Knife Sharpener Advice

How to Sharpen a Knife with a Handheld Sharpener

How to Sharpen a Knife with a Handheld Sharpener

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Many of us own knife sharpeners but don’t have the least idea about how to use them. Knife sharpeners come in different makes, shapes, sizes and with different features – all aimed at keeping our knives sharp.

Some are very basic and can only sharpen certain types of kitchen blades, while others are very diverse and can sharpen practically any type of blade out there.

The harder the sharpening material, the better the knife sharpeners can sharpen blades and that is the reason why diamond, being the hardest material that can be found, is the best material for sharpening. Having sharp blades around at home is very important since they are safer to use and also more efficient.

Blunt blades could cause harm as one struggles too hard to use them – whether they are for indoor or outdoor use. In this article, we are going to guide you about how to best use a knife sharpener.

Sometimes, you might have a knife sharpener but whenever you sharpen your knives, it may tend to damage them instead of sharpening, or at times, it may seem as if the sharpener does not work at all. We hope that this guide will finally put your dilemma to rest.

Steps on how to sharpen a knife with a handheld sharpener

Handheld knife sharpeners come in two types: a double set of sharpening rings, and a straight or rounded pumice or metal rod usually referred to as a “cook’s steel.”

Step 1

The first thing that you need to determine is if the knives can be sharpened manually. Serrated knives are factory-sharpened and are not suited to manual sharpening.

When sharpened manually, knives with heavily-waved edges such as bread or frozen-food cutters often result in uneven edges and are best done by professionals. A smooth even blade is needed for the best manual sharpening experience.

Step 2

When you’re ready to begin sharpening, hold the double-ring sharpener by its handle. Rest it against a countertop since holding it in the air – if you’re not very experienced – could lead to injury.

Step 3

Put the knife into the blade sharpener and draw it towards yourself, sliding it through the gap between the set of rings. You start with the part of the knife closest to the handle, drawing it towards the tip.

The ring assembly should be flat on the board and the knife perpendicular. Press it hard enough so that you can hear the sound of the friction, but not too hard as you could end up damaging the edge of the knife instead.

Three to four pulls through the knife sharpener should be enough, depending on how blunt the knife is. Never push the blade back into the rings and always lift out the blade after each pull and repeat the process.

If there are slots for ceramic, coarse or fine sharpening, make sure that you take a note of them. The very blunt knives can begin in the coarse slot before moving onto the fine slots.

Step 4

When you’re done with the sharpening and satisfied with your work, wipe the sharpening residue off the knife blade using a paper towel. There are some people who prefer to add a little oil on the towel before they wipe so that it can protect the carbon-steel edge even though water works just as fine. You can then wipe both sides of the knife using a towel.


As you can see, it is not that hard to sharpen your knives using knife sharpeners. Always remember to draw the knife towards yourself when sharpening and never to and fro as this could damage both the knife and the knife sharpener.

Another precaution to observe is that you should always keep the sharp knives out of reach of children as they could become fatal when used in a wrong way. We will leave you now so that you may try out your knife sharpener for the best results.

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