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ramenlegend
07-25-2013, 10:10 AM
I'm looking to try out a natural stone. Any recommendations on a somewhat inexpensive stone for a "natural" noobie? also, do you need multiple natural stones? for example, would it be ridiculous to start on a synthetic and finish on a natural? i'll throw out a price point of under $150, but I'm flexible.

Dusty
07-25-2013, 10:43 AM
It is quite common to start on synthetics and then finish on a natural stone, in fact this is my most common sharpening regime depending on the knife.

For knives, and also for beginners, look for natural stones that are softer, and create more slurry.

A Takashima Awasedo from Japanese Knife Imports is a great starting point. The medium sized one is $150 but if you can spring an extra $50 for the large, this is a stone of such quality that you won't 'need' to upgrade unless you really get bitten by the bug.

vinster
07-25-2013, 11:30 AM
I've tried a handful of natural stones in the lower grit ranges, but found the ones I tried to be slower than synthetics. I've heard from a number of folks that it's pretty common to start on synthetics and progress to naturals. I usually start with synthetics up to 1200 or 2000 grit, then jump to naturals for finishing and/or polishing. I happen to have multiple natural stones, but I think a single good muddy finishing stone would suffice for most folks.

What synthetic stones do you have now that plan on starting with?

ramenlegend
07-25-2013, 11:38 AM
I've tried a handful of natural stones in the lower grit ranges, but found the ones I tried to be slower than synthetics. I've heard from a number of folks that it's pretty common to start on synthetics and progress to naturals. I usually start with synthetics up to 1200 or 2000 grit, then jump to naturals for finishing and/or polishing. I happen to have multiple natural stones, but I think a single good muddy finishing stone would suffice for most folks.

What synthetic stones do you have now that plan on starting with?
well, I'm currently using a shun 1000/6000 but I'm planning on picking up a beston 500 to try out.

Ruso
07-25-2013, 12:00 PM
Might be slight offtopic, but why would one prefer Jnat over nice synthetic with high grit?

mainaman
07-25-2013, 12:46 PM
Might be slight offtopic, but why would one prefer Jnat over nice synthetic with high grit?
How high of a grit?
High synthetic grit does not necessarily equal a good edge.
Naturals give nice versatility, and also are best for produce kasumi finish on traditional blades.
It is a matter of preference, I guess, what you like.

Dave Martell
07-25-2013, 08:16 PM
Might be slight offtopic, but why would one prefer Jnat over nice synthetic with high grit?


How high of a grit?
High synthetic grit does not necessarily equal a good edge.
Naturals give nice versatility, and also are best for produce kasumi finish on traditional blades.
It is a matter of preference, I guess, what you like.


Plus, fine naturals can (although not always) significantly reduce a burr/wire edge which I've come to appreciate on single beveled knives.

mainaman
07-25-2013, 09:11 PM
Plus, fine naturals can (although not always) significantly reduce a burr/wire edge which I've come to appreciate on single beveled knives.
Agree, I look at my edges ona very regular basis under magnification and very rarely see burs, at least the steels I work with.

cheezit
07-25-2013, 09:23 PM
"It's the Indian, not the arrow."

Your stone isn't 'significantly reducing a burr/wire edge', the techniques and motions you're replicating are actively reducing the burr.

labor of love
07-25-2013, 09:25 PM
cheezit, you have an awesome screen name. But i think Dave knows what hes talking about when it comes to sharpening, its his business. literally.

mainaman
07-25-2013, 09:57 PM
"It's the Indian, not the arrow."

Your stone isn't 'significantly reducing a burr/wire edge', the techniques and motions you're replicating are actively reducing the burr.
so you have tried enough naturals and enough synthetics on enough variety of steels to be able to draw that conclusion?
Not saying that there are magical stones that do the work for you, but the Jnats tend to have that effect on the burr because of the nature of how they operate.

cheezit
07-25-2013, 10:20 PM
cheezit, you have an awesome screen name. But i think Dave knows what hes talking about when it comes to sharpening, its his business. literally.

So you're saying that if I had the 'exact' same stone as Dave I would be able to achieve similar edges? No...

Like you said, it is literally Dave's business to know sharpening - years of experience (read: skill) - and while natural stones do have unique properties, wouldn't how you're applying the steel to the stone have more effect on the edge than simply the mineral composition of the stone?

mainaman
07-25-2013, 10:45 PM
So you're saying that if I had the 'exact' same stone as Dave I would be able to achieve similar edges? No...

Like you said, it is literally Dave's business to know sharpening - years of experience (read: skill) - and while natural stones do have unique properties, wouldn't how you're applying the steel to the stone have more effect on the edge than simply the mineral composition of the stone?
The way the slurry of a natural works is different to the way synthetic slurry works.

Dave Martell
07-25-2013, 10:52 PM
"It's the Indian, not the arrow."

Your stone isn't 'significantly reducing a burr/wire edge', the techniques and motions you're replicating are actively reducing the burr.


I'd agree with you if I could replicate the same with synthetics. With those I can make the wire edge smaller and smaller but never really remove it. With naturals I grind the wire down pretty quickly and to the point that I can't make it reappear even with my tests I do. I can't explain why though, I've only got theories on that.

cheezit
07-25-2013, 10:59 PM
The way the slurry of a natural works is different to the way synthetic slurry works.

I think you missed my point. But if I understand you correctly, you're trying to make the point that, all things being equal, the relative attributes of a natural waterstone lend it to 'deburr' in a more efficient way than a synthetic stone.

Maybe what I'm trying to say is that I feel the most important aspect of sharpening isn't the tool you're using, but simply how you're using it. Furthermore, just based on my experience, friends and those I talk to who purchase stones under the impression that the stone contains a special attribute, a characteristic that will somehow imbue their knives' with superior edges, usually end up disappointed by the end results.

Anyway, I think we should agree to disagree. I don't want to drag this off-topic. (unless the discussion is fine the direction it's going :) )

mkriggen
07-25-2013, 11:47 PM
I think you missed my point. But if I understand you correctly, you're trying to make the point that, all things being equal, the relative attributes of a natural waterstone lend it to 'deburr' in a more efficient way than a synthetic stone.

Maybe what I'm trying to say is that I feel the most important aspect of sharpening isn't the tool you're using, but simply how you're using it. Furthermore, just based on my experience, friends and those I talk to who purchase stones under the impression that the stone contains a special attribute, a characteristic that will somehow imbue their knives' with superior edges, usually end up disappointed by the end results.

Anyway, I think we should agree to disagree. I don't want to drag this off-topic. (unless the discussion is fine the direction it's going :) )

OK, THIS IS GETTING REAL FRICKING OLD! Why is it that over the last month or so every f***ing thread keeps turning into a stupid f***ing argument? (and I do mean stupid in the literal sense, as in dumb, ignorant, asinine...) I'm getting real tired of it and I imagine I'm not alone. :punish:

cheezit
07-25-2013, 11:52 PM
Cool the jets there, turbo.


Anyway, I think we should agree to disagree. I don't want to drag this off-topic. (unless the discussion is fine the direction it's going :) )

Remember, don't sweat the small stuff.

mkriggen
07-25-2013, 11:57 PM
Cool the jets there, turbo.



Remember, don't sweat the small stuff.

:censored:Ok, guess I asked for that:peace:

Be well,
Mikey

jgraeff
07-26-2013, 12:05 AM
He has a point, the guys your asking have years of experience/ knowledge and skill.

Not that they are perfect but it shouldn't have to be a scientific reason, it just works.

Also in my opinion the tool does make work harder or easier, you can always improve skills but if you have a more efficient tool you can work faster/ better.

The reason I use gesshin stones, because they cut faster, and leave good edges. Not because my old stones weren't good or didn't produce good results but time is money and time is love ( rather spend time with family then spend all day sharpening my kit)

maxim
07-26-2013, 08:27 AM
Jnats make burr/wire edge smaller :D Period !
It is not for fun almost all Razor and high end tool users in Japan use Jnats to Finishing they tools

There is also many downsides to Jnats over synthetics but its another story

As for recommendation Good soft Jnat without inclusion is always best to begin with :)

Asteger
07-26-2013, 08:37 AM
Upsides: Jnats are far more interesting, will last much longer (possibly longer than the owner), often will probably gain in value, and you won't need to soak any of them for more than a little bit

Downsides: it's hard to be sure what you're getting unless you know what you're doing and can test them before, they're more expensive, they're harder to get, there are less and less of them around, many mines are closed, sometimes they're more fragile, they have more 'personality' and they will often take more experience to use

Not sure if anyone can add to the list?

Mrmnms
07-26-2013, 09:05 AM
Soooo, in the spirit of this thread, we have a Takashima Awasedo as a recommendation . I have a Yaginoshima I use as a finishing stone at times. Any other suggestions for Nats unde $150?

jgraeff
07-26-2013, 01:20 PM
Ya the takashima from Jon is a great stone!