Caring for Carbon Steel Knife Blades
Carbon steel knife blades are harder and have a finer grain structure than stainless steel, and require more care.
To properly care for a carbon steel blade, you must hand wash it with a mild soap and dry it thoroughly after each use. Never place your Kramer knife in the dishwasher.
With care, over time, a carbon steel blade will develop a deep gray/blue patina from exposure to different elements. This coating is similar to the seasoning of a well-used cast iron skillet, as it will protect the blade from rust and discoloration. This dark patina is the sign of a favorite, well-used knife.
Taking a page from sushi chefs, a moist towel can be used to wipe your blade between use with different foods. This is most critical when cutting highly acidic foods.
Rust Spot Treatment
If your blade does develop rust spots due to spots of water not fully dried off of the blade, Bob Kramer recommends using a gree Scotch-Bride pad and a little soap. WARNING: THE SCOTCH-BRITE PAD WILL LEAVE TINY SCRATCHES ON THE STEEL. Kramer suggests placing the blade on a flat surface for your safety as well as the knife's, then applying soap to the Scotch-Brite pad along with a little water. Using the pad, gently scrub the blade, rinse, and hand-dry.
Even a Kramer Carbon Steel Knife requires sharpening. The beauty of this material, however, is how easily and effectively it can be sharpened.
To prevent damage to your Kramer carbon steel blade, Bob Kramer recommends wood or soft plastic cutting boards exclusively. While marble, glass, hard plastic or metal boards may win points for beauty, these materials can all damage the knife's blade and dull it more quickly.
Caring for the Handle
Each Kramer by Zwilling Carbon Steel Knife has a genuine wood handle. To prevent the handle from drying or cracking over time, Kramer recommends Tried & True Danish Oil, which is 100% food safe. To oil your knife handle, Kramer recommends that you apply a small quantity of oil to the handle with a paper towel, allow it to soak in for 20 minutes, and then wipe off the excess oil. Do not store your knife until the handle has dried completely.