Homemade Knife Sharpening

Written by april dowling
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Homemade Knife Sharpening
Properly sharpening a knife is essential to knife maintenance. (knife image by apeschi from Fotolia.com)

Dull knifes are dangerous tools because they will continue to slide until they stop and leave a cut. Sharpening is done to smooth and hone a knife's blade. Properly sharpening a knife can prevent accidents, as well as allow the knife to perform better. Proper use of a whetstone and honing steel is necessary for homemade knife sharpening. The whetstone is used to sharpen the knife's blade, while the honing steel removes pieces of jagged metal to make the blade smooth.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Whetstone
  • Oil
  • Paper towel
  • Towel
  • Paper
  • Honing steel

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  1. 1

    Lubricate the whetstone with a couple of drops of oil. Spread the oil evenly across the surface of the whetstone with a paper towel.

  2. 2

    Place the whetstone on a towel, to prevent the stone from sliding. Hold the knife at a 20-degree angle, laying the edge of the blade against the stone's surface.

  3. 3

    Draw the blade toward you, sweeping it across the whetstone in one direction 10 to 20 times. Turn the blade over and sweep it across the whetstone in one direction 10 to 20 times.

  4. 4

    Test the sharpness of the blade by holding a piece of paper in the air, and then carefully slicing the paper with the knife. If the knife slices cleanly through the paper, it is sharp enough.

  5. 5

    Hold the knife at a 20-degree angle, and then glide it across the honing steel five times. Turn the blade over and repeat.

Tips and warnings

  • Never glide the blade back and forth over the whetstone, as it can ruin the blade.

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