Quantcast

How much should I expect to spend to get into sharpening?

Kitchen Knife Forums

Help Support Kitchen Knife Forums:

jacko9

Senior Member
Joined
Dec 31, 2014
Messages
1,166
Reaction score
360
Location
Northern California
I'd start with a 1K splash and go stone there are many I like one I got from JNS or my Shapton glass. A 140 Atoma flattening plate and a strop. For a strop I'm a woodworker so I cut a piece of closed grain stable cherry wood and loaded it with .75 micron CBN it works on all my knives.
 
Last edited:

Kawa

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 23, 2020
Messages
119
Reaction score
84
Location
The Netherlands
I'd start with a 1K splash and go stone there are many I like one I got from JNS or my Shapton glass. A 140 Atoma flattening plate and a strop. For a strop I'm a woodworker so I cut a piece of closed grain stable cherry wood and loaded it with .70 micron CBN it works on all my knives.
To be completely honest, it should be advice for a beginner on which gear to buy as a starter.

A 1k stone with a strop only will get a beginner/newbie/first starter nowhere. The advice isn't wrong for someone at your level, but for a beginner it is.
Getting a dull knife sharp on a 1k stone takes forever if you are just trying to find out what sharpening actually means.
 

soigne_west

Supporting Member
Joined
Oct 14, 2015
Messages
942
Reaction score
1,348
To be completely honest, it should be advice for a beginner on which gear to buy as a starter.

A 1k stone with a strop only will get a beginner/newbie/first starter nowhere. The advice isn't wrong for someone at your level, but for a beginner it is.
Getting a dull knife sharp on a 1k stone takes forever if you are just trying to find out what sharpening actually means.
Disagree. I’d say the combination of 1k and strop is perfect for a beginner so long as the edge there trying to sharpen isn’t damaged and thinning isn’t necessary.
 

jacko9

Senior Member
Joined
Dec 31, 2014
Messages
1,166
Reaction score
360
Location
Northern California
To be completely honest, it should be advice for a beginner on which gear to buy as a starter.

A 1k stone with a strop only will get a beginner/newbie/first starter nowhere. The advice isn't wrong for someone at your level, but for a beginner it is.
Getting a dull knife sharp on a 1k stone takes forever if you are just trying to find out what sharpening actually means.
Point taken but sometimes a beginner can get lost in a series of stones progressively losing the edge first achieved. I also agree that the knife has to be in pretty good shape with no major damage that would take hours to fix on a 1K stone. I did see a video by Maskim on JNS on a 1K stone removing micro chipping pretty darn quickly (no I not in his class of sharpener).
 

josemartinlopez

我會買所有的獨角獸
Joined
Jun 27, 2020
Messages
810
Reaction score
397
Location
Asia
If you have cheap, dull Western knives in your drawer and are practicing on that, the budget stone advice is fine. If you want to skip the budget stone, I would recommend a splash and go stone (to avoid all the soaking and drying when you start) with excellent feedback as a beginner stone. I'd start with something like the Naniwa Professional 800 (not 1,000) and add, if you like, a 2000 or 3000. You won't even need accessories like a sink bridge or tub, though these would help with the cleanup. The flattening plate and other accessories can come later, if you are sharpening more than a couple of knives infrequently.

Bottom line is, it takes much less to start than one thinks. Literally a high quality low grit stone with good feedback for less than $100 is more than enough.
 

M1k3

Aiyeh
Joined
Jul 28, 2018
Messages
3,700
Reaction score
3,982
i have a Shapton 5k and when i finish on it, the edge is sharp, and very smooth. but i don't knife, it doesn't feel as sharp on food as when i finish on the 2k. I think its the toothy edge that helps on food.
Try a few edge leading strokes on the 5k stone.
 

kayman67

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 3, 2019
Messages
962
Reaction score
547
Location
EU
The higher grit no usable edge is mostly user problem than a given non working edge.

The ideal starting point for a beginner is a soft-ish true middle grit 1k and a sharpie. As long as he is hitting the edge and learns consistency and pressure, that's the most important part.
 

Kawa

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 23, 2020
Messages
119
Reaction score
84
Location
The Netherlands
I totally agree with the above that a 1k should be enough, when the edge isn't completely ruined (as most add as an argument to why 1k is good for a beginner.)

The reason I'm saying a 1k gets a new sharpener nowhere, is because I believe when a 'newbie' calls his knife dull, it is probably chipped and really rounded. You know, you can cut your finger without cutting yourself...this kinda dull.
That's different from 'our' vision of dull. When we 'touch up with 2k/3k/4k', the knife is probably still razor sharp in the eyes of a newbie.
The meaning of 'dull' changes as you get better.


Did you all account for this in your advices towards a new sharpener? If yes, then I probably should lean towards changing my mind...
 

kayman67

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 3, 2019
Messages
962
Reaction score
547
Location
EU
My advice, based on experience, is in line with most opinions about this and about what type of stone is reactive enough to make a difference and not to pick up bad habits right from the start (that will be a pain to change later as we can see often enough).
 

GoldCoastMitch

Active Member
Joined
Dec 2, 2018
Messages
39
Reaction score
32
Location
New York
If I had to start over I would have tried the King 1000 first with a flattening plate. Heard very good things about it. I bought a few other stones but only working with a Chosera 800 right now until I learn how to use it. Going reasonably well. You might like it too.

Good luck
 

jacko9

Senior Member
Joined
Dec 31, 2014
Messages
1,166
Reaction score
360
Location
Northern California
Please remember that the OP asks about getting started so he can add stones as he or she gets experience. A good 1K stone will be the most valued over time even if they end up with a variety of stones.
 

VincentBeek

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 25, 2017
Messages
50
Reaction score
38
Location
The Netherlands
If his knife is now extremely dull and maybe chipped I would advise him to have the knife one more time sharpened by someone else. And then maintain it on a 1K stone. He's not going to fix his chipped knife on a 220 when he's sharpening for the first time. He will only make things worse.

You could go for the 1K King advice or maybe a good 1K (shapton, naniwa whatever you prefer. It's 80% you and 20% stones that do the job) from which you can extend up and down the grids.
 

jacko9

Senior Member
Joined
Dec 31, 2014
Messages
1,166
Reaction score
360
Location
Northern California
As I go back and look at the original question: How much should I expect to spend to get into sharpening? That's pretty open ended but, then he asked if a specific cerax combination stone was good enough.

I would only add that one needs to flatten whatever stone you get. That answer can be wet/dry sandpaper or a diamond flattening plate or some other method.

If he were asking if the $80 cerax combination stone by itself was good enough my answer would be maybe depending on what outcome you desire to achive.
 

inferno

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 11, 2018
Messages
2,644
Reaction score
1,171
How much should I expect to spend to get into sharpening? Is an $80 cerax combo 1K/6K good enough for a beginner?
i get the feeling all these combo stones are ****. so personally i would avoid them. at least get full sized stones. 200x70mm or so.

if you want a cheap option and only have a few knives, get a sharpmaker. it really works. and the knives get ultra sharp. but its slow.
-----------

if you want to get a good stone setup you want:

1 stone holder: 20-50bux

1 GOOD diamond flattening plate 140-400 grit: 70-200bux (dmt/atoma/EZ), this can also act as your coarse stone. but diamonds dig very deep scrathes in steel just so you know.. usually its not worth it using a very coarse D plate because you will be spending ages getting the scratches out on a 1k or so. now you know.

a coarse stone, 220 grit or so to get **** done. i like the shapton glass 220. its slow to wear and very fast acting. 30-40bux or so.

then your baseline stone, the 1k. now i've owned about 10 different 1k's and i only kept 4.
naniwa pro 800 - feels good and quite creamy. fast. wear slow. slow to dry completely though. like several days. mine is starting to crack (like all naniwa pros/choseras)

shapton pro 1k - feels quite rough, works very fast on all steels, slow wearing. dries in an hour or so. very good stone.

shapton glass 1k - feels smoother than the pro, its quite creamy. it might be finer than the shapton pros actual 7-800 grit. its just as fast though. feels better i think but not by much. i guess its an aquired taste. dries in minutes!

king hyper 1k - soaker, takes at least 1 week to dry. semi hard. feels very creamy and nice. its also as fast as the rest of them. relatively slow wearing.


then you want a finishing stone. and what the hell is a finishing stone??
it could be everything from 2k to 12k depending on who you ask.

personally i sharpen customer knives up to the shapton pro 2k. or the glass 3k. thats it. they only have **** knives anyway.

my own knives i take up to this:
japanese ingot stainless like vg10, aus8 etc: glass 3k or glass 4k. usually 3k. its all they can handle.
german soft stainless and other crap: shapton pro 2k.
powder satinless: 4k glass.
hard japanese carbon: 6, 8 or 12k shapton pro or glass. usually the 6k. after that it gets counter productive.

---------------------

stones on the cheap:

80-100 grit silicon carbide sandpaper for flattening
500 shapton glass
3k shapton glass

done! it will at most get like 5-10% better than than this, but it could get faster, much faster, and you could enjoy it more if you had more stones.

in general i think i like the shapton pro and glass lines the best. they seem to wear the slowest and the seem to cut the fastest (and i have owned about 50 stones or so and currently have about 30 of them) and they are quite cheap.

some say these dont "feel good" i think they feel quite good though. and this is just a matter of preference anyway. from 2k and above i'd say they feel just as good or better than anything out there! some may disagree and i dont really care.
 
Last edited:

spaceconvoy

Senior Member
Joined
Mar 8, 2011
Messages
410
Reaction score
479
I'd recommend no compound 😛 but I'm sure others will disagree. You don't need compound to make use of a strop. When you're learning how to sharpen it can seem like compound makes your edges better, but it's a crutch. I swore by it for a while until I slowly became more skilled and realized compound takes the edge off a great sharpening job, and only improves a mediocre one. But also, 1 micron boron carbide :)
 

Kawa

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 23, 2020
Messages
119
Reaction score
84
Location
The Netherlands
I'd recommend no compound 😛 but I'm sure others will disagree. You don't need compound to make use of a strop. When you're learning how to sharpen it can seem like compound makes your edges better, but it's a crutch. I swore by it for a while until I slowly became more skilled and realized compound takes the edge off a great sharpening job, and only improves a mediocre one. But also, 1 micron boron carbide :)
I feel like compound is the way to go when you dont finish on a really fine stone. Leather without compound doesn't seem to improve my middle gritt finish knives. Could also mean my edges arent slick enough on mid gritt stones, I have lots to learn.

Compund i've tried is green chromiumoxide, but that was too coarse for me. When stropped a little too high angle, the edge was immediately ruined.
Made a new strop with Red Rouge (the red polish brick from Dialux). Even it's ment for polishing gold (very soft) and it shouldn't do much on hard kitchen knife steel, it will deffenately makes my edges smoother. Les crispy sound and more slick feeling when testing on newspaper.
The strop doesn't load with metal much (almost non at all) after 30 knives or so. So it deffinately isnt removing much metal.. Green brick on a leather became a grey strop very soon...
 

kayman67

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 3, 2019
Messages
962
Reaction score
547
Location
EU
Colors need to be very well defined with grit range from the manufacturer, but it's more to how the compound will interact with various alloys.
Also the surface plays a big part of how this happens. Put the same compound on both sides and you see just how different it is.

As for a suggestion, 1 micron diamond for the fine side. This, if you require some mild maintenance or final treatment. Should be balanced and safe enough.
A medium fine oxide for inox on the other side, used before your last stone if it's in the 3k+ region. I've seen this helping a lot of people getting far better edges with finer stones. But there are other ways to do it. Obviously the strop is a helper. If you don't qualify for this scenario, I would just skip this side completely.
 

Ceriano

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 30, 2020
Messages
56
Reaction score
13
Location
Virginia US

Kawa

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 23, 2020
Messages
119
Reaction score
84
Location
The Netherlands
Would something like this work? It comes with both 0.5 and 0.25 micron?

Some say red (iron oxide) is too soft to be able to impact knives steel. Red is ment for softer metals, like gold and silver. I like it. It has a little more drag then bare leather.
If people use bricks (most people use diamond paste) the most commonly used is green (chromium oxide), which is more coarse then iron oxide.

Remember all these colored brick are designed for application on polishing wheels/machines designed for polishing very different kind of material; some are made for plastic as an example. Some colors (different materials) dont do well on kitchen knive steels.

Its cheaper then paste and can bring some very good results. if you can, buy the smallest piece you can find. You can do strops for 500 years with the smallest piece you can find. Your link seems to offer a sample kit with multiple small bricks. I'd go for it.
You can always make an other strop later on to try paste if you want to test it.
 

TBS19106

Amateur Sharpener in Philly
Joined
Dec 19, 2019
Messages
23
Reaction score
5
Location
Philadelphia
The set of stones that works well to thin your knife, are probably different than the ones that actually sharpen it. The ones you like on one blade, you might hate and will make your life harder on another.
I think a worthy thread to start might be "Stones to thin and stones to sharpen." In general, I like muddy stones to thin, but I have no idea if that is according to KKF Hoyle.
 

Ceriano

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 30, 2020
Messages
56
Reaction score
13
Location
Virginia US
I ordered the white/green/red compound bars (1-0.25 micron). I currently only have a 1000 grit stone. Can I use a 2 or 3 micron diamond paste instead of a 8000 grit stone? Or I still need an extra fine stone before moving to strop?
 

kayman67

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 3, 2019
Messages
962
Reaction score
547
Location
EU
Might be a better idea to use stropping with some type of fine polishing oxide/paste instead of 8000 stone, if you desire the finish and use the diamond as final step. In my experience this works much better than the other way around.
 

Kawa

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 23, 2020
Messages
119
Reaction score
84
Location
The Netherlands
I don't think stropping with paste can replace 'the grinding' you do on a stone.
On a stone you are abbrading the deeper scrathes away and replace them with more refined scratches. So the edge gets smoother and therefore potentially sharper.
With stropping you you only do edge leading strokes to remove the 'loose' particles on the edge and the 'overhanging loose particles' called burr. I dont think you will smooth out your bevel much by doing a few strokes on a strop.
 

kayman67

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 3, 2019
Messages
962
Reaction score
547
Location
EU
You can completely change the finish just by stropping. Doesn't take much either. But you need something different, like felt and the right compound. I've done it many times testing different abrasives.
 

cotedupy

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 27, 2020
Messages
380
Reaction score
434
Location
South Australia
Sorry to hijack but a couple of questions here from someone also newish to sharpening...

Why do most people recommend single grit stones rather than combis?

Why is drying time relevant?
 

Alwayzbakin

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 15, 2018
Messages
65
Reaction score
146
Maybe unpopular opinion these days...
Get a King 1k (and flattening stone) and use it till it melts away and needs to be replaced. At this point, move onto other suggestions.

King is clay like and smooth (wobble wont turn to deep scratches), forms a slurry like no other, is super forgiving, and gives a great edge with little effort, and isn't so aggressive that your knives will shrink away.
Lol I like it but I reckon it would take a long time. 15 years in and over sharpening the heck out of my first knives on mine and there’s still half of it left. 20 bucks well spent!
 

ma_sha1

Senior Member
Joined
Nov 22, 2019
Messages
1,098
Reaction score
1,540
Location
CT
Sorry to hijack but a couple of questions here from someone also newish to sharpening...

Why do most people recommend single grit stones rather than combis?

Why is drying time relevant?
Combo stones are good for beginners, but as your skill grow, so will you taste for stones, & the need to mix & match your own set from different brand. For example, I started with king 1k/6k combo, happy for a while but wanted to finish with more bite, so I brought King 4K as finisher. Liked the finish much better, but it’s overly muddy, soft & slow. Bought Rita 5K, it’s fast, smooth, great feedback but the grit seems less than 5K, maybe even less than King 4K. Basically, I still have not found my perfect set-up, it’ll be much less likely if I limit myself to combo offerings.

Drying time affects your hydration time upon next use. Improper drying may even damage some stones.
 

kayman67

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 3, 2019
Messages
962
Reaction score
547
Location
EU
There are some combo stones that would serve most people, but they aren't popular because it's this belief that combo's are less than... others.
 
Top