Global Minosharp knife sharpener, Anybody used one? Pro's and Cons?
I'm tired of taking my Globals to a professional knife sharpener to have them say "I dont do Global Knives". Went to Sur La Table, they sell a 45.00 two wheeled wet system that the clerk said was mfg. by global for globals. Before I buy it - any comments? Also can the system(with a different angle) be used for German blades(Wustof,etc.?)
It's useless. Any of those "wheeled" sharpeners are of dubious value, since it is pretty hard to keep the proper angle when these wheels are moving around everywhere while you move the knife.
Get an Accusharp or Chef's Choice electric regular for your non-Global knives, and/or get a Chef's Choice electric for Japanese knives.
The wheeled thingys are crap, I don't care what the people at Sur La Table say, I don't even care if the distributor of the knives also 'recommend' these damned things. THEY ARE CRAP! I suspect that stores like to sell these things because there is almost no chance you can cut yourself using these things and they satisfy some kind of gadgety need...
Think about what the rolling action is doing to the angle that the will be wiped across the edge -- it is like the "helical scan" of a video tape head -- the edge will no longer be perpendicular to the axis of the blade! Depending on how fast you pull the knife and how mush pressure you apply to the thing it will dramatically change the effectiveness and there is no way to judge this.
Minosharp is not a bad company, they actually make a nice kit that is similar to the Lansky sharpening system (which is alos excellent, but a little moremore money). It is about $65 and comes with a holder and decent medium grit whetstone. You can get a set of guides that fit the holder to help maintain a uniform angle for >$10. The rails & holder will also work with finer grit whetstones. It take only a tiny bit more time to use this system, is of decent quality.
Of course stores probably HATE this as it tougher for them to explain, costs more, is some what fragile and has the potential for idiots to cut themselves with...
Bottom line on quality German knives is that with proper steeling you can go a very very very long time without sharpening. Harder Japanese knives, with their steeper angled edged, theoretically need to be steeled less and are harder to properly steel. Of course the trade-off is that the fine edge will not stand up to a lot of the typical bad habits that most cooks inflict on knives. Once that razor edge on a Japanese knife is dulled you will want to resharpen it. Traditional Japanese chefs sharpen their knives much more frequently than do Western chefs do in part to the dulling that comes from wear.
The systems I described are FAR better values that the do-hickeys. They can be used for any type of cutlery and have much better results.
I actually disagree. While the device you mention is not going to get your knives as sharp as a whetstone or a visit to a good sharpener, it will restore a decent edge, and the slots (together with a steady hand) help to keep the knife on path. I use mine all the time (although its true I am crap with a steel). An electric sharpener is a whole different level of investment.
The Minosharp's wheels are set at an angle specific to Global knives
(18 degrees I think vs. 27 for euro knives) so I wouldn't reccomend
it for das Wustof. I've had good luck with mine so far, I follow the
Minosharp with a few strokes on a Fine (800+) diamond stone and
the edge is scary sharp once more...your mileage may vary.
I was gifted with a set of Global knives several years ago. I already had a set of Henkels but immediately fell in love with the Globals. I looked around on the internet a bit to find out how to care for them and then set out for Sur La Table and Williams Sonoma. At both places the sales staff were totally ignorant on how to care for these knives - I didn't know much but I at least knew the sharpening angles were different. I finally found the telephone # for the Global rep in New York and called them. I was transferred around to their knife "guru" and he told me to purchase the Minosharp which I did. He also said I should have the knives professionally sharpened at some point depending on my usage and care of them and that I could always ship the knives to Global if I could not find someone local. I have used the Minosharp and have been pleased with the results. I've also used both the Minohsharp and the Accusharp for the Henkels and both do a decent job. According to the guy at Global it is not a substitute for having them professionally done but it is a good way to sharpen them if you are not inclined to use whetstones at home.
Ross Cutlery in downtown L.A. (on 3rd St., across from Grand Central Market) sharpens Global knives.
There's a Minosharp for the Global and a Minosharp plus for traditional western knives. Some of the sales material says the Minosharp plus can be used for Globals. Don't try it, I did and ruined the edge on a perfectly good Global paring knife.
The Minosharp plus did a great job on my Wusthof. It's a good sharpener, but nothing beats a whetstone for results. I had to go back to my diamond whetstone to restore my Global paring knife.
For what it's worth, I purchased my Global Pros at the Yoshikin shop in Japan. When I made the purchase they suggested using the Minosharp III only. It was an expensive trip, so I took their word for it and haven't had any troubles.