Electric knife sharpeners are a big convenience in a kitchen. A good electric knife sharpener will give your knives the sharpest edge possible. Quality electric sharpeners will have a few features. First, they will feature multistage sharpening, usually in three stages. Second, they will use diamond abrasives to get the sharpest edge. Finally, they will feature precision guides in each of the stages to make sure you get an even edge down the entire length of the knife.
The First Stage
The first stage of any electric knife sharpener is going to be the most abrasive stage on the machine. The first stage typically shaves off metal the most aggressively. Some sharpeners recommend only using the first stage the first time you sharpen the blade. The other stages will realign and sharpen your edge completely without removing as much metal from the blade in this kind of system.
Sharpening the Blade
Most high end electric sharpeners can work with multiple types of blades, from serrated to beveled. If you just try to run your blades through all of the stages in order, you might not be doing it right. Most electric knife sharpeners have guidelines for different types of blades. Follow the instructions in the owner's manual for your type of blade. No oils need to be used with an electric sharpener. Don't press hard with the blade. This might ruin the integrity of the edge that you are creating.
Care for the Electric Knife Sharpener
Most electric sharpeners need to be emptied of metal shavings periodically, just as a pencil sharpener might. Always use a clean knife in the sharpener to prevent a buildup on the sharpening surfaces. Some sharpeners have self-cleaning cycles. Others come apart.
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