A sharp knife is a useful tool in the kitchen. You can cut through carrots, onions, and even tough meat with ease! But how do you keep your knives sharp? There are many ways to sharpen a knife.
In this blog post, we will discuss two different approaches for keeping your blades razor-sharp: manual sharpening that uses whetstones or abrasives and electric sharpening that uses mechanical means.
Honing by Manual Sharpeners
Manual sharpeners make a good choice for honing blades that are not too dull. Examples of these manual sharpeners are whetstones and diamond stones. They are considered manual because they are not powered by electricity.
Sharpening knives using manual sharpeners may use the following steps:
- Place the knife blade flat on a whetstone at about 20 degrees. The angle for sharpening is based on what type of metal you are working with and how dull your knife is.
- Apply pressure to the blade in a circular motion. This is done by using your thumb and index finger, or alternatively just one hand.
- Repeat the process on the other side of your knife blade.
- To know when you are done, check the blade for its sharpness. A well-sharpened blade will have a smooth surface and will be able to slice paper very easily.
- Finally, make sure to clean your knife and sharpener after the process has been completed. At first glance, this may seem like an unnecessary step but as you sharpen more knives in the future, you will see how easily residue can accumulate on the blade and create a build-up of metal shavings which will eventually dull your knife.
Pros: Cheap and easy-to-use sharpener for knives that are not too dull; does not need any electric power.
Cons: Sharpening will take longer than an electric grinder, may damage metal if taken too far.
Honing by Electric Sharpeners
Electric sharpeners are a great alternative for those who want to sharpen their knives without having the skills of using stones and other types of sharpeners. The electric sharpener can be bought in different shapes, sizes, and price ranges. There are also many electric knife sharpener models which come as an integrated unit with built-in blade storage or they can be purchased as a stand-alone unit.
The best thing about an electric knife sharpener is that the user does not have to spend time maintaining the device. Using sharpeners of this sort, you may want to follow the following steps to ensure success.
- Check on the electrical connection. Make sure the machine is unplugged and that there are no electrical cords or other things in reach of your hand.
- Next, hold the knife against the coarse rod at a 45-degree angle to get a rough edge on both sides of your blade.
- When you sharpen the blade on a coarse rod, make sure that it is not at an angle of greater than 15 degrees and there are no more than five passes per side.
- Next, move to the finer rods until your knife becomes razor sharp.
- Then move back to the coarser ones if they were used in order to remove any metal residue.
- Finally, use the stropping powder to finish off your blade with a polished edge and remove any metal particles that are left on it.
- The edges will have been honed at an angle of about 20-degrees; this should leave you with a sharp knife that is razor-sharp.
- After honing is done, make sure to wipe the blade and sharpener clean with a dry cloth.
Pros: Using electric sharpeners to hone your knife requires less time and expertise than sharpening a blade by hand.
Cons: Electric sharpeners can wear down the metal on your knife if it is not used properly or given enough time to cool off in between use. Also, in order to work, they require a power source.
In the end, you have to be confident in your knife sharpening skills. Knives are a very personal thing so it’s important that they feel right for you and that they’re able to cut what you need them to with ease. It will take some time but if you follow these steps, keep practicing, and sharpen regularly – eventually knives should become second nature!
Sharpening is an art form just like cooking or painting- no one can teach this skill better than the experience itself. Keep your knives razor-sharp and make the most out of them.