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Idiot Proof Sharpening

Jul 1, 2006
I have seen much discussion about best methods/devices to sharpen blades with. I was at the knife show in Dallas in November and someone at a booth was sharpening knives with this. It looked so easy. Any thoughts on it, or the best method for someone new at sharpening. I really don't want to make a butter knife out of one of my knives. :eek:

That is a Boker sharpener. I think it's called the Vulcan or something like that. I ordered one from Boker but then the e-mailed and said they were on back order or something so I cancelled the order. Got a Spyderco Sharpmaker instead which works well. :D

It's a Boker Vulkanus sharpener. www.bokerusa.com
I haven't used that one; but, I have used several similar spring loaded devices and those tend to leave a very wavy uneven edge. It works well on soft thin bladed kitchen knives, or a pair of scissors; but, I wouldn't use it on a field knife.

Do a search on "warthog" knife sharpeners. They have the same principle of operation but are probably better designed.
I have a Warthog and like it--was great on my wife's sorely-abused kitchen knives. Is good at touching up my EDC knife.
I put that in the gimmick arena (maybe I'm a bit harsh, but...)...

For those who don't know an edge from a bowling ball will like 'instant sharp' semi-tools like this example...

Most of the guys here do it with stones or use one of the better sharpening systems like Edge-Pro, Spyderco Sharpmaker, etc...

I suppose a guy could use it as a light steel in the kitchen if the angle could be adjusted???


PSSST: As Oliver Hardy said to Stan: "It's not for me."
I may be wrong but I don't think you can get a one type fits all blades sharpner. It would be great if a maker could advise
A set of diamond hones such as those from DMT will last practically a lifetime and can be used to sharpen all manner of things (except wits). A simple guide that clamps to the back of a blade will help to set the appropriate angle. Basically, that's all you need, along with a little practice. There are some excellent books on sharpening; Lee Valley Tools publishes one of the best IMHO. Happy Honing!
There is a Warthog EZ-Sharp sharpener review I did earlier located here.

It may come pretty close to being idiot-proof, but I found the resulting edge didn't come up to my expectations. YMMV.

My best sharpener is the Edge-Pro Apex with stone upgrade. My most used sharpeners are a pair of rod sharpeners with handles in butcher's steel format (one very coarse SiC, one much finer ceramic).
I like sandpaper, but I have great success with the ceramic sticks on the Smith's 3-in-1 sharpener.
If you own a Dremel you can use the cotton cloth polishing wheel, (on low speed), with the polishing compound applied to put the finishing touch on your sharpening project, it takes off the burr and polishes up the edge.
Make sure rotation of the Dremel is in the same direction as the edge. Don't get to close to the edge, you don't want to round it over, just polish it and get the wire off. You can use a fast cutting Diamond sharpener, I use a Lansky Pro Diamond, for the initial sharpening then the Dremel to finish it up. It takes a little practice to get the hang off it but once you do you will be amazed at how fast you can resharpen.
I like sandpaper, but I have great success with the ceramic sticks on the Smith's 3-in-1 sharpener.

Once I have a good bevel on the knife, I like ceramic "crock sticks" set in wood for proper angle for resharpening jobs. I would appreciate any comments about that practice. Am I missing something?