man holds Damascus steel knife in leather glove to show how to care for it

Damascus knives are made from high carbon steel and widely available in the market. Damascus steel knife is a beauty to behold and has historical reputation of high-quality metal. So, with this quality blade comes special care. Here are our tips on how to care for a Damascus steel knives to maintain their beauty and use.

Lubricate 

Carbon steel Damascus blades can rust when not cared for properly. You will need to make sure the blade remains clean and dry to prevent rust or discoloration.

Make sure to clean the knife and dry it thoroughly after each use.

After cleaning and drying Damascus steel, you should lubricate the knife with a wax or mineral oil to prevent moisture from affecting the blade. You can use castor oil, coconut oil or paraffin oil. Doing that will keep your knife rust-free and maintain its etched beauty.

Avoid abrasives

Damascus blades are made to last yet it is important to apply curtain precautions while using them. Avoiding abrasives–rough cloths, metal polishes, steel wool, etc–is important to maintaining the look and quality of the Damascus steel blade because if you do use an abrasive or metal cleaner it will remove the etched oxidation that you want on a knife to show the Damascus pattern

Be mindful of acids

Care for your Damascus steel by being mindful where are you using your knives. A carbon steel Damascus blade is especially susceptible to damage when used on acidic foods (fruits, for example), in wet, humid environments, and for field dressing game. These uses and environments due to different oxidation levels can remove the etching of the blade.

When you do use your knife, remember to wash, and dry it immediately, taking care to not rub the blade roughly. Using a microfiber or cotton cloth to dry it, the softer material will not wear the blade.

Store properly 

Take care about your steel knife by storing it properly completely dry. When not in use, it’s important to keep the Damascus steel knife in a dry interior environment, where it will not be affected by extreme moisture or temperature changes. After cleaning and lubricating your knife, storing it in a box or padded zipper case, your knife will keep well.

Damascus kitchen chef knives should be washed after every use and thoroughly dried before storing in a block or magnetic rack. 

When out in the field with your knife, make sure that you don’t keep it in a wet environment for long periods of time. Don’t store your knife (or any knife for that matter) in a leather sheath for a long time – acids and chemicals are used to tan leather and can lead to oxidation over time due to the normal moisture found in the air.

However, if you wish to store your knife in the leather sheath, you may do it after lubricating it (for example with olive oil or renaissance wax) and wrapping in few layers of cling wrap.

In addition, keep an eye out for a wet handle: the moisture from the handle can also rust the blade, so keeping the entire high carbon knife dry is important. We strongly advise against using a dehumidifier bar if you are storing Damascus knives with natural handle materials, especially in a closed safe or storage compartment. Extreme low humidity is a hazard for ANY natural handle material (woods, stag, etc.) and will likely cause cracking or separation. Humidity does not affect synthetic handle materials.

If due to storage conditions your Damascus carbon steel knife acquired some rusting, it can be easily removed by rubbing the blade with baking soda and vinegar.

Sharpen 

Even though Damascus steel knives are notorious for maintaining their sharpness for a very long time, they may require sharpening occasionally to maintain their performance.

Hand forged Damascus blades requires no special techniques for sharpening. As with all quality knives, the best way to sharpen a Damascus blade is by using a whetstone.

By taking good care of your Damascus steel knife, it will maintain its unique look much longer.

Carbon steel blade careCare instructionsDamascus knifeHandmade knives

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