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Best Sharper 2019 • 0 Sharpers Reviews

What is a knife sharpener?

Sharpen knifeThe knife sharpener is a essential kitchen tool, with which the blunt blade of a knife or scissors can be sharpened again. It is not an elaborate construction, but usually consists only of a simple**grip** and the abrasive material. This can be ceramic, steel or even diamond – the depends not least on the purchase price , which moves in a quite wide range.

Already at a quick glance on the pictures in our knife sharpener test comparison 2019 it is noticeable that the individual models partly clearly differ – this is quite simply due to the fact that despite a very similar basic principle** there are different types**.

Knife sharpeners are also available in the retail trade under related names such as sharpening steel, whetstone, sharpening bench or sharpening hat – read more about this in one of the following sections.

How does a knife sharpener work?

Graef Diamond Knife Sharpener CC 120 DThe underlying principle of a knife sharpener is very simple – so simple that simple models are available for only fewer Euro. Although these cheap variants have their weaknesses and not really a chance to be chosen by us as the knife sharpener comparison test winner, for rudimentary purposes they are solide to use. Whatever abrasive material is used – the grinding process remains basically the same.

With the widespread manually guided knife sharpeners, the abrasive material is quickly pulled by hand several times from both sides over the blade of the blunt knife. This causes the bent edge of the blade (the technical term for this is Grat) to straighten up again and the knife regains its sharpness. For this to really work, the abrasive material must be harder than the blade to be sharpened.

By the way, this is one of the reasons why particularly inexpensive knife sharpeners often do not have the desired effect : They are made of too soft steel and cannot generate enough pressure. Some grindstones are soaked** with water** before starting to grind. This is intended to protect the material and achieve a higher degree of sharpness at the same time. Also here we reveal later more.

Advantages & Application areas

The advantages and the application possibilities are quite clearly recognizable, but we will still go into the important plus points here. With a little talent, knife care is easy to do. Grinding is not a difficult task and does not require much time. Arger and a larger loss of time are the disadvantages, if the knife with the machining of luxury foods does not cut correctly and the working process takes longer time. In addition there are the later expenses for an unavoidable new purchase.

View of the Vulkanus Knife Sharpener Professional 09HS001 under TestA look at a detailed Knife Sharpener Test proves that really high-quality models also have their price. It may even be possible to buy a noble new knife for this. However, you should consider that a knife sharpener can sharpen and preserve a complete knife set. Most experienced chefs have their knife favorites and these have good handling. They don't want to do without it and a knife sharpener keeps it up to date.

The different knife sharpeners deal with the subject of sharpening in their own individual way and possess personal strengths. A correct knife sharpener not only sharpens a blunt blade, but also delays the process of blunting. This is a great advantage, because an actual sharpening process contributes to the removal of the material.

With some wear and tear, the knife becomes unusable at some point and with timely care, the knife's durability is significantly increased. In the long run, this means a certain saving, because noble knife sets actually strain the budget. The knives get a longer durability and better function through a knife sharpener.

The plus points of an exhibition sharpener

  • In the case of knives, efficiency is increased and durability extended
  • Stumps Blades become sharp again
  • Very easy handling
  • The budget is credited in the long term: Knives are not bought so often

Continental care instead of expensive new purchase

With a bit of exercise the care of the knives is very easy by hand. Grinding is in itself no heavy activity and does not take up too much time. The low effort is countered by anger and greater loss of time if the knife does not cut properly during cooking and each operation takes longer. In addition there are the costs for an sooner or later unavoidable new acquisition.

Although a look at our detailed knife sharpener test comparison shows that really good models also have a price for which you might even get a high quality new knife, you should bear in mind that a single knife sharpener can care for and maintain a whole set of knives. Most experienced chefs have their favourite knife, which lies particularly well in the hand and which one would not like to do without – the knife sharpener keeps it fresh.

Prevention is better than resharpening

The various knife sharpeners each work in their own way and have**individual strengths** (more on this in the following section). With the correct knife sharpener not only can a blunt blade be sharpened again, but the process of blunting can also be delayed delayed for some time. This is a great advantage, because during the actual sharpening process material is always removed.

This means a certain amount of wear and tear, which eventually makes the knife unusable – with early care, the life of a knife can be extended significantly. This also means a certain saving in the long run, because really high-quality knife sets (a single one is hardly enough for a real cook) cost a**beautiful stick of money**. With the knife sharpener, knives will hold longer and function better.

What types of knife sharpeners are there?

Almost all listed species of knife sharpeners are also included in our comprehensive knife sharpener test. We have already indicated above that there are certain sensible differences, which we will discuss in more detail here. It can be quite wages to have more than one knife sharpener in the house.

Manually and electrically operated knife sharpeners

The main part of the currently available knife sharpeners is still designed for manual operation. A little exercise with skill is part of it and allows the precise care of the valued knives. Nowadays you can hardly find a mechanical, hand-held device for which there is not also a comfortable, **electrically operated equivalent**. Sharpening knives can now also be done at the touch of a button.

Sharpening steel

The sharpening steel or rod is the knife sharpener for everyday use. Professionals such as butchers or professional chefs even use it several times a day. This is also necessary, because with high-quality knives the cutting edge of the blade is only a few millimetres thick and accordingly sensitive. Even with most careful treatment it is impossible to avoid that the pointed and wafer-thin cutting edge bends gradually.

A timely and regular use of a sharpening steel can counteract this very unpleasant effect – at least for a while. If the sharpening rod is repeatedly pulled over the blade on both sides, the bent edge will straighten up again and the knife will regain its cutting power. However, this effect cannot be achieved as often as you like, sooner or later the use of stronger means will be necessary.

Grinding stone

whetstoneA a much stronger medium than the sharpening steel is the well-known whetstone, which can also be used to sharpen knives that cannot be sharpened with an ordinary sharpening rod >any more . The linguistic distinction in trade is not always as clear as we find it here: A sharpening rod made of a other material as steel, such as ceramic or diamond, can also serve as a grinding stone.

In contrast to simple sharpening steel, when using a correct grindstone the bent tip is not only simply straightened up again, but a fine layer material is removed. The blunt knife is given a completely new cut, but also loses a little substance. For this reason, the use of a whetstone is recommended only for blades that have become really dull, for other care it is better to use a sharpening steel beforehand.


The Waterstone is a really exotic solution and is regarded as an insider tip among knife lovers and all other connoisseurs of the matter. This method is exotic because it is from the Asian region and is especially recommended for the knives of Japanese provenance which are popular in this country. Sharpening with a water stone is the most time-consuming of all variants, but produces outstanding results.

Strictly speaking, the waterstone is also a whetstone, which is used not dry, but is soaked with water before sharpening. The knife to be sharpened is pulled slowly, just too meditative, at a 15 degree angle over the stone. In order for the grinding process to be successful, peace and patience are required above all, but the work can have a very relaxing effect. Small disadvantage of these stones: They are not break-proof.

Sharpening device

Work Sharp Sharpener Knife and Tool SharpenerSharpeners are the only knife sharpeners in our knife sharpener test comparison, which is also available in an electrically operated version. Nevertheless, sharpeners are of course also offered in a hand-held version; both systems have produced high-quality representatives. A sharpening tool is used as an alternative to a whetstone if the sharpening steel is no longer sufficient.

The grinding rollers or grinding wheels of the grinding device, like the whetstone, carry heavy guns and remove material. Particularly recommended are sensitive ceramic rollers which process the burr so carefully that no part of the blade breaks off. However, it is not always easy to pull the knife evenly and at the right angle through the rotating rollers – especially with electrical appliances, unattractive cracks and notches can occur due to incorrect use.

So we tested the knife sharpeners

Our thorough knife sharpener test comparison is based on clear corner points, which in principle apply to all models to be tested. Here we present the points that we pay particular attention to with every knife sharpener.

Price/Performance ratio

This testing stone is the hardest whetstone not without its: Are**the things offered and the things required** in a solid ratio to each other? Not always is the cheapest offer really a bargain, and sometimes a higher price can really pay off – we clarify the true facts in the knife sharpener test.

knife sharpener type and grinding material used

sharpenThis is the most important informationeverything: What kind of knife sharpeneris offered? Is it a sharpening stick, a whetstone or a sharpener? And**what grinding material** is used? As we have already experienced, the differences between stone, steel, ceramic or diamond are considerable.

Grain size

The grain size determines the basic alignment of the knife sharpener. A coarse grain is intended for particularly dull or even**damaged blades**, i.e. a kind of repair grinding. A fine grain , on the other hand, is used to slightly resharpen the material. There are combinations of both types on the market.


The length of the knife sharpener is not the least factor that determines whether and how well**bigger blades** can be sharpened. The rule of thumb is simple: The longer the knife sharpener is, the longer the blade that can be machined with it may be. Our knife sharpener test indicates the accurate measurements of each model.

Special features

Everything that cannot be summarized under a single keyword is still not disregarded by us: If the knife sharpener has a**special handle**, it is dishwasher-safe, easy to handle, easy to clean, especially durable – every glorious sight and every shamewe register and evaluate.

What do I have to look out for when buying a knife sharpener?

We have now explained in detail what we our special attention are focusing on when testing a knife sharpener. But our criteria are not always equally important for every potential buyer. The best way to find out whether a knife sharpener meets your personal preferences is to answer a few questions.

How much money will I spend?

An unlimited budget is not always available, and it certainly doesn't hurt to understand in advance how much money the new knife sharpener may cost. However, it should always be taken into consideration that especially the particularly favourable models often have poor abrasive material (e.g. soft sharpening steel) and in the long term cause more costs than savings.

Where is my focus? Care or repair?

As we have already learned, knife sharpeners have different strengths and weaknesses. Decisive is the question, if a still intact knife should be maintained , or if I prefer to sharpen an already dull knife again . It may also be worth purchasing several models for all possible applications; some knife sharpeners also support both purposes by combining different grain thicknesses.

Which knives would I like to sharpen?

The Capability of the desired knife sharpener also depends on the Selection of the knife to be sharpened. For long blades, of course, a correspondingly large knife sharpener is required, for very sharp blades a**hard grinding material** is required.

Particularly with the popular exotic blades from Japan caution is advised, as these exceed many commercially available knife sharpeners in terms of hardness.

The leading manufacturers

There is a wide range of knife sharpeners on the market, partly from famous manufacturers. Here we present the most important names from our large knife sharpener test comparison short.

  • Graef
  • Gräwe
  • WMF
  • Desert Yard
  • Twin
Founded in 1920, over 90 years ago, the assortment of the German company Graef mainly consists of curtain rods, wooden toys and drawing board pins. These focal points have changed not least due to the turmoil of two world wars and a global economic crisis; today Graef stands for electrical household appliances and professional cutting technology in particular.
The German family business Gräwe has been known for the sale of high-quality cooking utensils since its foundation in 1970. In addition to iron pans and pots as in grandma's times, high-quality knife blocks also belong to the range – and**knife sharpeners** to keep them in good condition.
The company WMF began at the end of the 19th century in the tranquil town of Württemberg, from where its name derives: WMF stands for Württembergische Metallwaren-**F**abrik.WMF is one of the most important providers in the household and hotel goods segment. In addition to WMF itself, the widespread and well-known brands**_Hepp, Kaiser, Schaerer_** and Silit also belong to the traditional German company.
Wüsthof is a traditional German company which is managed by the founding family in the seventh generation. The iconic logo with the white trident on a red background is known in more than 90 countries and stands for high-quality cutlery.
Zwilling is the full name Zwilling J. A. Henckels is known worldwide for the production of high-quality chef's knives, cookware and cosmetics. The history of the German traditional brand goes back to 1731, when the Solinger cutler Peter Henckels registered his zodiac sign, the twin, as a handicraft symbol – so Zwilling is without doubt one of the most time-honoured brand names in the world.

Internet vs. specialist shops: Where is the best place to buy my knife sharpener?

When purchasing kitchen appliances of all kinds, the stationary specialist trade still has a good reputation. The often attractive pricing on the Internet is pursued with minimal mistrust. With precise approach there is no reason here. Unlimited opening hours prevail on the Internet, since online shops do not have a time limit and invite you around the clock for a virtual tour. You can visit the shop at any time, regardless of whether it is on weekends, public holidays or at night.

Where do I buy a knife sharpener?With the smartphone or the Tablet you are location-independent and the purchase can be realized from anywhere. You can order the knife sharpener during the coffee break in the office or from the gym. After the order the knife sharpener will be delivered to your home. If you are not present, you can specify delivery to acquaintances or neighbours. The Retail is intended for buyers with fixed times and places. no case it is fun to find out a parking space in the full city after the end of working hours and ultimately wait in the long queue to pay for the product. The Internet spares them from all these things.

The time of the specialized salesmen is past and the advance better consultation of the retail trade is already nostalgia. Good sales personnel is hardly to be found anymore. In many places savings are made and this also applies to qualified employees. Detailed product pages and better advice are offered here by online shops in conjunction with expert OnlineGuides like a voluminous Blade sharpener-Test comparison 2017.

From time to time it can be seen that salespeople often focus more on their own sales revenue than on the needs of the customer. This is not always true and there are enough good and sincere sellers present, but it is problematic to differentiate the black sheep. The specialist trade likes to use the argument that it is only possible to test a corresponding product on site. This is true, but it is also probability great not to get a whole new article. In shops, customers often test and inspect a knife sharpener. In the end, another offer is preferred. The selection is a criterion for the purchase decision. The specialized trade is limited in most cases to few current knife sharpeners, which write very good sales figures.

The internet provides a suitable offer and a test report for almost every knife sharpener. This often helps to relieve the strain on the budget. Older devices are also often very cheaply available and the requirements of numerous users are fully met.

However, these knife sharpeners can almost only be determined on the Internet. If a certain knife sharpener is not available from a dealer, simply click on another online shop and you will almost always reach your desired knife sharpener with this method.

The selection from all German shops can be found on the Internet and are only a mouse click away. With a Purchase in Retail you are dependent on a few shops in the immediate vicinity or you have to accept long journeys to find an alternative. Despite the public opinion the purchase of a knife sharpener on the Internet is ultimately even safer than from the local dealer. On the Internet, buyers get the same profit as all retailers. You get the complete legal warranty and a prospective warranty of the manufacturer.

Furthermore, the so-called Distance Selling Act allows the return of purchased items without giving reasons within 14 days. The customer does not have to provide a reason. For example, if the knife sharpener does not meet your requirements, simply send it back. If there is no impairment, for example due to damage to the housing or similar, the full purchase price will be refunded.

As a rule, this option is not offered by specialist dealers. Some shops offer a similar service, but this is only goodwill. In the local trade there is never a legal claim to a return. The most important point in the decision between specialized trade and Internet is certainly the price. The winner is entirely the Internet. Only very few exceptions are online shops always cheaper than the local trade. Distributors bear significantly low costs. Expensive sales staff is not locatable and a simple warehouse is sufficient in contrast to an attractive salesroom.

Numerous providers can offer lower prices due to the mass. With millions sold articles a low sales margin is sufficient. For the retailer it is a threat to his existence if he only sells a few hundred articles. All advantages of online shops are often immediately passed on to the customer. You have no other option. Users on the Internet can immediately compare current prices with just a few clicks. Only if a Onlineshop provides good offers will it be listed in the results of the price machines above. This ensures the interest of Internet users.

Knife sharpener test winner on the Internet order and buy onlineThe price pressure at the retailer is only slight and therefore retailer have more independence in pricing. For customers, this is in most cases associated with disadvantages. The storage capacities of the retail trade are limited because a sufficient presentation must take place. The online shop has a virtual salesroom, which can be expanded at will. In addition, you can usually see immediately on the Internet whether the desired article is available and the shipping time is also displayed.

When you visit a retailer, you will often receive a replacement product because the preferred item was not in stock and you did not go the hard way for nothing. After a complete check, the Internet offers too many positive aspects to dispense with when buying a knife sharpener. The specialized trade represents a good selection, if you need a knife sharpener as soon as possible. If there is a period of 1-2 days, you should always prefer the Internet. An inexpensive, comfortable and safe purchase is guaranteed.

Things to Know & Advisor

The history of the knife sharpener

Whether as an indispensable carving tool or as a questionable means of conflict resolution: the history of man with the knife is long and difficult to grasp – and the problem of the blade becoming dull is just as old.

In the beginning the knife was a disposable product

The first cutting attempts were made by man with sharply serrated stones, which were simply thrown away and replaced by new stones when they had become blunt. Already the first experiences with the knife were marked by the large and deep impression made on the effect of the sharpness.

The knife quickly became indispensable – as a tool and as a weapon. Man quickly began to be satisfied not only with the good nature had given him, but, unlike monkeys, began to make tools out of stone and steel. The lost sharpness of the precious blades has always been a great nuisance.

The knife maker was also soon the knife grinder

The development of knife making was soon accompanied by the art of knife repair, which was constantly refined by resourceful minds. Especially in the early days of the knife, this art was highly regarded and could only be practiced by humans with great skill. Sharp knives were considered treasure to be guarded.

A profession in its own right: knife and scissor grinder

However, the high recognition for the profession of knife and scissor grinder has not survived the centuries . Instead, sharpening blunt blades became a poorly paid occupation for the travelling people; similar to tinkerers and ragmen – their services were used, but no importance was attached to them.

Self the man (and the woman)

Today the sharpening of knives and scissors is everyday life for many hobby chefs and nothing special more. Because knives are now also very cheap to get – at least those for simple domestic use – many people prefer to buy a new one than to care for the care of the blunt blade.

Numbers, data, facts about the knife sharpener

We have already revealed a lot about the knife sharpener in our big knife sharpener test comparison 2019, talked about our own criteria and provided a guide for selecting the right model. A few points and helpful information can still be added.

The user is also important

A rule applies to all knife sharpeners, from which our knife sharpener comparative winner is no exception: First of all it depends on the user. How effectively a knife sharpener works depends primarily on the skill of the user – and that means that high-priced quality models always require a certain amount of practice.

Sharp is safer than blunt

Cautious natures tend to be particularly reluctant to sharpen knives – after all, they believe that a well sharpened blade increases the risk of injury considerably. Curiously, however, the experts here agree that the opposite is true: With a sharp knife, much less pressure must be exerted when cutting, it cuts better through its target and the danger of slipping decreases significantly – also because the leading hand less tires quickly.

The special features of Asian knives

Lovers of Asian, especially Japanese knives should be very careful when purchasing and using a knife sharpener. Japanese knives are usually significantly harder than their Western European counterparts. Many knife sharpeners are simply not hard enough to sharpen these blades, and are simply cut themselves.

Hand work is trump

For really high-quality knives from the top field, sharpening should be done by hand. The particularly expensive blades are often very sensitiveand tend to anneal when used with a motor-driven grinding machine. Manual sharpening with feeling and skill is indispensable with such knives and produces noticeably better results than faster automatic sharpening – this also applies to the belt grinder discussed below.

Grain size

The coarse grain size of 200 to 400 is used for repair grinding. This concerns the repair of minimal breakouts in order to prepare even very dull knives for the actual sharpening. Due to its characteristics, this coarse grain is rarely used for knives in classical use. The average grain is between 800 and 1.000. Waterstones with this grain are perfect for polishing. In the case of a normal use of knives, these are very often used.

The filigree grain between 3,000 and 4,000 is used for fine sanding. These are used after sanding with a medium grain size. This not only increases the sharpness of the blade, but also the longevity of the cut.

A waterstone with a very filigree grain size of 6,000 to 10,000 is used for polishing. The sharpness and the durability is increased again by these polishing stones. However, only after the preparatory work by the normal and fine sanding can be used. These polishing stones are not recommended for beginners with water stones. They represent a challenge for professionals. With special devices it is also possible to sharpen knives with serrated edge. The noble knife from Japan is an exception, however. In most cases, they were made with a one-sided cut that would be destroyed by the use of grinding stones or sharpening bars. Japanese knives should only be cut with very special waterstone.

Japanese grinding stones have a low grain size of 120 to 400. They are necessary for rough grinding. With a grain size of grinding stones of 1,000, nothing stands in the way of use for the main cut. With regard to the grain size of both classifications, care must be taken to ensure that different criteria apply to hard European stones. For fine grinding, Japanese grinding stones should have a grain size of more than 6,000.

Types of knives

So far we have mainly focused on the sharpening of classic kitchen knives and would like to give you an overview of the special differentiations for preferred knife types, the Japanese and the European knife:

Japanese knives

Japanese knives can look back on a long tradition and can be found in numerous domestic kitchens. Traditionally, this Asian kitchen knife is made with a cut. There are also models with double-sided grinding. As a rule, the cutting angle is 15 and 18 degrees and thus lower than knives from Europe. Due to the minimum cutting angle Japanese knives have a particularly high sharpness.

The selection of a knife sharpener for Japanese knife has to be done in such a way that the sharpness actually occurs at this angle and that the knife sharpener sharpens only on one side. knife sharpeners that sharpen at the same time are not suitable for Japanese knives. In the worst case they can be damaged!

In addition, Japanese kitchen knives have a harder steel than Western cutters. This results in some advantages. These knives retain their sharpness longer and are less susceptible to dents in the cutting edge. Disadvantages of the Japanese knife are that glass or stone is very poorly suited as a cutting surface. Softer substrates are used than with the western counterpart. When selecting a knife shepherd for Japanese kitchen knives it is important to ensure that the preferred model can sharpen an angle of 15 degrees and is sharpened on one or two sides.

The European Knife

Also European knives or kitchen knives have a long tradition. Especially knives German manufacturers enjoy an excellent reputation globally due to the special handling.

In contrast to Japanese knives there are exploitative differences. Most Japanese models have a one-sided cut, European pedants have a symmetrical cut. The blade is ground on both sides. The majority of European cutting angles are around 20 degrees. The result, the cutting edge must be sharpened on both sides and the knife sharpener used must have a 20 degree sharpening angle or be adjustable.

The steel used in European knives is in most cases softer than in Japanese knives. In production, more steel is used to achieve the high stability. European knives have the reputation that they are very resilient and also suitable for harder things, such as cutting bones. However, the knives from Europe are more susceptible to damage due to the softer steel used in connection with the application areas. Dents or dents along the edge length are not uncommon and therefore it is very important to sharpen these knives at regular intervals.

When selecting a knife sharpener for knives from Europe, you must first check whether the knife sharpener is capable of sharpening at an angle of 20 degrees. It should also be noted that sharpening is required on both sides. Taking into account the respective model of the knife sharpener, both sides are sharpened simultaneously or, alternatively, each individual side.

As with the previous explanations, it is obvious that some things have to be taken into account when selecting selection a suitable knife sharpener. It is very important that it is clear in advance which types of knives will be sharpened in the future. This applies particularly to the cutting angle explained for the different types of knives.

In order to facilitate selection, you will of course find all the necessary specifications and suitable applications for the individual models in a knife sharpener test. The sharpening steel is suitable for daily use and is not suitable for scissors, pocket knives, hunting knives, razors or serrated edges. Various coatings are offered with the purchase, e.g. diamond, ceramic or the standard trigger. The sharpening stone allows almost any knife to be sharpened by various grains. Excellent for razors, cooking knives, hunting knives, pocket knives, etc. A serrated grinding is not possible. The grinding machine is suitable for knives that need to be sharpened from the ground up. Not for use with serrated knives and Japanese knives.

5 Tips for correct knife sharpening

There is a lot of background information on knife sharpening, and the list of related guide literature is long. We have compiled a handful of good tips especially for beginners here.

  • Tip 1
  • Tip 2
  • Tip 3
  • Tip 4
  • Tip 5
Anyone who decides in favour of a sharpening steel should pay particular attention to two things: On the one hand, the sharpening rod should be at least as long as the longest blade of the knives to be sharpened. On the other hand, the sharpening steel must be harder than all the blades to be sharpened – otherwise the blunt knife is not sharpened but cuts into the sharpening rod.
If you are not sure whether a knife needs sharpening, you can check this with a very simple test: Just cut through a ripe tomato. A sharp knife cuts up the vegetables and the base remains dry, a blunt blade presses the tomato together and squeezes the juice out. Alternatively there is also the test with a sheet of writing paper – a sharp knife simply cuts through without tearing.
The use of a knife sharpener is not suitable for every type of blade. Special care should be taken when using serrated knives, which were developed in Germany and are therefore particularly common. Wave grinding is usually severely damaged by common knife sharpeners – here you should call on the services of a specialist.
The best way to sharpen a knife is to avoid becoming blunt for as long as possible. An important tip in this respect is the advice to do without a dishwasher. At least with expensive quality knives it should be followed – even if their manufacturers certify their products to be dishwasher-safe, because the cleaning process in the dishwasher with detergent and cleaning salts is very stressful for high-quality blades.
The right angle is decisive for successful grinding. It must always correspond to the cutting edge. However, the basic grinding changes through continuous use and resharpening. Two things are worthwhile: first, the renewal of the basic polish from time to time by an expert, second, diligent practice. Knife sharpening is perhaps more important than many other craft activities: Practice makes perfect. Sooner or later you develop a feeling for the grinding angle and speed – an indispensable property for effective knife sharpening.


Is a belt grinder suitable as a knife sharpener?

It's a apparent thought: Why shouldn't a blunt knife be brought into shape with a belt grinder? Especially ambitious do-it-yourself enthusiasts might already have such a device in their tool repertoire and could thus purchase an additional knife sharpener save – or not?

What is a belt grinder?

A belt grinder is an electrical device specially designed for grinding workpieces. With a grinding belt that runs over two rollers moved by a motor, even very difficult material can be ground in a very short time. Belt sanders are available as mobile and stationary versions.

In principle yes …

What works in theory also works in practice: with the help of a belt grinder, a blunt knife can indeed be sharpened again. Depending on the quality of the belt grinder used and the skill of its user, the result can even be compared with a professional knife sharpener in terms of quality class. Another advantage is the high speed at which the belt grinder works. Nevertheless, when using a belt grinder, one or the other hook has to be considered.

… but not without certain restrictions

The main points to bear in mind are the following: A belt grinder is a powerful tool, but that is also a big problem – a minor deviation from the optimum grinding angle can lead to considerable material wear and remaining damage to the blade. If a knife is only used under normal conditions, risk and effort are hardly worthwhile – after all, a belt grinder requires considerably more practice than a normal knife sharpener.

Result: Better not

Whether one is confident enough to use a belt grinder depends in the end on the assessment of personal abilities. A certain residual risk always remains, and perhaps the simplest and safest solution is to use a dedicated knife sharpener – a look at our Knife Sharpener Test Comparison 2019 will certainly help.

Useful accessories

The actual and extensive care of the knife is rarely precisely executable with only one device. When purchasing expensive luxurious knives you should also consider the purchase of one or the other supplementary product in order to give his knives the highest possible care. The applicability of the accessories differs according to the selected model of the knife sharpener. With us you will always find the information for which knife sharpener recommendations are intended.

Grinding stone holder for a firm stability

The grinding and sharpening of knives are activities that require high precision. Especially when working with the grinding stone, stability and the perfect angle are a basic requirement. Non-slip underlays offer a good hold. We recommend a minimal piece of an anti-slip mat, as are commercially available for washing machines. The safety method has the advantage that grinding stones can be replaced immediately.

If the work is done with a single grinding stone, a screw holder is a good solution. It resembles a screw material made of rubber and the stone is clamped in it. A big advantage compared to the simple anti-slip pads is the fact that the stone is lifted. The safety is improved especially for thin grinding stones and the grinding of minimal knives or knives with large blades is simplified.

Grinding angle aids for the right angle

The correct angle for grinding of a knife determines the success or failure. For this a lot of practice, talent and feeling is necessary to always hit this angle on your own.

A grinding angle aid can be a valuable aid for beginners in knife sharpening. The trade has different models ready to be clamped and pushed open. All of them complete their tasks more or less precisely.

Technical literature on the subject of knife grinding available

The correct handling of knives is a complicated theme and it is worth to delve into this subject. It is well known that reading is an education and that the trade has another literature available which deals in detail with knife grinding. The effort is worthwhile, if the basis has already been understood, then sharpening the knife is easier.

The investment in a good knife sharpener

The price range for trade fair sanders is enormous. Very simple models are already available for a few Euros and do not show any real grinding success, up to several hundred Euros for professional equipment everything is available.

Good knife sharpeners start already at about 30 Euro. Solid devices that are easy to operate are particularly suitable for private use. These devices require a budget of 50 to 120 euros. If this amount seems a little too high, it makes sense. Depending on the frequency of use and the expectation of the result, it can be useful to select an expensive product.

This investment pays for itself immediately. Every blunt knife is immediately and reliably provided with a new sharpness. A price range in the upper range is open. Several hundred euros have to be invested for professional equipment. Their use is not necessary in a normal household. Ask yourself how many knives have become blunt over time or have even been replaced by new cutting aids. The purchase of new knives over the years becomes an expensive purchase, as the investment in a solid knife sharpener.

The application of a knife sharpener

The knife sharpener does not only belong to the domestic kitchen, if knives must be sharpened. The device is well usable for sharpening pocket knives and is a great help in the hobby area, such as camping, fishing or hunting. Some machines are suitable for sharpening sensens, chisels, axes and other tools.

The use of electric knife sharpeners

In addition to the classic knife sharpeners, electrical grinding equipment is also available on the market. The advantage of an electric knife grinder is the time saved. However, in practice this is hardly comprehensible and a manual knife sharpener usually delivers the same fast result. In addition, an advantage of the manually operated grinders is that they are not dependent on any power supply and can easily perform their function in the garden or on the road.

The extra price in contrast to manual knife sharpeners is often unnecessary with electrical devices. The only advantage of this device is that the blade is only inserted and the knife sharpener does all the work itself. However, if you want to keep the complete controlling over the progress of sharpening and the result, you should prefer the manual version. This is more common and more common. For the most part, knife sharpeners are used in kitchen and the fewest of them would like to deal with elaborate techniques or equipment that is difficult to handle. The actual operation should be completed in a few minutes at the most.

Grinding phases

The basic working steps are practically identical and it does not matter whether electric or manual knife sharpeners and grinding stones are preferred. In the first section, the knife is pre-sharpened and damage or gross defects are repaired. Stones or grinding rollers with a coarse grain are used here. Some knife sharpeners do not have this range and knives with normal wear will not affect the final result. If the knives are damaged or heavily worn, this will not lead to the desired result.

In the second section the sharpening is done with a cutting edge and a fine-grained grinding roller or stone. This section is directly recommended for undamaged knives.

The third and last section is finished with honing or polishing. The new cutting edge is polished by a ceramic disc and the result is a razor-sharp and long-lasting cutting edge.

The right angle is important for grinding: Grinding angle aids

The correct angle can be decisive for success or failure when sharpening a knife. It takes a lot of practice, skill and feeling to always hit this angle on your own. A grinding angle aid can be very helpful not only for beginners in knife sharpening. There are various models on the market for clamping and sliding on – all of them do their job more or less neatly.

Read forms: Technical literature on the subject of knife grinding

The correct handling of knives is a complex topic, which is worth to learn. In the trade there is one or the other literature, which makes more deeply acquainted with the** fineness of the knife sharpening**. The effort is worth it, because once the basics have been understood, sharpening the knife is almost a matter of course.

Questions and Answers

There is a knife sharpener for ceramic knives?

With ceramic knives it is of course possible to sharpen the knife. The trade has its own knife sharpeners for ceramic knives.

How to use the knife grinder?

The use of a knife sharpener is often intuitively possible. With most products there is a fixed specification of the grinding angle and thus the correct use is ensured. Usual angles are between 30 and 40 degrees, whereby the ideal angle is 35 degrees.

How is sharpening steel used?

You hold the sharpening steel with one hand and the knife is pulled over the edge at an angle of only 20 degrees. The semi-circular movement is carried out until the desired sharpness has been achieved. It is important to exert light pressure on the blade at the right time and repeat the movement about 6 to 8 times.

Are scissors sharpened as well?

With most trade fair grinders, it is possible without any problems to re-focus scissors with a new sharpness. You can find out whether this is possible with the corresponding model in a knife sharpener test. Before making a purchase, you should make sure that this function is possible.

How often should knives be sharpened?

The intervals depend in particular on user behaviour. If hard objects are cut on hard surfaces, the need for regrinding increases. In general, it can be assumed that the knives should be sharpened every 30 to 60 days for normal use.

If the knife is pulled off afterwards?

Removing the knife does not depend on sharpening, but on bending over already bent knife components. This procedure is useful in order to increase the service life of the knife.

Which knives are good to sharpen?

The knife is better and can be sharpened more often as the thickness of the material increases. The purchase price is not decisive, both cheap and noble knives can be sharpened. When selecting the devices, pay attention to the corresponding marking for the serrated edge.

How safe are knife grinders in use?

In use, knife sharpeners are very safe and are suitable even for inexperienced sharpeners.

Why should knife grinders have different sides?

The knife grinders should have various sides to allow fine and coarse grinding.

What else to consider with a knife sharpener?

The grinding angle should be specified for a knife grinder. The devices should be compact so that they can be easily stowed.

Alternatives to knife sharpener

There are hardly any real alternatives to the knife sharpener for domestic use, but it is possible to have the sharpening of the corresponding knives done by qualified specialists outside the home.

Rare to meet, but not yet extinct: the scissor grinder The scissor grinder is one of the oldest crafts in the world and can still be found occasionally today, even though it has become a real rarity. Depending on the knife, it may make sense to have a blade treated by a specialist, at least for knives with shaft grinding this is even the unconditional recommendation – own efforts usually lead to damage of the same.

Conditionally an alternative: the belt grinder

We already saw above that a belt grinder under certain conditions is also suitable as an alternative to the knife sharpener. More detailed information can be found in the corresponding section.

The best way to find the right solution is

Even if it is sometimes worth going to a professional scissor sharpener and the belt sharpener can also be an alternative under certain circumstances – it is in any case sensible to have your own knife sharpener or even a complete knife care set in the house. It is available round the clock , and by the appropriate care one can reduce the grinding need of an expensive blade strongly and delay long . Our comprehensive knife sharpener test helps you choose the right model.

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