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How to Use a Handheld Knife Sharpener

How To Use A Handheld Knife Sharpener

Learn how to use a handheld knife sharpener in less than 5 minutes time. Sound good? Let’s jump right in.

When it comes to how to use a handheld knife sharpener, there are two basic techniques – using the sharpener itself on the knife and using the knife itself on the sharpener. Let us explain.

Most handheld sharpeners are, well handheld, meaning the device is small enough to be applied to a knife blade with normal human dexterity. In other words, the sharpener moves along the blade of a stationary knife. This is the technique most people are familiar with and would expect when thinking about how to use a handheld knife sharpener.

But there’s another, more opposite technique that’s equally effective and seems to be a bit more popular among the expert and veteran survivalists and that is to use the knife on the sharpener. That means to keep the sharpener stationary and to move the knife blade along the sharpener.

Maybe the vets like this method because it reminds them of sharpening their knives and machetes on boulders and other huge rocks they encounter in the wilderness. Maybe it’s because holding a knife handle over a long period of time is more comfortable than holding a rock, who knows?

But one thing is certain, either method can produce a razor-sharp edge capable of coarse or fine work. So without further ado, here’s how to use a handheld knife sharpener.


Step #1 – Use the coarse side first

Most sharpening stones have two different degrees of coarseness on either side known as grit. When your knife needs to be sharpened, it will always need the relatively larger burrs, nicks, and imperfections removed first before it is ready to be finely sharpened. Most electric sharpeners have two grooves, one coarse and the other fine, and you will still use the coarse side first for the same reasons.

Step #2 – Use the fine side next

Now that the major imperfections have been removed from your knife blade, it will be considerably sharper than it was before you started your task. Still, there’s further to go and the next step is to use the fine grit side of your sharpener.

The fine sharpening will put the final edge on your knife blade, so pay close attention visually and by listening and even feeling for the edge to set. Once, you have the feel for this you will be able to put a razor sharpening on any blade that passes your way. The best way to verify the true sharpness is to use your knife edge to cut through a sheet of paper. A properly sharpened metal blade will cut through the sheet of paper with no effort or resistance.

Don’t worry if your newly sharpened blade doesn’t ‘cut it’ the first time. Blade sharpening is a skill that develops and improves over time. Pretty soon, you’ll be shaving with a spoon or anything else you can sharpen because you’ll be that good at it and probably love doing it too!

How to Use a Handheld Knife Sharpener Conclusion:

Learning how to use a handheld knife sharpener is actually a quite popular topic, meaning many people want this survival skill but have yet to master it. Take the tips and strategies above and become the swordsmith of your own domain.


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What started out as a commitment to protect my family from the dangers of the world has turned into a mission to share my research with as many people as possible. Despite the ever-increasing threats of today, there are ways to keep ourselves protected. Knowledge is Power.

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