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How to Sharpen a Knife

Appreciated, kenpo. Good strategy with the inexpensive cutlery!
Ed Parker Kenpo, then Guro Inosanto JKD/Escrima/Silat, and then some Bob Orlando(Uncle Bill) Kuntao-Silat...:) Good times...:)

In the picture I gifted Guro Inosanto a Buck 110 with biker quick deployment sheath that opens the knife as you draw it. I was such a young pup back then...:) I still feel like a beginner most days...so much to learn...:) Guro Inosanto was fascinated by the Mexican knife culture of the Texas-Mexico border and I was fascinated by Guro Inosanto's stories about training with Ed Parker and Bruce Lee...:)
 

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Ed Parker Kenpo, then Guro Inosanto JKD/Escrima/Silat, and then some Bob Orlando(Uncle Bill) Kuntao-Silat...:) Good times...:)

In the picture I gifted Guro Inosanto a Buck 110 with biker quick deployment sheath that opens the knife as you draw it. I was such a young pup back then...:) I still feel like a beginner most days...so much to learn...:) Guro Inosanto was fascinated by the Mexican knife culture of the Texas-Mexico border and I was fascinated by Guro Inosanto's stories about training with Ed Parker and Bruce Lee...:)
That’s an amazing photo, kenpo! Mr. Inosanto is a classic, like the 110 you gifted him.
 
That’s an amazing photo, kenpo! Mr. Inosanto is a classic, like the 110 you gifted him.
Thank you. Guro Inosanto is one of the best martial artists who ever lived and taught, in my not so humble opinion. He's a humble person also.

Back in the 1980's I rode motorcycles a lot and ALWAYS carried a knife when riding. Horizontal carry is more comfortable on a motorcycle than regular vertical carry. I knew a fellow biker who did leather work and he introduced me to the "biker" sheath concept(The Buck knife slides into the sheath horizontally. There's a rivet that keeps the blade from totally closing. As you draw the knife the blade is opened. By the time the knife clears the sheath it's completely open and ready.).

I asked my biker buddy to make a custom sheath for Guro Inosanto. I then bought a brand new Buck 110(they were around $30 back then.). I gifted the knife and sheath to Guro Inosanto at a seminar. He was very grateful and humble.

I always loved training and talking to him. He's a martial arts encyclopedia. I still practice a lot of the Escrima he taught me. One of my favorite aspect of martial arts training was/is the Escrima Hubud(naked hand training.) and the trapping from JKD(Jeet Kune Do).

Guro Inosanto gave me one of the greatest martial arts compliments I've ever been given. He said I had one of the best Pak Sao(slapping hand) techniques he'd ever seen. Guro Inosanto trained with Bruce Lee. Sifu Bruce Lee was known for his Pak Sao technique...:)

We used to train the Pak Sao technique so much our entire arms would be bruised from wrist to shoulder. I used the Pak Sao technique when I worked security and usually when I had to use it the person complied. I used to combine it with leg kicks from Muy Thai...:)

A Buck 110 is a great knife. So many good blades nowadays. The Kershaw Emerson series with the Wave opening feature is pretty impressive. I have the 4XL model and I like it better than my Benchmade knives...:) The 4XL is a big knife but I don't care. It fits my hand so well and it's so easy to deploy whether you're lefty like me or a rightie...:)
 
You have lived quite a life, kenpo. Thank you for taking the time to share. The 1980’s seem like a simpler time than today. Values then were more clear cut. And one-handed opening knives were almost non-existent. I carried a Pacific Cutlery Bali-Song in my uniform shirt pocket back then. Memories…
Thank you for the kind words.

I agree that 1960's - 1980's were simpler times. My parents kept me busy with work and chores so I didn't have much time to get into trouble as a teenager.

I only have 1 Balisong now. I used to have several. I even owned a Benchmade Balisong. I prefer Karambit type knives now or knives with holes/rings for retention. I recently bought a Gerber Remix and it's a good size for limb destructions and basic cutting chores. The ring fits my pinky or index fingers and it feels solid.

In the Philippine Islands Balisongs used to be referred to as the "Filipino Yo-Yo" as they were carried by lots of local people...:) It's pretty good coordination exercise learning to manipulate a Balisong. We used to put tape over the blades when we trained because it's too easy to cut yourself with one...:)

Nowadays I have training knives that either have dull blades or secure sheaths or I have put duct tape over the blade...:) It's pretty easy to cut yourself with a blade if you're not careful. Even with dull blades, bandaids are my friend...:)
 
I must confess to having had a balisong addiction. I have about forty, with the majority Bali-Song, Pacific Cutlery or later as Benchmade. Before trainers were popular, we’d do like you and tape them up and practice over a bed so there wasn’t as much stooping to pick them up if they fell. Also prevented damage!
 
There are so many decent sharpening systems today its hard for someone not to be able to.put a decent edge on a blade, WITH A BIT OF PRACTICE AND PATIENCE

Having made knives for the better part of 40 years as a hobby I have tried many and probably the three that I would recommend, on order of novice use to pro are

1. Spyderco Sharpmaker. Easy to set up and use, you can even sharpen serrated blades with the triangular stones. Gives a good basic edge bevel which most users will find perfect, draw straight down and try too keep a consistent angle. After use simply wash with liquid soap on your fingers rubbing until clean. The ceramic stones should last forever, mine must be 20 years old now.

2 Laskey sharpener. A bit harder to set up and understand but you can get different edge bevels for different knife uses. If you can afford them spring for the diamond stones they are worth the extra money. One issue is tht certain types of blade spines can be problematic to grip with thier clamps, like jimped and distal tapers.

3. Work Sharp. A very nice sharpening system, can put professional edges on knives. Care and practice are the watch words here. Since it is basically a belt sander things can go south real fast if you are not careful and pay attention. Care and practice on cheap knives until you master it.
 
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Aww, don’t forget Magnum PI (the original one)!
Ah magnum PI, the show that really drewme down the rabbit hole for watch collecting. Especially Magnums fathers Pepsi Rolex GMT Master, which was the only thing Tom Sellick took from the show and he still wears to this day. Was not satisfied until I had one lol, it's long gone now but it's spirit lives on in my 90s Pepsi Citizen Dolphin.

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It was also the show which h gave us Harrison Ford as Indiana Jones. Tom Selleck was first choice for the role but was contracted for Magnum and could not do it. Which I think was alright I think Ford wound up being great in the role, at least the first three movies. He gave the roke a more grizzeled experinced look and feel.
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