Tips for keeping the Knife Sharp

A knife is a tool which is of little use if it is not sharp. To maintain it in proper condition, it is necessary to tone the blade time to time, depending upon the use. Normally the knife is sharpened using either by using 1) Steel sharpener / Steel Rod or 2) Grinding stone. 

Additionally, there are a number of mechanical knife sharpeners available. But even though these mechanical knife sharpeners do a superior job in sharpening the knife, they remove an excessive amount of metal of the blade.

Hence, it is very important to choose the correct mechanical knife sharpener and also regularly inspect the guiding angle for the blade to the stone is set correctly.

Important Note: This information is brief and general, and should be only used as an example for preparing the hotel & kitchen staff training material. This article should not be the only source of your information on \’How to Keep Knife or Knives Sharp?\’.

1) How to Sharpen the Knife using Steel Sharpener / Steel Rod?

  • A Magnetized steel rod is used for this method of sharpening.
  • The magnetized rod helps to remove burrs from the knife blade.
  • To start, the knife is held in one hand.
  • The base of the knife is placed at an angle of 20 degrees at the tip of the steel.
  • The knife is then drawn across and down the length of the steel in one movement, keeping uniform pressure on the knife or the centre of the blade this is to prevent uneven wear on the blade.
  • The purpose is to return the cutting edge to sharp \’V\’ and remove any burrs.
  • The advantage of this process is that it removes very little actual metal from the knife blade.
  • Use the steel regularly to keep a good edge on the knife.

2) How to Sharpen the Knife using Grinding stone?

  • Sometimes all knives need to be downed using a grinding stone.
  • A three-sided stone is normally used for this sharpening method.
  • The Coarse side – is used to work thick heavy blades and also to remove large nicks.
  • The Medium side – is used for medium weight blades, like for example butcher knife.
  • The Fine side – is used for light blades or knife, like for example boning knives.
  • Before starting the process rub some water on the stone.
  • Start at the tip of the knife and apply strong pressure down and forward so that the whole side of the blade is in contact with the stone.
  • Make long figure 8 passes over the stone.
  • Move back and forth while applying pressure, and keep the angle constant.
  • Repeat on the other side.
  • As the knives get thinner at the end, go to a finer side/stone.
  • Using a grinding stone wears away the metal of the blade, therefore this method should not be used as a replacement for the metal rode method.
  • Afterwards, clean your knife, and remember to keep it sharp with a steel rod.
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