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Knife Sharpening...

Chiffonade_'s picture

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I have a Chantry knife sharpener which I love and believe it works well. We finish an edge with the steel after using the Chantry. S.O. has a water stone which we use occasionally.

My question boils down to: Has anyone ever seen the "diamond" knife sharpeners out there? They look like a regular steel with a handle and a long spike that can be round or oval shaped. Does anyone believe these "diamond" steels are any better than a regular steel?

S.O. says that the only real drawback of a diamond steel is that it wears away the blade faster than conventional methods. (He's a sharpening fool, wields a steel like a butcher.)

What are your favorite methods for keeping those knives in tip top shape?

sanderson_'s picture

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I feel like a total void in the knife sharpening department. I wish FC would do a video...even slow motion might help... with lots of close-ups. I have to beg DH and his water stone to fix us up and I usually wait several band-aids too long to get things in shape.

MEAN_CHEF's picture

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I have an oval diamond steel. I love it. It doesn't take off too much if you go easy, but it gives you the option to sharpen a bit as well. Doesn't replace the stone. At least once a year I get my knives professionally sharpened. Costs betwee 2 and 4 dollars per knife depending on size. Well worth the price because you CAN'T do it as well at home with a stone. They come back so sharp that it is scary.

Carolina's picture

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What about the difference in sharping a straight-edged bladed knife (such as the Global) vs. a beveled-edged bladed knife (such as the Wusthof)? What is the best method for each?

MEAN_CHEF's picture

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Not sure what you mean. Both have beveled edges. The angle of bevel on the Global is more acute though. I had my Wusthofs retooled to have a more acute angle also.
It is a bit easier to sharpen the Global because (I think) the blade is thinner. But, to answer your question, I sharpen them both the same way.

Nancy_G.'s picture

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Chiffonade,

I'm so glad you brought up this topic as I've been thinking I need to get a new knife sharpener. Like MC, I usually get my knives done once a year but lately I've noticed that when I use my steel my knives don't seem to be improved. Does anybody know, do steels wear out?

Also, I always thought the technique for sharpening was to run the blade at a sharp angle completely down the steel a few times and then switch sides. However, I saw Martha do a segment on knife sharpening and she used short, small strokes working up one side of the knife and then switching to the other side. I had never seen a knife sharpened this way before but I tried it and my knives seemed sharper.

Comments?

Chiffonade_'s picture

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Global vs. Wusthof, Henkels, et al...The German style knifes begin with a thicker piece of steel, hence the "heft" for breaking lobster shells, etc. The Global is a "finer" blade, which is why it's probably hard to see the bevel.

MEAN_CHEF's picture

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I have seen chefs sharpen knives many different ways. In the end it doesn't matter as long as you do two things (applies to stone and steel):

*keep the pressure even over the entire length of the blade.
*keep the angle correct and consistent at all times.

This is a lot easier said than done by hand.

Carolina's picture

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Received my new ProCutDirect catalog today. Here's a quote: " These Japanese made knives are thin and sharp - razor sharp. The edge extends straight down from the spine.
i There is no bevel as on European knives."

They go on to say:

"Please do not use an electric sharpener on these thin and delicate blades."

Of course, that is exactly what I've been doing. Hope I haven't totally ruined them. Seems that the Chef's Choice electric sharpener, that I use, puts
i tri-beveled edge
on knives. They advise using a Japanese whetstone or ceramic and diamonds steels. Sigh.

MEAN_CHEF's picture

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You are right it does say that. The whole thing is one bevel. I think that its a matter of terminology. The globals Are thicker at the top than at the sharp edge - a bevel, no?

Carolina's picture

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NO! You
obviously don't know what a bevel is.

MEAN_CHEF's picture

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On the off chance that my Webster's is wrong, why don't you enlighten us.

Carolina's picture

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It's not Webster's definition I'm worried about, it's yours..........darlin'.

Chiffonade_'s picture

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Without looking into any dictionary, a bevel is any surface or item that begins thicker than it ends. Hence the reasons knives cut.
i Any
knives.

A simplistic illustration...I believe both of these are considered bevels:

c < (more represents a knife)
c and/or
c <> (more represents a mirror, or something beveled on both sides)

MEAN_CHEF's picture

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The actual terminology in PCD catalog is "There is no bevel as on European knives". It could mean that there is a different kind of bevel. European knives come down relatively straight and then bevel right at the end. Globals taper from the top all the way to the blade. Both are bevels as far as I am concerned.

Jean_'s picture

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Actually your non-beveled knife is actually wedge shaped. :-)

MEAN_CHEF's picture

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True, but it fits the bevel definition.

Jean_'s picture

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DH has a Firestone diamond electric knife sharpener that he bought at Gander Mountain to keep his hunting/skinning knives sharp. I'm more that happy to have him keep mine sharp too, although I don't have any that are as expensive as the ones you are talking about. My favorites are boning knives that we got from one of our butcher friends--have no idea what brand they are. I also have a chefs knife that I use a lot for chopping. It's an inexpensive knife from Chicago cutlery, but I'm very happy with the edge he puts on it. I can cut an unpeeled tomato to 1/8th inch slices with it if I want to.. :-)

Carolina's picture

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Beveled means angled. Wish I could draw a picture here. A knife with a beveled edge has a straight shaft, then a
i definite
angle, then the edge. An unbeveled knife goes down from the top of the shaft to the edge without any angle. It goes from thick to thin, with no angle. Dig?

MEAN_CHEF's picture

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Goes from thick to thin with no angle. Hello.
Angle=bevel=taper=goes from thick to thin. call it what you want. If there was no angle or taper the top of the knife would be as sharp as the blade side.
It really is not that difficult.

Carolina's picture

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I give up. Good night, Gracie. Our winds are really starting to pick up here. Time to unplug. Bye. BTW, anybody heard from Andrea? She's on the Outer Banks and really needs our prayers tonight.

Jean_'s picture

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More things can be beveled than a knife edge (and there in is the defining concept--it's the edge that is beveled, not the whole item, cuz then it would be a wedge). Anyhoo here's a little drawning that simulates a very sharply beveled edge on glass (for instance).

Carolina's picture

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You are too clever! Fantastic! That's a beveled edge. Thanks. (The end. Whew!)

MEAN_CHEF's picture

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That's a bevel all right. So is a wedge. A bevel is "the angle that one surface or line makes with another when they are not at right angles." Unless my dictionary is incorrect, it covers wedge, taper etc etc.

Jean, I know that you know better.

Wolverine's picture

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I find that my diamond electric knife sharpener works quite well on all types of knives. The key is to let the knife bring itself out as it goes thru the sharpeners - a beveled knife just does this a little slower. Carolina is correct about what a bevel is, a taper does not fit the definition, nor does a wedge. A taper - think of an obtuse triangle. ( Flat bottom, inclined top , one side wall has height, then the incline tapers to meet the bottom line. Like a slice of layer cake. For a wedge, think of a slice of pie. There is no way either of these are bevels.

Jean_'s picture

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You get an attaboy!!

Carolina's picture

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Thanks, Wolverine. Hopefully you have just helped redeem me for my stupid truffle joke. Perhaps you would be kind enough to answer my question, since you-know-who would rather argue than advise.


Have I ruined my Globals and their razor sharp, unbeveled edge by using the Chef's Choice sharpener? Chef's Choice puts a beveled edge on a knife. Unfortunately, I was a day late and a dollar short in learning this. They aren't anywhere near as sharp now, as they were when they were new.

MEAN_CHEF's picture

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You need a dictionary too.

Carolina's picture

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Face it, darlin', you got
i edged
out this time. :)

MEAN_CHEF's picture

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Even though you are unable to understand the dictionary, maybe you could have someone read this and explain it to you. Then you can explain it to the other two.
IF you don't get it now, I give up

Rebecca's picture

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Wow!