How to Use a Quartz Light Bulb to Sharpen a Knife


If you ever find yourself in a situation in which you need a sharp knife but cannot find your regular knife sharpener anywhere, look around your garage or junk drawer for a burned-out halogen lightbulb. There is a little trick you can learn that will surprise you and your friends. After a few minutes of sharpening the blade, you will have a clean and sharp edge, and can get back to work.

Things You'll Need

  • Halogen lightbulb
  • Carefully remove the protective covering surrounding the inner workings of the halogen bulb. It should be a thin glass that is easily broken. Clean away any glass shards and splinters. Inside, you should find a hard glass bulb that houses the filament. Remove it and rinse it clean with some tap water.

  • Holding the glass bulb in one hand and your knife in the other, lower the glass to a solid surface.This glass is actually hardened glass made of quartz that has about a 500 grit. It will remove steel with a lot of repetition. Keep the surface wet to help lubricate the knife as it moves across the glass.

  • Draw the knife across the surface of the glass at approximately a 20-degree angle. Pull the blade toward you while pressing down with firm pressure, making a slow, counterclockwise motion. If the bulb is small, be careful not to let the blade come too close to your thumb. Continue sharpening for about 75 rotations.

  • Polish the edge of the blade by dragging it along a piece of thick leather, away from the edge of the blade. You should now have a nicely sharpened knife that is ready for any general application.

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