Finding a place to have your professional quality knives sharpened or repaired is sometimes challenging because it is essential that they are done right. Different knives require different techniques, and if you don't have a sharing business near you, one excellent option is a mail-in cutlery knife sharpening service.
Different Knives, Different Sharpening
If you decide to use a mail-in cutlery knife sharpening service, you need to talk to them about how they sharpen knives and what they can handle. Most services can sharpen different styles of knives with different profiles and materials, but if you have something like a professional Japanese cleaver, the edge is different than a German blade, and you don't want them sharpened the same way.
It is essential to ask about how the service sharpens these different knives so you are comfortable that they will not damage the knife-edge and it will come back sharper than when you sent it out. If your knife has blade damage, check with the service to see if they can fix it for you. Often regrinding the tip into a knife or restoring the cutting edge is well within the ability of a high-quality sharpening service.
Shipping Your Knives
When you are using a mail-in cutlery knife sharpening service, sending your knives to them can be a little concerning if they are expensive professional knives. Some of these services offer a shipping pack that they can send to you to mail your knives to them. The pack is trackable and most are insured so if the knives are lost in transit, they can be replaced.
Once the knives are sharpened or repaired, they are shipped back to you the same way, minimizing the risk you are taking and ensuring your knives are safe from the time they leave your kitchen until you have them back, sharpened, and ready to use. If the sharpening service you are considering does not offer this service, you may want to look further because most professional services will offer tracking through every step of the process for you.
Some knives require different sharpening techniques and can not be sharpened on a standard belt or grinding machine. Ceramic blades, for instance, require a completely different process that is similar to polishing gems or crystals to get a good sharp, durable edge on them.
If you have specialty knives that you are concerned about, contact the mail-in cutlery knife sharpening service like Knife Flight and ask if they can handle your blades. In many cases, the sharpening service will have all the blade types that they sharpen listed on their website, but you can also email or call the service to get clarification before sending anything in.