What's the best angle for my kitchen knives?
Great question. We want the best angle for your knives too. They'll cut well and be a joy to work with again. In short, to answer your question, knives are generally sharpened between 15 degrees and 22 degrees per side.
With regard to your specific kitchen knife, we have a few questions.
One, Is it Western or Eastern in style?
Western style knives are designed and made with a 20 to 22-degree angle in mind for their sharp edge. Eastern style knives are typically designed to have a 15 to 17-degree angle for their cutting edge.
Why the difference?
The difference is largely to do with the metal types and the strength of the metal varying between styles. The softer a knife's metal the more forgiving it will be when in use. That sounds nice. However, that also means it can't have as sharp of an angle on the blade or it'll wear out more quickly. It's a balance of characteristics.
Western knives are made of a less hard metal and have less aggressive angles on their cutting edges. They will be of a double bevel construction as well. So whatever angle you're looking for in total will be applied in half to each side. Thus the 20 degree bevel will actually be a 40-degree cutting edge for that knife.
Two, does it happen to have a single bevel?
If so, great. You most likely have an Eastern style knife with a single bevel making one side flat and the other side the angled edge. The whole of the cutting angle is on that one side.
We sharpen all single bevel knives on stones. These take more time and skill than other knives and as a result we will reach out to you specifically if you send one in. There will be an additional charge depending on the length of the knife.
In the end, the "best" angle for your knife is determined by its original design, intended use and metal composition. Generally the more aggressive, or acute, the angle of your knife the less durable your cutting edge will be. However, we can sharpen to your specifications.
Let us know if you want a specific angle outside of these guides. Otherwise we'll work with the angle on the knife and it's manufacturer's intention when we sharpen. We look forward to it.
Ready to sharpen your knives? We are too. Order them sharp today.