Sharpening Made Easy
Knife Sharpening Information and Equipment
Steve's Sharpener Recommendations
I am often asked what sharpener I recommend. The answer depends
on the working style of the person asking and what they are willing to
spend. Following are some recommendations, sorted by price with
comments on each model:
For under $20:
A good bench stone and time to develop sharpening skills. Not as
good as a guided system, but definitely the lowest price. For
For about $75:
Spyderco SharpMaker - quick and easy, but bevels are not pretty.
Handy for the kitchen, and recommended for people who don't want
a lot of work, but don't want to spend the money for an electric
Lansky or GATCO or DMT rod-guided system - not as fast to use as
the Sharpmaker, but nice clean bevels. For the craftsman.
For around $150
Chef'sChoice 320 ($90) - electric machine, sharpens and strops to a
This or the following CC model is a perfect, no-skills solution for
those willing to spend the money.
Chef'sChoice 120 ($120) - adds a coarser "pre-sharpening"
stage, needed for really dull knives and/or thick blades .
Chef'sChoice 130 ($130) - adds a "steel" stage in place of the
second diamond grinder.
EdgePro Apex ($165 to $245) - the perfectionist's rod-guided
system. See below for Pro model.
Paper Wheels ($70 for the wheels, plus $50
for a bench grinder). Requires a little skill; angle control is
manual, but it is the fastest way I have found to sharpen a knife.
For around $500:
EdgePro Pro model ($375 to $650) In addition to knives, accepts
attachments for scissor and chisel sharpening.
Chef'sChoice 2100 commercial sharpener. This machine produces
a double bevel edge, unlike the triple bevel produced by their home
machines. The sharpening unit is removable so it can be cleaned
in a dishwasher, and be replaced when it wears out. Life
expectancy is about 3000 knives. About $379 for a setup with
For around $1000:
Tormek - power wet grinder with fixtures
available for everything including scissors and woodworking tools.
Angles are well controlled and bevels are clean. Can also be
$750 will equip you for knives and scissors, but you can spend up
to $1000 with all the woodworking fixtures. Buy the stone grader
and stone truing tool. It is a travesty that they sell it
For around $2000
The F. Dick sharpening machines, SM-110 and
SM-111, are worth considering for someone setting up a sharpening
E-mail corrections and updates to
Updated September 30, 2012
Copyright 1996 - 2021 by Steve Bottorff