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A swiss army knife is a great pocket-sized tool for any outdoors person or anyone who could make use of the various tools in this knife. It’s not only useful, but it also gives you that feeling of being prepared for anything. If you are an owner of a Victorinox swiss army knife, you not only need to keep it sharp but also keep it well-maintained! So, what is the best way to take care of a Swiss army knife?
Keeping a Victorinox knife sharp is easy by honing and sharpening, which is part of the care of the knives.
- Wash the blade immediately after use
- Keep the joints clean
- Clean the entire knife periodically
- Lubricate the joints
- Store safely
- Keep Your Knives Sharp
Keeping your knives sharp is a required maintenance task that you would need to perform on every knife you have. Victorinox knives are no different, and you should have a maintenance routine for these knives as well. We have a look at these well-made Victorinox knives and go through the methods you can use to sharpen them as well as some information on how to take proper care of these knives.
If you are interested in checking out different amazing Victorinox knives you can find them by clicking here (Amazon link).
Are Victorinox Knives Any Good?
Victorinox is a company that was established in Switzerland in 1884, which gives it a 130-years plus history in producing knives.
The company is probably most famous for the iconic Swiss Army knife that became the first multitool. It was issued to the Swiss army in 1897 but quickly gained worldwide popularity that still persists today!
What is not common knowledge for many people about the company is that it started out producing quality kitchen knives and cutlery sets before they produced the iconic Swiss Army knife.
Victorinox Knife Quality
Victorinox knives are usually made from high-quality, high-carbon stainless steel. The stainless steel makes the maintenance of the knives easier in that they will not discolor, stain, or rust as easily as other knives that are not made from stainless steel.
The stainless steel does, however, mean that the steel in these knives is not as hard as pure high carbon steels, which means they may need to be sharpened a bit more frequently.
Victorinox knives have a good reputation for being knives of good quality, but they are generally considered to be mid-range pocket knives. These knives remain popular, however, among many outdoorsmen and backpackers for several reasons.
- Lightweight. The knives are lightweight, which allows for quick chopping and processing and also helps to prevent fatigue in the hands when using the knives over extended cooking times.
- Durable. The knives are well made with the typical Swiss attention to detail and quality. This means that the knives are durable and will last you a long time.
- Hold an edge well. While the Victorinox knives will not hold an edge as well as a Japanese kitchen knife, they do hold an edge well in comparison to similar Western-style kitchen knives.
- Reasonable price. Probably the most notable characteristic that has helped to keep these knives popular in many kitchens worldwide is that they are reasonably priced. These are quality knives that anyone can afford.
Victorinox makes a wide range of swiss army-style pocket knives and multitools. This gives you a wide range to choose from and even gives you the ability to own a range of these knives that meet different criteria for your needs.
With the renowned quality from Victorinox, you have the peace of mind that you are carrying a quality product in your pocket or on your belt.
Our recommendation: My brother and I got the first real Victorinox Swiss army knives when we were little boys. Since then, we have always taken the Victorinox knife with us, especially during trips to nature. Currently, our most popular pocket knife is the Victorinox Swiss Army Rangergrip 78 Multi-Tool Pocket Knife with a 130 millimeter (5.1 inches) blade. If you are interested in this knife, you can look at it here (Amazon link).
How To Sharpen Victorinox Swiss Army Knives
After a few weeks of use, your new swiss army knife will become dull and not cut effectively due to the wear on the sharp edge of the knife. This will require you to apply more pressure on the knife in order to make cuts.
This can be dangerous since increased pressure when cutting can cause a knife to slip and cut you or damage the item that you are trying to cut.
It is, therefore, important to keep your Victorinox Swiss army knives sharp so that they will cut efficiently and safely whenever you need to put them into action.
It is not as difficult as you may imagine to keep your knife sharp and to give them the correct care to make sure they are safe and reliable to use and give you top service.
There are two main procedures that you need to include in the maintenance of your pocket knives to keep the edge of your knife in good condition and to be able to cut and perform as they should.
- Honing. Honing the edge of the knife is a task that is done frequently to maintain a razor-sharp edge on the knife.
- Sharpening. Sharpening is done less frequently and is only necessary when the edge of the knife has reached a point where honing is no longer effective in restoring the edge.
Honing Your Victorinox Knife
Honing your knives regularly not only maintains the edge but will also result in less frequent sharpening needing to be done on your knives.
The honing process is less aggressive than sharpening, which essentially means that it removes less material from the edge of the knife. This will ultimately serve to extend the life of your knives.
Honing your knives can be done using a variety of methods. This is where stainless steel knives have an advantage because of the softer steel that they are made from in comparison to harder, high-carbon steel knives.
One of the quickest methods that you can use to hone the edge of your knife is by means of honing steel.
The honing steel can be in the form of steel honing steel, ceramic honing steel, or diamond honing steel. The softer stainless steel reacts better to being straightened with honing steel than harder steels do.
A few passes of the knives over the honing steel every two weeks or so will re-align the sharp edge of the blade and restore the keen, sharp edge of the knife.
Honing will not only straighten the edge but will also refine the edge by removing small amounts of steel from the edge. Ceramic honing rods do this very well and do a better job of polishing the sharp edge of the knife than the other two varieties do.
Other methods of honing that can be used on your Swiss army knives include the use of a leather strop with stropping compound or the use of a high-grit whetstone in the range of 3000 to 6000-grit.
TIP: The popularity of the Victorinox pocket knives has seen a plethora of fake products being sold as genuine articles. Check out the main differences between real and fake Swiss army knives in the article below:
Sharpening Your Victorinox Knives
Sharpening of your Victorinox Swiss army knives will become necessary once the edge has deteriorated to the point that honing the blade will not achieve the desired level of sharpness.
At this stage, the knife needs to undergo sharpening to revive the sharp edge of the knife and restore it to full sharpness.
The ways that are available to you to sharpen your knives are many and varied and will largely be determined by your personal preference in this department and your sharpening skill level.
Whichever method you use to sharpen the knife, you should also finish off with a honing of the knife on a strop or honing rod.
You can sharpen your Victorinox knives using the following methods.
Sharpening on whetstones is often the preferred method for kitchen knives because you have full control over the edge that you put on the knife. However, this method requires skill, which only comes through practice.
- Pull-through sharpeners
You can use pull-through sharpeners that have the appropriate angle set on the sharpener to get a good edge on the knife. These pull-through sharpeners are quick and easy to use and don’t require the same level of skill as whetstones do.
- Electric sharpeners
Electric knife sharpeners are similar to pull-through sharpeners. The only difference is that there is a motor that powers grinding wheels in the machine to sharpen the edge. Many electric grinders have adjustable angles to cater to many different types of knives.
Victorinox not only makes knives, but they also make sharpeners that you can purchase from them to keep your knives good and sharp!
The easiest method to sharpen your Victorinox kitchen knives is with a pull-through sharpener.
- Pull the knife through the sharpener 5 or 6 times with moderate pressure.
- Pull the knife through the sharpener 5 or 6 times using very little pressure.
- Finish the sharpening process by honing the blade on a honing rod or a strop.
TIP: Have you ever wondered if the knife can be sharpened with a cheese grater? If you are interested in whether this is possible, click on the article below!
How To Take Care Of Your Victorinox Swiss Army Knife
One way to maintain the quality of your swiss army knife is by using and storing it properly.
When not in use, make sure you’re taking care of it by keeping it dry and out of contact with other metal objects, like coins or keys in your pocket, which could slip into the slots on the knife or damage moving parts
Cleaning should also be done regularly as dirt can get stuck in some parts inside the handle, such as between the blades when they are closed together.
Pocket knives should not be treated like basic kitchen cutlery but rather like finely tuned instruments that need the proper care and maintenance.
If you expect your pocket knife to perform at its best when you put them to use, it will need to have been taken care of to be in good condition to be reliable.
Owning a quality Swiss army knife comes with a responsibility to take care of these knives to get the required duration of quality service from these tools.
Proper cleaning, storage, and care will make sure that you get to enjoy your Victorinox Swiss army knives for years! Here are some basic maintenance guidelines to get you started with a good care regime for your pocket knives.
1. Wash Your Victorinox Swiss Army Knife Immediately After Use
Cleaning your Victorinox knife is much easier if you wash it straight after using it before items can harden and stick to the blade.
This not only makes the knife cleaning process easier but is also better for the maintenance of the knife. The acidic residue from citrus fruit, tomatoes, and onions can all leave tarnish or damage the blade if left on the knife for too long.
Even though the blade is made from stainless steel, certain acidic substances can stain and discolor the blade.
Do Not Wash Your Victorinox Knife In A Dishwasher
There are several problems associated with using a dishwasher to wash your pocket knives. The water in most dishwashers is hot, high-pressure water which can damage the handles on the knives.
The chemicals that are in dishwasher soap can be harsh enough to damage the handles on the knives over time.
The high-pressure water in a dishwasher jostles the cutlery around inside the machine and also forces water into all the joints, gaps, and moving parts on the knife.
This can, in the worst-case, damage the sharp edge of the knife, but it can also cause the pivot points to become stiff, and the penetrating water can remain in joints and cause rust, even on stainless steel parts.
2. Keep The Joints And Moving Parts Of The Knife Clean
Depending on how you store your knife, it is going to pick up dirt and dust, which will infiltrate the joints and moving parts of the knife. This is particularly true if you keep your knife in your pocket without any sort of sheath or cover.
In your pocket, the knife will pick up dust and lint that will become caught up in the moving parts and the grooves of the knife where the components fold into the handle.
The best way to keep these clean on a regular basis is to use a small brush to gently brush out these areas to remove the contaminants. If you don’t have a small brush, an old toothbrush can be used to perform the role.
TIP: Pocket knives consist of several parts, can you name these and say what they are used for? Check out the explanation of all parts of the pocket knife in the article below:
3. Clean The Entire Knife Periodically
The best way to wash your Victorinox Swiss army knife is to simply wash it by hand. The process is quick and simple; clean all the lint and dust out of the knife with a brush, place some warm water in a bowl and gently rub the knife blade with your fingers or a soft sponge. Make sure to keep your fingers clear of the sharp edge.
Next, hold one of the pivot points in the water and open and close each of the components that work around that pivot point. Do this several times with each component, and then repeat the process for the other pivot point at the other end of the knife and the components on that side.
This loosens any dirt and dust in the joints. After this process, you need to thoroughly dry the knife with a soft, dry cloth.
Us a hairdryer to blow warm air into the joints and pivot points on the knife to expel any moisture remaining in these locations.
The last step that remains in the cleaning process is to lubricate the joints, which is the step we will cover next.
4. Lubricate The Moving Parts
The pivot points on the knife need to be lubricated periodically to keep the movement smooth and to protect the metal in these areas.
Lubrication should be done once a month and after every periodic thorough washing of the knife. The best oil to use for this is the Victorinox Multitool oil with part number 4.3302, which is specially formulated for the job.
The advantage of this oil is that it has no taste or smell, it stays on the metal for a long time, has great wear and corrosion protection characteristics, and it is food-safe oil.
If you do not have this oil and cannot source it, a drop of food-grade mineral oil will work as well. Place a drop of the lubricating oil on the pivot point and move the components on that side back and forth to work the oil into the joint.
TIP: If you want to know more about lubricating pocket knives check out the simple guide in the article below:
5. Storing Your Victorinox Swiss Army Knife
Storing your Victorinox Swiss army knives correctly is an important part of their proper care. Storing the knives improperly could result in the knives becoming damaged or in reducing their usable lifespan.
Many of the Swiss army knives come, even the ones that are intended to be kept in your pocket, come with a protective pouch for the knife. It is great to keep the knife in this pouch, even when in your pocket, as it will help to keep the knife clean and prevent dirt and debris from accumulating in the pivot points and joints in the knife.
Some of the knives come with a pouch that is intended to be threaded onto your belt, and these are also a great option to keep the knife protected but always handy.
Even if your knife did not come with such a pouch, it is worthwhile getting one for your knife to help to keep it in the best shape possible!
6. Keep Your Knives Sharp
Honing and sharpening should be a part of your maintenance and care of your Victorinox knives. You can hone your knives daily after use, but sharpening should only be done as needed.
TIP: Are you looking to buy a new whetstone? Check out our recommendations (we personally use the first three ones):
Our PRO choice whetstones combo (Amazon links):
- Fixing stone: Whetstone SHAPTON Ceramic KUROMAKU #320
- Sharpening stone: Suehiro CERAX soaking whetstone: Medium #1000
- Finishing stone: Whetstone SHAPTON Ceramic KUROMAKU #5000
Our budget choice (Amazon link): Sharp Pebble Extra Large Sharpening Stone Set
If you’re looking to replace your pocket knife or multitool, then you might want to consider Victorinox knives. These are knives that will last a long time and stay sharp because they have high-quality blades. Swiss Army knives are also some of the most affordable, high-quality pocket knives available on the market.
Sharpening these knives can be as complicated or as easy as you want to make it. Whetstone sharpening will take time and skill but will produce the best edge on your knife. Pull-through and electric sharpeners are easier and quicker to use and will put an acceptable edge on the knife.
Remember to hone your knives regularly and to take good care of your knives each time you use them, and store them in a manner that they will not suffer damage or cause injury.
Victorinox is one of the most reputable brands in the world, so when it comes to quality and versatility, make sure to check them out as good quality, affordable pocket knife options!
And if you are interested in checking out different amazing Victorinox knives you can find them by clicking here (Amazon link).
TIP: Are you looking for the right tool to sharpen your pocket knife? If so, in the article below we’ll introduce you to the 4 best sharpeners for your pocket knife!