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How to sharpen your knife?

par Jeremie Plane

A knife, to be well maintained, must be sharpened. But how often, with what and how? Which material to choose and why?

In this article, you will find all the information you need to become the king of sharpening. 

To begin, it is important to make the difference between sharpening and honing :

Sharpening consists of  "straightening" the edge of your blade, without creating a new edge.

Honing consists of forming a new  line on your blade when it is dull or damaged.


How often you sharpen your knife will depend on how you use it. In general, it is advisable to sharpen it once a week. Sharpening is done using a sharpening steel.

Step 1: position the blade at 15° in relation to the sharpening steel

Step 2: Make the same number of passes on each side of the blade

Step 3: Repeat the operation for 10 seconds and 4 or 5 round trips will suffice.

Step 4: Clean your blade with clean water after sharpening to remove all small impurities.

Help and tips

It is useless to rub your knife and your rifle at the same time.

You just have to pass your knife, from the base of the blade to the tip, on the rifle.

Our sharpening gun has a guide built into the finger guard to help you find a 15° angle. The end of the sharpening rod has a tip to stabilize the sharpener vertically on your work surface for ease of use.


For sharpening, the ideal method is with a sharpening stone (water stone or oil stone).

The whetstone is often used to sharpen Japanese knives. It is made of materials such as granite, and has the property of being abrasive. But in contact with water, it softens and precisely avoids the abrasion of the blade.

Step 1: immerse the stone for 10 to 15 minutes in water.

Step 2: position the blade at 15° in relation to the stone

Step 3: from the base of the blade to the tip.

Help and tips

Be careful to remain symmetrical by passing the two sides of the blade alternately over the stone.

Sharpening and honing are two steps that should not be neglected if you want to keep your knife as long as possible. 

An action that takes only a few minutes, but that will delight you and your knife. 

Now that you know everything about these techniques, you just have to apply them, always being careful not to lose a finger in the process...

Which sharpening stone to choose?

The 400/1000 stone:

 The 400 grit is very abrasive. It is to be used if your blade is damaged and you want to reshape the edge quickly.

For the 1000 grit, it is good to maintain a blade already in good condition, the result will be sharp enough for normal use. This stone will keep a good edge without spending too much time sharpening.

The 1000/6000 stone:

I recommend this stone if you like to keep your knives very sharp. 

As said above, the 1000 grit will keep your blade in good condition and keep a useful edge for normal use.

When you switch to 6000 grit, your blade will become extremely sharp. 

You now know how to take good care of the edge of your knife. But one question remains: which stone to buy for this purpose?

In fact, the stone you should buy depends on the condition of your blade, and the edge you want to obtain.

There are a lot of different types of stones, ranging from 800 to 6000 grit. The higher the number, the finer the grain of your stone. 

We offer two types of stone at Kotai: the 400/1000 and 1000/6000.