the stone produces a light-greyish slurry. The stone was easily soft enough that I could cut a slice off the end using a normal metal-saw with an old blade.

    I'm afraid I don't know, but they are much cheaper, priced at around 9 GBP
  10. The Fine and Ultra Fine stones are made from exactly the same ceramic compound. According to Sal Glesser (the guy who designed them) The only difference between these hones is that the UF is finished with a surface grinder at the factory (and should therefore be flat and smooth), while the F is "as fired" (and won't be as flat, nor as smooth.)
    Thus, if you lap the Fine hone, you're basically changing it into a version of the UF hone. You could make it more or less coarse depending on what you're lapping with.
  11. My Fine and Ultra-Fine Spydercos were both lapped with the same DMT D8C coarse plate. This means they should both have the same "surface scratches".

    They still put a distinctly different edge on a razor. The Ultra-Fine being finer, as expected.

    According to Sal at Spyderco, the different grits are created by different carriers/binders and different firing techniques. This would certainly explain their very different density.

    Test it yourself: put both hones on the same surface and tap them in turn with any implement. You will notice a very different tone. Different tone = different density. Different density of carrier/binder/abrasive = different cutting characteristics. If the Fine and Ultra-fine were the same hone, except for lapping, their density would not be different.

    The difference between the Fine and the Ultra-fine goes well beyond a simple lapping. Have no fear. Using a Coarse 325 grit hone to lap a Fine hone will not turn it into an Ultra-fine hone. Using a Coarse 325 hone to lap an Ultra-fine hone will not turn it into a Fine hone, either. My three Spydercos, all lapped, have been working normally for months now.

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