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Best knife sharpener??

b
bigalspop Dec 8, 2006 08:38 PM

Any suggestions for a dependable knife sharpener? thanks hounds

  1. UnConundrum Dec 8, 2006 09:01 PM

    http://drsharpening.com/

    LOL, I know you're looking for a tool.... But you can't beat Dave... I use water stones for my own knives, and when my good knives need a touch-up, I send them to Dave. There are some contraptions that do an excellent job holding your knife and helping you pass a stone over it, but I assume you're looking for the electric type???

    1. f
      FlavoursGal Dec 8, 2006 11:14 PM

      The December issue of Cook's Illustrated has a piece on knife sharpeners. The only sharpener that they "highly recommend" (electric or manual) is the Chef's Choice Model 130 (electric). It sounded so amazing that I went out last week and bought one; haven't tried it out yet, though.

      http://www.chefschoice.com/page2a.html

      1. Candy Dec 9, 2006 12:01 AM

        I have had the Chef's Choice since it came out. The large one with a grinding wheel (rarely used) and two honing wheels used most often

        1. jayt90 Dec 9, 2006 02:34 PM

          There is a large selection of water stones, diamond stones and steels, jigs, ceramic antennae, leather strops,and even a gentle belt grinder at Lee Valley Tools.
          If you're not sure what is best for you, ask for a knife expert at the counter. There is sure to be someone there who knows what will work, so it is better to visit a store than to buy online. But online help is available from
          customerservice@leevalley.com

          1. c
            ChefD Dec 9, 2006 03:03 PM

            I have an AccuSharp manual one and it works great and is about $10 at Ace Hardware. It was also featured in Cooks Illustrated.
            http://www.cooksillustrated.com/image...

            1. alanbarnes Dec 9, 2006 03:35 PM

              My favorite electric sharpener is the Cook's Choice, but it hasn't been out of the cupboard in four or five years. I stopped using it after being scolded and schooled by a professional knife sharpener.

              Scolded because (so he says, anyway) the electric machine ruins the knife's edge. Schooled in the proper use of a honing steel. With a proper edge, even my 8" chef's knife, which sees substantial use every day, can go the better part of a year without sharpening. And it retains a razor edge because of religious honing.

              So IMHO the most dependable knife sharpener is a local guy who's got all the tools needed to put a good edge on your knife and the time and patience to teach you how to hone it properly.

              2 Replies
              1. re: alanbarnes
                m
                mclaugh Dec 16, 2006 02:23 AM

                Your professional knife sharpener is right. It has to do with a knife's edge geometry (blade thickness, edge angle, and grind), which varies depending on a knife's purpose. (Look at it this way: you wouldn't use a meat cleaver (typically axe ground with a 30° edge) to peel a tomato, just as you wouldn't use a paring knife (typically hollow-ground with a 12-14• edge) to split a rack of ribs.)

                The problem with electric sharpeners (and all the non-electric knife-sharpening kitchen gadgets sold in places like Linens and Things) is very few allow you to adjustable the sharpening angle or grind geometry, so you end with knives that are all 20° flat ground or whatever the sharpener manufacturer thinks is the best all-purpose edge geometry.

                1. re: mclaugh
                  Rodssharpeningservice Jan 7, 2010 01:21 AM

                  Also people tend to hollow out a knife in time and eventually it will not cut in the middle simply because it dose not meet the board

              2. d
                dgb Dec 9, 2006 03:49 PM

                I have a Chef's Choice and you can't beat it for the convenience, speed and ease of use. I have had it for at least 3 years and don't notice any damage to my knife's edges. Before I had ceramic rods and a steel,it worked fine but I never had the time to really get them razor sharp. It just took longer and was a bigger hassle. The biggest problem now is sometimes the knives are just too sharp for a clutz like me in the kitchen!

                3 Replies
                1. re: dgb
                  b
                  Beckyleach Oct 21, 2009 09:03 AM

                  I live a LONG way from any professional knife sharpener. I ruined a (lesser quality Henckles) set of knives by taking them to the local guy who *claimed* he sharpened knives, when he man-handled them and destroyed all the blades.

                  So, I just bought a Chef's Choice 130 to go along with all the lovely, new Wusthof Classic Ikon knives I've acquired recently. Given the choice between dull knives, ruined knives, or electrically-sharpened knives, I'm happy with my choice.

                  My only warning is--if you're new to this, like I am--watch out for the blade edge closest to the bolster! I accidentally over-sharpened this to a razor-sharp POINT and when you're paring things (and naturally wanting to curve your thumb around the bolster for a good grip--you SLICE THE HELL out of yourself! I had to get my husband to sand down all those vicious tips I'd accidentally created, last night, after both my daughter and I cut ourselves on the same day.

                  I think I (stupidly) was curving the knife blade as I started the stroking process...

                  1. re: Beckyleach
                    Chemicalkinetics Oct 25, 2009 02:04 PM

                    Becky,

                    I would give your husband a set of waterstones this Christmas. He will love them and you will get a semi-professional knife sharpener at home.

                    1. re: Beckyleach
                      Scargod Oct 25, 2009 06:18 PM

                      Before getting stones realize that waterstones are messy, wear very fast and must be flattened fairly frequently. Then there is the issue of whether your husband or you would actually learn to use them. You must keep the knife at the proper angle. Most people do this freehand and there is a learning curve. It also takes time and patience to do a good job.
                      I have waterstones, ceramic stones and a diamond sharpening system that holds the diamond hones at the proper angle. If you are going to do stones I would suggest a couple of Shapton ceramic stones: http://www.shaptonstones.com/. They will require less maintenance and last longer. They are quite a bit more money than waterstones.

                  2. Mild Bill Dec 9, 2006 04:08 PM

                    I've had a Chef's Choice 120 forever, (Cook's Illustrated's #2 choice) and I have a nice kitchen knife collection... No knife damage, although you can get thin hair-like scratches on the sides of the blade from sliding on the magnetic guide supports... A piece of maskng tape on the sides, exposing only the edge, eliminates this if you care about such things...
                    If you aren't using a Chef's Choice 120 or 130, (or some other quick and efficient contraption) you're worrying too much and working too hard...

                    They're either 'sharp enough' or 'too sharp' for a clutz like me too! :-)

                    I appreciate the hands-on craftsmanship of those of you who take the time and use wetstones and stuff, but I only want my knives to be 'sharp enough' for efficient kitchen porpoises;
                    I don't need an 8" German scalpel!

                    But 'Stubby's Cafe' does have a nice ring to it!

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: Mild Bill
                      j
                      JSHU Mar 4, 2009 12:34 PM

                      BILL
                      WHEN I READ "I DON'T NEED AN 8" GERMAN SCALPEL" I HIT THE FLOOR LAUGHING!! YOUR RIGHT,CRAFTMANSHIP IS ONE THING,BUT NOT FOR THE KITCHEN.
                      GERMAN SCALPEL HAHAHAHAHA

                    2. rcallner Dec 9, 2006 06:27 PM

                      My best, easiest, most reliable sharpener is the "Shinkansen" (so named because it kind of looks like the bullet trains of the same name) ceramic water sharpener I got when I purchased my first Global knives. It's low-tech, easy to use, and has worked well for my Henkels, too, though a school of thought says not to because of the Japanese v European bevel angles. After I sharpen I take a few swipes with a steel to straighten out the edge.

                      1. s
                        socal boy Dec 10, 2006 05:22 AM

                        Water Stones from Lee Valley. Not the easiest to use, but gives my knives a nice edge.

                        1. e
                          EclecticEater Dec 10, 2006 06:08 AM

                          Chefs Toys a store in Santa Ana will sharpen your knives, and if you've never had that done, please try them. You'll be amazed at what a good, sharp knife really can do. COOKS ILLUSTRATED just rated knife sharpeners, manual and electric. The Jiff V Sharp Knife & Scissor Sharpener for about $8, the cheapest, most basic sharpener, won first place in the non-electric category. It used to cost about $3. and now is in the $11. category. If you don't find one of these and try it at that price, I guess you just want to feel you've spent more. I thought I'd throw this opinion in because sometimes people like to feel they're really paying for an implement, when the cheaper and more basic version does just as well if not better.

                          1. c
                            ChefD Dec 10, 2006 03:51 PM

                            The Jiff V Sharp Knife & Scissor Sharpener.. Is that the same as the Accu Sharp Knife and Tool Sharpener? That is the one Cooks Illustrated has rated at top for the manual ones.

                            1. a priori Dec 10, 2006 06:18 PM

                              "Best knife sharpener[?]" It depends.

                              Like Mild Bill says above, it depends on how sharp is "sharp enough" for YOU. Personally, I take the adage that the "most dangerous knife is a dull knife" pretty seriously. So unlike Mild Bill, I indeed want a German or Japanese scalpel.

                              It also matters what type of knife you have. One of the reasons some people like the cutting performance of Globals or MACs or Shuns is the very acute angle of the cutting edge. However, some mechanical sharpeners have pre-set angles that are designed for more typical edge geometry. Which is why there is a Shinkansen model designed for Globals and another model for edges with more obtuse angles, (e.g., Wustofs, Henckels). Same with the Chef's Choice. They make a version for Asian knives.

                              If by 'best' you mean results close to hand-sharpening on waterstones and the flexibility of choosing any sharpening angle, you might want to look at the Edgepro.

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: a priori
                                b
                                Buckethead Dec 11, 2006 05:56 PM

                                There is such a thing as too sharp, it depends on what you're using the knife for. If you're hacking into bones and such, a sharp edge won't last long, but a more obtuse edge will be able to take the punishment.

                              2. jfood Dec 11, 2006 12:57 AM

                                add me to the chef's choice with three wheels. I use about once a month on my knives. Fantastic

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: jfood
                                  JerryMe May 13, 2010 08:01 PM

                                  Bizarrely enough I have one of those things - found it at an estate sale. Run whatever knife I'm going to use for dinner thru it a few times, rinse it off, dry it off and it's perfect.

                                  My sis (who used to do cooking in a resto always told me "You only cut yourself on a dull knife and she bemoaned my knives) taught me to sharpen and touch the blade before cutting / slicing / dicing. I could not ever copy her skills but I like to think I've learned something. Of course - I've cut myself a lot. God I miss her.

                                2. s
                                  Sam Harmon Dec 11, 2006 01:06 AM

                                  The best knife sharpener if one lives in Chicago is Northwest Cutlery. They have one of the few remaining large sharpening wheels left, and do an outstanding job on high quality knives--German or Japanese.

                                  For anyone in Chicago, they're an incredible resource.

                                  1. f
                                    Food Tyrant Dec 11, 2006 02:48 PM

                                    I have used a lot of sharpeners, including water stones. They are great and make for a great edge. The Edge Pro system basically uses a water stone as the sharpening agent and provides you a reliably repeatable angle to insure that you get the sharpest edge possible.

                                    Not cheap, but if you have a number of knives it will pay for itself relatively quickly (against paying $3-5 per blade for sharpening services).

                                    http://www.edgeproinc.com/

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: Food Tyrant
                                      h
                                      housemaidsknee Mar 4, 2009 01:54 PM

                                      Spyderco Sharpmaker - http://spyderco.com/catalog/details.p...
                                      Well worth the money - can usually be had under $50 and its phenomenal.

                                    2. Scargod Mar 4, 2009 02:00 PM

                                      Really can't be answered until you give us more info and clarify how much effort, money and time you are willing to put into it. Not a simple answer. How sharp is sharp? A file is about as dependable as you get and would do great if you want to slice bread or tomatoes.

                                      1. Demented Mar 5, 2009 09:38 AM

                                        I have natural Arkansas oil stones, Japanese style wet stones and a Chef'sChoice 320, the one with the diamond hone and strop.

                                        For sharpening my kitchen knives I use the machine. The blade doesn't even get warm to the touch after the few passes needed to bring the edge back.

                                        Whats best for you?

                                        1. j
                                          julieapfel Apr 22, 2009 07:45 AM

                                          does anyone know if the Chef’sChoice 1520 Electric Knife Sharpener is the new version of the Chef’sChoice 130?

                                          8 Replies
                                          1. re: julieapfel
                                            e
                                            EscapeVelocity Apr 22, 2009 04:26 PM

                                            I use a Chef's Choice 100 Trizor. I like to skip the third stage and instead use a bi-beveled edge instead of the tri-beveled edge touted as Trizor. I generally only use the first stage for reshaping blades....in other words, the 2nd stage is the most used stage. The 3rd stage puts a more obtuse angle on the 20 degree 2nd stage....actually duling the blade. By not using the 3rd stage on a 100 or 110, you get a sharper knife.

                                            From what I understand, the 130 and the 120 use a steeling 3rd stage, not a trizor 3rd stage...is this correct?

                                            1. re: EscapeVelocity
                                              bgazindad Apr 22, 2009 08:46 PM

                                              I just happened to call Chefs choice today about the differences between the 120 and 130. The third stage in both is a stropping stage. The second stage on the 130 is a steeling stage with no motor. The second stage on the 120 is a diamond encrust wheel which is motor operated.

                                              1. re: bgazindad
                                                e
                                                EscapeVelocity Apr 22, 2009 09:41 PM

                                                Seems like the 120 is more versatile. Giving you the option of 2 diamond hone bevel angles, probably 15/20, then a stropping stage. Youve got lots of options. A 15/20 double bevel edge, a 15 or a 20, stropping or no stropping.

                                                1. re: EscapeVelocity
                                                  bgazindad Apr 22, 2009 10:34 PM

                                                  The bevel angles on a 120 are 20 degrees. If you want 15 or 20, look at the model M1520. it has both or one asian sharpeners they have. The asians sharpen at a 15 degree angle. CC site is below.

                                                  http://www.chefschoice.com

                                                  1. re: bgazindad
                                                    e
                                                    EscapeVelocity Apr 23, 2009 04:48 PM

                                                    So all the talk about trizor edges is BS?

                                                    1. re: EscapeVelocity
                                                      bgazindad Apr 23, 2009 06:13 PM

                                                      I am unable to address the trizor issue. I am unfamiliar with it. I am sorry. I have only enlighten you to the facts that I have come across in my research. I focused on the 130 and 120 because they were recommended by Cooks Illustrated in their test of sharpners.

                                                      1. re: EscapeVelocity
                                                        Politeness May 5, 2010 02:27 PM

                                                        EscapeVelocity: "So all the talk about trizor edges is BS?"

                                                        It depends on your definition of BS; it also depends on how often you are willing to sharpen your blade, and your standards for "sharp."

                                                        Right out of a fresh sharpening, a Trizor edge will not be as sharp as a straight bevel edge. If you want to hold a human hair in free air and split the end of it by touching it with the edge of your knife, you may be able to do it with a knife that Chemicalkinetics or Scargod has just sharpened with a stone, but you are not going to do that with a Trizor edge. But you also are not going to split that hair with a knife that after a "perfect" sharpening by an expert professional knife sharpener has been used to slice carrots for five minutes. Using a knife "dulls" the edge -- though the word "dull" covers a group of several reasons of lack of "sharpness." If the dullness is due simply to the edge no longer tracing a straight line, then proper use of a steel will bring it back to sharp again; if the dullmness is due to chips or nicks in the blade, then the knife needs to be sharpened anew to regain optimal sharpness.

                                                        A Trizor edge, all else being equal, is more resistant to bending, curling, and nicking than the same blade sharpened to a straight bevel edge. With most knives, if the knife is used for a full hour of cutting without honing, then after that hour, the Trizor edge is likely to be sharper than the straight bevel edge.

                                                        The same considerations apply, by the way, to the choice between a Sabatier style knife with generally softer and tougher steel vs. a harder and more brittle Solingen steel or Seki steel. The harder steels are more difficult to sharpen to a fine edge and the edge that they do take will nick more easily; but knives made with them do not need to be sharpened as frequently as Sabatier style knives generally need to be sharpened.

                                                        If you are ready, willing, and able to sharpen frequently, a Sabatier style knife with a straight (not Trizor) bevel can be made as sharp as any knife you can use. Harder steels and Trizor edges reduce the frequency of sharpening and -- toward the back end of the time between sharpenings, after a lot of use -- the harder steel knives and those with Trizor edges may be sharper.

                                                        BTW -- off topic -- are you the same EscapeVelocity of the excellent survey of TV antennas in the AVSForum?

                                              2. re: julieapfel
                                                Scargod May 1, 2009 03:59 PM

                                                I don't care if I get stoned or flamed for saying this, but I would never use ANY of these to sharpen my knives. They are too compromised, too inexact and take off too much metal to suit me.
                                                I sharpen by hand and use a diamond based sharpening tool (kit), which holds the tool at the exact angle I want, yet lets me manually manipulate it. I finish with an ultra-fine water stone if I'm in the mood.
                                                I would never use an electric sharpener on my knives unless it was an electric motor driving a large diameter, abrasive-coated wheel, which is what I plan on building and using next.
                                                I was recently in two people's homes where they had nice knives but were not taking care of them. One said they did not use their steel. This is the simplest way to get a good edge "back", unless it is hoplessly dull. First try your steel, then sharpen if you must.

                                              3. g
                                                Ganka May 2, 2009 07:24 AM

                                                Before buying a knife sharpener, consider the following:

                                                If you want a manual or electric sharpener, be sure that it will be able to sharpen the knives you use and, if it is a manual one, that it will fit the hand you usually work with.

                                                If you want a sharpening stone, you have to be experienced enough to hold the knife at the correct angle, because otherwise you may spoil its cutting edge.

                                                No matter what kind of knife sharpeners you choose, always use a sharpening steel to keep the blades sharp in the period from one sharpening to another. Use a steel at least 10 inches long, so that you can hone your bigger knives as well.

                                                Here is a link that might be useful: http://www.helpful-kitchen-tips.com/k...

                                                1. a
                                                  amandayang Oct 20, 2009 05:23 AM

                                                  Go for Chefs Choice Electric Knife sharpeners, the best brand I've used. I've tried a couple of other brands, but I'll stick to Chefs. Really fast to use and there a lot of models to chhose from. You wont be sorry.
                                                  http://chefselectricknifesharpeners.com

                                                  2 Replies
                                                  1. re: amandayang
                                                    Scargod Oct 20, 2009 06:32 AM

                                                    Perhaps this $600 unit? http://www.amazon.com/Chefs-Choice-Diamond-Commercial-Sharpener/dp/B00196P3RO/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&s=kitchen&qid=1256044043&sr=1-4
                                                    Read the reviews for electric knife sharpeners. Very mixed. While Chef's Choice may be a better product than some others it still is inferior to hand sharpening and the hand "systems" that can sharpen the whole knife well.
                                                    This, or something of this style is what I recommend: http://edgeproinc.com/products.html
                                                    You don't have to be a pro to use these, but they will give you fantastic results. That and a steel should keep knives in good shape for quite a while unless you are really hard on knives. I hate the thought of constant grinding with one of these electric units when it is often unnecessary. You can't even sharpen a tip well. Paring knives? Not very well.

                                                    1. re: Scargod
                                                      j
                                                      JorgeNYC Feb 22, 2014 10:48 AM

                                                      For that money I'd buy a Tormek T-7 water cooled grindstone system. Best machine out there. Bundle packages are available to fit your lifestyle whether it be home owner or professional wood turner. Can get pricey but will pay for itself in the long run. You could probably make some cash on the side and sharpen neighbor's knives at a cost they would deem fair. Why do you think people get their knives sharpen by professionals because they have such equipment to do it correctly on hand. Sharpening supplies.com has these machines. Check it out for yourself. I'm really surprised that no one on this thread has mentioned Tormek at all. http://www.sharpeningsupplies.com/Tor...

                                                  2. Channa Oct 20, 2009 09:04 AM

                                                    I love it when people ask about knife sharpeners! Always. . . half the responses recommend a Chef's Choice electric, and the other half say "horrors!" -- you'll ruin your knives with a CC.

                                                    2 Replies
                                                    1. re: Channa
                                                      Scargod Oct 20, 2009 01:41 PM

                                                      I didn't say they would ruin knives. Just do an inferior job and lead to edge unevenness and premature wear if used too often.
                                                      I have found, over my many years of cooking, that many good cooks don't consider knives as wonderful tools to be cherished. They don't understand metallurgy or the years of designs evolving to get to where highly specialized knives are now, or the elaborate process of making a high quality knife.
                                                      To some they are just a means to an end and only need to be so good. I've had a half-dozen electric knife sharpeners and used other's. They go from fair to horrible. They can destroy a knife edge. They still require skill and "touch" to optimize what they are capable of. Those grooves and guides have to have slop to accommodate a variety of blade widths. If a knife has a German style bolster, then that's another obstacle. If you don't follow the instructions and pass the knife through the sharpener at a steady and even rate you will have inferior results and then you (or someone), will have to go over it again to fix all the irregularities. That can wear a knife out prematurely if done too often.
                                                      Though I have not tried a $600 unit, I daresay that you can never, ever equal the original edge with a pull-through electric knife sharpener.

                                                      1. re: Scargod
                                                        d
                                                        dscheidt Oct 20, 2009 07:07 PM

                                                        What? Cooks think tools are tools, and should be used as tools, and not holy relics? What a shock! Most electric knife sharpeners are not very good. But I'd rather use a knife sharpened by electric can opener than one that's not sharpened at all because it might get "ruined" by sharpening. The chef's choice stuff is a actually pretty good, better than most "professionals" that sharpen knives, and more than sharp enough. No good for a single bevel knife, of course, but a single bevel knife has no place in most people's kitchen.

                                                    2. f
                                                      FlatlanderIA Oct 20, 2009 01:34 PM

                                                      Spyderco Sharpmaker. Electric knife sharpeners make me cringe. It takes finese and skill to sharpen a japanese kitchen knife properly, and Spyderco has the right tool to get it done. It even comes with a DVD showing you the techniques. It's all you ever need. Oh yeah, it's made in the USA!

                                                      3 Replies
                                                      1. re: FlatlanderIA
                                                        l
                                                        lazycook Jan 6, 2010 11:24 PM

                                                        Buy a 1 inch by 30 inch or 1 inch by 42 inch or 2 inch by 42 inch belt sander and sharpen like the pros do. It is so fast and easy it is unbelievable. But you will have to search for the right belts, you won't find them in Home Depot or Sears. Get a 220 grit, 600 grit, and 1200 grit belt. You can also get a leather belt and jewelers rouge for polishing and honing. If your knives are already pretty sharp you might just need the 1200 grit belt. You can put any angle on the blade you want, not just what some manufacturer decided on. With coarser belts you can also sharpen lawn mower blades or sand metal or wood.
                                                        There are a lot of videos on the internet that show you how to sharpen with a belt sander.

                                                        1. re: lazycook
                                                          alanbarnes Jan 7, 2010 07:29 AM

                                                          For the typical home cook, I couldn't disagree more. A well-maintained knife only needs to be sharpened once or twice a year. Any more than that and you're removing too much metal and seriously reducing the lifespan of the blade. A belt sander is not only overkill, in the hands of somebody who's inexperienced (eg, somebody who only uses it once or twice a year) it's a good way to ruin cutlery very quickly.

                                                          Yes, many professional sharpeners use belt sanders. They make total sense if you're sharpening a few dozen blades a day. But the best professional sharpeners working on the most expensive knives sharpen by hand, either freehand or using a jig like one of EdgePro's. Somebody who wants to "sharpen like the pros do" would be better advised to pick up an EdgePro Apex. Shorter learning curve, better results, and no danger of doing any permanent damage.

                                                          1. re: alanbarnes
                                                            Chemicalkinetics Jan 7, 2010 08:23 AM

                                                            Maybe you are right, but a EdgePro is not very macho, unlike a sand belt.

                                                      2. davepotwin May 5, 2010 11:10 AM

                                                        Try a FURI Diamond Finger knife sharpener... Beats even the best steel hone out there, because no human can keep the correct angle on the blade, on both sides no matter how hard you try by hand with a steel.. FURI really has done their research on east & west knives, and has found that a 20 degree angle is the sharpest and most efficient. I don't want to sound like a commercial or spokesman, but they know their stuff. (why they use Rachel Ray to promote stuff to unknowing americans saddens me) but whatever gets it out to the main stream.

                                                        The fact that their chef knives have copper tipped handles so you can grind them down as your blade loses steel is genius- keeping your blade at a perfect balance. They are razor sharp- be warned.

                                                        http://www.amazon.com/Rachael-Ray-Ozi...

                                                        15 Replies
                                                        1. re: davepotwin
                                                          alanbarnes May 5, 2010 11:15 AM

                                                          The angle that's "sharpest and most efficient" depends on a number of factors. It isn't the same for every knife, and anybody who claims it is doesn't know what they're talking about. A 20-degree angle may be ideal for a Furi chef's knife, but to assume that that translates to knives by Hattori or Blazen or Henckels or Wusthof would be a mistake. And it certainly isn't ideal for any knife that was designed with an asymmetrical bevel.

                                                          1. re: davepotwin
                                                            Chemicalkinetics May 5, 2010 01:54 PM

                                                            Dave,

                                                            Most knvies today can handle a 20 dgree bevel and higher, so it is a good common denominator angle, but it is not the sharpest and most efficient angle. Knives made of stronger steel can take on a sharper angle and remain stable.

                                                            1. re: davepotwin
                                                              cowboyardee May 6, 2010 01:48 PM

                                                              It even also depends on what the knife is used for. I keep my Hiromoto gyuto at something like 8-10 degrees per side (actually the one side is steeper than the other, but that's neither here no there), and take extra care with it. It slices proteins as well as most yanagis (sushi knives) and can still handle major vegetable prep. At the same time I've been keeping a thin CCK cleaver at about 18 degrees/side, and using it for high speed, high impact work. Either knife would support a 15 deg/side edge with no problems.

                                                              A step further-

                                                              The edge on a Tadatsuna gyuto I used to own was down at like 6 deg/side, and the (YSS inox) steel in that knife wasn't even as hard and durable as the (aogami super) steel in my Hiromoto - the edge rolled all the damn time. But the geometry of the Tadutsuna sort of demanded a very acute edge and making it more obtuse would have defeated the purpose of a knife so thin and carefully ground.

                                                              The 'correct' angle, as Chem and Alan pointed out above, is a confluence of factors - what works best for the knife AND the person holding it.

                                                              1. re: cowboyardee
                                                                Chemicalkinetics May 6, 2010 02:04 PM

                                                                Cowboy,

                                                                I am very impressed that you can hold your knife against the stones at that low of an angle (6o). I lose control around 10o.

                                                                1. re: Chemicalkinetics
                                                                  cowboyardee May 6, 2010 02:24 PM

                                                                  The Tadutsuna was definitely a learning experience when I had it. You didn't really even hold an angle so much as lay the knife flat on the stone and then press the edge down.

                                                                  When I started sharpening, I used to abrade away the skin on the sides of my thumb because the only way for me to hold a consistent low angle was to rest my thumb on the stone and keep the spine on the same part of my thumb.

                                                                  Even my Hiromoto, sad to say, has some scratches up on the cladding from my earlier days of sharpening. I've gotten better with practice.

                                                                  1. re: cowboyardee
                                                                    Chemicalkinetics May 6, 2010 02:43 PM

                                                                    Got it. You were pretty much grinding your thumbs while sharpening the knife. :P

                                                                    It makes sense, this will make a very good consistent height and therefore angle. This is not a problem for a light sharpening job, but I cannot imagine putting a new bevel like this. It will hurt your thumbs for sure.

                                                                    1. re: Chemicalkinetics
                                                                      alanbarnes May 6, 2010 03:46 PM

                                                                      And as the thumb is ground away, the bevel angle gets shallower...

                                                                      1. re: alanbarnes
                                                                        Chemicalkinetics May 6, 2010 05:08 PM

                                                                        Ha ha ha. True, but I think that point the bevel is the least of all concern.

                                                                        1. re: alanbarnes
                                                                          cowboyardee May 6, 2010 08:41 PM

                                                                          As long as you give your thumb a break every hour or so to fill with scab and granulation tissue, your angle should be fine. Its a delicate balance.

                                                                          1. re: cowboyardee
                                                                            alanbarnes May 6, 2010 10:22 PM

                                                                            Maybe Bondo?

                                                                2. re: davepotwin
                                                                  s
                                                                  Seitan May 10, 2010 10:14 PM

                                                                  So, is this FURI Diamond supposed to be used like a steel, or a sharpener?

                                                                  Also, what chef knives have copper tipped handles? I don't quite follow.

                                                                  1. re: Seitan
                                                                    Chemicalkinetics May 10, 2010 11:26 PM

                                                                    I am answer for dave

                                                                    This knife has a coppertail.

                                                                    http://www.amazon.com/Furi-FX-8-Inch-...

                                                                    Furi diamond is suppposed to work as a knife sharpener, afterall it is diamond plated -- I think.

                                                                    1. re: Chemicalkinetics
                                                                      s
                                                                      Seitan May 13, 2010 06:14 PM

                                                                      Yes, though there are diamond steels out there as well.

                                                                      http://www.amazon.com/W%C3%BCsthof-9-...

                                                                      1. re: Seitan
                                                                        Chemicalkinetics May 13, 2010 06:32 PM

                                                                        :) Ok, I meant the Furi diamond works like a sharpener by removing metal and producing a new blade edge. Diamond steel rods also work like this as well. Traditional pure metal steels work like a honer by realigning the edge.

                                                                        Now, go buy your funny copper handle knives. High five.

                                                                        1. re: Seitan
                                                                          alanbarnes May 13, 2010 07:00 PM

                                                                          >>"The Wusthof 9 inch diamond steel can align your knife edge and unlike traditional steels, the Diamond Steel also contains fine abrasives that will sharpen your knife as well as re-aligning the blade. "<<

                                                                          So it isn't a traditional steel; it's a combination steel / sharpener.

                                                                  2. s
                                                                    Shann May 11, 2010 05:10 AM

                                                                    I have to agree with the people that have recommended the Spyderco Sharpmaker. It is not as easy to use as the metal grinding ones like Chef's Choice, but it is much much easier than trying to use plain old stones. It sets the ceramic sticks up in a V shape and you just go up and down. It is limited to 30-40 degrees.

                                                                    1. t
                                                                      TruHunter Feb 7, 2014 11:31 AM

                                                                      I'm a retired soldier and avid hunter of Deer, Bear and wild Boar. I know a few things about knives primarily tactical military knives and hunting knives.
                                                                      I have have always used a high carbon steel knife, they require more maintenance than stainless but a razor edge can be achieved by hand with natural stones and a leather strop!! I've been doing it for over 25+ years. I have no problem skinning and butchering a Deer or Hog and occasionally touching up the knife with a steel as I'm working. These $300 plus sharpeners are a waste of your hard earned money. Buy good steel and learn the craft of hand sharpening.

                                                                      1. m
                                                                        Muddirtt Feb 7, 2014 03:47 PM

                                                                        Edited. Double posted.

                                                                        1. m
                                                                          Muddirtt Feb 7, 2014 03:54 PM

                                                                          The "best knife sharpener?"
                                                                          Prepare to spend and/or learn. Here's a link for starters...
                                                                          http://www.TheBestKnifeSharpenerGuide...

                                                                          1. pegasis0066 Feb 11, 2014 12:24 PM

                                                                            I saw this on Field and Steam's website - Work Sharp Knife and Tool Sharpener

                                                                            http://www.worksharptools.com/knife/s...

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