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Rapid River Knifeworks Fixed Blades
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What Angle to Sharpen a Knife

Determining what angle to sharpen a knife with depends upon the type of knife and what it will be cutting. The sharper the angle of the knife (a fillet knife has a very sharp angle) the less durable the edge becomes. This means that for knives with very acute (sharper) angles it is important to sharpen these knives with a sharpener with a sharper 15-degree angle. While stronger tactical knives require a larger 20 to 30-degree angle.

As a general rule of thumb, it is best to remember that a 20-degree angle is good for most knives. If you are sharpening a fillet knife or a boning knife then you would hold the knife at a 15-degree angle and if you have a tactical knife that cuts stronger materials then you would hold it at about a 30-degree angle.

To help get your angle right just think of a 90-degree angle that is straight up and down. If you cut that angle in half you would have a 45-degree angle. Then if you cut it in half again you would have a 22.5-degree angle which is a good starting point for you to use.

The Redi-Edge Tactical Knife Sharpener Set contains all of the angles that you need if you find it too difficult to keep the same angle while sharpening a knife.

An article on how to create a knife sharpening angle guide will be added in the future on our website.

Most American-made kitchen knives are built for durability and are usually sharpened at a 17 to 20-degree angle. The sharper Japanese knives that are less durable like a Santoku should be sharpened at a 15-degree angle like a fillet knife that uses more finesse.

Stronger knives like hunting knives and pocket knives that require less finesse and are used to cut through stronger material have a less acute (sharp) angle which means that the angle of sharpening it also increases to about 20 to 30 degrees.

Here is a guide to what angle to sharpen blades with to give you an idea of what angle to use.

7 to 8 Degrees: Straight-Edge Razors (to keep from damaging the edge)

10 to 17 Degrees: Knives for cutting meat with precision and finesse like a fillet knife

17 to 22 Degrees: Most kitchen knives fall into this category. Japanese knives toward the 17-degree mark and American knives toward the 22-degree mark.

22 to 30 Degrees: For more durable knives that cut stronger materials like hunter knives and pocket knives.

30 Degrees or more: The most durable knives like machetes and axes are sharpened at this angle since they are more relied on cutting really tough materials and less finesse.

You can read in-depth articles on how to sharpen knives in different ways below.

This concludes this article. Happy sharpening!

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