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Best archetype of knife sharpener?

Discussion in 'Maintenance, Tinkering & Embellishment' started by TSilant, Apr 8, 2013.

  1. TSilant


    Apr 1, 2013
    Ok, first, im not exactly looking for specific sharpeners. Im looking for what particular 'kind' of sharpener is best. Or if no one in particular is best, which ones are on the level for being the best.

    I know pull-throughs arent meant to be good, i know theres pocket stones, i know theres ceramic files, and i know theres bench stones. Thats all i know of, and i have *no idea* what the difference is. So, what would be the recommendation of those vastly more qualified than myself?
  2. awestib

    awestib Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 29, 2008
    This one plus freehand sharpening! No oil or water required, very portable (6inch) and enough knuckle clearance. If you practice on this stone and get the hang of removing the burr, you are good to go for an utility edge.

  3. bpeezer


    Jan 27, 2013
    Depends on the person. I (being very biased, as I am about to spend a load of money on them) think that Japanese waterstones are the "best". Diamond bench stones are great. Blade clamping, angle holding sharpeners like the Edge Pro Apex or Wicked Edge are great. Belt sanders are great. Silicon Carbide sandpaper is great. Ceramic rods are great. Basically, with tons of practice, I think the thing you are most comfortable using is the best (or the thing you're about to spend lots of money on :D). For someone just interested in getting consistent good edges, I think the Edge Pro or Wicked Edge would be best. It does much of the work for you, but takes a lot of the fun out of it. Just my .02
  4. TSilant


    Apr 1, 2013
    Now i just need to find one of those things.

    Thanks folks!
  5. Brisket


    Aug 2, 2009
    Stones, rods, wet/dry sandpaper, strops, guided systems, belt sanders and paper wheels with various abrasives are all tools that can assist you to achieve excellent results if you can master their use. What sharpening tools are best for you depend upon your specific sharpening objective and the time, money and effort you are willing to invest to achieve it. The best sharpening tools for someone that wants highly refined & mirror polished acute edges on super steel blades without regard to cost or time will not likely be the best sharpener for someone that wants a workable edge on a mid grade steel blade with minimal cost & time invested.

    Can you be more specific about what you want to achieve as well as the time and money you are willing to invest?
  6. TSilant


    Apr 1, 2013
    Up to $200 if possible, and im mostly looking to keep a usable sharp edge on things. The quality of the steel im pretty sure is decent (i know barely anything about steels. i basically just go look at a list to make sure im not buying BAD steel, and go from there) and usable to me means that i could use it for, say, hunting/camping/bushcraft/etc.
    As for time, if the device is going to serve that end ill take the time to learn how to use it. If you mean the time spent sharpening, i shall without any knowledge of whats normal in regards to that say that about half an hour or so would be fine if its going to be worth the effort.
  7. aread


    Aug 8, 2012
    There are so many levels here that it's hard to narrow it down for you.

    Excellent edges for hunting/camping/bushcraft/etc can be achieved with a $5 stone & a coffee cup IF you are willing to invest the time & effort. But that is probably not what you are asking.

    The easiest to use are the guided systems like Edge Pro and Wicked Edge. But these are not in your $200 budget. However, there are a number of systems that are in your range that will provide good edges.

    There are also the ceramic sticks like the Sharpmaker that may fit your needs.

    The waterstones are probably not the best choice for hunting / camping edges. They can do a spectacular job if you develop the skill, but they are generally pretty expensive and there is always one more stone that you need to get the perfect edge. Then of course when you get that stone, you just need one more. :)

  8. Skimo


    Mar 28, 2009
    Edge pro apex was 150-180$ last I checked.

    Good edges are subjective, some guys are happy with pull through carbide edges, others are happy at 220 grit on up to completely mirror polished.

    Some are happy with 60 degree edges, others won't be happy till its less than 20 degrees. Some like "V" edges others like convex.

    Some people have no idea that edges can get any better than factory sharpness, others aren't happy till their knives whittle hair.

    All that being said, it took me using the edge pro to figure out how sharpening really works and now I can get hair removing edges freehand on whetstones because it makes sense, I can hear and feel the differences of the steel on the stones.

    I think the DMT rig, Lansky rig and that other one... Those are probably good starts. Edge pro is great, can't speak for the wicked edge.

    There is no magic solution for sharpening for the same reason that there's no magic solution for good penmanship, it takes practice with any media to become proficient... Well that's subjective too because I've met knife nuts who thought sharp was what they had... I thought they had dull uneven edges. The most important thing is to pick something, and work at it until you're happy.
  9. phillipsted


    Oct 4, 2010
    The Spyderco SharpMaker might be a good compromise for you. It has some limitations, but all-in-all, it is an extremely flexible sharpening tool. Plus, it comes in a molded plastic carrying case which turns into the base of the sharpener when you open it up. Very portable. I take mine to camp with me every year. It is quick to set up, requires no water or lubrication during sharpening, and is easy to clean up. I've used one since the early 1990s and am on my third one (I passed the other two to my sons).


  10. TSilant


    Apr 1, 2013
    Yeah, but it doesnt really help if i go buy and learn how to use something that isnt going to be comfortable for me to use, if that makes sense. I dont mind learning how to use the things, its just that buying one of every archetype is crazy expensive, and learning how to use each seperate one before i even use them would be silly.

    And another shall momentarily recommend sharpmakers. Im noticing a trend :)

    Sounds good! Ill read a few reviews on it, then start trying to hunt one down. Thanks!
  11. TSilant


    Apr 1, 2013
    Right - Ive found a Spyderco Tri-Angle Sharpener, and i plan to pick one up.

    Now, i suppose someone couldnt direct me to a guide/crash-course on how to use it?
  12. Lo/Rez


    Feb 10, 2013
    There are videos on Youtube where Sal (the fine gentleman who started Spyderco) demonstrates how to use it. Here's a link to part 1.
  13. TSilant


    Apr 1, 2013
    Much obliged!

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