What's new
What's new

I think I ruined my whetstone


Jan 6, 2016
I don't know where to post this, but this seems like as good a place as any. I have a knife onto which I melted bee's wax in order to prevent it from rusting. Though this worked amazingly well, it also caused me to foul my whetstone with wax when I tried to sharpen it. Any ideas? It was a nice stone, so I don't want to throw it out.

I'm thinking of putting it in boiling water to melt out the wax. Is there any reason this would be a bad idea?

I can’t think how it would hurt it. I’ve also heard about putting paper towel over the stone and using an iron to heat and melt the wax into the towel. There are commercial wax removers but I’ve never used any.
There are also Stones for cheap. Who melts wax on a Stone? Is it some ancient ritual for Stones that you use on special occasions?

Wrap the stone in paper. Put the package in a toaster oven set to 400 F. ( Paper burns at Fahrenheit 451)

Bake until all the stink and smoke stops.

Stones can take a lot of heat.
Put in a metal pan of heavy mineral oil. Heat to 450 F, hold for an hour, allow to cool. Wax will have dissolved into the oil.

This trick also works for getting melted polyethylene off an enameled cast iron cookpot. (Used corn oil for that.)
Naptha is the proper solvent for wax. Naptha and an old tooth brush and the wax will scrub right off. Heating might also work but I'd be concerned about the possibility of cracking the stone. Try the naptha first, it will work.
Just use kerosene or mineral spirits as a lubricant when you sharpen your knife. That will dissolve enough wax at the surface to let the stone cut.
I can't help but notice this is a whetstone not an oilstone, some people suggest using oil/non-soluble solvents, If you do this you won't ever be able to use the stone with water again

Try paper and an iron/heat gun, if that doesn't work - burn the wax off
When the wife comes home and smells the smoke, just tell her that you were burning the oil out of your Harley crankcases before welding them.


Well, someone at my work told me that the best way to de-grease an engine block is in the dishwasher :) so is that better or worse?
I can attest to the fact that a good stone will take a lot of heat. I have a very hard Arkansas stone that has been in the family for 3 generations. It was worn until it was swayback about 1/4" in the middle. I wanted to be able to touch up planer blades but it was just too worn for that. I clamped in in the BP and used an 80 grit cup wheel to flatten it. It was smoking pretty heavily and I was concerned the heat would crack it but it was fine. It's now as good as new.