Dull knives are the worst. It's always such a disappointment to been in need of a blade, only to find that all of the ones within reach are not capable of doing the job. They're not only a disappointment, though, they're also dangerous because with a dull blade, you have to put so much more effort into cutting that you increase the chance that you may slip and cut something that you didn't intend to.
I had several old pocket knives and a drawer full of kitchen knives that, through years of use and abuse, had become too dull to use on a regular basis. I decided that it was time to change all of that, so I began looking for a tool to sharpen up these blades. After reading about several of the options available, I settled on a 6" diamond whetstone from a company named DMT.
When it arrived, I realized that this was not like any shaprening stone that I had ever used in the past. The model I had selected came in a nice hardwood box with non-slip feet attached to the bottom. Inside of that hardwood box was the sharpening stone itself. Upon looking at it, I discovered that it really wasn't a "stone" at all. The bulk of it appeared to be made of some sort of plastic, and the sharpening surface looked like it consisted of only a thin sheet of metal with a bunch of holes punched through it. According to what I'd read, those "holes" are there to catch the dust and keep it off of the sharpening surface.
After seeing it in person, I was a little bit concerned that I might have bought some sort of gimmick item, but my concerns would soon be laid to rest. Before actually using it, I did a little research online to find the proper technique. I found that I only needed to prep the surface with a spritz of water, and then once I'd located the proper angle for each blade, I only had to swipe each side across the surface 3 to 5 times. That's it. It seemed a little too easy to me, but I gave it a try.
It actually worked great! In less than 30 seconds, one of my worst kitchen knives went from just about useless, to one of the sharpest knives in my drawer. I went on to sharpen the rest of my knives over the course of about 45 minutes. This sharpening stone was very effective on all of the different types of blades I tested, and it worked very fast.
The "fine" grit whetstone is supposedly the best all-around sharpener, and it worked great for me. I was so happy with it that I also purchased DMT's "very fine" stone for a little bit of extra precision. All in all, I think this is a great tool.