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How to sharpen the blade of a lead knife?

How to sharpen the blade of a lead knife?

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You can usually sharpen the blades of lead knives. It’s expected that lead knife blades will blunt with use over time. However, most lead knives can be resharpened – check the specifications of individual knives to make sure.
If your lead knife gets blunt you can sharpen it If the cuts being made are not as clean as they should be, or it is more difficult to cut materials than it used to be, you might need to sharpen your blade. How often you need to sharpen the blade will depend on how often you use the knife.
 Wonkee Donkee says 'Keeping your lead knife sharp means it’s safer and easier to use, as well as keeping your cuts neat.'
If you're not confident in sharpening your lead knife you can get a professional to do it for you You can get sharpening stones designed to resharpen knives at home, although this may take some practice as you need to hold the knife at the correct angle. If you are not confident with sharpening your knife yourself you can get it professionally resharpened.

Using a sharpening stone

whetstones, oilstones, water stones and sharpening stones are all stones which can be ised to sharpen lead knives Sharpening stones are used to sharpen steel blades and other similar tools, such as chisels or scissors. They come in a variety of shapes, sizes and grades.
Using a lubricant like oil or water with sharpening stones make them easier to use The grades of sharpening stones relate to the size of grit particles on them; the finer the grade, the smaller the grit. Often, blades may be sharpened with a few different grades, starting with quite a coarse one and moving to a finer one, to produce a smooth, sharp edge. Extra fine stones are often called oilstones as they need to be lubricated with oil.
whetstone can be used to sharpen a blunt lead knife Usually, some kind of lubricant will be used with all sharpening stones. This can be oil or water, depending on the type of stone being used. The lubricant means you will be able to move the blade easily and smoothly across the stone as you sharpen it.
Angle the blade of a lead knife at 20 degrees from the sharpening stone

Step 1 – Angle blade against stone

Hold the blade against the stone, with the sharp edge facing away from you, at an angle of about 20 degrees. The smaller the angle the blade is held at, the sharper the edge will be.

Blades sharpened to around 40 or 50 degrees should be appropriate for lead knives 20 degrees is an advisable angle for a lead knife to be sharpened at. This should create two 20-degree bevelled edges on each side, resulting in a 40-degree blade. A blade between 40 and 50 degrees should be sharp enough, and won’t become blunt as quickly as a sharper blade would.
Use a sharpening stone to sharpen lead knives

Step 2 – Move blade up and down

Keep the blade at a constant angle and move it in a figure-of-eight motion up and down the stone. Do this about four or five times. Try to move your point of contact as you move up and down. You will get the best results if the length of the blade can run across the stone. This will be more difficult to do with a curved blade.

sharpen both sides of the blade of you lead knife

Step 3 – Turn blade over

Turn the blade over and angle it against the stone, as with the other side. Repeat the figure-of-eight motion, moving up and down the stone about four or five times.

Oiling the blade of a lead knife helps to prevent it from rusting

Step 4 – Oil blade

Use some oil on a cloth to polish the blade. This should remove any tiny fragments of metal which may have come off during sharpening and could be stuck to the blade. Occasional oiling will also prevent rust.

Wonkee Donkee says "If you use your wet stone to sharpen a carbon or hardened steel blade you will need to clean it before using it with a stainless steel blade. This is because the stainless steels are likely to corrode if they come into contact with other steels"

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