There are two basics of sword care:
- Removing burrs and nicks from the blade. A burr is a raised piece of metal. A nick is a missing piece of metal. In the good ole days of sharp weapons, a nick would be ground out until it was gone. The reason being the bottom of the nick would be dull and not able to cut. This is not something we need to worry about today with rebated weapons. So really your work is cut in half as you only need to worry about the burrs. This is easily handled by passing a fine 8 inch Nicholson 'Mill Bastard' file along the blade. Remember to not saw back and forth with the file as this will dull it. Only move the file in a forward direction so that the teeth of the file can cut.
- Oiling the blade to prevent rust. Most fine oils will do, but not heavy ones like engine oil. Olive and vegetable oil will eventually go rancid. Mineral oil is good and medieval. A three-in-one oil is fine. Wipe it off before use. Bicycle chain oil is my preference as it has a wax coating that polishes well on armour too. A couple of drops on the blade spread out with a small rag will give a thin coating and that is all you need, even for long term storage.