How to Start a Knife Sharpening Business

Knife sharpening business requires long hours on the road and small remunerations. The job entails door to door marketing and specialized skill.
To increase your financial prospects, open a store or promote the business online. The best alternative is to network with hotels, catering services, restaurants and cafeterias.
Other ways to increase income is selling new and refurbished knives and offer discounts for bulk services. The business is practicable full/ part-time and is usually a one man show or partnership.
To succeed you need moderate startup funds to purchase equipment. Other financial considerations are transportation, business name and marketing. Here are a few ideas on how to start a knife sharpening business.
By Kiran Jonnalagadda from Bangalore, India (Knife sharpening) [CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons
How to Start a Knife Sharpening Business
Lean the Trade
The job is highly specialized and you need to learn the trade. Learn from practical experience or apprentice programs. 
Attend trade workshops and seminars on knife sharpening. Purchase video tutorials, books and manuals about the trade. You could increase knowledge through online resources such as blogs, websites and ebooks.
How to develop your Sharpening Skills
  • Attend a sharpening training program
  • Attend seminars
  • Buy Video tutorials
  • Become an apprentice
  • Buy ebooks, manuals, booklets
  • Visit blogs, websites
Make it a side Business
You could operate a goods store, supermarket or sell kitchen utensils alongside your sharpening business. Part-time it offers time flexibility while adding to your income stream. You could decide to specialize on specific knives or provide broad based services.
Business that Thrive alongside Knife Sharpening
There are a few ventures that complement knife sharpening. Try to include scissors sharpening, culinary knifes, garden tools and salon shears.
The business is flexible enough to accommodate outcalls and store ownership. You could sell kitchen utensils such as pots, pans, spoons and knives.
Who are your Customers?
Knife sharpeners have different clientele they service. They service culinary knives for chefs, pocket knives, kitchen knives and restaurants knives.
Other clients include hotels, catering services, butchers, fast food establishments and gardeners.
A List of Customers
  • Hostels
  • Hotels
  • Restaurants
  • Catering outfits
  • Fast-food Outlets
  • Butchers
  • Private homes
  • Deli
  • Flea markets
  • Food fairs
  • Hardware store
A Host of things to Sharpen
You would be surprised at the number of things that need sharpening. The obvious are knives, scissors, saws, garden tools and saloon shears.
The List of Things to Sharpen
  • Knives
  • Scissors
  • Saws
  • Garden tools
  • Knives
  • Router blades
  • Beauty shears
  • clippers
Knife Sharpening Equipment
The cost of equipment depends on you choice of tools. You could invest in heavy model tools, power grinders, and wet grinder.
You need paper wheels and belt sander to repair damaged tips. Buy a tool box complete with wrenches and screw drivers. The equipment should cost around $5000-$7000.
How much to Charge
It takes about 10 minutes to sharpen a large knife. The charges depend on the kind of service you offer.
The charges range from$1-$10 depending on what they sharpen. Barber shares attract good prices including chef knives. Find out what is obtainable in your country and create a price list that is competitive and fair.
Funding the Enterprise
Try target savings to get adequate funds for the business. You could work from home or open a small store.
Another option is borrowing from friends and family. The funds should go towards buying the equipment and marketing.
Register your business as a one man enterprise and choose a business name. You need an employer identification number and insurance.
Knife sharpeners go for outcalls and are always on the road. Purchase a used van and equip for road jobs. If you place your logo on the bus you need to pay signage and advertisement fees to local government.
Marketing Ideas
Reach out to potential customers through door to door sales. Print flyers and signage boards in your area of operation. You can approach hotels, hardware stores, local residents, restaurants and catering outfits.


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