Maintain your Laguiole knife
A genuine Laguiole knife made in the ancestral fashion is an every day companion. Under normal use your knife has a lifetime guarantee.
A folding knife should be wiped, never washed !
- horntip, horn, stag horn and ivory handles
Those are natural materials. The materials used to make the knives are natural materials. If possible, avoid getting the handles made from horn wet and avoid washing them with water (beyond a quick wipe with a damp cloth), or there is a risk of the handle splitting.
Horn is composed of keratin similar to feathers and finger nails. This is one of the reasons why it offers a great variety of colours and that this material requires minimum care.
- French wood or exotic wood handles
Wooden handles can withstand cold limited water. Nevertheless they still have to be considered as fragile materials.
Woods: If your knife handle becomes dry or/and dull, apply olive oil with a soft cloth on it.
- Carbon fiber, aluminium, stainless steel and acrylic handles
These materials are hardwearing and thus recommended for people who need a "rough and ready" outdoor knife or whose hobby is fishing for example.The carbon fiber, aluminium, stainless steel and acrylic handles are more resistant to water and to getting wet than the aforementioned natural handled knifes.
In any case, they have to be wipped after use and the mechanism needs to be cared of.
We strongly advise against using the dishwasher to clean any folding knives.
- Carbon steel blade
The advantage of the carbon steel blade : it is a softer steel, so we can sharpen it more quickly than stainless steel blade which is harder.
This is the traditional blade which develops a charcoal-grey patina with use. This is a natural oxidation, but it could evolve into rust in case of a lack of care.
A carbon steel blade should be cleaned with a damp cloth and immediately dried (in the old days the peasants did not wash their knife blade but wiped it on their work trousers).
Avoid using scotch brite, it can scratch the blade.
To render the blade the colour it had when you purchased it you can use products you find in hardware shops. Otherwise, you can dip a cork in cold ashes of a wood fire and wipe the blade with elbow grease... Then the blade will be clean again until the next acidic food you cut (such as lemons/tomatoes etc)!
- Stainless steel blade (reference number 12C27)
Contrary to the traditional blade which blackens, stainless steel blades remain clean whatever use you make of them. 12C27 or 14C28N stainless steel are up-market steels. It is easy to grind whether by professionals or by private individuals.
After use wipe the blade with a damp cloth and dry it. Avoid using scotch brite, it can scratch the blade.
- Damascus blade
In case of regular use, wash it after every use to keep its moiré look. If you do not use your knife for a long time, grease your blade to avoid any deterioration in its beauty. A neutral grease such as the silicon grease used in plumbing is preferable.
Damascus blade care is identical to the other blades. In order to clean it, wipe the blade with a wet cloth and dry it. Avoid using scotch brite, it can scratch the blade.
There are 2 different complementary methods for sharpening your knife :
- honing to restore the edge
- grinding to maintain the edge
During both operation you need to keep a 20-30° angle (a blade must not be scratched!)
Press hard and regularly (faster movements does not improve the quality of the sharpening ; it only increases the risks to cut oneself or scratch/chip the blade,...!)
These methods can be done in a few minutes but need some practice. Before sharpening your brand new Laguiole knife, try to practice with an old knife.
The honing is done on a whetstone or an electric grindstone (grindstone needs to be perfectly round).
Before use, the whetstone has to be submerged in water for about ten minutes. A coarse-grained stone is used for gardening tools and a medium-grained stone for knives.
Make a movement as if you wished to cut a thin slice out of the stone (keeping the same angle). Do this movement again alternating one side of the blade with the other. Wet the stone regularly during the grinding.
Fixing the stone on a workbench using two clamps (contrary to what is shown on the picture below) will free both hands and make the honing easier .
The grinding is made with a magnetized steel with a 25cm long bit and a hilt. Wether it is round, oval or flat, you will do the same movements.
The movement is identical to the one with the whetstone. Going from the top of the bit with the bottom of the knife's blade do as if you wished to cut the steel towards the hilt. Do this movement again alternating one size of the blade with the other.
It is necessary to oil regularly the moving parts of any folding knife as much as it is for a car engine. It will prevent it from a premature wear.
You can use a multi-use oil or a WD 40 oil. With the blade folded closed, put a drop of oil between the blade and the spring at the blade axle. Open and close the blade, then wipe off the surplus oil.
- solid brass bolsters
To leave a Laguiole knife in a leather sheath for an extended period of time without using the knife will oxidize the brass bolsters. This is simply due to the chemical agents used in the tanning process of the leather.
To give the oxidized brass bolsters their original shine, wet a rag with some “ metal polish (Ouator or Miror brands are recommended) and elbow grease will do the rest!
- stainless steel bolsters
No care is needed for knives with stainless steel bolsters.
- for any knife
Avoid having your knife in your pocket along with other metallic objects such as keys, coins... It might scratch the handle and the metallic parts of your knife.
Correct use of a Laguiole folding knife
Like any other knife a Laguiole folding knife is made TO CUT.
A knife is not a tool made for:
- being used as a lever
- being used as an oyster-knife
- being used as an awl or a punch
- being used as a throwing knife
Can we click the blade shut without damaging its cutting edge ?
The Laguiole knife has got a slip-joint (it means the blade is half-blocked.) When you fold the blade, the action of the spring brings the blade into the handle. In former days on the farm, the grandad used to click the blade to mean the meal was over.
Nowadays modern cutlery enables us to snap or click the blade shut without spoiling its sharp edge.On certain models of knives in our “Prestige” range or “Collection” range the springs have got a blade stop. The heel of the blade shuts on a stop under the bee (it acts like a brake.) and the cutting edge is entirely protected!
For the 3 piece knife (with the blade, the corkscrew and the punch), the blade must always be accompanied.
A few remarks about Laguiole table cutlery
All table cutlery items have stainless steel blades and handle tops.
Stainless steel blades remain shiny whatever use you have.
We advise you to hand-wash your table knives in order to keep the cutting edge for a long time:
- we recomment to wash the blade of your knives with a wet or damp cloth and to dry it immediately after each use if possible.
- avoid any abrasive such as powders, scrobing cloth..., it will scratch the blade.
For dish-washers, a few precautions have to be taken:
- avoid using too much soap
- do not wash with other metal items at the same time in your dish-washer (marmelade jar top...,)
- make sure there is enough rinsing product.
Only stainless steel handles can go in the dishwasher on a daily basis and resist the chemical detergents and high washing temperatures.
Acrylic handles could go inside dishwasher and safely BUT only occasionally (example one per month). Over time, these handles will degrade if washed in the dishwasher everyday: the acrylic will crack. You should hand-wash knives with these handles. You can submerge acrylic handled knives in hot or cold water in a sink without a problem.
In case of persistent stains on your knife blades that go inside dishwasher, we recommend the use of specific products on a cloth (a few examples: Ouator, Hagerty Inox,...). Do not forget to rinse and wipe the cutlery after washing it.
Beware: only stainless steel handles can resist to dish-washers or can be submerged in water. See the Guarantee Card to know if the handles can go into the dish-washer.
Can a Laguiole knife be repaired ?
Any laguiole knife can be mended, even very old ones.
We can replace a worn blade as well as a spring or a handle, ...
But be aware, sometimes reparing a knife is more expensive than buying a new one!
Do not hesitate and ask for a free estimate (visit our section "Repair service").