Sharpening Geissfuß - how does that work?

If you hone your tools yourself, you often need a lot of knowhow. Especially special tools such as the Geißfuß then sometimes present real problems. How to sharpen this special tool, and how to do it correctly when sharpening, read in this post.


The Geißfuß is a less well-known tool, which is mainly used for linocuts and woodcuts. For the woodcut (as a carving tool), the Geißfuß must be particularly sharp, otherwise he can not cut through the wood clean and produces only a few exact cuts.

When sharpening the Geißfußes the problem is mainly the kink. The carving iron is listed as V-shaped, and that's exactly what makes sharpening problems. When grinding different angles must be exactly adhered to not to grind the tool and thus affect its function.

Professionals go about making the iron dull and then sharpening it completely. Re-sharpening is very difficult and time-consuming at Geißfuß and often fails. However, when sharpening, some of the problems with the wrong sharpening angles will be eliminated.


In a Geißfuß the bevel is usually on the outside. Therefore, it is always ground from the outside. This must be noted in any case. If sharpened on the opposite side of the bevel, you can often even ruin the tool.

Suitable grinding stones

It makes sense to use a triangular grindstone for sharpening the Geissfuß. These grindstones are also easy to get under the edge and can also remove the burrs on the inside.

Otherwise, special knife sharpening stones, such as an Arkansas stone, are also suitable. With this you can also pull off the tip of the v-shaped part freehand from the outside (but still pay attention to the angle!). For the inside you can then under certain circumstances even use fine wet sandpaper to peel off. This can be buckled without losing its abrasive effect at the kink point.

Tips & Tricks

To be on the safe side, you can also give your Geissfuss a professional sharpening service. In general, one knows there also with special tools, or at least can get the professional information. You also have the guarantee that the tool will not be damaged.

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