carbon steel stain - newbie crisis

Sep 10, 1999
I've only been collecting (accumulating) for 6 months or so. I recently came home to find that spouse had snagged the only unboxed knife in the pile to skin a chicken.

This was my only Randall - a model 14 in carbon steel - now showing an interesting patina. I hit it (the knife, not the spouse) with vinegar, non-abrasive metal cleaner and a tuf-cloth. It's still showing some discoloration and a few "pinhead" stains. I didn't want to do anything more b4 checking with the forum.

Is there anything I can use that will restore the 14 to mint? If so, how would one honestly list for sale a Randall that's only done one chicken?

Or should I just remember that Randall's are supposed to be "users" and get over it?

TIA for any advice. FWIW, spouse reports Randall worked like a champ on the chicken.
The most beautiful Randall I've ever seen (it was not mine) was carrying the patina of many many years of use, and its beauty was just that it looked like a real "user"-making its owner proud of a very good real-life tool.

I suggest that you cut some tomatoes, lemons and possibly chicken again, and then wipe it down with vegetable oil to leave it with a light patina that will be more or less stable from then on.
Just remember to wipe it down with oil occasionally, vegetable oil if you use the knife for food preparation or mineral oil with rust-resistant additives if not, and just enjoy it like that.
Common recommendations are to use Flit polish. If things get bad try crocus cloth or paper which has ferric oxide abrasive (jeweler's rouge).

You are a good husband not to hit the roof over this issue, but you need to get your wife some more kitchen knives. Forschner makes some very practical knives with rosewood handles that my wife likes. The following link has a nice variety (not necessarily best prices):
I agree with Costas!! My Randall #1 has been my camp knife for years. I know its not a camp knife, but when I bought it, I didn't know the differece!!! It's been on at least 100 camping trips, deer scouting missions and has been coast to coast by motorcyle!!
It has even been used to salvage racks from two road killed deer! (yes I properly dispossed of the carcasses)
I can tell you how every stain, scratch and ding happened and where!!!! It's kept "scary sharp" and that's all that matters!!!
Let your carbon steel Randall develope its own "personality"!!!!