My grandpa needs to practice how to sharpen knives with his Shapton Glass Stone 1000 Grit 5mm. So he compiled these 9 dull, but cheap and fully expendable, knives. Which ought he practice on? Please don't hesitate to pick more than one, and rank them in order.

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  • 2
    All of the serrated knives can be excluded as possibilities. Your grandpa will want to practice on a knife with a plain edge
    – AMtwo
    Commented Jul 11, 2020 at 6:01
  • @AMtwo Thanks! It's bizarre that he possesses just Serrated Knives, and he doesn't know why.
    – user24882
    Commented Jul 11, 2020 at 6:02
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    6 says Wiltshire, btw, not Wüsthof. i.sstatic.net/LbIyC.jpg
    – Tetsujin
    Commented Jul 11, 2020 at 8:17
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    @MonkeyZeus - I wouldn't dream of using one of those. I have done so in the past, but it takes quite some effort to recover them from the damage they cause.
    – Tetsujin
    Commented Jul 11, 2020 at 18:03
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    @Tetsujin Thanks! Apologies. I copied and pasted the wrong URL. Grandparents haven't bought any other whetstones.
    – user24882
    Commented Jul 11, 2020 at 20:07

2 Answers 2


Practise on the cleaver from your other question.

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It's big enough to handle, which makes it easier to keep at a constant angle. It also looks to have just about no edge remaining, so there's no chance of making it worse.

Of the ones pictured above, only 5 & 6 look really suitable candidates; 6 I'd guess only has that hard chamfer on one side, making it too lop-sided for a beginner.
They're all going to be pretty fiddly as a practise knife.

When the idea of a practise knife was first raised, the intention was that it would actually be something vaguely similar to the one the practise was for. I'd assumed spending $£€ 5 on a cheap new one would be the solution.

TBH, you could use all of the above. Each would be a different challenge.
You can take the serrations right off a serrated edge knife & turn it into a regular knife [my favourite skinny parer started life this way]. 1, 7 & 9 might be candidates for that. The others I wouldn't bother, they're variants on the 1970's steak knife theme. The others will make better steak knives once they're sharp.

Using 1000 grit, this is going to be a very long journey. I'd have bought a dual-grit whetstone, 400/1000
The 400 is coarse enough to recover a bad profile or set a new one, with some patience; the 1000 is to set the final angle.

Having done all this myself, badly, many many times, I'd still go for the electric I mentioned in one of my earlier answers.
You could do the whole lot in an afternoon, perfectly - even the serrateds.


#6 (the Wursthoff professional) and #5 don't look to be serrated, which is good. Go with them. But you don't want to use it on a serrated blade, there are some specialty sharpeners for them but they're rarely worth it.

  • 1
    It says 'Wiltshire' btw - not that that's important.
    – Tetsujin
    Commented Jul 11, 2020 at 8:10

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