Knives made of zirconium Hunting appeared on the market relatively recently, depriving metal blades of their monopoly. Meanwhile, this material has been used for industrial purposes for more than a dozen years; it is used to produce parts for the aviation, auto, and space industries.
I use it even in the manufacture of dental implants. Specialists highly appreciate the chemical inertness of zirconium Hunting, as well as heat resistance, incredible hardness, and color stability. Hunting kitchen knives have all these properties. They are very sharp, hold their sharpness for a long time, and provide an excellent cut of loose products. Difficulties in operation can be caused, perhaps, only by sharpening Hunting knives, which require some skill and special tools.
PROS AND CONS OF Hunting KNIVES
To understand how to sharpen Hunting knives, you need to study the features of this material. Zirconium Hunting is produced exclusively in factories, and the technological process is quite complicated, requiring special industrial equipment. At the initial stage, natural zirconium ore undergoes a stage of complex purification.
The output is zircon dioxide, to which yttrium oxide and other chemical additives are added. The resulting mixture is sintered under high pressure at very high temperatures (1000-1500 degrees). The resulting blanks become the basis for future blades – they are polished, given the desired shape, and dressed in handles. Hunting knives usually have ABS plastic handles.
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This material weighs little, as does the resulting knife blade. At the same time, the plastic is quite durable. The last stage of production is sharpening on special machines with diamond coating. It is this abrasive that can give hard Hunting an incredible sharpness. The output is a Hunting knife, which has a whole list of advantages:
- sharpening is ultra-sharp and lasts for a long time – up to several years of regular use;
- the blade is incredibly hard, comparable in this indicator only to diamond (Hunting – 8.5 points on the Mohs scale, diamond – 10 points);
- lightness and compactness of the design – only small and medium-sized knives are made of Hunting;
- accurate and flawless cutting of medium-weight products, almost without human effort;
- not subject to corrosion and rust formation, as it is not metal;
- the blade is hygienic and chemically inert, does not affect the taste of food, does not oxidize, does not absorb dyes and odours.
The peculiarity of Hunting knives also lies in their narrow specialization. The blade is very hard, but brittle, so it is not suitable for working with hard products. But in cutting gastronomy, vegetables, and fruits without stones, mushrooms, greens, they have no equal. Another feature is connected with this – a relatively large angle of sharpening the blade (about 40 degrees). This is necessary to give strength to the cutting edge. A smaller angle will make it even thinner and more vulnerable to damage. As a result, Hunting knives have the following disadvantages compared to steel blades:
- excessive rigidity of the blade – it is almost devoid of flexibility, mechanical shocks can lead to cracks, chips, or breakage;
- not suitable for cutting frozen, bones, hard foods;
- narrow specialization – can be used strictly for its intended purpose.
HOW TO SHARPEN A Hunting KNIFE: MANUAL WAY
Given the above features of these blades, a fair question arises – do Hunting knives sharpen in principle? It all depends on the condition of the cutting edge. Given the fact that it is initially very sharp and hard, it does not dull over a very long period. With improper handling, it happens that the blade fails (cracks and chips appear on it), not having time to become dull.
If you carefully use this blade, provide it with proper care and careful use, one day you will have to think about how to sharpen a Hunting knife. Therefore, to begin with, carefully inspect the blade for the integrity of the cutting edge.
If there are noticeable chips and cracks, it is unlikely that it will be possible to reanimate the cutting edge on its own. If the blade has no obvious flaws, you can sharpen a Hunting knife with special tools. Proceed like this:
The type of sharpening for your knife. It can be one-sided (in Japanese varieties of knives) or symmetrical two-sided. It is also worth finding out to what extreme sharpness the blade was originally sharpened. The degree of the graininess of the tool with which you will perform the final sharpening depends on this.
Choose a sharpening tool.
It can be a diamond bar that has sides with different grain sizes. For coarse sharpening, a coarse-grained surface is used, for finishing – a fine-grained one.
Sharpen until the burr disappears.
Be sure to maintain the sharpening angle specified by the manufacturer. If this is problematic, you can purchase a special sharpening angle holder. Work first one side of the blade until a burr appears on the opposite side, then the other. A sharp knife has almost no burr.
HOW AND HOW TO SHARPEN Hunting KNIVES AT HOME
Special devices can facilitate and speed up the sharpening process. However, they should be designed specifically for Hunting knives, devices for steel blades are likely to be ineffective. Hunting is much harder than steel and requires processing with the hardest possible abrasive, with diamond coating. Also, do not try to sharpen steel knives with a tool designed for Hunting- you risk removing too much metal and thereby completely grind off the cutting edge.
So, for processing a blunt Hunting knife, the following are suitable:
This is an auxiliary tool that is suitable for straightening the blade, maintaining its working shape between sharpening. It is a rod with a handle that looks like an elongated file. The cross-section is round, oval, or multifaceted. The rod is coated with diamonds. Musat is smoothly passed over the blade several times as necessary to “tweak” the knife, perhaps right during cooking (do not forget to rinse the blade).
These are the same grindstones that we talked about above. Professionals usually use Japanese water stones, which must be soaked in water before sharpening the knife. During operation, suspension forms on the surface, which protects the blade from too aggressive abrasive action.
It consists of diamond discs or plates hidden in a plastic case with slots for blades. The knife is inserted into the recess and drawn forward / backward several times along the entire length of the blade. In this case, you need to make an effort, and the process itself lasts about the same as sharpening on water stones. The convenience of this method is that the sharpening angle is usually already set.
This device sharpens a knife without effort on the part of a person. The electric mechanism rotates the diamond discs, the knife is sharpened automatically. The device is powered by mains or batteries. The device is also convenient in that it adjusts to the width and angle of the cutting edge, sharpens it quickly, and some models have a chip collection compartment. The disadvantage of such a tool is the high cost, which can exceed the price of the blade itself. Also, if used incorrectly, too much of the blade material can be removed, which will lead to premature damage to the knife.
The industrial equipment is used in the production of blades and in professional workshops. Its use requires compliance with safety rules and special work skills. For example, you need to control the force of pressure on the blade and the angle of sharpening.
A sharpening method is available for home use, which, however, requires strength and patience. The composition includes an abrasive with particles up to 5 microns in size. The paste is applied to thick cardboard or other suitable material, then the blade is carefully polished.
RULES FOR THE CARE OF A HUNTING KNIFE
In order for the cutting edge of a Hunting blade to remain intact and intact for a long time, to please with a sharp, neat cut, it is necessary to provide the blade with proper care. Follow these guidelines:
- handwashing with dish detergent is preferred;
- machine wash in warm or cold water is acceptable if the knife does not touch other dishes;
- protect from bumps and falls – the knife is fragile, it can crack or break;
- do not cut hard foods, fruits with bones, meat with bones, freezing;
- use wooden and plastic boards (glass, Hunting, metal spoil the cutting edge);
- use strictly for its intended purpose;
- sharpen with special diamond-coated tools suitable for Hunting blades;
- store separately from other knives and utensils.
Now you know how to sharpen a Hunting knife at home, and you can extend the life of this solid blade. This blade is expensive and fragile, requires a delicate attitude, but it is unrivalled when used for its intended purpose – it provides an easy and neat cut of the product.
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