First, you should closely examine the blade of your axe to know whether it has become dull or not. Make sure you look for dents or chipped areas on the blade which will help you to determine its condition.
If you see that the blade of your axe is completely damaged then sharpening it will not work. You have to replace it because the blade’s edge can no longer work effectively. However, if it has small dents then sharpening it will be beneficial which will remove these dents easily.
Before sharpening the blade, you should remove the rust and dust from it. Usually the mud or dirt damages the blade and you should remove it by using a cloth.
Now you should take water and wet the whetstone thoroughly as this is the most effective method for sharpening the blade quickly.
If you do not find water, then you can use motor oil or any other lubricant on the whetstone. It will also help in sharpening the blade in an effective manner.
Then put the blade of your axe on the whetstone. Make sure you place the grain side of the blade first because this side requires more sharpening.
You should use long strokes against whetstone but make sure the angle of the blade is correct and it moves smoothly. You should complete seven to eight strokes away from the body and then one to the other side to get desired results.
If you see that the whetstone gets dry while sharpening the blade, then put some more water or oil on the surface and keep rubbing the edge of your axe blade.