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Knife Sharpening Information and Equipment

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Chart of Abrasive cutting rate vs. Sharpness
Scotch-Brite table
Trizact table
NOTES: It is impossible to make exact comparisons between all the different abrasives because different standards are used for average, minimum and maximum size, the percentage allowed outside those limits, and the distribution of sizes within those limits.  Sizes of 240 grit and larger (macrogrits) are determined by sieving, while sizes of 240 grit and smaller (microgrits) are determined by sedimentation. Both ANSI standards have a 240 grit.  European "P" sizes are for coated abrasives; "F" sizes are for bonded abrasives.

A comparison of grit sizes of belts, wheels, stones and hones used in knife sharpening.

Description Belts and wheels Waterstones Average grit size in microns Trizact

ANSI/CAMI (USA) FEPA (Europe) JIS
(Japan)


12

1842


P12

1764
*American National Standards Institute B74.12. 12*

1575

16 P16
1322

16*

1118


P20
984

20*

940

20

905

24*

686


P24
740

24

715

30

638


P30
622

30*

556

36

535


P36
524

40

428


P40
412

50

351 A500


P50
326

60

268 A400


P60
260


P80
195 A300

80

192


P100
156
Coarse Crystolon 100
150 141


P120
127 A160

120

116
100 micron belt


100


P150
97 A130
Medium Crystolon, coarse India 150

93
80 Micron belt


80

180 P180
78 A100
3M 74 micron diamond stone


74


P220
65 A90
60 Micron belt, extra coarse diamond hone 220

60


P240 240 58
Medium India, fine Crystolon
240
F230, P280
53



280 50


P320

46
Coarse Diamond 325 F240
45
Fine India 280
320 43
3M 40 micron diamond stone & belt "400"
P360

40
Medium diamond 320
F280
360 36
35 Micron belt
P400
35 A45



400
32

30 Micron belt
P500
30
Washita 360 F320
29


P600
25.8 A30
Fine Diamond 600

25

400 F360
23
22 Micron belt
P800
600 22
Soft Arkansas, 20 Micron belt, 3M 20 micron stone "800", 500

20
18 Micron belt
P1000
18


F400
17


600
800
16
15 Micron belt, 15 micron SiC paper
P1200

15 A16
Hard white Arkansas, extra fine diamond, and medium ceramic 700
1000 14


P1500

12.6
A10
12 micron belt 800

12



1200
11

Queer Creek Blue Ohio Sandstone
600 - 1000


9-16



P2000

10.3

3M 10 micron diamond stone "1800"

10

1000
F600
1500
9.2
Extra-fine diamond hone "1200"

9
Hard black Arkansas, 9 micron belt 1000

9


P2500

8.4




2000
7.5


1200 F800
6.5
6 Micron belt


6
5 micron SiC paper
F1000
5
Extra fine white Ceramic, green chrome rouge, 3 Micron belt, Tormek compound* 1500 F1200
4000 3 A3


F1500
6000
2

Japanese Waterstone
F2000 8000 1.2
1 Micron belt, Linde C compound 2000

1
Chromium oxide polishing compound,
0.5 micron Chromium oxide paper



0.5
There is another chart of fine abrasive equivalents at http://www.gemsociety.org/info/chmesh.htm




Crystolon is Norton Abrasives tm for Silicon Carbide stones
India is Norton Abrasives tm for Aluminum Oxide stones
Raybrite and Linde compounds are aluminum oxide powders
* Tormek compound contains a variety of grains of various size, from 3 microns down to 0.7 micron. The average effective size is 1 micron.

Scotch-Brite Abrasive Belt Equivalent Grits

3M is not consistent in their use of color for a particular grit. This chart is based on Scotch-Brite surface finishing belt data.

Grade Equivalent abrasive grit Color Abrasive Material Finish (micro-inches)
Aluminum Stainless Steel
Coarse 80 - 150 Brown Aluminum Oxide 130 - 150 62 - 72
Medium 150 - 180 Maroon Aluminum Oxide 80 - 100 32 - 40
Fine 180 - 220 Green? Aluminum Oxide 50 - 70* 15 - 25*
Very fine 220 - 320 Blue Aluminum Oxide 16 - 35 6 - 12
Super fine 320 - 600 Gray Silicon Carbide 8 - 12 4 - 6
*Estimated. Scotch-Brite is a tm of 3M Corp.

Scotch-Brite Hand Pads

Grit Designation Color Equivalent Grit Abrasive
Extra Coarse Brown
Aluminum Oxide
Coarse Tan
Aluminum Oxide
Medium White, Gray or Maroon
Aluminum Oxide
Fine Light Gray or Green 150 - 180 Aluminum Oxide
Very Fine Maroon 220 - 280 Aluminum Oxide
Extra Fine Gray 320 - 400 Silicon Carbide
Ultra Fine White 600 - 800 Talc

BearTex (Norton) Hand Pads in Order of Aggressiveness

Grit Designation Color Abrasive Product code
Very Fine Maroon Aluminum Oxide 777
Very Fine Maroon Aluminum Oxide 747
Very Fine Green Aluminum Oxide 796
Very Fine Gray Silicon Carbide 851
Ultra Fine Gray Silicon Carbide 635
Micro Fine Gray Silicon Carbide 748
Non-abrasive White None 456

3M Trizact Abrasive grades

(This abrasive is arranged in pyramids.  They produce finer finishes and last 2 to 4 times longer than conventional abrasives.)
(Although Trizact "A" sizes are nominally the average mineral size in microns they produce a finer finish than conventional abrasives.  See top chart on this page.)  JIS and P-grade equivalents
A3 JIS 4000
A5 JIS 3000
A6 P2500
A10 P1500
A16 P1200
A20
A30 P600
A40
A45 P400
A60
A65 P280
A80
A90 P220
A100 P180
A110
A130 P150
A160 P120
A300 P80
A400 ANSI 60
A500 ANSI 50


Chart of Abrasive cutting rate vs. Sharpness

Updated September 28, 2015


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