How to Lubricate an Oil Stone

Used to bring high-quality blades to razor sharp edges, oil stones should be lubricated with oil prior to use. Oil stones are made either out of rocks like Crystolon and Arkansas stone or out of aluminium. When not using your oil stone, you should wash off all oil or lubrication and keep it in a clean dry place. The stone should be oiled only when you are ready to sharpen a knife or instrument.

Purchase honing oil at a hardware store. Honing oil is a mix of mineral oil and alcohol or kerosene. Do not use motor oils or kitchen oils on your oil stone because they are too thick and will clog up the stone. Likewise, don't use WD40 or other lightweight lubricants; they are too light to prevent the stone from wearing out prematurely when you sharpen steel and other hard materials.

Pour five or six drops of the honing oil on the oil stone, and allow it to spread evenly. Begin sharpening your blade or tool, keeping a rag handy to wipe away excess oil when it builds up. The oil will also collect shavings of metal as you work, so as you sharpen your blade, be sure to wipe these up to keep them from scratching the metal and the stone.

Add a few more drops of oil each time you wipe away the oil that is loaded with shavings. Keep the oil stone well lubricated as you sharpen the knife or tool to ensure minimal damage and wear to the stone.

When you have a nice sharp edge on your blade or tool, wash off the honing oil with soap and water. Wash the oil stone, and store it or wrap it with materials that will soak up the excess oil.

Things You'll Need

  • Blade or tool
  • Honing oil
  • Oil stone
Cite this Article A tool to create a citation to reference this article Cite this Article

About the Author

Based in San Francisco, Ocean Malandra is a travel writer, author and documentary filmmaker. He runs a major San Francisco travel website, is widely published in both online and print publications and has contributed to several travel guidebooks to South America.