Electronic knife Sharpening or by hand which is better?

Discussion in 'Cooking Knife Reviews' started by emmbai90, Mar 16, 2014.

  1. emmbai90

    emmbai90

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    I know this has been discussed a lot but i'm wondering as a beginner in knives and sharpening i know nothing about sharpening knives except you sharpen it on the rim flat ways, i would really like to know what value methods i can use to sharpen my knife set, there is one i've been eyeing and it's this one: AnySharp Global World's Best Knife Sharpener (Classic) 

    I've looked at the reviews and people say it's really good to use and i have a flat surface to use it on, and since i have to get into sharpening i would like to know if this is also the best long term thing to use at a value price? i've heard a lot about granite stones too and how well they sharpen knives, there is also this compact little sharpener that people think is great and i love compact items so id definitely love something compact:   What do you think of those two? and do you have any to recommend?. Also do you know any handy videos that teaches how to sharpen in different ways?.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 18, 2014
  2. petemccracken

    petemccracken

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  3. kaneohegirlinaz

    kaneohegirlinaz

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    great advice Pete, @emmbai90, maybe you'd like to  try the search bar at the top of the page, Chef Talk has been around for over 13 years and MANY topics have gone around the block several times over.  That might be helpful for you?
     
  4. emmbai90

    emmbai90

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    I did look at the others but mostly it's expensive products people mention not much discussion of value products say £15 and under, i'm considering a stone and i found a playlist from one thread for sharpening videos but that's for Japanese knives mines just an Ehos value set and they are really good for the price, great that they come with steak knives and folks as they help when one day i get to putting stuff like steaks and burgers under the oven so i can just fish it out with one of the steak knives

    I'm considering getting a sharpening block and there are cheap ones too but i don't want to mess my knives up ether, they have a nice flat rim though so i imagine they would work well on a stone block? i heard it takes a while though on a block.
     
  5. cheflayne

    cheflayne

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    Like anything, with practice a person gets faster. I sharpen my knife once a week on stones. Takes me about two minutes.
     
  6. galley swiller

    galley swiller

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    I agree with Pete McCracken and cheflayne about hand sharpening (though I respectfully disagree about even suggesting the minosharp).

    About reviews: I know it sounds good to read the review of users - I do it myself - but I am primarily looking to see how many negative reviews there are and what they have to say about the faults of a product.  That will often tell you much more than  the positive reviews about the quality of a product.

    Manual pull-through sharpeners at best leave an extremely rough edge.  That rough edge will initially cut through your food being prepped, but there's a very high cost of wear on the edge of your blade, and a very rough edge is much more prone to dulling.  It can be a vicious circle.

    First suggestion - get a ceramic honing rod, preferably as long as possible.  There are several on Amazon.uk for about 20 to 30 pounds.  That will partially slow the dulling process and give you a bit of time before you will need to really sharpen.  I would recommend the 12 inch (30cm) Idahone, but I did not find it on the Amazon.uk website.  It's possible some other retailer in the UK sells it.

    Second, use a good quality wood cutting board, to keep the edge of your knives from dulling faster

    Third, read the following post:  http://forums.egullet.org/topic/26036-knife-maintenance-and-sharpening/

    Fourth, watch on-line videos by Murray Carter, Jon Broida and at the Chef Knives To Go website.

    Fifth, search the ChefTalk forums (including the "Cooking Knife Reviews" to see what you can do.

    Sixth, get a general, 800 to 1200 grit waterstone (with an absolute minimum face size of 50 mm x 200 mm) and start practicing.

    If you can't afford the price of a semi-decent stone, then look up the "Magic Mousepad Sharpening Trick" and practice that trick with some "beater" knife which isn't worth much money (but you are willing to practice with)'

    If you REALLY don't have money, watch Murray Carter use a concrete block and some Japanese newspapers to get a knife sharp!

    It's not magic, it's not high tech brainlessly simple, it does require persistence in learning - but that skill will be with you the rest of your career.

    Galley Swiller
     
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2014
  7. chrismit

    chrismit

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    There is no question sharpening by hand is going to give better results than electric or pull through sharpeners. However, everyone doesn't want to sharpen by hand. The reason you don't see many inexpensive pull through sharpeners recommended is because the majority if them are not good ie terrible. The thing about the minosharp is it has a grit progression for some minimal polishing. However, you say you aren't using japanese knives, sounds like you are using cheaper stainless knives. Not familiar with the brand you mentioned but I'm just hazarding a guess. If that's the case you won't get the benefit from something like the minosharp due to sharpening angle and your knives potential inability to handle the polish level. Also the sharpener is likely to cost more than your knife. I would either start with those knives and learn hand sharpening, something like a 500 grit stone and 1-2k stone or try out one of the cheaper sharpeners. Maybe one of the European chef choice machines. However in the event you purchase a japanese style knife the chef choice will no longer serve any purpose If you hand sharpen your knives can likely handle something around a 20deg angle, maybe even more obtuse. If you decide to move into japanese knives you will need to budget something for sharpening.
     
  8. emmbai90

    emmbai90

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    Nice tips here :D thanks :) i'm definitely on a budget, i got some money from college after a finished my last course, apparently for any coasts i might of encountered during the course but they gave me way more than i actually spent lol but i've probably spent most of it as i bought some things for my room that i needed too then recently £16 on a good pair of chef pants so i've probably got like £95 - £100 left, i will probably come into more money soon once i get into an apprenticeship although i have to save at least £500 to upgrade my PC. I think i already have a steel sharpening stick, i put the amazon link above of my knife set, it's quite a nice set i paid almost £25 for it and i think it's stainless steel yes and has a rivet on them, so not too shabby at all for a starter kit, i think a steel stick is only for honing though it's not going to sharpen my knives. It will only take me a little over 2 months though to save £500 although i might need more but for the rest of the time i'll definitely save for a waterstone and a diamond stone, i think because my dad was in mechanics when he was younger too he could probably show me properly how to sharpen.
     
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2014
  9. emmbai90

    emmbai90

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    I found this great video on sharpening and honing sticks, i think i might get a sharpening stick (unless mine is a sharpening stick i'm not sure), it seems a whole lot easier and cheaper than buying a waterstone because then you need something else to keep smoothing down but sticks last ages while stones grind down eventually, my set will definitely need less sharpening too because it's steel and it keeps it's edge longer than other knives, so definitely easier to maintain. 

     
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 18, 2014
  10. petemccracken

    petemccracken

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    @emmbai90, hones and "sharpening sticks" (a REAL misnomer!) do not "sharpen" and definitely cannot replace "stones" !

    Hones, which include steels, are used to realign the edge, think changing from j to i , stones grind away metal to go from u to v, gigantic difference!
     
  11. cheflayne

    cheflayne

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    I have had my waterstones for a few years now and they are nowhere near worn out. I use them once a week. I keep them flat with a piece of drywall screen that cost me £1. My last set of stones lasted 25 years and only had to be replaced because they were stolen.

    You mentioned being on a budget and I can certainly appreciate that. I dont believe in spending money frivously even if not on a budget. I scrimp on my work clothes, chef pants bought for £6, but not on my tools. It is my view that high priced clothes don't really perform any better than inexpensive clothes. I don't feel the same about tools, plus they will last a lifetime or close to it if properly cared for.

    £16 could have bought you a waterstone that would definitely outlive a pair of chef pants. Just something to think about at this stage of your career.
     
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2014
  12. dillbert

    dillbert Banned

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    Pete -

    "ceramic rods" actually exist in more than one form.

    some are intended as straighteners - aka similar/same as a "steel"

    others have a more aggressive girt and will in fact aggressively remove metal and "sharpen"

    see

    http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=ceramic+v+sharpeners&qpvt=ceramic+v+sharpeners&FORM=IGRE

    confusion absolutely abounds - see the recent post suggesting that for the sharpest edge possible, use a smooth glass rod.

    oops. not gonna work anywhey anyway anyhow - but it sounds good to folk who never looked an an edge under 10x mag.

    a static V-rod ceramic is really not much different from a pull thru V-notch carbide "sharpener"
     
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2014
  13. nicko

    nicko Founder of Cheftalk.com Staff Member

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  14. lennyd

    lennyd

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    I don't want the OP to think I am avoiding answering his inquiry by suggesting to review the countless great threads and discussions here that detail the pros and cons of the various sharpening methods, but much as sharpening isn't rocket science etc does still require a process of learning no matter if your going to use stones free hand or any one of the many jigs or electrics, and to be totally honest it is common for us all to have more questions after gaining a little knowledge and then you will have better questions and therefore answers that are more suited to your needs.

    Keep in mind that similar to how good knives are not cheap getting the proper equipment to get a good edge isn't either,

    Same applies to the ways one can gain the skills to get good results on stones. It just doesn't come easy or inexpensive.

    To over simplify think of it as cheap knife = cheap sharpener and expensive knife = expensive sharpening kit etc
     
  15. emmbai90

    emmbai90

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    They are a pair of those new smart fitting pants with the draw string but the other cheaper pairs are really tight and small and i'm a big person, £16 is a bargain for them as they are mostly selling at £32 - £36.
     
    it does help though a bit to make sure your edge is competely straight, i've been looking at angles of sharpening and if you get the angle slightly off then you can use a stick and it straighten it up again and it helps in the worst case where you round it too much.
    Mine is a cheaper Ethos stainless steal set which would keep a longer edge, if i have to buy a waterstone then i imagine that would be adequate enough for my knives to keep them really sharp, i just bought them for a starter set really but i need a bigger chef knife as the one in it doesn't have a big enough heel for my comfort, but i'll buy a stainless steel one to match my set, i get one for £5 or £6 from Asda. So i can definitely get some practice in with my set.
     
  16. lennyd

    lennyd

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    I am not familiar with Ethos, but have found my low end knives actually get good results from less expensive oil stones (using water not oil) rather than wet stones.

    I still use the wet stone on some of them for the final stages, but most don't get any advantage from doing so.
     
  17. emmbai90

    emmbai90

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    My set has a good rivet on them and they are nearly as sharp as expensive knives (although they aren't that sharp right now since whoever sharpened then left them a bit blunt, i've used them once just to test them out but they certainly sliced through good), i reckon they can get a nice edge if sharpened properly, certainly got a bargain there as they are almost like professional knives but i'm always good at finding bargains, i think i may post what i find on here for people here in the UK who need good quality stuff for cheaper, i always seem to look at the right times when deals are on expensive uniforms and tools. Are your knives stainless steel?.
     
  18. ziggyb

    ziggyb

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    Option for those that want to try.
    Short learning curve, inexpensive and belts can be found in any grit including leather with compounds.
    It is fast at 3200 rpm but once you learn to move the steel and have a water bucket backup, lots and lots of thing can be done.

    A Harbor Freight 1 x 30 belt sander.

    look it up on youtube and various knife forums.
    It is what it is, but for the $, you cannot beat it as long as you understand to move accordingly and not build up heat.

    http://m14forum.com/edged-weapons/1...x30-sander-my-favorite-sharpening-system.html
     
  19. ziggyb

    ziggyb

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    Not as scary or hard to deal with as you think.
    Paper Wheels run on 3200 rpm polishers work great and are common as well.

    Next step down is 1750rpm for 1x42 belt machines for $250 and up.

    As long as you know what you're doing and pay attention, all is well.
    In the video, you can see the guy is not sweating it.

    Now polishing cloth wheels that grab at that speed are a whole nother ball game :)
     
  20. dillbert

    dillbert Banned

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    a ten mile diameter pulley running at 3200 rpm is something different.

    perhaps one should think in belt speed / fpm / etc?