Hey JaseRicco, sounds like you are falling down the Spyderco rabbit hole and having fun learning about edges while you are at it. That's a good thing as the whole sharpening journey really adds another dimension to the knife hobby. You've been very polite here from the moment you joined and seem to be open minded about learning and hearing advice so I hope you don't mind if I take a few minutes to drop a few sharpening tips on you. I hope none of this is too remedial but if it is then maybe someone else will get something out of it.
The first thing I will mention is the idea of edge bevels and microbevels. The edge bevel is the sharpened part of the blade that does the cutting. The edge bevel is visible to the eye and usually extends up about 1/8" from the cutting edge (More or less depending on the sharpening angle and the thickness of the blade down there). Spyderco usually tries to send their knives out from the factory with about a 30 degree inclusive edge bevel (15 degrees per side).
Now lets talk about a microbevel. A microbevel is a secondary bevel created by sharpening the edge bevel at a slightly wider angle. See illustration below. (Fancy drawing skills huh??
When you use a wider sharpening angle the sharpening stone only makes contact with the very small section of the edge bevel right at the cutting edge. There are MANY benefits to this. First of all, because you are only removing steel from a tiny section, sharpening is MUCH faster than if you were having to remove steel from the entire edge bevel. It also means that you don't have to be quite as perfect with your angle to get amazing results. This is because you are making contact with the apex even if your precision is off by a degree or two. There are many other benefits too like being able to add strength and stability to the apex even on a very low angle edge. The main benefit in my book though is it makes resharpening almost effortless. A sharpening job that might take you 5-10 minutes if sharpening the entire edge can be done in less than a minute with a microbevel.
Now, one of the reasons that people initially get great results with the sharpmaker even though they are new to the tool is they are using a microbevel without even knowing it. Since most of Spyderco's knives come from the factory with a 30 degree edge, the 40 degree rods will naturally start creating a microbevel. What you will notice over time though is that with each sharpening, the microbevel will start to creep into the edge bevel and the microbevel won't be so "micro" anymore. Eventually, the 40 degree edge will completely take over the 30 degree edge and you will find that it is taking MUCH longer to sharpen and you are having more trouble bringing your edge to the same level of sharpness that you were achieving so easily at first. This is when you need to reprofile and this is where the CBN or diamond rods become necessary (or bench stones or guided system).
Once your microbevel has gotten too big, you need to resharpen the entire edge back to a 30 degree bevel and bring it back to an apex, completely eliminating the microbevel. From there you have what is basically a "factory edge" again and you can begin the whole process anew. This part of edge maintenance will take a bit of time. I can usually reprofile a knife to 30 degrees in 10-15 minutes on the SM with diamond rods, but this will greatly depend on how big you let the microbevel get between reprofiles.
This is why I told you that the Diamond rods would end up playing a bigger role in how sharp you get your blades than the UF rods. Sure, you can sharpen a big wide bevel with a high grit stone and get it sharp but it is hard to match the crispness of a brand new microbevel on a fresh apex, especially when it took you all of 30 seconds to get it hair popping sharp.
This certainly isn't the only way to sharpen but it is a good way and an efficient way and will get you excellent results.