Sharpening stones are commonly used to sharpen; Knifes, chisels, Axes & Other Hand Tools in the kitchen, home, workshop, jobsite and the great outdoors.
 
Accessories and stones are available in our Shop.  We do not sell knives.

How to Use:

  1. Choose appropriate grade of stone (See Stone Grits)

  2. Do not soak in water finishing stones 3000 grit and above. Splash with water only. For grits less than 3000 then soak stone in water for 5 minutes

  3. Choose sharpening angle (See Below)

  4. Maintain the correct angle by using a jig (See our Shop) or by using the stacked coin method (See below).

  5. Keep blade wet whilst sharpening at appropriate angle.

  6. After use let the stone dry thoroughly. Returning a stone into its box while still wet or damp will result in mould and may cause damage.

Stone grits:
In theory three stones are needed for sharpening:

  • One to grind,

  • one to sharpen and

  • one to hone. (See also our honing accessories)

 
Coarse stones
number range: Less than 1000

A whetstone 
with a grit less than a 1000 is primarily used for knives, or cutting edges, which are damaged. If your blade has any nicks or chips in the blade, then these stones will get rid of those for you in no time, but due to their abrasiveness they shouldn’t be used for general sharpening as they don’t leave the best finish on your blade edge.

Grit

240     Fastest metal removal, leaves very visible scratches in cutting edge. Best used to reshape or

repair chips. 


300     Very fast metal removal, leaves visible scratches in cutting edge. Most coarse stones commonly

available. Best used to put on an edge quickly for very dull knives. 


400     Good metal removal rates for dull knives.

600     Good metal removal rates for dull knives, before using a finer grit.

800     Fast metal removal rate, scratches not as visible. Finest recommended grit for dull tools and

knives.

 
 
Medium Stones
number range: 1000 to 3000

The 1000 grit stone is considered your basic, go to, sharpening stone. If your knives have lost their edge and need a good sharpen, then this is the grit you should start with.
You shouldn’t use this stone often, as it will wear your knife down. The 2000 and 3000 grit stones can be used more often if you are the sort of person who likes to sharpen a bit more regularly as they are less coarse, but again, they are designed for sharpening and not maintaining your edge.
NOTE: a 3000-grit whetstone is ideal for a boning knife and you don’t need to go any higher as refining your edge more will bend the knife on the muscle and sinew of the meat, meaning more frequent sharpening.


Grit
1000   Good metal removal rate, light scratches edge. Intermediate stage before finer grits. The 1000

grit stone is the basic sharpening stone to sharpen knives.

 
1200   The 1,200-grit stone is great for sharpening Traditional Japanese knives, because Traditional

Japanese knives are more delicate than Western style knives. However, the 1,200 grit and 1,000 grit are interchangeable.


1500   Still a reasonable metal removal rate. Intermediate stage before finer grits.

2000    The 2,000-grit stone is still considered a medium stone. It is not as abrasive as the 1,000 or 1,200 grit stones; therefore, it will take longer to sharpen. We recommend the 2,000 grit stones for those who prefer to sharpen knives very often (every day or every other day), because it doesn’t work off as much material as the lower grit stones.


3000   When sharpening knives, it is important to use medium stones and finishing stone. However, it

is easier to use a 3,000-grit stone as a buffer in between, rather than jumping from a 1,000 grit stone to a 6,000 grit stone. 
 

If you are planning to cut meat such as chicken, it is best to stop at the 3,000-grit stone.

 

Best finishing stones for boning knives. 
 

Caution: Please never soak finer grit stones. When preparing, simply wet the surface and it is ready for use. Failure to do so will result in the stone cracking or weakening.

 
Finishing stones
number range: 4000 to 8000
Grit stones 4000 and 5000 bridge between your sharpening and superfine finishing stones, the latter giving you a super refined edge.
You can actually use these stones as finishing stones in their own right however and perhaps for Western knives which typically have a cutting edge similar to a ‘U’ rather than a ‘V’ shaped edge, a 5000-grit stone may well be as far as you need to go.
If you are using your knife to cut meat, then you can happily stop at 4000 or 6000 grits. 
If you are only using it for vegetables or fruit, go all the way to the 8000.
This is because the refinement you get from #8000 grit stone is such that your knife edge has the potential to bend whilst cutting through muscle and sinew.


Grit
4000   Caution: Please never soak finer grit stones. When preparing, simply wet the surface and it is

ready for use. Failure to do so will result in the stone cracking or weakening.

 
5000   Fine - Modest sharpening rate, leaves metal edge with frosted appearance.  The basic finishing

Stone. 


Great stone to use in between the sharpening process. Using a stone in between a medium stone and a high grit fine stone will make sharpening easier and faster. 

Recommended for Western made Western knives. (i.e. German knives) 

 

Caution: Please never soak finer grit stones. When preparing, simply wet the surface and it is ready for use. Failure to do so will result in the stone cracking or weakening.

 
6000  
Extremely Fine - Edge is extremely sharp. Very slow sharpening speed. Edge reflects light very

well.

 
Although, the 6,000 grit stone will give you a more refined edge, it will also be more prone to dulling faster. Using a rougher edge will maintain the blade for longer. 

 

Caution: Please never soak finer grit stones. When preparing, simply wet the surface and it is  ready for use. Failure to do so will result in the stone cracking or weakening.

 
8000  
Near Mirror Polish - Edge is very near perfect. Grits past this stage provides only modest

benefit. Leave edge polished to naked eye. This is the best finishing stone for the sharpest and most polished blade. We recommend this stone for those working with mostly produce and non-fatty ingredients. 
 

Caution: Please never soak finer grit stones. When preparing, simply wet the surface and it is ready for use. Failure to do so will result in the stone cracking or weakening.

 
10000
Mirror Polish - Sharpest edge possible, extremely slowing sharpening. Leaves mirror edge

without visible flaws.

 

Caution: Please never soak finer grit stones. When preparing, simply wet the surface and it is ready for use. Failure to do so will result in the stone cracking or weakening.

 
Suggested Sharpening Angles:

17º Angle - Shavers, Sushi Knife, Chef knife or kitchen knife  
With a total angle of 20º to 34º, this is still a very fine edge. This edge is typically too weak for any knife that might be used in any type of chopping motion. Also, harder steels are more susceptible to impact damage because they are more brittle. If your knife is used for cutting soft items or slicing meats, this lower angle can hold up and provide a very smooth cutting action.
 
20º Angle - General use kitchen knife                                     
17º to 20º angle covers most kitchen knives. Most western knives are roughly 20º. Kitchen knives sharpened to 15º to 20º degrees cut very well and are still durable. These angles are still not highly durable as a total angle under 40º will not respond well to rougher treatment in harder materials.

25º Angle - Wood chisel, General purpose outdoor knives                              
22º to 30º knife edges are considerably more durable. A pocket knife or a hunting knife will inevitably see abuse not seen by knives meant primarily for slicing or chopping softer materials. While the edge may not ultimately cut as well (but you may not notice a difference) it will be considerably more durable.

30º to 35º Angle – Axe, Machete, Cleaver, Hand plane blade, Wood chisel, Chopping knife or outdoor knife
Any edged tool or knife that is sharpened past 30º degrees will be very durable. Its cutting ability will be noticeably reduced. This durability has an advantage because more force can be used to make the cut. While most knives won’t benefit from this sharpening angle, an edged tool like a machete, cleaver or axe must be durable as the typical cutting action of these tools would damage other edges.     
                     
40º to 55º Angle – Engraving Gravers or Wood planer blades

How to keep your knife at the right angle to the stone

When you have decided on a  grinding angle, measure the width of the knife. Then look in the table below how high you must keep your knife against the stone.
 

Width of the blade

Sharpening angle 12°

Sharpening angle 15°

Sharpening angle 18°

Sharpening angle 20°

Sharpening angle 23°

10 mm

2.08 mm

2.59 mm

3.09 mm

3.42 mm

3.91 mm

15 mm

3.12 mm

3.88 mm

4.64 mm

5.13 mm

5.86 mm

20 mm

4.16 mm

5.18 mm

6.18 mm

6.84 mm

7.82 mm

25 mm

5.20 mm

6.47 mm

7.73 mm

8.55 mm

9.77 mm

30 mm

6.24 mm

7.77 mm

9.27 mm

10.26 mm

11.72 mm

35 mm

7.28 mm

9.06 mm

10.82 mm

11.97 mm

13.68 mm

40 mm

8.32 mm

10.35 mm

12.36 mm

13.68 mm

15.63 mm

45 mm

9.36 mm

11.65 mm

13.91 mm

15.39 mm

17.58 mm

50 mm

10.40 mm

12.94 mm

15.45 mm

17.10 mm

19.54 mm

55 mm

11.44 mm

14.24 mm

17 mm

18.81 mm

21.49 mm

60 mm

12.47 mm

15.53 mm

18.54 mm

20.52 mm

23.44 mm


Exact formula: width of the blade, measured in mm x sin (sharpening angle in degrees) = height in mm

Use Coins to measure the correct height whilst sharpening

If you want to use coins to measure the correct height for sharpening, follow these steps:

1.    Determine the sharpening angle which you want to use

2.    Measure the thickness of the blade in mm

3.    Calculate as follows:
The height in mm - half of the thickness of the back of the knife. This is the height that you are going to fill up with coins.

Example: You are going to sharpen a Böker Saga Cook's knife with an angle of 15 °. The blade has a width of 52 mm, the thickness of the back of the knife is 2.4 mm, the height which you find in the table with step 2 is more than 13 mm. The calculation which follows is approximately 13 mm - 1, 2 mm = 11, 8 mm. This is the height that you can measure out with coins.
 

Coin

Thickness

1 penny (1971-1991)

1.52 mm

1 penny (1992-present)

1.65 mm

Two pence (1971-1991)

1.85 mm

Two pence (1992-present)

2.03 mm

Five pence (1992-2011)

1.89 mm

Five pence (2012-present)

2.38 mm

Ten pence (1992-2011)

1.85 mm

Ten pence (2011-present)

2.05 mm

Twenty pence

1.70 mm

Fifty pence coin

1.78 mm

1 british pound

3.15 mm

2 british pound

2.5 mm