Tips to Use A Sharpening Stone for Knife Sharpening

Tips to Use A Sharpening Stone for Knife Sharpening

Use of the whetstones is the most common and popular methods of knife sharpening and most of chefs use it on a regular basis. You may also require one for your kitchen as no knife will remain sharp as always, no matter how strongly the manufacturers advertise that it never needs sharpening. Therefore, do not wait until this vital kitchen tool is no longer sharp and keep a whetstone handy. This will ensure that your knife will be maintained and sharpened properly and never be dull. Moreover, no matter how strange it may sound, it is true a dull knife is more dangerous than the sharp one as more force is required that results in injuries and cuts.

Knife Sharpening

Preparing the Stone

You will first need to prepare the stone for knife sharpening irrespective of the fact that it is a Cry stolon or India stone or a water stone or an oil stone. The process of preparation for all these types of stones is similar and can be done in a few steps that include:

  • Place the stone on a damp towel or cloth
  • Make sure that it is on a flat surface to prevent sliding
  • Start with the coarser side of the stone
  • Lubricate the stone with care

Know the Lubricating Instructions

Some care should be taken regarding the lubrication of the stones. Few stones only use specific oil or water for lubrication purpose and therefore you should only use the recommended and approved lubricant. It is also important to remember that once you use one type of lubricant, you should stick to it and do not change it after the first use. Do not use food oils like vegetable and olive oil on oil stones. There are some diamond stones that never need any lubricant at all for knife sharpening. Therefore, it is necessary that you read the instructions of the stone before lubrication.

Knife Sharpening

Sharpening the Knife

The process of knife sharpening needs some care as well. You must hold the knife in one hand against the stone at an angle of 20 degrees with the sharp edge touching the stone. It should face away from you and place your fingertips of the other hand near the sharp end and on the flat part of the blade. This will control the direction and pressure of the blade when you sharpen it. Now follow the sharpening process as under:

  • Sweep only one side of the blade across the stone by sliding it slowly down the stone
  • Sweep the blade in an arc
  • Draw the entire edge from heel to tip across the stone
  • Continue with the first side until it is sharp
  • Wet or oil down the stone occasionally to prevent drying
  • Turn over the knife and sharpen the other side following the same process

The Stone Grit

The stone grit plays a significant role in knife sharpening and determines the result. You should always sharpen the edges of your knife on a stone that has finer grit on a regular basis. On the other hand, if the knife is very dull then you will need a coarser grit for sharpening it, but you must also follow it up by running it on the stone with finer grit for polishing the edges sharpened. Always sharpen the knife from heel to tip and turn it over when one side is completed. It must be done evenly and uniformly so that both the sides are properly balanced. Counting the number of strokes is a good practice to maintain evenness.

As for the stones, you should change it when you feel the burr forming on one side of the edge.

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