S110V follow up

I’ve started researching my issues with the S110V blade I have and found that pretty much no other user had the same issue I have. Not with a Spyderco, nor with any other brand using S110V. I have since sharpened the blade 3 times, thus completely removing the original factory bevel and any steel that might have been overheated or had any other problem out of the box.

20x Roll
20x picture of an edge roll
400x chips
400x picture of microchipping
400x chips2
400x picture of microchipping

The knife had an edge at 16DPS, finished on a 8k Shapton glass stone and then stropped very lightly on 0.3 micron AlOx on horse leather. The resulting edge passed the HHT 3 and I didn’t see any burr under magnification.After using the knife for a few minutes cutting cardboard boxes (maybe 15 cuts) the edge showed tiny chips. Some of them I could see with the naked eye under artificial light, but all of them could be felt by dragging the edge over my finger nail.

400x-8k Glass
400x convex edge

If Spyderco messed up the edge, my repeated manual sharpening should have fixed this issue. The edge angle isn’t too low imo, but I raised it in my next sharpening session to 18DPS in an attempt to fix this issue.

The edge showed the same deformations after 12 cuts in cardboard. I checked it under a scope and it looked like exactly like before. As a final resort, I made a compound edge of the 2 previous angles, and added a 19DPS bevel that I then blended with 0.3µ AlOx forming a convex edge that zeroed in at 19DPS approximately (no real way to measure it perfectly). This is the only edge that has held up to 15 cuts in cardboard.

So far this edge has held up pretty well with a lot less chipping than the previous edges. In all, if this is the only way I can get CPM S110V to work, it’s a steel I rather not see becoming mainstream.


7 thoughts on “S110V follow up

  1. Hey man, this is coonassjedi from IG. Do you think your edge finish may be the issue? I know from experience that super high carbide steels like this, S90V, and my 10V K2 don’t like these ultra polished edges, even at 15dps. They tend to work much better left in the coarse state, say about the level of a fine diamond stone. The polish likely removes too much matrix from around the carbides and you get the dreaded carbide tear out, resulting in the chips because of the voids left by the carbide. Glad you got the blog back up man. Good stuff

    1. I seemed to have missed this comment and just now saw it. my apologies for the late reply.

      I don’t see how a less refined edge would give less micro chipping, but it would be less noticeable. I have since also tested the blade for hardness and it the steel was at 64HRC, not the 62 that Spyderco advertised. It seems a batch of these blades were hardened to high. I’m hesitant to buy another one to see if it’s better or worse. For now, I’ve lost a lot of faith in the US made Spyderco blades aside from the sprint runs. It seems the Taiwan made knives all have better fit and finish out of the box, and they are definitely ground better.

      Carbide tear out should be minimized by the addition of niobium to the alloy. I think this blade was just too hard and failed because of that.

      Thanks for visiting and reading my posts!

  2. Hello, i recently purchased a k2 and am wanting an s110v manix. M4 is my favorite steel so far for edge holding, im curious what the reccomended edge angle and finish is for high carbide steels. I have a deep fear of disappointment and i still havnt cut much with the knife yet. Thanks

  3. I own a Phil Wilson custom Bow River boasting a S110V blade at 63 HRC. Disregarding qualified advice -even from Phil himself- I sharpen it up to a very fine edge (3 microns/8000 with DMT extra-extra fine or 1200-grit with GATCO Ultimate Finishing Stone).
    I’ve not noticed any chipping at all (under high magnfication) and the knife cuts incredibly well.
    I ought to say that I mostly cut soft material (meat, fish, etc.).
    Just my two cents…


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