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Cutting Edge

Whereas steel and geometry define the potential of a knife to be and to stay sharp, it’s the cutting edge that will have the final say how sharp the knife actually is and how long it will stay sharp.

 

When blade geometry can be compared to the chassis of a car, the edge is like the tires. The tires are the point of contact to the road, like the edge is the point of contact to food. Without matching tires, even the best car won't drive well, and without a good cutting edge, a knife won't cut well. And like the tires of a car wear out and eventually have to be replaced, the cutting edge will be worn and needs occasional "replacement".

There are many different ways a cutting edge can be sharpened, with a straight or a serrated edge, with a wide or a narrow angle, with a coarse and toothy finishing or a mirror polish. In the cutting edge, there is no right or wrong. There are choices to be made, all with their respective pros and cons, which we are going to explain in this chapter. The good thing is - as easy as it is to change the tires of the car if you are not happy with them, as easy is it to change the cutting edge.

 

For being able to do so, and considering the many cycles of sharpening a knife needs to go through its long lifetime, it's a good idea for anyone interested in their knives to learn sharpening. This is why we dedicate one chapter of our knife-o-pedia to sharpening.

 

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