Crank through this year’s gardening by restoring your shears to razor sharpness on the cheap.

GAUGE THE SITUATION

Inspect the blade for the factory edge – the manufacturer’s original cut. Secure the shears in a vise and grab a bastard cut mill file (the coarsest kind). Don gloves and safety goggles.

REVIVE THE EDGE

Repeatedly pull your file along the factory edge, moving in broad strokes away from the handle until you achieve a sharp edge. Move the blade through a piece of printer paper to test sharpness. If it cuts easily, you’re done.

SMOOTH OUT IMPERFECTIONS

Use a honing stone to buff the blade’s inside edges, removing any shards. A stone not only smooth the blade but also prevents it from quickly dulling again. To repel rust, wipe the blade with a little oil.