1) You haven’t the interest or patience to master a new skill. Sharpening by its very nature takes some training. If you are not paying close attention to what you are doing, you can easily grind away more metal than you need to or, worse yet, completely ruin a perfectly good knife. Especially using a power sharpening system. There’s a learning curve. Respect the curve.
No matter what all the DIY knife sharpening experts tell you, sharpening a knife, like any valuable skill, takes time and concentration to learn and get good at.
2) Your time is precious. Sharpening a kitchen knife can, in an ideal world, take only 10 minutes. That’s, of course, if it’s in pretty good shape to begin with. Otherwise, we’re talking more like 20 minutes or more. But that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Because, before all this, you’ve got to put in the hours learning how to, correctly, do it. And no matter what all the DIY knife sharpening experts tell you, sharpening a knife, like any valuable skill, takes time and concentration to learn and get good at. Even if you use a power sharpening system, depending on which brand/model you buy, it could take more time for you do it yourself than to pack up your knives and mail them off to a quality sharpening service.
3) Easy-peasy sharpening systems can be the least desirable sharpening solution. General rule-of-thumb—the easier the system, the worse it is for your knives. There are some exceptions to this rule, but fast, easy sharpening is not necessarily quality sharpening.
Second general rule-of-thumb—the more inexpensive the sharpener, the worse it will probably be for your knives. Inexpensive sharpeners tend to grind off more metal than is necessary, thereby shortening the life of your knives. If you really really must sharpen your own, be prepared to pay $100 dollars and up for a decent system.
4) You don’t really enjoy sharpening. Life is short. Have you heard the saying, “back to the grindstone”? There’s a reason it means what it means. If you don’t enjoy grinding down metal in the first place, it’s only going to get more and more tedious, not less.
5) Quality knife sharpening services are plentiful and affordable. There are a number of top-notch sharpening services you can find to mail your knives to that are only a mouse-click away. Really. And they’re not that expensive. A package of two 8-inch chef knives and two 4-inch paring knives, including shipping, could run as little a $33.
Take the next step and find a qualified sharpening service at Reviews of Professional Knife Sharpening Services. You’ll wonder why you waited so long!
P.S. After you get your knives back from the sharpening service, you must hone them regularly if you want to keep them sharp. See below for two hones/steels I recommend (read My Favorite Honing Steels for more info).
P.P.S. And here’s how to do it: How to Hone (or Steel) a Knife.