Choosing the right angle for sharpening is one of the most crucial things for a knife to increase its longevity and overall performance. Whether you are a professional chef or a home cook, sharpening your knives to the correct angle will ensure you get the best results when preparing your meals.
In this comprehensive guide, I will explore the basics of knife sharpening and the importance of the angle in achieving a sharp edge.
Understanding the Basics:
Understanding the basics of knife sharpening is essential before diving into the best angle for sharpening a knife. Knife sharpening is the process of sharpening a knife blade by removing small amounts of metal from its blade that helps it to get a sharp edge. Over time, a knife’s edge can become dull due to its daily use. Using a dull knife is more risky than a sharp knife regarding safety. So regular sharpening is necessary to increase its longevity and keep it ready for different types of tasks such as slice, dice, or mincing.
There are several methods for sharpening knives, including using a sharpening stone, honing steel, or an electric sharpener. Regardless of the method, the angle at which you sharpen the knife is crucial to achieving a sharp edge.
What is Knife Sharpening?
Knife sharpening is the procedure of making a knife’s edge sharpened by grinding the blade against a hard and rough surface. The main goal of knife sharpening is to create a sharp edge while maintaining the knife’s geometry. You may get several sharpening tools available in the market for sharpening a knife, such as sharpening stone, sandpaper, electric sharpener, or honing steel. You can choose any of them for sharpening your knives. However, choosing the right knife sharpener is also very important if you want to get the best result. It makes food cutting easier, and you require to put less pressure to get your desired cuts.
Why is the Angle Important?
Choosing an angle for sharpening your knife edge is one of the most crucial steps in sharpening. The angle determines how sharp the edge will be, how durable it will be, and how well it will perform in specific tasks. A sharp edge creates the balance between sharpness and durability.
A narrow angle creates a sharper edge but is also more fragile and requires more maintenance. A wider angle creates a more durable edge, but it’s less sharp and requires less maintenance. The angle you choose will depend on the knife you have and your preference. So choose the right angle before sharpening your knife.
Types of Angles:
There are three types of angles used in knife sharpening: acute angles, blunt angles, and convex angles. Here are three following angles you can choose for sharpening a knife-
An acute angle is typically between 10 and 20 degrees which creates a very sharp edge. However, such steep angles are incredibly fragile and require more maintenance. It is used for tasks that require a sharp, delicate edge, such as filleting fish or slicing vegetables.
A blunt angle is typically between 25 and 30 degrees which creates a more durable edge compared to an acute angle. However, they’re also less sharp and require less maintenance. A blunt angle is used for tasks that require a more robust, durable edge, such as slicing, chopping, and cutting through bone.
A convex angle is a combination of acute and blunt angles, creating a slightly curved edge. Convex angles are commonly used in Japanese knives and are designed to create a balance between sharpness and durability.
Different people have different choices when it comes to selecting an angle for sharpening a knife. The best angle for sharpening your knife depends on the type of knife you are using and the tasks you use your knife for. Experiment with different angles and methods to find what works best for you and your knives. Remember, a sharp knife is not only safer but also more efficient and enjoyable to use.