Knife Sharpener Vs Rod – Which One Is The Best?
Is your knife mashing tomatoes instead of slicing them? It’s about time to get some sharpening done. If you are reading this article, you must be aware of how crucial it is to keep your knives sharpened. However, you might not be sure which tool you should choose and how often you should repeat the process.
Related: 10 Best Knife Sharpeners In Australia in 2023
In this article, I will explain the difference between knife sharpeners vs rods and when and how to use them. So let’s begin.
Knife Sharpener Vs Rod: Know The Difference
A knife sharpener is a tool used to sharpen the blades of knives. While a honing rod, also known as a steel rod, is used to straighten and polish it.
Before getting further into honing rod vs knife sharpener, I want you to understand the difference between sharpening and honing. So read on.
Sharpening is necessary when a blade has become too dull or damaged to cut effectively. It removes metal from the blade to create a new sharp edge. Sharpening should be done regularly to maintain the edge.
Honing, on the other hand, is necessary to maintain an already sharp blade. It does not remove metal but realigns the edge- making it precise and easy to use. Honing should be done after each use to ensure the blade remains sharp.
Knife sharpeners are designed to quickly and easily sharpen your knives. It typically consists of an abrasive wheel or stones that grind down the edge, removing metal and restoring a sharp blade. They come in many different forms, including electric, manual, or a combination of the two.
The best way to use a knife sharpener is to sharpen your knife regularly. It ensures that the blade remains sharp and cuts through with ease. I suggest you should not wait until the blade becomes too rough before sharpening it, as this can cause permanent damage. Also, be mindful that a sharpener removes metal, so it’s best not to over-sharpen your knives.
Coming to the honing rod, serves a completely different purpose, i.e. maintaining an already precise blade. Honing rod has a coarse surface that helps remove minor imperfections. It doesn’t sharpen the knife as a sharpener does. Instead, it realigns the edge and keeps it sharp for longer. Honing rods come in various materials such as steel, ceramic, diamond, and even Japanese water stones.
The best way to use a honing rod is to hone your knives after each use, just like a chef does. Because when you use your knife on a cutting board, the serrations fold over left and right. So to realign them, you need to give your knife quick maintenance with a honing rod. You can also use it to realign the edge after a sharpening session with a knife sharpener.
Related: What Can I Use Instead of a Sharpening Stone?
What are Some Best Knife Sharpening Tools? – Types and Uses
In my opinion, the best knife-sharpening tool depends on your specific needs. Generally, the most commonly used tools are whetstones, honing rods, and electric sharpeners.
Below I have mentioned each tool with its specialities so you can choose the one that fits you the best. No matter what type of sharpening tool you choose, be sure you understand how to use it first.
Whetstones are my personal favourites. They are undoubtedly a classic option for sharpening knives as they allow you to control the angle and pressure of the blade. They come in different grits, from coarse to fine- so you can find the one suitable for your knife.
Manual or pull-through Knife Sharpeners
Manual or pull-through knife sharpeners are a go-to for beginners. They are a convenient choice for quickly sharpening blunt knives. They have a pair of two blades that sharpen the knife as you pull it through. These sharpeners are often less expensive than whetstones and honing rods. However, they can damage the blade if used too frequently.
The difference between a manual knife sharpener vs rod is the same: a manual knife sharpener gives a sharp edge while a rod maintains an already sharpened edge.
Electric Knife Sharpeners
If you want a quick and easy way to sharpen your knives- an electric knife sharpener is the best option for you. They come with preset angles- so you only have to press the blade against the wheel to sharpen automatically. The downside is that electric sharpeners are expensive and cannot sharpen serrated blades. Electric knife sharpeners are the most popular. They range from a few bucks to hundreds of dollars.
Talking about rod vs electric knife sharpener: go for an electric sharpener if you have dull blades. Pick a honing rod if the blade is nice and sharp and only needs to be realigned.
What are Some Best Honing Rods? – Types and Uses
Honing rods are easy to use and help to retouch the blade’s sharpness after each use. The best honing rod will depend on your needs and preferences. Below I have explained the three commonly used honing rods so you can pick the one that best suits your knife.
Steel Honing Rod
Steel honing rod is a popular choice for knife sharpening as it is durable and can handle frequent use. Steel honing rods are also great for those who want to sharpen serrated blades. The downside is that steel honing rods require more maintenance than ceramic honing rods, as they need regular oiling to prevent rusting.
Diamond Steel Rod
If you want superior sharpening results and a rod that will last a long time- diamond steel rods will be the best choice. These rods are coated with diamond particles, which makes them incredibly durable and long-lasting. The downside is that they are not budget-friendly, and require more maintenance than other honing rods.
Ceramic Honing Rod
If you want an easy-to-maintain honing rod- a ceramic honing rod will be your pick. These rods are made from ceramic material, which is very durable and does not require frequent oiling and maintenance. The downside is that they may not be as effective at sharpening serrated blades.
FAQ – FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
If you want to nail all your slicing, dicing and chopping- you need to invest in good knife-sharpening tools. Both knife sharpeners and honing rods have their place in knife care. If you are planning to choose between a knife sharpener vs honing rod– I would say do not choose one but grab both. Why? Because both of these have entirely different functions.
If you need a quick fix for dull blades- a knife sharpener is your best bet. But if you want to maintain the sharpness of your blades over time, then honing rods is the way to go. However, you can choose between the various knife sharpeners and rods. I hope this blog will help you to make the right buying decision for your cutting needs.