Professional chefs are particular about sharpness of their kitchen knives. They often choose steel knives for easy maintenance. When you start using a steel knife, it is important which whetstone you choose for sharpening the knive.
Today we are going to tell you about “how to choose a whetstone”.
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Types of Whetstone
There are mainly 3 types of whetstone － ”rough”, “medium”, and “finish”. Each is similar in shape, but the size of stone particle is different. Rough whetstones literally have rough particles and finishing whetstones have fine particles. Medium whetstones fall in the middle.
Following are details for each type of whetstone.
The grit size is about #80～320. They can be used when you want to roughly sharpen the knives. － For example, when you need to adjust the outline of the blade that was cracked. With rough particles, they can shave the blade more easily. However, this is just for roughly adjusting the base, and sharpening cannot be complete with this.
The grit size is about #400～2000. For home-use, medium whetstones would work well enough. They are not strong enough to adjust the outline, but enough to provide sufficient sharpness for daily use.
The grit size is about #3000 or more. With fine particles, they can be used for finish-up of sharpening. They provide not only even more sharpness but also resistance to corrosion so that the knives will be less subject to rust or lye coming out of vegetables. Finishing whetstones can increase sharpness and durability.
How to Choose a Whetstone
Recommended for beginners is combined use of a rough whetstone of #220 and medium whetstone of #1500. For general maintenance, using a medium whetstone alone can be enough, but in order to use it properly, the whetstone itself needs maintenance. The maintenance of whetstones is very simple. All you need is flatten the surface of whetstone that sharpens knives. For this, you need “surface adjustment”. You can perform minimum maintenance with a medium whetstone for sharpening of knives and a rough whetstone for surface adjustment of the medium whetstone.
If you would like more sharpness and durability, you can add a finishing whetstone.
Finishing whetstones with larger grit size take more time and effort for maintenance, but they can provide more sharpness and durability. You can choose depending on your purpose and preference.