(OT) Sharpening direction

Reading the post on using a belt sander to sharpen tools reminded me of a tool maker who made commercial knives for the clothing industry many years ago. On all of his knives he used a grinder (or sometimes a shaper) that turned away from the edge of the blade. The theory being that it lined up the atoms in the steel and made the blade stay sharper longer. It seemed to work for him, he sold more blades then his competition and changed them out less often. I know that the knives, chisels etc that I sharpen that way seem to hold an edge better too. Any comments on this?
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My observation, too. Also a famous maker of knives thirty miles south. Probably has to do with the greater delicacy possible when the belt isn't trying to yank the whole thing from you. Less pressure, less heat, better edge-holding.
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