Pick Your Knife Sharpener: Manual Styles for Your Home

Explore the simplicity and efficiency of a knife sharpener. Manual sharpeners make getting a fine edge to your blade fast and easy. Use one every day after cleaning your knives for the night to maintain a strong, sharp angle. A few swipes is all it takes with these handheld devices.

How To Use Your Manual Knife Sharpener

Using your knife sharpener manual style is a quick task for anyone, even if you're new to honing your own blades.

You can tell when it's time to sharpen your knife by the quality of your kitchen prep. A knife that is sharp cuts cleanly and easily through all foods. When the blade is in need of care, you may find that cutting takes a little longer, even if by just a few seconds, or that the smoothness of the cuts becomes a little more jagged.

  • Most manual sharpeners have a coarse and a fine slot for you to use. Choose which your knife needs each time. Go with coarse if you need to reshape the blade, because it's been awhile since you maintained it. The finer slot is appropriate for a quick sharpening every day or so.
  • Move the blade through the slot from base to tip a few times. As you pull, feel for the contours of the knife against the sharpener. This is a subtle feeling, but you'll feel it right away, anyway. Each knife you sharpen may feel a little different in the slots.
  • You can hear a light noise of the blade being filed as you pull. If your knife is silent, you may need to add a little more pressure to the knife.
  • When you're done, rinse the knife and dry it throughout before putting it away.

Your Knife Sharpener Manual Sharpening Stages

Some knives require more sharpening than others. This is largely based on the original quality of the knife, its blade angle and how often you use the knife.

For instance, utility knives that you enjoy for a variety of kitchen tasks need frequent care, while a carver may only come out of the drawer when you have a large roast for a special occasion.

  • Two -stage knife sharpeners have a fine slot for quick honing and a coarse side for restoring sharp edges.
  • Four-stage sharpeners have fine and coarse slots, plus sharpen scissors. Carbide and ceramic sections refine all your knives.
  • Specialty tools help you care for exceptional or important pieces, like finely crafted Nesmuk knives. The strop for these knives, for example, polishes your knife blade to a mirror-like finish.

Ensure you choose the sharpener that's right for the knives you own or plan to order right now.

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