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Feb 27, 2008 12:13 PM

Rust spots on new santuko knife

I did not know I had to be so careful with this knife, so first time I washed it, I put it in the dishwasher, set on air dry. Now it has a couple small rust spots. How do I remove the rust?

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  1. UGH!!! NEVER put quality cutlery into a dishwasher! NEVER! It will only harm the steel -- to wash a knife takes just a few seconds and you ought not leave it wet, always dry promptly.

    To remove the rust spots use a small amount of paste metal polish like Wenol or Simichrome -- just a pea sized dot on a soft cloth (old fashioned diapers are ideal) and steady pressure.

    2 Replies
    1. re: renov8r

      Thanks! I got the knife for Christmas because my daughter said I didn't have ANY good knives, but I didn't know they were that sensitive. I guess I really don't have any good knives, as I have never had this problem before!

      1. re: danhole

        The damage comes from being knocked around in the dishwasher, it tends to dull the knife. Do get some Semichrome, it is a great metal polish, so is Never Dull. Both are good to have on hand. You may want to have your knife resharpened too after you polish ther rust spots off

    2. Mrs Hole, what is your new knife made of? Did your daughter give you a handmade carbon steel santoku from Japan? Stainless can be put through dishwashers, albeit not with anything else made of metal placed in the same part of the basket.

      2 Replies
      1. re: Sam Fujisaka

        Cap'n Sam ;-}, It says it is high carbon stainless steel, and now that I look at the packaging, at the very bottom, in 5 point type, it does say to handwash and dry immediately! Darn, wish my eyes were a bit better or I would have caught that sooner. I guess I put it next to some other silverware. The spots (only 2) are very small, but it bothers me, being the compulsive perfectionist I am.

        1. re: danhole

          You can probably just wipe the spots out with a thick wet hand towel. It won't be any worse off. Remember, just a few molecules of steel can produce what looks like a lot of oxidation (rust) without any real damage. If the spots were small, no problem. Don't read the next paragraph if you're still worried.

          I have a high carbon steel knife that is easy to maintain really really sharp and that is now after years of use a glossy mottled rusty brown and grey on the sides--somewhat like firearms (e.g., 1600 -1700s Kentucky rifles that were intentionally "browned") before the use of blueing. My friends Werner and Jenny basically don't worry when their two-generation old carbon steel German knives rust a bit--couple strokes of the steel and a wipe down and good to go.

      2. Yes, please never put it in the dishwasher again! Also, never let a knife soak in water. Buy a honing steel and use it every couple of uses to keep it sharp.

        1 Reply
        1. re: Hapa Dude

          Get a ceramic one. Look on Amazon - they have a Kyocera for around $25. It's the same one that Global sells for around $100 without the pretty stainless steel handle.

        2. Sam is right, but I would also add that you can try rubbing the rust spots off with steel wool, and that you should never air dry a knife. It is far better to dry it carefully with a thick towel. The stainless qualities only seem to go so far with good knives.