An interesting sharpening stone


I was recently sent for review a free sample of the so-called “AmericaStone“, a small ceramic sharpening stone with three surfaces that claims to deburr, hone and polish a blade’s edge, and handle serrations too.  There’s a demonstration video on YouTube that illustrates it in action.

I’ve given the Americastone a workout over the past few weeks, on everything from folding knives, to sheath knives, to machetes, and on blades that were smooth, or nicked, or rusted.  It does a good job sharpening them all, but its small size means that it takes a while to get anything but a small blade into sharp condition, and also makes it more difficult to work on nicks and flats in the blade.  A larger, bench version of this stone would help deal with those issues, but at present it’s only made in one size.  (Using the Americastone on a machete or axe is an exercise in frustration – tiny tool meets very large blade!  Clearly, it’s not designed for such use.  A big, coarse tool such as the Sharpal 216N or Lansky Puck is far more suitable.)

After using the Americastone fairly extensively, I’m in two minds about it.  It works very well at what it does;  but it works slowly, and in the field, one can’t always spare the time for that.  If speed is an important factor, most of us would be better served by a pocket sharpener such as those from Sharpal, Lansky or Smith’s (which are also a third of the price of the Americastone).  The latter will still be useful as a finishing stone for use at leisure, but not as a primary sharpener under those circumstances.

I should also point out that I was raised in Africa.  We had different priorities there when it came to field knives, as we’ve discussed before in these (and other) articles:

Wilderness & survival tools – price versus quality

How Survival Knives Are Designed And Manufactured

Useful information for knife novices

I think that, for a rough field environment, the Americastone would not be as useful as a coarser, more general-purpose instrument.  However, for a knife aficionado working at home or in town, who wants to keep his high-quality blades razor-sharp and doesn’t mind taking the time and the trouble to do so, it’s a useful and highly portable tool.

(Despite the fact that the stone I was sent was a free sample, I didn’t allow that to influence my review of it, as you can see for yourselves.)



  1. I have a number of knives, and a number of sharpening stones, diamond stones, etc. I don't believe I need any more.

  2. I ran across a booth that was hawking these at the Atlanta car show. They put a good edge on my Benchmade. That was back in February and I was overdue on sharpening the knife. I usually hit 4 or 5 strokes on an Arkansas oil stone and then 4 strokes on a V ceramic stick that will give the blade an edge that will easily shave the hair on my arm. That edge usually last me 2 or 3 months. The "America Stone" sharpening would shave but the edge only lasted about a month.

  3. If anyone is looking for a decent field sharpener, have a look at the "Work Sharp Guided Field Sharpener"

    Not too big, it's easy to get a good edge quickly and keep it sharp.

  4. I found that a non embossed credit card sized bit of plastic, like a loyalty card, with two grades of wet-and-dry carborundum paper, fine and very fine grade, stuck on each side with double sided adhesive film makes a good edge restorer and also cleans up the rest of the blade as well.
    Fits in wallet.

  5. Thank you for the review BRM. I am fairly new to this (yes, I have swords, but these all go to the professional sharpener) so this is helpful.

  6. Your "survival" knife and other tools are what you have with you, worst case on your body, when you need them. As much as I like a machete or Kukri I don't often carry them.

  7. A lot of professional knife sharpeners, the folks who service restaurants and butchers, use vertical belt sanders, usually with one inch abrasive belts in decreasing grits. These take a good bit of skill as they can destroy the temper of good steel in seconds if not properly utilized.
    A home equivalent that I use is the Work Sharp system with easily changeable 1/2 or 3/4 abrasive belts from coarse down to 1,000 grit and even a leather belt for finer honing. I happen to have the Ken Onion model designed in cooperation with that well known knife designer. Most of my favorite folding knives are his designs.
    For field use I generally have handy a Paul Block honing tool, a plastic fob with two crossed mini honing pins in an X orientation. A few strokes will greatly improve most knives and other cutting implements.

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