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Sharpening Knives

Sharpening knives using a variety of methods including files and whetstone and restoring the tip of a broken blade.

Transcript provided for the hearing impaired.

Alright today on Repairs101 I’m going to show you a few different ways to sharpen knives including serrated knives, whetstone grinding and using a file to restore a broken knife’s point.

This episode of Repairs101 is sponsored by Princess Auto.

Sharpeners

OK now this was my grandparents’ knife sharpener. It’s probably a hundred years old. Made simply with some hard washers set up loosely beside each other. It does a great, fast, easy job on small knives that are merely blunt, not actually damaged.

Getting the angle right

Now you can make or buy a fancy jig to hold the knife at the exact prescribed angle. Or you can just use this old scouts’ method that is about getting the job done by hand and by eye. Simply hold the blade ninety degrees to the stone or steel. Cut that angle in half and then cut it in half again.

You may already have one of these in your home and not realize how good a job you can do touching up dull edges with it. Roll the Chef’s Steel in your hand occasionally to introduce new steel to the blade.

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A strop is just a piece of heavy leather used to push off any burr that may have developed on the edge. You can use an old belt or even a board or a piece of plywood works OK.

Whetstone

Keep a dry whetstone in good shape by cleaning it with a stiff brush and washing it in water after use.

Hone small knives blade over stone whereas you may want to hone large knives stone over blade.

You can use almost any light fluid to lubricate your whetstone. And you know, for what it’s worth, instead of a whetstone you can use a big flat rock, a brick, a cinderblock or even the sidewalk. And you’ll still get good results as long as you keep that twenty-two and a half degree angle.

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