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Thread: General sharpening questions

  1. #1

    General sharpening questions

    The only knives in my kitchen that get sharpened are a couple of inexpensive commercial (WalMart) chef's knives. One is a Santoku stainless and the other is a 9 inch or so KitchenAid. I keep them sharp with a hand held Chef's Choice diamond hone that has both 15 and 20 degree "slots".

    I will sooner or later upgrade to a new knife, probably a Japanese blade like a Konosuke gyuto that I would make the handle for (I'm a decent woodworker). Persuing that is why I joined here.

    So my question is, is the diamond hone that I'm using OK for a Japanese knife? I'm a home cook not a pro, and knives tend to stay sharp enough for quite a while.

    TIA
    Last edited by Maylar; 05-23-2014 at 05:00 PM. Reason: spelling

  2. #2
    Senior Member Mrmnms's Avatar
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    Diamond hone is too aggressive for a Konosuke. The steel is hard. I would use only decent water stones on that knife. Maybe practice sharpening on your inexpensive knives before moving up to a Japanese gyuto. Good luck.

  3. #3
    Senior Member ThEoRy's Avatar
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    You have yet to sharpen those knives. Honing just realigns the edge.
    Starting this harvest I'm a starving startling artist/
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  4. #4
    It's been said before - abrasion is abrasion. There's plenty of stuff out there shaped like a hone that sharpens. And you can only "realign" an edge so many times before it breaks off and the knife is dull forever until sharpened, correct? So if the knives are sharp, then something is obviously working.

    If you don't feel like messing with a waterstone, then try it in your setup on the 15* section. Worst thing that can happen is it doesn't work, and you have to buy stones. Nothing mystical about this stuff. It's just metal.
    If you sweat the small stuff, it doesn't turn into big stuff. - Me

  5. #5
    The hone seems to work, but these knives never seem to get as sharp as when they were new. As a woodworker, I understand the process of sharpening but have never had much success with knives. Keeping the angle consistent on a stone seems impossible.

    I sharpen plane irons, chisels, turning tools, etc all the time. I use natural Arkansas stones with oil, I'm not a fan of water stones at all. I think I'll try the soft Ark on one of these cheap knives and see where that leads.

    Thanks for the replies.

  6. #6
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    Use an angle guide, that simple. If you can't get a constant angle, you will dull your knives more instead of sharpening them, and it's a waste of metal and time. Angle is the key to sharpening.

    I don't like water stone as well, too messy. I prefer dry honing with silicon carbide and oil stone. Talking about cheap stainless knives here.

    And, new out-of-factory knives are never sharp, I won't use them without putting my new razor edge on. I just can't stand that 'sharpness'.

    http://www.kitchenknifeforums.com/sh...ng-Angle-Guide

    Never attempt to sharpen a decent Japanese knife without any experience, you will just destroy that precious blade. Get a cheap one first for practice.

  7. #7
    Senior Member ThEoRy's Avatar
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    They don't seem as sharp because it's getting thick behind the edge. You have to thin the bevels out on waterstones.
    Starting this harvest I'm a starving startling artist/
    Lyrical arsonist it's arduous spitting this smartest arsenic/

  8. #8
    Senior Member larrybard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LKH9 View Post
    Use an angle guide, that simple. . . .
    Any particular commercially available honing guide suggested? I assume we're talking only about using one only on non-Japanese knives. I'm about to start learning, using a newly purchased starter set of stones from Dave, as soon as I receive his DVDs (on their way), but would like to try first with some inexpensive carbon knives, and a guide might come in helpful, after using the "sharpie" method for determining appropriate angle, etc. A quick internet search shows inexpensive angle guides made by Bates and Taidea, for example. I've never used one, and am a bit concerned about the bottom of the guide dragging along the stone.

  9. #9
    daveb's Avatar
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    I started with below to get me in the right ballpark. From there I was able to feel where the knife wanted to be sharpened. Holding the angle steady will come in time.

    http://www.sharpeningsupplies.com/Kn...3EPPTCYn7w_wcB

    Gotta note that in my experience as you get started you will dull the knife, scratch the knife, scuff the knife, get wire edges, probably get a birds beak or two. But you will not ruin the knife. It's just creating opportunities for learning
    Dave
    Older and wider.

  10. #10
    Senior Member larrybard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by daveb View Post
    I started with below to get me in the right ballpark. From there I was able to feel where the knife wanted to be sharpened. Holding the angle steady will come in time.

    http://www.sharpeningsupplies.com/Kn...3EPPTCYn7w_wcB
    Thanks. Interesting possibility -- yes, I would only use a guide to get comfortable maintaining a constant angle, and then develop a feel for the sweet spot -- but do I misunderstand the description at the link provided; it seems to only permit angles of 12 or 24 degrees?

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