Are these pull-thru ceramic sticks a good choice while working?

Jul 22, 2009
I have a Smith draw-thru sharpener that has two sets of ceramic sticks. There is no tungsten or carbide metal crosses tearing away at the steel, just small crossed ceramic rods.

When I was young and cut meat for a living, I would, while working, often stroke my Forchner knives along my butcher's steel to straighten the edges. (The steel, the knives and plenty other good stuff got washed to oblivion by hurricane Katrina.) Now, when cleaning large redfish, drum, gar and large catfish and my cheap-ish knives start to slow-down, I pull a couple of licks through my ceramic sticks and I'm good-to-go again.

My skinning knives also benefit from a few pulls through the sticks when cleaning these bigole wild hogs we kill. The hogs have a lot of mud in their bristly hair, causing the knives to dull even quicker.

The following evening after cleaning fish, hogs or deer I kick back and put a nice sharp edge back on my blades with the Lansky.

Was just wondering if the ceramics are a poor choice of edge maintenance to use while cleaning and skinning. Most of my knives are no-name stainless (440A I suppose?) and just don't hold a very good edge while working. The 1095 and Sandvik blades don't require us to stop and touch-up as often.

When I start building some of my son's and my knives out of A2 and S30V, will it be a poor practice to use these pull-thru doohickeys to touch-up these higher-end blades?

What'da y'all use while working to keep your edge sizzling through your work?
You may not be hitting the apex of the blade using the pull through ceramic. A longer ceramic that you can touch up free handed will be a better choice. You'll be able see if you're getting the apex of the blade
Several years ago standing in line at the register in a hardware store I picked up one of those real small pull through ceramic deals without thinking. As soon as I used it the first time it dawned on me that there was no way to remove the small sticks to clean them after they loaded up!!!!:grumpy:so,, thinking to myself( whataDumbass!) I put it in a desk drawer where I see it from time to time as a reminder to think it through before you get it!!!!
Grab a ceramic stick and use it like a steel. Nothing inherently wrong with ceramic pull throughs, except lack of angle control.
Ceramics are fine. I use Spyderco F and UF rods to finish after setting and apexing the bevel with diamond hones.

But the pull through ones? You can't adjust the angle and the pulling motion can negatively affect a roll or nick. I don't even keep one handy for touchups. I simply use a ceramic rod for that, a few swipes are sufficient.
I used a Smith's pull through and I find it hard to control the angle, I prefer my sharpening stone
Skip it they are terrible, I had the same "sharpener" if you can call it that years ago before I knew better.

It's almost never at the right angle and the surface area is very small so even if it is by chance at the right angle it clogs with steel after only a pass or two and is useless.