Concerning using a Victorinox honing steel with a Mac knife
Short answer - Don't use that hone with that knife. You will quickly damage both hone and knife.
Somewhat longer answer. You want the hone to slide over the edge of the knife, and do what a hone should do - use pressure concentrated into an extremely minute area to force that part of the edge of a knife which has been pushed to one side to be pushed upright. What you do NOT want is for the edge of the knife to "grab" into the steel of the hone and start cutting into the hone. That means the hone needs to be made of a steel which is harder than the steel used in the knife.
Here, you have the opposite. Victorinox matches their hones to their knife blade steel - and Victorinox uses "X50CrMoV15" steel (i.e., Krupp 4116 steel), hardened during heat treatment to about 56 hRc. The Victorinox hones are probably heat treated to just a little bit harder than that.
Mac Knives, on the other hand, are hardened to a 58 to 60 hRc. Those two points make a huge difference.
Mac knife + Victorinox hone = damage, big time.
Mac does sell a hone for its knives - it's ceramic, not steel, and is WAAAAY harder than the steel used in Mac knives. Or, you can buy an Idahone ceramic honing rod. I would suggest the 12 inch length Idahone. It's longer than the Mac hone (which is 10-1/2 inches), so it can be used on longer blades than the Mac would be comfortable with, and it's cheaper (at $30, vs $65 for the Mac).
I would just suggest tossing the Victorinox hone away and getting and using an Idahone for all of your knives.
The primary drawback to ceramic hones is that they can and often will, shatter if dropped. But the Idahone comes with a fair sized steel ring at the end of its handle, so it can be safely hung on a hook on the wall out of the way when not in use.
Hope that helps
Edited by Galley Swiller - 3/23/14 at 9:18am