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How to Feel For A Burr

Sharpening instructions often instruct you to feel for a burr as a test of progress. If you feel a burr, it indicates that you have sharpened all the way to the edge. But Sharp edges can cut and should be handled with care. So how do you go about safely feeling for a burr?


Tip - Move Perpendicular to the Blade's Edge

Place your thumb or finger on the side of the blade and then slide it over the edge. Always move perpendicular to the edge. If a burr is present, you will feel a slight catch right at the edge. Remember, the burr forms on the side of the blade opposite to the side that was in contact with the sharpening stone.


Don't Feel Along the Edge

Sliding a thumb or finger along a sharp edge is not safe. In fact, doing so is just asking to get cut, so don't do it!


Feeling for a burr is a reliable method for determining progress and is an important skill in sharpening. It can be done safely if you remember to move across, never along the blade.

Our goal is to help you sharpen safely and effectively. Our specialists are here to help, so let us know if you have any questions.