Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Product Review: the Lansky Quadsharp

A sharp knife is the only acceptable knife. We've discussed sharpening knives before, and that information remains useful and relevant. However, I always have my eye open for new and better ways to keep a blade sharp.

I've been using a Lansky Sharpening System for almost 20 years now, and it produces wonderful edges. I also keep a couple Smith's Pocket Pals around for quick touch-ups. Between these tools, I can keep an acceptable edge on most knives, but they do have some glaring weaknesses: the Lansky kit doesn't work well with large or very small knives because of the nature of the blade clamp, and the Pocket Pal works well for touch-up but doesn't give me the precise angle control that I've come to love, so I always end up running the blade through the Lansky when I get home anyway.

On a recent trip to the sporting goods store, a new offering from Lansky called the QuadSharp caught my eye. It combines the form factor of the Pocket Pal with the angle control of the full kit, and at the same time improves upon both items.

For size comparison, the QuadSharp beside a Pocket Pal and a SOG Flash II pocketknife.
Instead of a diamond rod like the Pocket Pal, serrations are sharpened with a ceramic block, which also serves as a dressing block. It also has all four of the angles used in the full Lansky kit, allowing you to sharpen in the field without worry about losing your chosen blade angle.

Because it doesn't require a clamp on the blade to work, the QuadSharp also corrects the weaknesses of the full Lansky kit by sharpening nearly all blade sizes with equal effectiveness. I've run it on blades as short as 2-3/8" and as long as my 12" kukri, and it also doesn't balk at the deep belly of the kukri like many sharpeners do.

The big downside to the QuadSharp is that its cutters are only a single grit. They work fine for a blade that already has most of an edge, but they don't do as well on a knife that needs serious edge work; for that, I'll still need the full kit. However, for most sharpening tasks, the QuadSharp performs as well as the full kit in a fraction of the time. It's also ten dollars cheaper and much easier to toss into a backpack or pocket.


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