Further Knife Maintenance
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Cultivate the habit of periodically inspecting your knives. If you notice tarnish spots of Red Oxidation (which means “rust”) clean the blade quickly with knife polish or CLR® (a household cleaner we have found to be effective). High Carbon Steel blades will develop a gray-blue patina that protects from red oxidation. After the inspection, use a clean cloth to apply quality mineral oil or wax to protect the blade from rusting before returning the knife to dry storage.  

Knives require a safe dry storage place. A knife block is perfect for storing knives as the block protects the knife blade and secures it, helping to prevent accidents. Magnetic Knife Strips are good as well, unless you have curious pets or kids. Another choice is Knife Covers. Never store your fine knives jumbled in a drawer. 

Don’t allow fine knives to bang one another or bump into objects as the precision ground cutting edge could be damaged in the collision. Bumping is also a reason fine knives should avoid the dishwasher, where the jetting water can knock your knives into other utensils or dishes.

“Steel” the knife frequently to maintain the edge. We cover steeling your knives in Lesson 2: Basic Knife Skills, Topic 2: Knife Construction & MaintenanceExercise 4: Steeling Your Knife.

Always use a knife-friendly cutting board made of materials like natural wood or a soft composite polyethylene. Cutting boards made of glass, ceramic, metal or marble can damage your fine knives by causing their edge to turn or roll.

Your knife is a precision tool, not a generalized blunt instrument.