Knife sharpening machines: a convenient way to keep working tools in order
Knives for household use are important tools on which the productivity of work depends, since it is the state of the edge that affects the speed and amount of force applied. The amount of effort you will have to work with is influenced by many factors: the blade material, the sharpening angle, the geometry of the descent and the purity of processing. Knife sharpening machines allow you to quickly adjust the condition of the blade. The main thing is to choose the right abrasive and follow the rules of sharpening.
Why are devices blunt and why use devices for sharpening knives
Professional chef’s knives, unlike ordinary household knives, are made of more expensive types of steel, mainly a chromium-containing type of high hardness is used. However, even this fact is not a guarantee that the blade will never be blunted. The tip of any material is constantly in contact with solid objects, such as:
- fruit pits;
- frozen foods;
- sand or dirt particles;
- the surfaces of cutting boards, which can be wooden, plastic or glass.
In addition to the fact that knives are constantly in contact with various surfaces, they can also become dull if stored incorrectly, if the tip is in constant contact with other kitchen appliances. Another factor is considered improper care and frequent washing in hot water, which negatively affects the surface. As for knives intended for carpentry use, in this case, due to the peculiarities of the application, surface grinding cannot be avoided.
Useful advice! In order not to have to use machines for sharpening knives often, it is recommended to pay special attention to the proper storage of devices. It is desirable that the blade is constantly in a special stand or on a magnetic holder. This rule applies to both kitchen appliances and knives of other tools.
It should be borne in mind that the tip can be brought into perfect condition not only with the help of a professional knife sharpening machine, which is characterized by high cost, but also by using simpler models with good technical characteristics.
Knife sharpening machines are characterized by the presence of grinding bars with various abrasive capabilities, on which the result of the process will depend. To perform a high-quality preparation of the blade for work, it is recommended to use at least 2 bars, one of which is pre-sharpening, and the second is ground the base.
Belt machines for sharpening knives are most often used directly in production. Their purchase for household purposes is not considered justified, which cannot be said about electric knife sharpening machines that housewives can easily use.
To restore the sharpness of the blade, it is only necessary to install the device in the groove and connect the sharpening to the outlet. It should be borne in mind that before using any grinding device, you should read the instructions or at least once see how a professional uses it. The quality of sharpening is greatly influenced not only by the design features of the sharpener, but also by the user’s skills. The grinding accuracy will also be affected by the size of the abrasive installed on the grinding wheel. Machines for sharpening knives, scissors and other tools are divided into the following types:
The functionality of the design depends on the technical characteristics and the ability to change the sharpening angle. The power of the device has a great influence on the service life. There is an opinion among experts that the most convenient is an electric machine that independently determines the optimal sharpening angle. The mechanical knife sharpening machine uses a reliable attachment that allows you to maintain the desired angle throughout the entire sharpening period.
How to properly use knife sharpening machines and equip the workplace
In order to properly restore the edge of the blade, you need to know how to sharpen knives on a grinding machine, and follow some rules:
Useful advice! After using the machine for sharpening scissors, knives or other tools, the abrasive must be wiped to remove all unnecessary particles from it. Before use, it is also necessary to wipe the sharpened blades, because small particles of the worn metal remain on them.
Knife sharpening specialists do not recommend trying to start self-sharpening with expensive knives, it is better to start practicing on a spare device. And they also advise using an inexpensive blade before the main job. Firstly, this way it will be possible to check the sharpening tool without fear of spoiling an expensive knife, and secondly, this simple manipulation will help to gain some experience.
Before using a machine for sharpening flat knives or any other type of devices, it is necessary to prepare the optimal place for work that corresponds to safety regulations. For example, when performing manual sharpening using a stone bar, it is required to fix a wooden board tightly on the table.
The bar is set by each user based on personal preferences: it can be positioned horizontally or perpendicular to the position of the master. Do not try to press the base of the knife as hard as possible during work, the movements should be progressive or jerky. If you perform all the actions carefully, as a result you will be able to get a sharp blade that does not have any chips, cracks or burrs, and the entire sharpening cycle will not take more than 5-7 minutes.
The main types of knife grinders: features of their use
The design of the machine for sharpening knives for professional or household purposes depends not only on what tools you will be able to grind, but also on the ease of use of the device. To decide on the choice of a product, you should know the basic parameters of each type.
A standard machine is a structure consisting of two grinding wheels and an engine located between them. Emery is distinguished by the presence of circles of different grain size, which makes it possible to perform rough primary processing to restore the integrity of the tip or change the sharpening angle. The second circle is characterized by the presence of another abrasive that allows fine grinding of the base.
Despite the fact that the disks are fenced off with protective screens, it is still recommended to use special glasses when working. In addition to the standard application, you can use a machine for sharpening knives for meat grinders, scissors or disc knives. The estimated cost is from 1300 to 2000 rubles.
In an angle grinder, one circle for sharpening is perpendicular to the plane of the other. One of the advantages is the possibility of wet sharpening, which allows to prevent excessive overheating of the steel. Due to the more complex structure, the device also has a higher price – 2500-4000 rubles.
Separately, we can mention the sharpener with a sanding belt, which is mainly used for processing wooden parts. If you change the tape to an option with a grain more suitable for working with metal, you can use the tool to eliminate roughness and get rid of burrs on the blade. In this case, the price starts from 1500 rubles.
The grinding and polishing design is used to carry out such a sharpening process as finishing, which consists in polishing the surface of the blade. The main differences from the previous version are the presence of a grinding wheel made of leather, as well as working only at low speeds. The price of the simplest device is 1700 rubles.
Useful information! If you choose a machine for sharpening ordinary household tools: knives, scissors or axes, inexpensive standard models are also suitable. If you are looking for a machine for sharpening reismus knives, plane or jointer knives, it is better to give preference to angular type sharpeners. A grinding and polishing structure is suitable for grinding and final finishing.
Parameters based on which to choose a knife sharpening machine
After the main purpose of the purchase is established, it is necessary to determine the main characteristics of the device, on the basis of which the choice will be made. So, the resource of work depends on the power indicator: the higher the power, the easier it is to drill large products using the device. At the same time, you need to understand that powerful sharpening consumes a lot of energy.
For standard household use, power from 150 to 400 watts is sufficient. In professional knife sharpening machines, the parameter can reach a value of 1000 watts. Consider other parameters that you should pay attention to when buying.
Weight and dimensions. In order not to feel excessive rattling or vibration, the structure should be weighty and massive. In general, the size depends on the diameter of the grinding discs, which are chosen based on the conditions of use.
The diameter of the grinding wheel. It is selected depending on the type of knives that will mainly be sharpened. Most of the devices are characterized by the ability to replace circles as needed. So, in the machines for sharpening the jointer knives, a circle with a diameter of more than 150-200 mm is installed. In more powerful models, you can see the presence of circles with a size of 250 mm or more.
The grain size of the grinding wheel. For rough initial finishing, a coarse-grained abrasive is used at the stage of overfilling, and for finishing it is better to choose fine-grained circles. Most often, the grain size varies from 8 (minimum) to 40 (large).
The speed of rotation. It is calculated in revolutions per minute, respectively, the higher the indicator, the less time sharpening will take. For example, a machine for sharpening jointer knives operates at a speed of 6 thousand revolutions per minute, and 2-3 thousand are enough for a conventional kitchen knife. There are also low-speed devices with speeds up to 100 revolutions.
The landing diameter. Here the indicator can vary from 12 to 32 mm. It is important to note that the larger the shaft, the larger the circle can be installed. But the installation of a large circle on a small shaft is strictly prohibited.
Belt grinder: a simple device for grinding and sharpening
Types of grinders. Design and principle of operation. Recommendations for the selection and use of a belt grinding unit.
Safety. For the convenience of working with machines for sharpening knives of planing machines or other tools, the design is equipped with supports for the stop, capable of changing the angle of location, protective glasses that prevent injury to the eyes or hands. Kits of some models include baths for cooling and washing the tool.
Equipment. If there is a large number of various devices for sharpening in the kit for the device, this allows you to carry out a significant range of work – from overfilling to the finishing stage.
Build quality. It is important to inspect the machines for sharpening plane knives, kitchen appliances or scissors before buying, because it is necessary to check that the operation of the device is not accompanied by extraneous noise and there is no backlash. The body of the device must be made of durable, but lightweight material.
Useful advice! The process of preparing the machine for operation should not take much time. This also applies to grinding wheels and other attachments.
Overview of the best models of sharpeners: knife sharpening machines “Profile”
The domestic company “Profile” offers a large number of sharpening devices to choose from, allowing you to give the blade almost its original sharpness. The designs make it possible to carry out multi-stage sharpening by replacing a coarse abrasive with a smaller one, as a result of which it is possible to obtain an even blade.
Depending on the chosen model, you can sharpen a tool for any purpose, and the quality of home sharpening is not inferior to professional. These devices, unlike conventional machines, do not tear off the steel base, but grind and clean the blade without unnecessary damage.
Among the most popular sharpening kits, the kit “K02 Start” stands out, the price of which is within 14 thousand rubles. The device is equipped with the function of automatic fixation of the turning angle. The only thing that may not be enough is a set of abrasives. The built-in bearing group makes it possible to perform an instant 180 turn of the clamps, and flat springs provide reliable fixation of the knife in the clamp. For convenient replacement of clamps, the housing is equipped with an installation unit.
The next most common set is considered to be “K03 Standard equipment”, the cost of which reaches 23 thousand rubles. This model is designed to maintain the specified angles throughout the sharpening process. The kit has all the necessary tools that allow you to sharpen, edit and fine-tune knives.
“K03” is also distinguished by an updated rack and pinion lift, which provides ease of use. The autofixing mechanism reliably holds the blade in a horizontal position, which is especially important when performing the finishing stage. All the details are conveniently stored in a branded drawer.
Rating of the best electric knife sharpeners
The Elitech CT600C is considered a sought-after electric sharpening device with a power of 600 watts, which is enough to work with a variety of knives, including carpentry equipment. The sharpener involves the use of large 200-millimeter circles, the landing diameter reaches 32 mm. Experts warn that when overloaded, the engine of the device can heat up very quickly.
Included with the machine is a special lighting device that adds comfort when using. To work with thin drills, the presence of a magnifying glass located above one of the circles has been thought out. There is also a coolant tank.
The considerable weight of the structure (12 kg) guarantees the absence of vibration of the emery even at high speeds. The build quality is at a high level. The price of sharpening does not exceed 7,500 thousand rubles.
The sharpener “Kraton BG 560/200” is characterized by a relatively high power – 560 watts, which allows the use of large 200-millimeter circles. The emery shaft is initially designed for 16 mm, but if desired, it is possible to increase the landing diameter to 32 mm (using an adapter). Among the disadvantages, users distinguish vibration during operation, even despite the large weight of the device – 13 kg.
As the wheels wear out, the imbalance can increase, but this can be said about almost all models of grinding machines. The device as a whole is designed for 15-20 minutes of continuous operation, after which, in order to avoid severe overheating, it is recommended to let the engine cool down. The price of the device is about 3500 thousand rubles.
Important! The biggest drawback of the work of sharpening machines, in which the circles are aligned with the engine, is poor cooling of the motor. Therefore, such devices are not recommended to be used for a long time without stopping.
Another popular household appliance for sharpening knives is the model of the company “Whirlwind” TS-400, the power of the device is 400 watts. Despite the low power, the manufacturer has equipped the device with grinding wheels with a diameter of 200 mm, but the landing diameter is 16 mm. Due to the low power consumption, you can continuously use the sharpener for 30 minutes without overheating, only when working it is important not to press the blade against the circle too hard. The weight of the device is 9.2 kg, additionally there is a backlight in the package. The price of the model is 3400 rubles.
A selection of popular semi-professional sharpening devices
One of the best machines for sharpening circular knives and saws made of solid materials is considered to be JMY8-70. With the help of the device, you can perform oblique sharpening and process the tool on both sides. At the same time, the holder is able to change its position in the range of 85 degrees. The cast base with rubber inserts ensures precision machining, and the sharpening process itself is not accompanied by excessive noise or vibration. The adjustment of the work is carried out manually, and the sharpening angle of the tool is observed by using bearings in the guide mechanisms and an inclined holder.
For more convenient operation, the kit contains adapters corresponding to the landing size of the sharpening disc, and an additional mount. The tilt of the desktop can be changed from 30 to 45 Other technical characteristics:
- power – 250 W;
- number of rotations per minute – 2850;
- saw diameter – 80-700 mm;
- the diameter of the grinding disc is 125 mm;
- weight – 33 kg.
The Tormek model of the Swiss manufacturer is considered to be a universal semi-professional sharpening machine. The device is designed for sharpening knives of woodworking machines, axes, household appliances, planes and chisels. The kit includes a whetstone made of electrocorundum and a leather disc for finishing. The rotation speed is 90 rpm. The cooling liquid of the stone in combination with low revolutions allows you to get a high quality of processing even at the stage of overfilling, and after finishing the blade acquires razor sharpness.
The clip for the tool to be sharpened easily moves in the horizontal direction, and the sharpening angle is adjusted not only based on the features of the knife, but also adjusted for the wear of the grindstone. Among the disadvantages, we can single out the high cost of machines – more than 15 thousand rubles, as well as the presence of only one clamp in the kit.
Good reviews were also received by Japanese machines Kipdi Naniva, which differ in the horizontal placement of the grindstone and the end work surface. Despite the low power (125 W), the rotation speed reaches 450 rpm. The complete set includes 3 abrasive stones with different grit – 250, 1000 and 6000 GRIT, which makes it possible to carry out a full sharpening cycle.
For ease of use, a drainage hole is provided in the housing to drain excess liquid formed during operation. A significant disadvantage is the fact that these devices are designed only for a professional, because there are no transporters in the package that allow you to set the correct sharpening angle, nor clips, and the blade processing actually takes place by weight.
Among the manual machines for sharpening knives, it is worth noting the APEX Edge Pro system. There is no electric drive, but the device itself has a large number of advantages, among which it is possible to distinguish convenient adjustment of the sharpening angle in a large range, as well as the ability to install an abrasive of any grain size. Additionally, the kit includes a device for sharpening scissors. Among the disadvantages, there is a high price of the device, which, depending on the model, varies from 10 to 30 thousand rubles.
The sharpening machine is considered a convenient device that allows not only to maintain the sharpness of the blade, but also to return the original condition of the blade after damage. On the web you can find a large number of videos “Machines for sharpening knives with your own hands”. In the absence of engineering ideas, it is recommended to simply purchase a ready-made device that meets the needs at the point of sale. The main thing is to correctly determine the features of the device and the frequency of its use.