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Knife Care

Knife Care

Avoiding Corrosion

This information is here to help you look after your knife.

The knives I make are either made from Damascus steel or tool steel. Both of these materials will rust if allowed. I will suggest ways for you to avoid this.

They are not dishwasher safe so don’t put them in one.

Rust or corrosion is caused by acids reacting with oxygen on the surface of the steel. By coating the surface of the blade we can avoid or inhibit this happening.

In general there are 4 situations where knives are used.

  1.  Daily or very frequent use.

  2.  Infrequent use for food

  3.  Infrequent use and not with food

  4.  As a collectable

Let’s address each of these.

Daily or frequent use.

This is the one situation where there is no need to take steps to protect the blade as the knife is being used so frequently that there is no chance for corrosion to begin. The knives I have made and use in the kitchen myself are either rinsed and wiped down or just wiped and go on a magnetic holder ready to use. They develop a grey patina over time.

Infrequent use for food.

In this situation you would want to wash and dry the knife and then apply a light coat of a food safe product and I would suggest cooking oil. It does not need to be a heavy coat just a light wipe with a paper towel.

Infrequent us and not with food.

For this you can use the above recommendation of oil or use a wax. I use renaissance wax which is a micro-crystaline wax or a good quality furniture wax is fine preferably with a bit of beeswax and carnuba in it.

As a collectable

I would recommend wax for this situation. If the knife is stored under glass or not handled much then it will not need coating very often at all.

Once a year would probably be any amount for most collections.


Keeping your knife sharp is important as it makes for less work in whatever you use the knife for. Don’t wait until the knife is blunt to resharpen. Touch up the blade as soon as you feel the performance dropping off.

The most important factor in sharpening a knife is keeping the blade on a consistant angle throughout the process. This will give you the sharpest edge. Being able to go back to sharpen that blade again and again at the same angle will not only give you a keen edge but it will mean you sharpen the blade taking off the least possible steel.

There are not many people who can keep a knife on the same angle time and time again to sharpen it well. If you are one of those lucky people then good for you. You don’t need to read anymore.

I use a Lansky type of sharpening fixture to sharpen my knives. I say ‘Lansky type ‘ as you can buy a Lansky sharpener but I made mine.

Whatever sharpening fixture you may decide to buy or use it doesn’t matter provided it gives you the ability to put that knife back on the stone at the same angle every time.

Most sharpening stones will do a good job.

Over the years I have used india oil stones, ceramic, and diamond to sharpen with and all of them have worked well.

I currently use diamond in my fixture because I can use it dry so there is no mess.


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