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Old 07-24-2007, 03:33 PM   #11
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I do it just before I am about to use the knife. That way, I don't have to remember if I did it before I put the knife away.
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Old 07-24-2007, 03:37 PM   #12
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I hold the steel in one hand, and the knife (blade facing inward) in the other. I begin with the base of the knife at the base of the steel, and pull the two arms apart. This is the way Jacques Pepin said to do it. I do it just about every time I use a knife. On the other hand, how often do you actually re-sharpen your often used knives? Since I keep them in pretty good shape by using the steel often, I never know when to actually run them over the stone.

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Old 07-24-2007, 03:46 PM   #13
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Sometimes I need to use the steel several times in between slicing and dicing when I am putting my mess in place.
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Old 07-24-2007, 03:54 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Caine
Sometimes I need to use the steel several times in between slicing and dicing when I am putting my mess in place.
Professional butchers at packing houses will go as long as four hours of heavy meat cutting before realigning their edges. They know when it is required because they can feel it. I think you can slice and chop veggies all day long unless you are really banging the blade into the cutting board.

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Old 07-24-2007, 04:18 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlueCat
I hold the steel in one hand, and the knife (blade facing inward) in the other. I begin with the base of the knife at the base of the steel, and pull the two arms apart. This is the way Jacques Pepin said to do it. I do it just about every time I use a knife. On the other hand, how often do you actually re-sharpen your often used knives? Since I keep them in pretty good shape by using the steel often, I never know when to actually run them over the stone.

BC
Well, I don't know diddly about Chef Pepin, but I just read his sharpening advice here. Most of the info is okay but some is incorrect.

Steeling is only done properly when the angle of the blade to the steel matches (exactly) the angle of the edge to the blade. If you have an axe-like edge of 25 degrees like you get from the Henckel factory you have to maintain a 25 degree angle. Simple. Now, if you slide your expensive Shun Elite blade down the steel at 25 degrees, whoops, you have just rolled, and probably ruined, the 16 degree edge angle set at the factory.

1. Place the end of the steel on a surface and keep it absolutely verticle.
2. Match the angle
3. Lock your wrist
4. Pull or push with your arm only, maintaining the angle with the locked wrist.

Again, simple. All it takes is a little knowledge and a little practise.

This business about watching some TV chef slashing away this way and that is absolute garbage. That would be for show only. Most big time chefs have their knives sharpened professionally anyway. Find those guys at bladeforums and knifeforums, where pros hang out.

Sorry if I sound somewhat harsh, but there is a lot of bad info being spread.

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Old 07-24-2007, 04:20 PM   #16
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I hold my steel vertically at a slight angle, and pull the blade towards the handle of the steel in alternating motions. I hone the edge every day before I start prepping, and usually once or twice throughout the night depending on how much of and what I'm cutting or chopping. I'll also use a stone for my blades every other week or so. My main two knives (10" chefs and 7" santoku) are so sharp that I can shave ripe tomato slices less than 1 mm thick.
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Old 07-24-2007, 04:31 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Caine
I do it just before I am about to use the knife. That way, I don't have to remember if I did it before I put the knife away.

Is your memory better when you are about to use a knife than it is after you've used a knife?
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Old 07-24-2007, 06:30 PM   #18
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I use the steel every time I wash the knife before putting it into the block. I pull the blade toward me from heel to tip. Five times on one side then five on the other, then four each, then three, then two, then one. This is the first time I've written this down and am afraid it sounds like a symptom of OCD.
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Old 07-24-2007, 06:39 PM   #19
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when i am ready to do a light day's work i simply run the blade along the steel towards the steel's bolster a few times
if i know i have hard veggies to do i will point the steel down onto the prep table and apply a bit more pressure
i do this too, if i have done any butchering and the blade ran against bones and might have gained a few burrs
once in awhile i will run the blade opposite the bolster lightly
i believe the steel can become unidirectional also
i also will run a cloth opposite my usual direction along the steel to remove the metal filings

but i hae been seen to use the bottom of a ceramic ramekin or baking dish to sharpen the knife when i am too busy to dig my diamond stone out from the bottom of my tool box(es)
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Old 07-24-2007, 07:40 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy M.
Is your memory better when you are about to use a knife than it is after you've used a knife?
Probably not, but there is less chance something would interupt me and cause me to forget to use my steel immediaely BEFORE I start puting my mises in place.
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