Knife Maintenance: 4 Ways to Keep Your Blades Sharp - LovingLocal
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knives on a desk with a knife sheats

Knife Maintenance: 4 Ways to Keep Your Blades Sharp

Every kitchen needs a good set of knives no matter if you’re a professional or just a passionate home cook. Having the right knives will reduce your meal prep time and give you the perfect slices. But once you buy them, you should also take good care of them. Keeping them sharp and protected should be your priority. There are several accessories that can help you do this and extend the life of your knives.

Get Some Sheaths

knife with sheat on a table

If your knives are your most prized property, you would want to protect them from any potential damage. One way to do this is to buy sheaths. Invest as much as you can into these accessories. They can make a big difference – especially the protective saya sheaths that are great for travelling or simply storing the knife in the kitchen drawer.

These sheaths will extend the life of your knives and make sure they last for many years to come. They protect the blade from chipping, scratches and knicks. A lot of knives are very delicate with their sharp and thin blades so they need every piece of protective layer they can have.

These sayas are also very helpful if you have small children. They’ll keep the blade away from the kids in case they get in touch with the knife. The most common materials used to make this type of sheath are magnolia, ho, nurizaya or bamboo. Magnolia is the most popular of them all because it’s water-resistant and can prevent corrosion. It won’t absorb smells as well, which is important if you’re storing a general-purpose knife.

Magnolia also has a grain that’s easy to paint which means you can easily personalise the sheath and improve its aesthetics. When you buy this type of knife sheath, make sure you get the right shape. It has to match the type of knife you’re buying it for. Otherwise, it won’t cover the whole knife or will be too big and the knife will slip out.

If you’re not sure about the size, measure the dimensions and compare them to the sizing chart of the online store. The measurements include the knife’s length, height and thickness. If you’re buying in your local store, bring the knife with you. Don’t hesitate to invest in a sheath. Do so before it’s too late and your knives are chipped and damaged.

Use Knife Sharpeners

You use kitchen knives on a daily basis. It’s normal for them to become dull with time. You therefore require a high-quality knife sharpener. You might have heard the phrase “A sharp knife is a safe knife” and it’s very true. A sharp knife won’t slip when you want to cut the food. There’s an option where you can get the knives professionally sharpened, but this can cost you a lot of money.

A more budget-friendly option in the long run is to buy a sharpener. A sharp knife protected in a saya sheath is a tool that will last for a long time. There are four main types of sharpeners you can choose from. The manual one is simple and lightweight. You stabilise them on a flat surface, pull the knife through the slots and work both sides simultaneously.

There are also electric sharpeners. They’re motorised and easy to use. Besides the motor, their other components are abrasive disks and wheels. You can even choose the abrasion levels and the speed in some models. If you prefer the traditional methods, get a whetstone. It sharpens the knife when you hold it horizontally at a slight angle above the stone and skim back and forth.

“Steels” or sharpening rods have the same design but serve different purposes. Honing rods are made to give the steel fibres a proper alignment. These sharpeners can be made of fine ceramic or steel. The rods, on the other hand, have a rougher surface and with time will take some of the metal away from the blade.

Buy a Good Knife Block

a knife block in the kitchen

Just like knife sheaths, knife blocks are a good way to store and protect your blades. They’re also a nice kitchen accessory when you place them on the kitchen counter. The blocks can be modern, traditional, elegant, rustic, or contemporary as they come in many designs. But there are three main models: universal, classic and magnetic.

Just as the name suggests, universal blocks can hold any type of knife no matter the size, material, shape and blade thickness. They can be made of wood or some type of plastic and filled with interlocking rods made of nylon. The rids are the pieces that hold the knives upright.

The classic knife blocks look very elegant. They’re made of wood which gives them a natural, sophisticated aesthetics. Every type of blade already has a designated slot, you can’t just store them any way you choose. The newest and most contemporary form of this kitchen tool is the magnetic version.

They are simply a flat surface with magnets on the inside, rather than a standard box shape. The magnetism works as soon as you place the knife close to the magnet’s surface. It instantly pulls the blade, and it stays safe and sound on the surface. If you have ceramic knives this board won’t work.

Invest in a High-Quality Travel Case

A travel bag or a case is the safest way to transport the knives from home to work or during your trips. It’s also a good storage option at home. The main thing to consider is the bag’s storage capacity. It’ll be perfect if it can hold every knife you have in the kitchen. It can be nice if you buy a bag with extra slots so you can extend your knife collection in the future.

The size of your knives will dictate the size of the bag you need. Remember, knives come in various sizes and shapes, so choose a bag where they can all fit comfortably. Opt for a closure system that’s straightforward and user-friendly, such as snap buttons, clips, zippers, fasteners, or hook-and-loop. For added security, some bags even offer a locking feature.

Bag materials come in a range. Many opt for soft, flexible materials like leather, canvas, nylon and polyester, which are often easier to manage. Yet, they may wear out quicker. In contrast, tougher materials like metal typically endure longer and can withstand years of use.

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