Sharpening Your Knives the Easy Way

Kitchen Knives and Gatco Sharpener

Sharpening knives can be tricky, especially if you don’t do it very often (which most people don’t).

Gatco Knife Sharpener
Gatco Knife Sharpener

I’ve watched YouTube videos on sharpening, and I’ve tried all the classic sharpening methods over the years. My knives have always been pretty sharp, but I always knew they could be sharper. I think it’s because I don’t do it often enough to develop some level of knife sharpening skill.

Recently, an extremely generous friend gave my brother and I a number of quality kitchen knives. Some are American, some German, but the best are Japanese. I have had my Cutco chef’s knife for maybe 5 years and use it all the time, so it takes  a beating–I use my ceramic hone on it fairly regularly, and as of last year, I started sharpening it with my brother’s [amazon asin=B003774RF2&text=Gatco knife sharpener].

I’m not going to go all cuckoo over the Gatco, but the thing works very well. It’s hard to describe how it works, so I’ll just show you in this little video clip I took of my brother using it on my [amazon asin=B005FNPY7G&text=Cutco chef’s knife]:

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k2rSGKPXpaw&feature=youtu.be[/youtube]

Basically, you clamp your knife into the holder, then figure out what angle your edge is. You just select one of the sharpening rods

Gatco Sharpener In Action
Gatco Sharpener In Action

and guess at the angle your knife was ground at. So far 22 degrees has been most common. But you can easily tell the angle of your edge without using the sharpening system–if you have the right one, go for it. If not, put the rod in other positions until you get the right one. From there you just run the sharpening rod along the blade edge, letting the system do all the work for you.

My brother’s kit includes coarse, medium, and fine stones, as well as one designed for serrated knives. The thing works well.

Now, I’m not saying that you have to spend $90 on a sharpening set like this to do a good job. I AM saying that something like the Gatco is an excellent way to sharpen your expensive knives, especially if, like me, you don’t have the skills to use traditional sharpeners.

Picture of the Day: Beaver Slides

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Beaver Slides are the contraptions in the background of the picture. They were used to gather up hay back in the old days (when my grandpa was a kid). These ones used to sit (and still might) near Deerlodge, Montana.

Picture of the Day: Spanish Armor With Horns

Medieval Knight Armor From Palacio Real

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I have never really liked knights all that much, but seeing this armor in person was an amazing experience. I love the horse’s armor more than anything. Imagine the work that went into making such detailed stuff for a horse!

Picture of the Day: My 1955 Cadillac

Here’s my first official Picture of the Day! It’s where I share a picture of something that inspires, interests, or motivates me to create something (whether I took the picture or  not). Sometimes it might just be something that makes me happy.

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I’m starting off with a shot of my 1955 Cadillac. My Doberman Ivan is in the background. I like the sleek 50s lines of the car, the chrome, the grille, everything (except the gas mileage).