The 10 Best Knife Sharpeners

Updated December 14, 2017 by Ezra Glenn

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We spent 44 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top selections for this wiki. If you're starting to end up with puree instead of nicely sliced tomatoes every time you get them on your cutting board, it might be time to sharpen your blades. Our selection of knife sharpeners will give you the edge to get chopping and slicing with precision again in no time, whether you're a home cook or a restaurant chef. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to support our work. Skip to the best knife sharpener on Amazon.

10. SunrisePro Supreme

With its patented, power-gripping suction base and round design, the SunrisePro Supreme attaches securely to almost any smooth countertop or other surface. Its tungsten carbide elements make honing any blade a fast and easy process.
  • works with serrated blades
  • weighs less than four ounces
  • plastic housing feels cheap
Brand SunrisePro
Model JHCL-1
Weight 0.3 ounces
Rating 3.6 / 5.0

9. Messermeister Ceramic Rod

While having razor-edged cutlery is nice, many people don't want to use up their counter space or add yet another electrical appliance to their kitchen. The Messermeister Ceramic Rod does the trick with panache and slips easily into a drawer for storage.
  • soft grip for safety and comfort
  • available in 10- and 12-inch lengths
  • hard for novices to get the hang of
Brand Messermeister
Model CR-12F
Weight 11.2 ounces
Rating 3.6 / 5.0

8. Lansky Master's Edge

The Lansky Master's Edge comes with five detachable rods, including one triangular one for handling almost any type of serrated blade. While it is quite effective for those who know how to use it, it does have a significantly steeper learning curve than most models.
  • rods store securely in base
  • sleek and stylish design
  • rods don't always stay in place
Brand Lansky
Model MEDGE1
Weight 1.4 pounds
Rating 4.2 / 5.0

7. Spyderco Tri-Angle Sharpmaker

All the components of the Spyderco Tri-Angle Sharpmaker pack easily into its ABS plastic base and lid, making it a great travel option. When you're ready to use it, the pieces are a cinch to snap together, and include rods and stones for nearly every blade imaginable.
  • can also be used on fishhooks
  • includes an instructional dvd
  • requires a lot of practice to master
Brand Spyderco
Model 204MF
Weight 1.3 pounds
Rating 3.8 / 5.0

6. Chef's Choice Angle Select

Built for professionals, the Chef's Choice Angle Select offers an all-in-one design that accommodates European, American, and Asian-style cutlery. Its patented stropping and polishing discs restore blade angles and edges to pristine conditions.
  • uses pure diamond abrasives
  • manufactured in the usa
  • end results can be a bit coarse
Brand EdgeCraft
Model 0115200
Weight 5.1 pounds
Rating 4.2 / 5.0

5. Brod and Taylor Professional

The Austrian-made Brod and Taylor Professional looks so good you'll want to leave it on your counter at all times, even when you go months between uses. It uses spring-loaded tungsten-carbide bars to maintain the edges and angles of even your most precious kitchen tools.
  • works with serrated or flat blades
  • automatically self-adjusting
  • expensive for a manual model
Brand Brod & Taylor
Model KS-500
Weight 1.7 pounds
Rating 4.3 / 5.0

4. PreciSharp 3-Stage

The PreciSharp 3-Stage has a sturdy ABS plastic build, an ergonomic handle, rubber feet to avoid slippage, and keeps your hands away from the blade as you go. It easily accommodates knives of any size and won't occupy too much space in your kitchen.
  • great for beginners
  • good value for the price
  • not the best on ceramic cutlery
Brand PreciSHARP
Model PRECI-01
Weight 8 ounces
Rating 3.9 / 5.0

3. PriorityChef Diamond

The PriorityChef Diamond boasts a two-stage system that can prepare all of your straight-edged cutlery to slice through just about anything with ease. It features an elegant design with a built-handle for you to keep it steady while you work.
  • slot order is clearly labeled
  • outperforms more expensive models
  • cushioned base won't slip and slide
Brand Priority Chef
Model PCKN-03
Weight 14.4 ounces
Rating 4.5 / 5.0

2. V-Sharp Classic II

Featuring a durable, powder-coated finish, a handmade steel frame, and 325-grit natural diamond rods, the V-Sharp Classic II has been carefully crafted to give your knives long-lasting, razor-sharp edges. It has a unique industrial design and comes in five colors.
  • precisely calibrated spring tension
  • snaps to your choice of 3 angles
  • hones both sides of a blade at once
Brand Warthog
Model 540036
Weight 1.5 pounds
Rating 4.6 / 5.0

1. Chef's Choice 130

The Chef's Choice 130 is constructed with hardened steel designed to create the most precise edges possible using its ultra-sharp, microscopic teeth. A single pass, once per month, is enough to keep any blade nearly as sharp as when you bought it.
  • built-in stabilizing feet
  • backed by a 3-year limited warranty
  • safe for use on expensive knives
Brand Chef's Choice
Model 0130506
Weight 4.7 pounds
Rating 4.8 / 5.0

A Dull Beginning

A simple fact of life is that sharp knives will dull. You cannot avoid this, nor can you ever purchase a non-dulling knife. Now that we have come to terms with this harsh reality, we can correct course to sharpen our blades to achieve optimal performance. If you are someone who uses blades frequently; hunter, chef, serial killer, you need a way of sharpening your tools.

Knives need to be sharpened for a myriad of reasons: corrosion by acid, getting bent, and repetition of cuts all weaken and dull the knife, creating blade damage. Luckily for us, there are methods to refine the edge resulting in fewer new knives purchased.

Knife sharpening is a complex process and it is achieved in several stages. First, the blade is sharpened. The semantics of the word sharpening can be tricky. Here it is defined as grinding the blade against a hard surface, or a soft surface with hard particles, such as sandpaper. The hard surface will grind away the old dull surface of the blade, exposing the new metal underneath. A grindstone or whetstone is usually employed at this stage of the process. The rougher grit will be used first, then a refined sharpening can occur using a finer grit.

The next step is straightening, which is also known as honing the blade. The aim is to realign the newly exposed metal and this is achieved with a honing steel. This does not remove much, if any, metal from the blade. The hone will smooth out the nicks and rough patches caused by the destructive sharpening phase. This is known as burnishing the blade. The hone will look like a rod made of steel, though ceramic models are effective as well.

The final stage is polishing or stropping, which gives the blade a mirror finish. This is accomplished by using a razor strop, which is made of soft materials like leather or canvas. The existing metal is tempered enough to be reformed at this stage, making it easier to create a smooth edge.

Grinding, Steeling, And Stropping

The three stages of sharpening a blade can be named after the tools they use to achieve the desired effect: grinding, steeling, and stropping.

A whetstone is the primarily tool used for sharpening the blade. Most are synthetic and include particles in the stone to determine grit size. A larger grit will make for a rough grind, while a finer grit makes it smoother. Most stones will have two sides to facilitate a rough and a fine grind. An oil stone and a grindstone are similar variations of the whetstone. Diamond, of course, is a girl's best friend and a knife owner's dream. Considering it is the hardest known substance to man, it can sharpen anything and it's used for knives as well.

Another option besides using whetstones is the scary sharp method. And yes, this is the actual name for it. The method employs using sandpaper to the same effect as a whetstone and it's ideal for woodworking tools.

In the next stage you must steel your blade. The honing steel rod is the most popular option, though, as mentioned previously, ceramic and even diamond rods give an excellent performance. The operator must adapt to a tough learning curve; blade precision is important at this stage and it requires you to hold the blade at consistent angles.

Lastly, the stropping stage. Remember seeing old barber shops on television? Remember that leather paddle they used to buff the straight razor? That is stropping. The strop can be leather or canvas and it's the final step in polishing the blade, making an even surface. Depending on the use of the knife, this step may be omitted. A chef will not require the blade precision chopping vegetables that a barber requires shaving with a straight razor on a gentleman's face. The chef may simple steel the blade and keep working.

Knives can last a long time, provided they are properly maintained. Cleaning, polishing, and oiling your knife all contribute to the longevity of the blade. Sharpen your knives frequently. I'm sure you have heard the saying, a dull knife is more dangerous than a sharp one. If you are uncertain as to how to test if you blade is dull, there are a number of tests you can perform.

A History With The Knife

Prehistorically, humans began to sharpen knives as soon as knives were used as tools. Evidence of stone knives sharpened were found to be in use over 75,000 years ago. Once humans began to use metals, the knives improved, along with their sharpness.

Western style knife sharpening can trace it's roots back to the mountains of Trento, Italy. The moletas were a staple in every Italian city. Characterized by their oversized hat and sharpening station, these men sharpened all the knives of the residents in the city. They delivered the knives to the people on horse drawn carriages.

At the turn of the century, these immigrants moved to New York and brought their knife sharpening skills with them. Grinding stones replaced the cumbersome pedal operated foot wheel, and business grew. The moletas were absorbed in American culture, and brick and mortar knife sharpening shops emerged.

Today, you can certainly bring your knives to be sharpened, but there is something special about doing it on your own. It does have a steep learning curve, but I can assure you, this skill will last you a lifetime.


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Last updated on December 14, 2017 by Ezra Glenn

Ezra is a writer, photographer, creative producer, designer, and record label-operator from New York City. He's traveled around the world and ended up back where he started, though he's constantly threatening to leave again.


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