Diamond sharpening stones, also known as diamond plates, diamond stones, or diamond files, have been used for centuries to sharpen and hone the edges of a variety of objects. The exact origin of using diamond to sharpen and hone is unknown, though the practice likely arose in ancient civilizations such as China, India, Persia and Egypt. In the days before modern technology, diamond was one of the few natural materials that could be used to harder and more durable materials than itself – hence its popularity as a tool for sharpening other metals like steel.

By the middle ages abrasive treatments had become standard for tools and blades in most cultures. Natural diamonds were still too rare so early efforts included grinding down quartz crystals and corundum coarse stones. Diamonds are an especially hard material which was not readily accessible until later during the industrial revolution when new processes made them available at reasonable prices.

Until recently most shops used oil-impregnated diamond plates that are still widely used today. As with all stone sharpening methods you’ll need to properly prep your stones before each use by cleaning them with warm water mixed with soap and a soft brush. Today’s advancements in manufacturing allow for finer grits and denser stones which make it possible to sharpen nearly any material with ease. They are now available in a variety of shapes and sizes ranging from pocket-sized models up to large format slabs making them an essential addition to any tool box or work shop.

Materials Needed to Clean a Diamond Sharpening Stone

Materials Needed to Clean a Diamond Sharpening Stone

1. Cloth rag or old towels – Make sure they are clean and lint-free to prevent any unwanted debris in the sharpening stone that can dull it over time.

2. Isopropyl Alcohol – On cloth rag or towel, drench the cloth in just enough isopropyl alcohol to slightly dampen the surface. Do not use water as this will reduce the efficacy of the diamond particles used on these stones due to moisture damage.

3. Natural Soft Brush – A very soft brush (like a toothbrush) is necessary when cleaning your diamond sharpening stone so you don’t inadvertently scratch its surface from hardened residues of metal shavings, oil and other debris on the stone’s surface which could damage it if left for too long.

4 Rubber Gloves – It’s important to wear rubber gloves when cleaning a diamond sharpening stone as any oils from your hands can contaminate and break down the sharpness of the diamond crystals over time.

5 . Paper Towel– Once all particles have been removed, use a paper towel to wipe away any remaining residue on the sharpening stone’s surface before it hardens again and compromises its performance. Use paper towels instead of rags because rags can leave fibres behind which may also interfere with performance over time.

Steps to Clean a Diamond Sharpening Stone

I. Preparation:
1. Safety gear: It is important to use protective gear when cleaning a diamond sharpening stone. Wear gloves, safety glasses, and a dust mask to keep yourself safe from potential cuts and airborne particles.
2. Choose an appropriate surface: Cleaning a diamond sharpening stone can create debris and dust, so it is important to choose a surface that can be easily cleaned afterwards such as outside on your patio or driveway, or in your garage with a drop cloth covering the floor.

II. Cleaning the Stone:
1. Create a damp paste: Begin by mixing water with mild dish soap to create a damp paste that can be applied directly to the stone’s surface.
2. Using a soft scrub brush: Gently work the diluted soap into any crevices of the stone with in small circular motions while avoiding any abrasive solutions or brushes, as they will damage the surface of the diamond stone.
3. Rinse off: Rinse off all of the soap and scrubbed away dirt with hot water until all residue has been washed away from the diamond sharpening stone’s surface.
4. Dry completely: Wipe off any excess moisture using microfiber cloths and make sure to dry completely before using again for sharpening tools or knives for best results.

Cleaning Mistakes to Avoid

Cleaning diamond sharpening stones requires special care and attention. To clean diamond sharpening stones properly, follow these tips:

• Use a soft bristle brush or cloth to gently remove dirt from the stone.
• Avoid scrubbing with abrasive compounds or hard brushes, as these can damage the stone.
• Be sure to rinse the entire stone thoroughly after cleaning to remove dirt and debris.
• Wipe the stone dry with a clean cloth before using it again.
• Avoid using excessive pressure when cleaning the stone, as this can cause it to scratch easily.
• Do not use any chemical cleaners on the stone, as they may discolor or corrode it.
• Ensure that you allow enough time for the stone to dry completely before continuing use.
• Inspect your diamond sharpening stones periodically for signs of wear or damage that could affect their performance.

Maintaining a Diamond Sharpening Stone


Diamond sharpening stones should be stored in a cool, dry place. If the stone is stored in a humid environment, it may cause rust spots on the stone surface and diminish its ability to sharpen. For additional protection, cover your diamond sharpening stone with mineral oil when not in use. This will also help keep residual particles from accumulating on the surface of the stone.

Cleaning / Replacing:
Eventually, all diamond stones will need to be cleaned or replaced after many hours of use. Proper cleaning means using a Scotch-Brite pad and light solvents such as mineral spirits or paint thinner. More aggressive solvents like acetone can strip away some of the bond that holds diamond particles to the stone plate and should only be used if absolutely necessary. An old toothbrush can be used to reach fine crevices where debris accumulates and hot water can also help dislodge debris from within pores in the stone’s surface. If you see visible wearing of the diamond surface, it may indicate it’s time for a new diamond sharpening stone – ask your local hardware supplier if they supply them!


In conclusion, it is essential to properly maintain and care for diamond sharpening stones in order to ensure that they remain in good condition. This includes regularly cleaning the stones with a damp cloth or brush and avoiding acidic cleaners. Furthermore, if a stone has any rough spots or excessive buildup, it should be resurfaced before use by soaking the stone in mineral oil and using extra-fine abrasives cloths. Keeping these tips in mind will help diamond sharpening stones to stay sharp and perform well over many years of usage. As Benjamin Franklin once said, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” Taking proper care of diamond sharpening stones now will save plenty of time and effort later on.