The ordinary "rod" style sharpeners seems to be what most of the rad chefs are using, but a decent one seem to cost at least $35, which is half the price of the knife I'm planning to use it for.
Is there any reason to buy one of the $35 sharpeners instead of paying $8 for a sharpener like the one picture?
Honing rods realign an edge that has been slightly bent out of shape, they don't quite sharpen the knife and a cook's knife will be whetstoned or taken to a grinder when honing is no longer sufficient.
Carbide knife shredders physically strip metal from the blade and soon all your knives come out of it shaped like khukuris or falcatas, no longer able to even touch the cutting board.
All right. But that shouldn't really be a big problem since it is possible to every year or so get the knives' edge professionally honed/sharpened for ~$10?
I realize that I will ultimately run out of knife material to sharpen, but I guess that would take a decade or so?
This basically if you had a knife you gave a damn about and spent money on. But since by the sounds of things if your knife costs less than the steel, you bought a ten buck Walmart knife. So go nuts, ruin your blade and buy another one a year or so later...
Wusthof Two Stage Hand-Held Sharpener
This sharpener was sturdy to hold but didn’t secure the knife because its 1/8 inch of extra space at the top of its chamber allowed the knife to teeter as it slid over the abrasives. That extra space forced testers to ease up on pressure as they pulled the knife through the chamber (lest they push too hard and have the knife clunk down on the counter as it slid out of the chamber), which made for an inconsistent edge.
A basic oilstone runs $10-$10
If you're really set on not spending any money to maintain a tool you use every day for ten years then get some 800 grit wet-dry sandpaper and fix it to something hard and flat.