The Best Practices on How to Use a Knife Sharpener

There are different techniques for sharpening a knife. It depends on what type of sharpener you have and what type of knife you are working on. To excel in this skill, you must be aware of all the options available to you. That is if you ever plan to learn the skill yourself because you have another recourse: to have your knives sharpened by another.

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There is a professional who handles blades of all forms and sizes. A good lot of them use grinding stones to perform the task. The drawback of letting a professional handle your knife is first, the cost. After a while, costs will continuously escalate because you need to pay the price every time you avail the service.

As opposed to having your own tool and learning how to use knife sharpener, which makes for a one-time payment only, this could take a toll on your budget after a while. Second, professional techniques in knife sharpening take away much metal from the material, reducing its lifespan in the process. Grindstones easily overwork blades, taking away more metal than necessary.

The Advantages of a Sharp Knife

There is a big difference between a dull knife and sharp knife. It is not only how precise the blade can cut through your food ingredients or any other material that you need to slice, dice, cube, or chop. It is also about how safe and comfortable you are as you go through the chores yourself.

A dull blade is dangerous. It will also require a lot of pressure from you to cut into food. When you put in more pressure to cut into your food ingredients, they have the tendency to slide through and towards your fingers.

Knife sharpening is also a preventive maintenance. Keeping the blade’s edges consistently sharp will help maintain their function and form.

Whether you need to sharpen your knife to achieve a razor sharp outcome or you only need a little polishing to maintain its form, you need a good knife sharpener in your kitchen as well as some know-how on the best practices of sharpening a knife.

Knife Sharpening Methods

There are three main techniques on how to use a knife sharpener. The first is stone sharpening, where some metal is removed from the knife to create a new, beveled edge. The second is honing, where the edge is realigned and polished. The third is stropping, where leather is commonly used. Please note that serrated knives are a totally different kind of knife species and require different tools and techniques.

For most, if not all, manually operated knife sharpeners, you need to exert some effort in putting your knife in the correct angle and performing a pull through motion. This is the case with sharpening stones, steels and those with rotating wheels and grinds.

In case of electric sharpeners, you only need to place your knife where it should be and turn the power on. Automatic units perform the task with accuracy and precision, requiring minimum effort from you. That makes them the practical choice for modern-day homemakers.

Knife Sharpening Tools

Different knife sharpening tools require different techniques in dealing with blades. So before we teach you how to use a knife sharpener, we will first show you how they are classified.

Sharpening Stone. This was taken from the earliest techniques that our ancestors used to sharpen their hunting tools. Back then, sharpening stones were only just about any shape and were purely sourced from natural stones, which are also known as water stones or whetstones. These days, however, sharpening stones are made of either ceramic, diamond, or whetstones and comes in a rectangular block and about one inch thick.

Sharpening Steel. This is characterized by a rod usually made of ceramic or steel, often used more for honing knives than actual sharpening.

Manual Sharpeners. Manual sharpeners come in different forms. The most common are those with chambers, where you can sharpen your knife in a pull through motion. Others have rotating wheels instead but require the same technique.

Electric Sharpeners. These are the most convenient types, which would not require effort from your end beyond the task of putting the knife onto the given slot and hitting a go button for the task to start.

Knife Sharpening System. The advantage of a knife sharpening system is its ability to deal with all types of blades. Because most would have various chambers for honing and sharpening both serrated and non-serrated blades, kitchen and sporty knives, and everything else in between, this is an amazing tool to add to your countertop.

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