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Old 09-27-2004, 09:02 AM
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Candler,NC
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Hollow grind versus flat grind?

'Mornin y'all! I'm wondering about the advantages/disadvantages of hollow grind as compared to flat/convex grinds both in making and final use. My limited experiance ha been with flat grind, but I'd like to get some thoughts on hollow grind.
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Old 09-27-2004, 11:54 AM
Quenchcrack Quenchcrack is offline
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Flat VS Hollow Grinding

I am not an experienced blade maker but my choice has always been to flat grind. Now, this does not give you a blade that is as visually appealing as a hollow ground blade, but I think it is more serviceable. I do not see many historically accurate reproductions that have a hollow ground blade so I assume this is probably a recent innovation. :cool:

Which is worse; ignorance or apathy? Who knows? Who cares?
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Old 09-27-2004, 12:09 PM
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SteveS SteveS is offline
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Just about anything anyone says on this subject gets shot down with counter examples. But I'll give you my 2 cents anyway.

Hollow grinds (like mentioned) look cool.

Edge thickness plays a major role in cutting ability. Imagine a piece of steel 3/8" thick with a 20 degree edge on it (like an axe.) It just won't slice tomatos, yes it can shave but sucks at slicing chores. Now picture a piece of 1/16" steel with a 20 degree edge.

So edge thickness is a major factor in cutting. In fact you want the thinnest blade possible that will support edge for it's intended use.

As you sharpen and re-sharpen a knife the edge gets thicker and thicker. A hollow grind doesn't suffer from this as much as a flat grind knife. That is the main advantage of a hollow grind in my book.

There's a belief that the hollow ground knife is 'sharper' than the flat grind. Not true, scandinavian knives are flat ground, but the bevel and edge angle are the same and go all the way to the edge. Extremely thin edge in that case. So either can be sharp.

On a small blade like a pocket knife I like a hollow grind. You get a stiffer spine and a very thin edge. However, a flat grind that goes all the way to the edge is also very good. What I don't like is flat grinds and thick edges. They don't cut well and after many sharpenings they just get worse.

BTW One note on historic knives. Many american blades were hollow ground, but on BIG stones (like 3 or 4 feet). So techincally, they are hollow, but it's almost flat.



Last edited by SteveS; 09-27-2004 at 12:12 PM.
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Old 09-27-2004, 12:12 PM
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Ray Rogers Ray Rogers is offline
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Like Steve said, there are many strong opinions on this subject and it has been discussed in detail on these forums. Give the Search button a try and you should be able to find those threads....


Your question may already have been answered - try the Search button first!

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Old 09-29-2004, 12:29 PM
berettaman12000 berettaman12000 is offline
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Exactly what Steve just said!
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Old 10-23-2004, 11:44 AM
tmiller5087 tmiller5087 is offline
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2 cents......Iffin you want razor sharp , grind it like a razor. Iffin you want it strong as a axe, grind it like a axe.
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Old 10-23-2004, 12:50 PM
AwP AwP is offline
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I'm with tmiller5087, convex all the way. It gets slightly less sharp, but it can still be shaving sharp, and the edge lasts so much longer.

~Andrew W. "NT Cough'n Monkey" Petkus
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Old 10-23-2004, 02:05 PM
tmiller5087 tmiller5087 is offline
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Thank You Andrew.....isa buckeye point of view. Remind me to send you sumthin for dat cough.

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Old 10-24-2004, 01:14 AM
Fsawyer Fsawyer is offline
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I started out flat grinding... I decided to teach myself how to hollow grind.. NOW I don't do any flat grinding at all.. I love Hollow gound.

To get more control while hollow grinding.. The wheel does the real work.
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Old 10-24-2004, 10:10 AM
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Chuck Burrows Chuck Burrows is offline
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I do not see many historically accurate reproductions that have a hollow ground blade so I assume this is probably a recent innovation.
Quench actually the Sheffield knives of old are technically hollow ground - the only thing is that the stone they used was 6 foot in diameter so that the hollow is a very flat radius but still a radius.

Chuck Burrows
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