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Dec 2, 2012 09:42 AM

"Dressing" edge on my Shun

Do I use a steel or a ceramic "rod" that looks and works like a steel? I maintains the edge so re-sharpening shouldn't be an issue. Or does it matter anyway.

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  1. Well, before the REAL knife experts jump on board --

    I don't think you want to use a regular steel on a Japanese blade due to the risk of chipping the edge. A ceramic rod should be fine though. I personally would recommend a leather strop charged with chromium oxide to dress the edge.

    3 Replies
    1. re: tanuki soup

      Don't know much about strops but I guess now is the time to learn. Thank you for the come back

      1. re: Moneemaniac

        Just to clarify, I'd recommend a bench strop rather than a free-hanging strop (the kind used for sharpening razors). You can easily make one by gluing a length of old leather belt to a piece of wood. Rub the surface with a green chrome oxide crayon (which you can get at any hardware store) and you're ready to go! The picture shows how simple it is to make a bench strop.

        I made one a couple of years ago, and still use it regularly to keep my Japanese knives nice and sharp. If you're interested here's a link to the thread at CH describing the project in gory detail.

        1. re: tanuki soup

          Very interesting. I'm all over it. The ceramic "stick" works well but you have to be exquisitely gentle with it. The strop sounds perfect. Thank you! !!

    2. For a Shun knife (mostly likely Shun Classic), I would suggest that a waterstone is best. If you incline to use a metal steel vs a ceramic rod, then I would think a ceramic rod is bit better. A smooth metal steel is good too. What you want to avoid is a medium to rough grooved steel.

      2 Replies
      1. re: Chemicalkinetics

        Shun Kaji. Just want to keep it sharp without screwing up the edge

        1. re: Moneemaniac

          I would give the same advice for Shun Kaji. If you must use a honing steel, then make sure you use very light force. Good luck.

      2. Waterstones would be best for sharpening and a strop for maintaince