How To Sharpen A Folding Pocket Knives

The following steps describe how to sharpen your Folding Pocket Knife.

1.  Lubricate the sharpening stone.

Apply a thin layer of lubricant to both sides of your sharpening stone.  Simple.


2.  Sharpen one side of the blade using rough grit.

Angle the knife blade about 15 degrees against the rough grit side of your sharpening stone.  Note the recommended angle varies depending on what type of knife you’re sharpening and how sharp you want it but in general you can stick with anywhere from 10-15 degrees for your standard pocket knife.   The smaller the angle the sharper the blade will be but at the expense of poorer edge retention.  In other words, a greater angle will be less sharp but last longer.

It’s vital to try to maintain this same angle while you sharpen and this isn’t easy.  Naturally, practice will make perfect so don’t expect to be good at this from the outset.  You’ll get there eventually and if you get fed up and need help consider using a sharpening guide which is a cheap but handy tool for maintaining that constant sharpening angle.

Once you are comfortable with your angle then begin to stroke the blade against the stone.  You can bring it towards you or away from you and that is really down to personal preference.  You don’t need to use a great deal of pressure here, a light-moderate weight is adequate and try to keep the pressure somewhat consistent across strokes.  Move the blade as though you are trying to shave a thin layer of stone off the sharpening block.  Repeat this process for about 10 strokes.


3.  Repeat on the alternate side.

You get the idea – simply repeat step 2 on the opposite side.  Technically you should continue to sharpen until you have raised a burr, which is occurs when one bevel is ground until it meets another.  The burr is like some frayed material hanging off the end of where it was ground. It’s weak so you don’t want it on your edge because it will break off.  If you hold the edge up to bright light you’ll see a highlight along the edge which is not present on the other side.


4.  Stroke alternate sides

After you’ve focused on each side then perform another 10 or so strokes but this time changing the side on each stroke.


5.  Repeat steps 2-4 using the fine grit.

Once you’re done with the rough grit you simply need to repeat the process using the finer grit side of the sharpening stone.  This will remove your burr created during the rough grit phase.

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