Knife Sharpening Made Easy

Knife Sharpening Information and Equipment

Steve's Knife Sharpening School

Due to retirement I am only honoring prior commitments to teach.  New students should consider our Video.

"He who receives an idea from me receives instruction himself without lessening mine; as he who lights his taper at mine receives light without darkening me." -Thomas Jefferson, 1813

Do you want to revive this dying art or just improve your own sharpening skills?  Are you thinking of starting a knife or scissor sharpening business?  You can earn up to $100 an hour.  Whatever your motivation, consider our Sharpening School. In your training you will spend two days with an experienced sharpener and learn how to sharpen knives, scissors and other home and garden tools on a variety of professional sharpening equipment.  By attending our training you can learn what equipment is right for you before you invest. 

Instruction and hands-on experience is available on the following equipment:

TORMEK Wet grinder for knife, scissor and tool sharpening

PAPER SHARPENING WHEELS - To hone and strop knives

F. DICK RS-150 Two stage commercial knife sharpener

F. DICK SM-111 Three stage professional knife sharpener - grind, sharpen, polish

CHEF'SCHOICE Knife Sharpeners including the 2000 Commercial knife sharpener

TRU-HONE Knife Sharpener

EDGEPRO Manual knife and scissor sharpening system

Spyderco SHARPMAKER Manual knife sharpener

Wolff TWICE-AS-SHARP Scissor sharpening machine

Viel Tools BELT SANDER for knife repairs, garden tools, axes and other convex edges.

And of course there are a variety of other smaller sharpeners and tools that we can use and talk about.

You will learn to sharpen:

Knives, including repairing tips, reducing bolsters and correcting blade shape

Serrated Knives

Household and dressmaking scissors

Industrial and Upholsterers shears

Pinking shears

Garden tools

You will also learn how salon shears, nail nippers and clipper blades are different from the above and why they require different machinery and training.

Your customers can include:

Chefs and home cooks


Cooking Schools

Fabric Shops

Upholstery Shops

Quilt Makers

Tailors and Dressmakers

Alteration shops and Dry cleaners



Places where you can set up for more customers include:

Farmers Markets

Grocery Stores

Culinary Stores

Senior Centers

Church and other community kitchens

and many others.

See detailed course description at

Why we are different

Other sharpening schools charge up to $1000 a day and only teach you how to use the equipment they make. Some even sell a complete franchise package for $50,000 to $80,000.  My approach is different.  First, I cover a wide variety of commercially available equipment so you can choose what meets your needs and budget. Second, instruction is a one-on-one and tailored to you or your group.  Third, my price is reasonable.  Finally, I focus on knives, household and dressmaker scissors, and garden tools.  I do not get into salon shears, clipper blades, power tools, saws, etc. 

The two-day school (about 10 hours) is $700.  All classes are one-on-one unless you come with someone;see two-fer special below.  On Day One you will learn my method of combining wet grinding with paper wheel honing and stropping, and become able to sharpen most household knives.  On Day Two you will learn how to sharpen scissors and garden tools.  You can try any of the listed equipment and get some practice time sharpening knives and scissors that you brought. Two days is recommended for anyone thinking about starting a sharpening business. All classes include lunch. All classes include the opportunity of being my apprentice either at a farmers market or at a supermarket sharpening session.
A certificate is awarded upon successful completion of the course.  

Two-fer special:

Take the two day class with a spouse, child, colleague or friend for an additional $100 per additional person, 3 people max.

Classes for two run about 11 hours total.

I teach M-F from April to the end of Oct.  All classes are one-on-one and by appointment.  Phone or e-mail for an appointment.  $100 deposit holds your date and includes copies of Sharpening Made Easy and How to Start Your Own Knife Sharpening Business.  The balance is due at start of class. A credit will be given if you previously purchased either book.  

CANCELLATION POLICY: Cancellation deadline is 7 days before scheduled class.  A refund of $50 will be made for a cancellation (you keep the book and booklet), or the full deposit credited for a postponement. Cancellation or postponement within 7 days will not receive a refund or future credit.

Physical requirements:  Sharpeners need to be able to work on their feet for up to an hour at a stretch.  To attend my school you need to be able to climb two flights of stairs and walk 200 ft.  If weather and your fitness permits we will walk about 3/4 miles to lunch.

Smoke-free house and shop.

Complete this application and mail it to me.  You may enclose a check for the deposit or pay it by PayPal by clicking the button below.  When your deposit is received you will receive a confirmation e-mail with a link to How to Start Your Own Knife Sharpening Business download and a copy of Sharpening Made Easy will be mailed to you. This email will also contain a map, driving instructions and recommendations for nearby hotels.

Click button to pay deposit by credit card  Add to Cart

WHAT TO BRING:  5 or 6 items that you want to learn to sharpen, safety glasses, a notebook and lots of questions.  (Pack sharp objects in your checked luggage if flying, and put a note on top to warn TSA if they search it.)  We do not sharpen any power equipment(saw blades, router bits, lawnmowers, etc.), salon shears or clipper blades.  It is a good idea to bring two checks - one to pay for class on day one and one to buy equipment when class is over.  We cannot accept credit cards except for payment in advance through PayPal.

For names of other sharpeners who offer training see school.htm  I can also suggest resources for training and equipment for groomer and salon shear sharpening and clipper blade sharpening.  Please contact me by e-mail.  steve at bottorff dot com

  EQUIPMENT we sell:

Steve Bottorff,South Euclid, OH (Cleveland area), steve at bottorff dot com, 216-650-2034

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