Knife sharpening as an essential to tool maintenance is not a new idea. It has been around as long as tools have been around. For example, in Colonial times the mill where tools were sharpened was one of the first buildings to be constructed. This was because the new settlement could not be built if the tools got dull and useless. The sharpener’s today are designed using the same principles as grist and whet stones. Electricity is not used instead of water for the grinding wheels.
What to Look For
When purchasing a knife sharpener, it can become confusing because there are so many out there. A bench top grinder is most commonly used for the sharpening of axe blades and gardening tools. It is essential when sharpening chain saws that it is done carefully. Chain saw blades need to be sharp because the better they cut, the safer they are to use.
The tips on a chain saw sharpener dull quickly and therefore it is important to buy plenty of tips. The drill is designed so that it quickly rotates as the saw blade is held up against it. Tormek is known for its knife and scissor sharpener. It is designed with a water function to reduce friction. The grinder does come with a complete package with several different supplies. This includes a leather strop, however, a paper wheel is recommended to both hone and drop the knife edges.
Versatility is the most important factor of a good knife sharpener. It is important to note whether it can sharpen long knife blades, stop edges adequately, and can the parts be replaced easily. Knife sharpeners can be very costly and so it is important to make sure that the sharpener does suit the purpose and be reliable. The most costly sharpeners are for heavy duty tools and can cost up to thousands of dollars.
Electric vs Manual Sharpeners
There are knife sharpeners available for every day use and not for the professional workmen or landscapers. These sharpeners are much more inexpensive and portable. There is also more variety. A handheld knife sharpener is one of the most basic. It is not electrical and is often found in places such as butcher shops. There are variations of this simple design though. For example there are wheeled sharpeners. Wheeled sharpeners work by drawing the blade in between two wheels. These can be both electrical and manual. It is the abrasive material against the knife that does the sharpening.
It does not have to be electrical in order to get a high quality result. The skill of the person doing the sharpening can make all the difference as well. It is how well the knife is angled as well as running the wheel. There are plenty of courses available to learn this skill well. Sharpening and maintenance of tools can be an important element to running a workshop regardless of whether it is in the home or in a business.
To find out more you can check out some of the manufacturers we carry such as Lansky.