But there are a couple of tricks, whether you use your knife or a powered slicer. The most important one is chilling or almost freezing your bacon before slicing. Note that I said ALMOST FREEZING. Bacon is kind of greasy and slippery. When it is almost but not quite frozen, it is much easier to work with.
We made bacon for quite awhile without a powered slicing machine. And it was fine. I enjoy a slightly thicker cut than is popular in the Philippines. Thick cut bacon is a pleasure for me. So hand slicing is very well suited to that. My brother-in-law could hand slice as thin as any machine.
We used both a chefs kitchen knife to slice and a meat slicing knife with its broader blade. Both worked, but we most often reach for the meat slicing knife if we do it manually. We use a cutting board when cutting almost any meat. They are not expensive, they protect the meat from contamination and the knife from damaging itself or the surface you cut on. One good trick when using a cutting board is to sit it on a moist dish rag or small kitchen towel. The cutting board tends to stay in place and not move around while you are cutting your bacon.
But we can cut bacon much faster since the thickness is preset and the machine cuts through bacon quite quickly. You do not need an expensive machine to cut bacon. But you may have to adjust the length of your bacon to fit the "travel" of the machine.
These can be worth investing in if you enjoy serving hams and other sliced meats often. Sliced bacon or a thinly sliced ham sandwich are a real pleasure to serve and to eat. But a steady hand, a sharp knife, and a good cutting board will let you serve wonderful food too!
Making bacon is easy. Slicing it is just a matter of practice. And we save the ends to cut into chunks for fried rice and our morning omelets. So don't feel you need to get every last slice from your pork belly. Chunk it and use it anywhere you'd add chunks of ham. You'll love it!
Love, Peace, & Bacon Grease!