Introduction: Sharpen a Knife

Picture of Sharpen a Knife

i will show you how to sharpen a knife to a razor edge and i only requires a real piece of leather (which you can get from a shoe shop just ask for scraps and they will usaly give it to you for free)a sharping stone and some time

Step 1: Wet the Stone

Picture of Wet the Stone

first take your sharping stone and spit on it and spread the spit all over the stone so there is a thin layer of spit or you can use olive oil just aply a very thin layer this is acualy better to do if you use olive oil. this is so when you sharpen the knife the shavings of metal will not plug up the stone which will ruin your chances of sharpinging it.

Step 2: Start Sharping

Picture of Start Sharping

now that the stone is wet you take the stone and put it on a flat surface and take your knife and put it on the stone and imagin your self shaving a piece of the stone but do not aply to much presure and then do it on the other side do it a couple times and make shure you sharpen it evenly on each side usaly three on each side and do that about three times then two on each side two times then once on each side about three times and then check the sharpness by taking your nail and move it down the side of the blade and if it is smooth then it is perfict but if it has a lip on it then sharpen that side then re check the sharpness

Step 3: Now to Use the Slip Strop

Picture of Now to Use the Slip Strop

now take your piece of leather and lay it on a flat surface and drag the blade from one side to the other backwards three times on each side about four times then two on each side four times and then once on each side about seven to ten times then take the piece of leather and fold it over and stroke it over the blade downward just like i have done in the third picture then check the sharpness the same way as you did befor and thats it.


noonetheninja (author)2014-10-27

Where do you get the stone

You can get oilstones at a sporting goods store, at Woodcraft, Walmart, etc. If you need bigger ones, such as 8" by 3", has a great selection. There's also Amazon.

aga (author)2006-11-18

There are different types of whetstones. Oil stones and water stones you should not use water on an oil stone nor oil on a water stone. The best way is not use any stone but use sandpaper and a piece of glass starting with 100 grit and working up to 800 or 1200 grit . The glass remains perfectly flat and you do not have to worry about loading an expensive stone just replace the sandpaper.

knifeguru (author)aga2009-05-23

I like to use diamond sharpeners like the ones made by DMT. They work very well and fast. Sand paper works great too but i just prefer diamond. : )

ke5ldo (author)knifeguru2011-11-12

sandpaper chips the blade and eventually reduces the temper.

Haml3t (author)aga2009-03-30

How would I know if my stone was an oil stone or a water stone? And if I do as you say and use sandpaper and a piece of glass, what is the glass for? Also, for using whetstones and sandpaper and grinding wheels and anything like this in general, I'm not entirely sure on which direction you drag the blade. The sharp edge faces in the direction you move it? Or does it trail behind? Thanks very much for the guide and advice.

ke5ldo (author)2011-11-12

45 years of knife sharpening is to use a GLASS DR. Pepper bottle for finishing. NO OTHER GLASS OR PLASTIC WILL WORK!. Hold the bottle by the neck, and strop knife away form you. Repeat as often as necessary. This will harden the edge and give excellent retention of the edge. It also smooths the edge. Even if you have to buy the bottle, it's worth it.

shadow wave rider (author)2011-06-20

were in the world did you get such an awesome knife??? i would really, really like to get one like that

MMoyce (author)2011-06-06

SWEET KNIFE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

henster22 (author)2011-02-13

I love your knife.
Where did you get it???

theREALcybercat (author)2011-01-28

Bowie Knife!

ducktape.mac (author)2010-11-06


Tetranitrate (author)2006-10-15

Whats the point of the leather for the knife, Ive always wondered that, but this is great, Im going to use it on the fake samurai swords they sell in china town for like $30 and get them nice and sharp.

The fake samurai swords more than likely wont sharpen. They are made from cheap cast steel (stainless?) which won't hold an edge. They really werent ever designed to be sharp or tools, mostly just decoration.

casper.707 (author)titaniumfrog2008-05-28

It is called stainless steel. Also, I have a Fury 60080 el cheapo fake military knife made of stainless steel and I was wondering if anyone knows whether or not it will hold an edge. A simple yes or no would be extremely helpful.

milamber (author)casper.7072010-09-06

short answer no long answer ... still no

Ive actually sharpened one in the past. They are made of stainless steel but I was able to sharpen it enough so that it could cut through a 2 inch thick branch on a tree. The handle was wooden though so after a while it cracked. I'm going to buy another one with a metal handle.

Vendigroth (author)Tetranitrate2007-03-27

the hilt, man! it's called the hilt! Furthermore, i'd be very surprised if something costing only $30 could hold an edge. The soft steel they're made from sharpens well but when it comes to using time, it can't take it. Personally, i wouldn't sharpen my cheap swords, but keep the crude edge they came with for a bit more permanence

999592 (author)Vendigroth2008-08-31

mostly hilt is just used in reference to swords

thoraxe (author)Vendigroth2008-02-24

i got a cheap stainless-steel knife from the flea market for $2 and it holds a really nice edge. I was going to harden it with my forge but I'm guessing the handle is made from a lead alloy or something, because the knife has a cast tang and is not magnetic. Also, i polish the butt of the knife and it gets shiny, but it dulls to a gray fairly quickly, a characteristic of lead.

yes true unless you can get those spinny things they use in metal shops (the things that shoot sparks everywhere) sorry for sounding like a retard if you know what Im saying please post whatever its called

davidcarr3 (author)TheCheese99212008-02-11

Bench grinder, if it's on a bench, with 2 grinding wheels spinning Or Angle grinder if its held and only has one wheel.

yes true unless you can get those spinny things they use in metal shops (the things that shoot sparks everywhere) sorry for sounding like a retard if you know what Im saying please post whatever its called

Keith_Dawg (author)TheCheese99212006-11-10

wouldnt a grinder ruin a factory edge???? are you commenting on the burr behind the bevel on the edge?

Leon Close (author)TheCheese99212006-10-17

Angle grinder?

thoraxe (author)Tetranitrate2008-06-27

the point of the leather is to remove burrs and break off the microscopic saw teeth formed by sharpening, while also being a very gentle abrasive. This is how barbers keep their razors sharp.

thoraxe (author)thoraxe2008-06-27

here is a video on the same way to do this, plus the science behind it.

rotor (author)Tetranitrate2006-10-16

My understanding is that it removes the wire edge that builds up when you sharpen it on the stone. As you push one side against the stone, a small 'wire' of metal builds up on the opposite side.

Mr. Bean117 (author)rotor2008-01-03

It's called a burr

survivor569 (author)2008-03-19

try the internet, there are thousands going on ebay. a good site is i think they are the best knife available.

bustedit (author)survivor5692009-09-10

i do believe it is KaBar, not karbar (not to sound like a pest, but if they look it up, might not find anything)

survivor569 (author)bustedit2009-09-11

Yes! You would be correct. My bad on that typo :)

milamber (author)survivor5692010-09-06

actualy just to be a nit picker i'l point out its actualy Ka-bar

JamesTB13 (author)2010-06-22

Graywolf, that is truly a BEAUTIFUL knife. What is it, and WHERE CAN I GET IT?

Gryle (author)2008-07-18

Could one use a leather belt in place of the leather scrap?

flamesami (author)Gryle2009-12-13

if the belt is soft of "soft and furry" on one side, the side facing inwards, like the leather Graywolf is using, then yes!

beehard44 (author)2009-11-15

you pushed the knife too far in and you get .....

Bits of you!

Always be careful with knives!!!

XI3 (author)2009-05-28

good tutorial, but a period once in a while wouldnt kill you lol. i had a hell of a time with a few sentences.

NRen2k5 (author)XI32009-09-09

I'm glad I wasn't the first to say it. Stay in school, kids.

I3uckwheat (author)2009-06-14

thank you for the advice i have just got a sharpining stone and i didnt know how to use it there wasnt any instructions so i came here and you instructions were the best yet thank you soo much 5 stars and faved

knifeguru (author)2009-03-29

Cool, i like to use diamond sharpeners more.

Father Christmas (author)2008-09-05

i must say, that is a beautiful blade.

X_D_3_M_1 (author)2008-02-06

is that a true bowie knife? can u tell me where u got that?

zofo300 (author)2006-10-18

thats a nice knife

Graywolf (author)zofo3002006-10-19


X_D_3_M_1 (author)Graywolf2007-10-23

yeha like whered u get it

Naruto_Uzumaki (author)2007-07-26


meddler (author)2007-06-29

Not trying to be a know it all, but when you use a stone, the (angle)you hold the knife against the stone is the most important aspect. My dad can sharpen a knife so sharp in a little while it makes me sick. I think he said keep it at a 45 degree angle, and keep it constant and you will have a sharp knife.

xenobiologista (author)2007-06-10

Hint: if you look at the blade edge-on under a light and you can see the edge as a shiny line, it's not sharp enough. It's a good way to look for nicks too (I'm talking kitchen knives here, no idea how sharp a hunting knife is supposed to be =)

About This Instructable




More by Graywolf:Make Char ClothSharpen a knife
Add instructable to: