Using your JonoKnife Bread Knife!

Removing the Bread Saw Guard

All JonoKnife fiddle bow bread saws come with a magnetic blade guard included. For your safety your fiddle bow knife should be stored with the guard attached. Remove the guard by pulling it downwards away from the blade. To re-attach the guard after use; fit it from the side. You should never move your hand towards the blade teeth. The teeth are SHARP! If you own a JonoKnife breadboard then the magnetic guard is not necessary as the knife stores safely attached to the board.

Best Bread knife cutting technique

Use a gentler grip to hold the handle than used for a conventional breadknife. Make sure the handle of your fiddle bow knife is level and not tilting down to the left or right before you cut. Slice with long forward and backward strokes. Apply minimal downward pressure, especially when cutting bread straight from the oven!

Cleaning up the fiddle bow knife

When slicing most breads your JonoKnife should stay clean. Simply tapping the knife against the counter should get most crumbs to fall off. If however you do need to clean or polish the blade please follow the blade specific cleaning instructions in the FAQ below. Regardless of the specific cleaning solution, the hand grip technique remains the same. Use a thick cloth / cleaning pad between your fingers and the blade and only rub the blade with your hand coming from behind the blade – never from the toothed edge.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can this bread knife be used by someone who is left handed?

All JonoKnife sizes and wood choices come in a choice of either right or left handed version. When buying our fiddle bow knife specifically for a left-handed person, make them feel special by getting the knife made just for them!

I am right-handed but my partner is left. Which knife?

For a mixed handed couple, the right-handed knife is most often the best bet. This is because, in general, left handers are more adept at using their wrong hand due to a lifetime of having to fit into a mostly right handed world (bless you left handers!) Many left handers actually  report that they cut bread better using their wrong hand with a JonoKnife than using their left hand with a regular bread knife!

Can a right-handed JonoKnife be converted to a left one and vice-versa?

 No. The handle of our fiddle bow knife is made to be either right or left handed in the workshop. As the blade height is thinner than the handle is thick, the blade is screwed on to the handle in an offset position. If the blade were flipped the teeth would not reach the bottom of the handle on the reverse side.

How do I clean my JonoKnife handle?

Slicing most kinds of bread does not really dirty a bread knife so cleaning is often not necessary. If necessary though, a simple wipe down with a damp or wet rag can be done. Never submerge the knife in water. The regular use of water or soap and water will cause the wood finish to dull over time.

What if the wood finish dulls over time?

This should not happen if the knife handle is not wet washed or wiped frequently. However, if the wood does dull over time then just apply a coat of food-safe wood oil.

Can I put my JonoKnife in the dishwasher?

No. This will lead to the wood weathering very badly and to reduced blade tension.

How do I clean the blade?

When cutting dry bread, the blade seldom gets dirty. If you do need to clean the blade though then remember, safety first! Only clean / dry / polish the blade from behind and always have a thick cloth or cleaning pad between your fingers and the blade. Your hand / fingers should never face the teeth. As the XL and the Original knife use a carbon steel and  stainless steel blade respectively, they have different cleaning considerations. See points below for cleaning either blade.

How do I clean the Original knife’s stainless steel blade?

You can use a wet cloth or cleaning pad with soap on the stainless steel blade. The blade should be dried afterwards but will not rust if it is left to drip dry.

How do I clean the XL knife’s carbon steel blade?

Avoid wet-wiping the XL’s carbon steel blade as much as possible. If you have to wet wipe it be sure to dry it off afterwards. It is better to wipe the carbon steel blade clean with vinegar rather than water as vinegar will not cause rust to develop. In fact, vinegar actually removes rust whilst also cleaning the metal.

What if tarnish or rust develops on my XL blade?

Regardless of cleaning technique and frequency some tarnishing / rust spots may appear over time due to moisture in the air. This is the unfortunate downside of carbon steel blades. The upside is that carbon steel can tackle much tougher crusts and stay sharp a lot longer than stainless steel. Cleaning the blade with vinegar instead of water is a great way of avoiding rust and can even remove rust. You could also initially clean the blade with soap and water and then wipe it down with vinegar afterwards. If a blade does rust or tarnish over time for whatever reason and vinegar can not remove the build up, a metal polish like Brasso or Silvo on a thick cleaning pad can be used.

How long will my JonoKnife stay sharp?

Depending on which JonoKnife you own (Standard Size or XL) the blade should stay sharp for anything from two years to a lifetime. Your blade’s lifetime depends entirely on its frequency of use and what foods you cut with it. The bread most likely to reduce blade life is sourdough or some other really hard crusted bread. If you cut a lot of this kind of bread it’s best to use the XL knife which comes with a carbon steel blade.

Can I sharpen my JonoKnife?

JonoKnife blades can not be sharpened. However, a blade that has had many years of use should still cut bread better than a regular bread knife owing to the design of the thin, tensioned blade. If after a number of years you wish to restore the blade sharpness to brand new condition, we offer a blade replacement service. Please get in touch for further details.

Can I replace the blade at home?

Theoretically yes. Very few people have the equipment required to fit a new blade at home though. When replacing the blade, the wooden handle has to be compressed from end to end to take the tension off the blade. It takes about 150 – 200kg of force to achieve this compression; one would need a long sash clamp. This is a tool that most people do not have. For this reason we offer a blade replacement service.