What is a Hollow Grind?

Many people ask what is a hollow grind? A hollow grind is a type of sharpening that features symmetric concave surfaces and produces an edge that is very thin and sharp. This type of edge is not strong enough to be used for sustained use on fibrous or hard materials. A hollow grind is best suited for straight razors and other blades used for food preparation and slicing. In this article, we will cover the advantages of this type of grind and how to make a hollow grind for your knife.

what is hollow grind

Concave edge

Many woodworkers swear by the hollow grind. Its concave edges help slice through materials while flat surfaces tend to push the work away. Its concave edge also makes the blade much thinner and sharper than one with a flat edge. There are several advantages to hollow grinds, including a reduction in waterstone wear and increased blade sharpness. Listed below are the benefits of hollow grinds. Listed below are some pros and cons to each grind.

concave edge knife

The convex edge is slightly rounded on one side and tapers down to its finest point. It is considered the superior edge grind because of its longer life, reduced drag and reduced wear. The transition lines between flat and concave edges are smooth and gradual. This helps ensure a constant build of steel behind the cutting edge. Other grind types lack this feature and thus become duller more quickly. This is the primary reason why convex edges are more expensive than flat edges.

Increased bevel angle

Among the various sharpening techniques, hollow grinding increases bevel angle. This method reduces waterstone wear and hones only small flats on the bevel. It is not suitable for a wide range of sharpening tasks as the result may be a stoneing edge. However, there are many advantages of hollow grinding. One of them is that it is easier to use a plane freehand. Another benefit is that the hollow grind reduces the chance of overheating the blade.

increased bevel angle

In contrast to flat grinding, hollow grinding reduces metal removal and speeds up the sharpening process. The cutting edge is smoothed with intermediate polishing stones. This process removes very little metal from the steel, reducing the time necessary to sharpen it. It also reduces the possibility of over-sharpening a blade. Further, it reduces the risk of chipping the blade. This method is a great alternative for woodworkers who usually freehand hone their blades.

Parallel blade sides

The term “parallel” means parallel, which is a good description for a hollow grind. This grind consists of two parallel sides with the edge thinner than the blade itself. It is also known as an asymmetric grind because it uses two distinct bevel angles on each side of the blade. The parallel side grind is often used in combination with the asymmetric grind, but it has the advantage of retaining the edge of the blade even when the sides are parallel.

Parallel blade 1

The other kind of hollow grind is a sabre grind. This grind can either be flat or hollow. It depends on the purpose of the blade. The latter is used for precision cutting. It is characterized by an edge with a gradual transition from a flat bevel to a partial break angle. The sides of a sabre grind have a transition line from zero thickness to a slight burr.

Sharper edge

A hollow grind knife is usually easier to sharpen than its counterpart. Sharpening is typically less aggressive, but hollow grind knives should still be regularly maintained with a strop. If you are looking to sharpen a hollow grind knife, it’s important to understand its basic properties and how to use them. Here are some tips to keep your hollow grind knife sharp. You may want to use an aggressive sharpening method if you’re not accustomed to this type of knife.

Hollow grind knives are easier to sharpen because they require less steel mass behind the edge. Hollow grinds are generally used on blades with short lengths and for more delicate cutting tasks. Since the edge is thinner, it can be harder to break, but this can increase sharpness. The hollow grind is often used in conjunction with other edge shaping techniques, such as a hammer grind. Some woodworkers prefer a hollow grind, since it is more convenient.

Less common on modern knives

A knife’s grind is crucial for its function and appearance. The appropriate grind depends on the material and intended use. Many manufacturers offer the same blade in different grinds, and owners may choose the grind that suits their style. The grind type determines how easily the blade takes an edge and how well it holds its edge. Some grinds hold an edge longer than others, while others require more maintenance. Steels with a harder grind are easier to maintain and take sharper edges than softer steels. These types of knives are often used for carving or for cleaving.


modern pocket knives

Earlier knives used hollow grinds to slice potatoes, split wood, and make other cutlery. Today, this type of grind is rarer on knives. A hollow grind is typically flat or more convex. However, a hollow grind can be extremely sharp and effective for slicing potatoes, as it can be used to split wood. Many makers, however, do not use hollow grinds, which makes them less versatile for everyday use.