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Marko Tsourkan
10-21-2011, 08:50 AM
Just to give you heads up.

Stu from Tools from Japan has agreed to provide 4 Sigma Select II stones for a pass-around.

These are Sigma Select II #1000, 3000, 6000 and 10000 stones.

They will be available in 3-4 weeks.

I am new to organizing a pass-around, so I will have read up on it and talk to people who have done it to figure out how to manage it best. There will be some conditions, so please stay tuned.

Marko

EdipisReks
10-21-2011, 09:49 AM
i've been really curious about sigma stones,. this'll be really cool!

tk59
10-21-2011, 10:46 AM
I'm interested, Marko. :)

Marko Tsourkan
10-21-2011, 11:16 AM
Yes it is very cool and I hope we do more of pass-arounds like these, where buyer has an opportunity to try a product before buying it.

I want to thank Stu and Tools from Japan (KKF member schtoo) for making this possible.

Marko

Rottman
10-21-2011, 11:18 AM
I'm interested, Marko. :)
Somehow I was expecting this post.....

Chef Niloc
10-21-2011, 11:22 AM
Add me on please, I was looking at them the other day and almost pulled the trigger, be nice to test them out 1st
Thanks
Colin

tk59
10-21-2011, 11:26 AM
Somehow I was expecting this post.....Am I really that predictable?

obtuse
10-21-2011, 01:35 PM
Sweet! Looking forward to it.

SpikeC
10-21-2011, 01:39 PM
How many participants are going to be allowed into this? I would like to get in if possible.

Marko Tsourkan
10-21-2011, 02:05 PM
How many participants are going to be allowed into this? I would like to get in if possible.

There will be no limits on a number of participants, but the order in which people get on the list would be determined (at least in part) by participant's level of contribution to the forum.
I think it is fair.

I will talk to a few people over the weekend and try to hammer out terms and conditions.

It might take a bit back-and-forth to work this out, but hopefully we will set up a framework that is efficient and safe.

The only cost to participants will be to ship the set unto the next person. Tools from Japan provided stones free of charge.

M

PS: Spike, you certainly made the cut in the first wave of testers, as far as I am concerned.

sachem allison
10-21-2011, 05:45 PM
i would love to get in on this if possible. I don't know how much I contribute though.:tooth:

Eamon Burke
10-21-2011, 08:25 PM
Oooooo this is cool! I would love to check them out as well, though I dont need another lesson in new must-haves!

JohnnyChance
10-21-2011, 10:00 PM
I would be interested in checking them out, but I can just visit you Marko when you have em so you can save a spot for someone else.

Marko Tsourkan
10-21-2011, 10:05 PM
I would be interested in checking them out, but I can just visit you Marko when you have em so you can save a spot for someone else.

Sure thing.

M

tk59
10-29-2011, 07:30 PM
Has it been 3-4 weeks yet?

JohnnyChance
10-31-2011, 12:41 AM
Has it been 3-4 weeks yet?

No.

Marko Tsourkan
10-31-2011, 06:10 AM
No.

The good news, stones are on the way.

M

shankster
10-31-2011, 08:00 AM
Excellent! Looking forward to the reviews....

Eamon Burke
10-31-2011, 11:31 PM
Woohoooo

tk59
11-01-2011, 11:20 AM
Sweet.

Marko Tsourkan
11-05-2011, 07:48 PM
Received 10K stone today. Assume the other stones will arrive within days (possibly on Monday). It looks like they might have been all shipped separately. Will give it a try tomorrow. :)

M

tk59
11-05-2011, 11:14 PM
Alright! I'm excited the ball is rolling.

Marko Tsourkan
11-07-2011, 07:31 PM
All Sigma II stones (1K, 3K, 6K, 10K) are here.

Thanks Stu -

tk59
11-07-2011, 07:41 PM
Great! I'll be expecting them all Wednesday. :D

Eamon Burke
11-07-2011, 07:46 PM
sweet

Marko Tsourkan
11-07-2011, 07:51 PM
Great! I'll be expecting them all Wednesday. :D

Sure, but if you ask people waiting for custom work, Wednesday is likely to be some Wednesday in 2013. :)

Jokes aside, I will put together a list and pass-around schedule and post in the thread.

M

Marko Tsourkan
11-14-2011, 08:57 AM
I have tried the stones and will be ready to pass them onto the next person as soon as I get some packing foam and work out a packing solution that would make them damage-proof. I will order foam today and should have it by Thursday.

M

shankster
11-14-2011, 09:44 AM
"I have tried the stones and will be ready to pass them onto the next person"

And??? What do you think?

tk59
11-14-2011, 10:35 AM
Yeah. Are you gonna buy a set? :)

Marko Tsourkan
11-14-2011, 10:37 AM
"I have tried the stones and will be ready to pass them onto the next person"

And??? What do you think?

I like some better than others (mostly higher grits), but I need to compare impressions with folks who have more experience using synthetic stones than I. Also, I only sharpened one steel - 52100. These are fast cutting stones and work well on 52100.

In any event, I think I would leave writing a review to folks like tk59, PensacolaTiger, JohnyChance and the like. These guys have more experience sharpening, more knives in different steels, and more stones on hand to compare to.

BTW, anybody who might be interested in trying these, is welcome to get in the line. If you guys in Canada don't mind waiting a bit, we can send stones your way eventually.

@tk59 I will probably buy at least one from the four I tried.

M

shankster
11-14-2011, 02:12 PM
"In any event, I think I would leave writing a review to folks like tk59, PensacolaTiger, JohnyChance and the like. These guys have more experience sharpening, more knives in different steels, and more stones on hand to compare to."

fair enough..I'm looking for a new 1k and eventually a 6k and these stones are available locally and the price seems fair so I shall await for the reviews with baited breath.. :D




"If you guys in Canada don't mind waiting a bit, we can send stones your way eventually."
Thanks for the very generous offer,but I don't have much faith in Canada Post or Canada Customs.I wouldn't want to disrupt the flow of the pass around

rulesnut
11-14-2011, 11:20 PM
"If you guys in Canada don't mind waiting a bit, we can send stones your way eventually."
Thanks for the very generous offer,but I don't have much faith in Canada Post or Canada Customs.I wouldn't want to disrupt the flow of the pass around:plus1:

shankster
12-19-2011, 10:47 AM
Any updates/reviews? I just notices that the original post has been locked.

JohnnyChance
12-19-2011, 01:05 PM
I have them currently and am about to hand them off to someone else. I noticed the original thread was locked as well, not sure why. I am not a stone guru, I have a very meager stone collection, but I have enjoyed most of the Sigma II's a lot during my time with them. I will be posting a more thorough review and some pictures shortly.

shankster
12-19-2011, 02:44 PM
Thanks JC.Looking forward to the reviews as I'm in the market for a new 1k stone.

Cheers

Dave Martell
12-26-2011, 11:46 PM
None of us mods know why this thread was closed sooooooo.....it's re-opened. :)

Marko Tsourkan
12-27-2011, 01:26 AM
Oh, I didn't even noticed it. :)

Chef Niloc
12-27-2011, 04:53 AM
Do we have a list going for this? I don't see it posted?

Marko Tsourkan
12-27-2011, 11:57 AM
I am trying to sort this out, Collin. I will have a list up in a day or two.

M

Pabloz
12-27-2011, 01:12 PM
Marko,
Please include me also.

THANKS,
PZ

Marko Tsourkan
12-28-2011, 02:36 AM
The stones at the moment are with Matt (mattrud).

M

mattrud
12-28-2011, 03:02 AM
John dropped them off to me yesterday. I am going to play around with them Thursday then they can go wherever I am told to send them.

DeepCSweede
12-29-2011, 08:44 PM
Any comments regarding these stones would be helpful. I was toying with the idea of ordering some of these based on a recommendation of a buddy of mine that does a lot of tool sharpening. Just wondering how well these work especially with 52100.

Marko Tsourkan
12-29-2011, 08:52 PM
My impressions were very positive for 3K, 6K and particularly 10K. 1K was a decent stone, but I had an issue with the sound while flattening and sharpening. To me it was like nails on a chalkboard :( , so I didn't give it much attention.

3, 6, and 10K worked all well on 52100. Good feel, very little dishing.

I am down for 10K from Tools From Japan (company that provided stones for pass-around http://www.toolsfromjapan.com/store/), contemplating getting 6k as well.

Hope this helps. I believe JohnnyChance is writing a more detailed review. I only tried stones on 52100.

Marko

Marko Tsourkan
12-29-2011, 09:12 PM
This is a little bit overdue, sorry folks.

I think to simplify logistics, it would make sense to group people by region. The stones are currently with a forum member in NYC.

There were a few people interested in reviews, but I hope I didn't miss anybody who wanted to partake in a pass-around. Please post in this thread and I will add you to the list.

First Region
Marko
JohnnyChance
MattRud (NYC) - has them currently
SachemAllison (NYC) - next
Nilloc (NY, Long Island)

Second Region
tk59 (SoCal)
Johndoughy (TX)
PabloZ (NM)
SpikeC (OR)



Thanks,
Marko

PS: I have you as interested in reviews, but please correct me if you want to get on a pass-around.

Edipisreks
Obtuse
Shankster

mattrud
12-29-2011, 09:22 PM
Stones are soaking right now.....

Marko Tsourkan
12-29-2011, 09:24 PM
Fantastic. I am writing to Sachem Allison to let him know to contact you and to arrange a pickup once you are done testing - take your time.

I don't think they need to be soaked for long - up to 30 min or so on the higher grits.

M

shankster
12-29-2011, 10:00 PM
Even though I just bought a Chosera 1k today,I'm still interested in the reviews..

Cheers
Peter

Eamon Burke
12-29-2011, 11:08 PM
East coast, west coast...and me and Paul. 2 loners in the Old West! :gunner:

Pabloz
12-30-2011, 12:00 AM
East coast, west coast...and me and Paul. 2 loners in the Old West! :gunner:

Yup..and you're Deep In The Heart Of Texas....wishing I was home again.

Marko Tsourkan
12-30-2011, 12:06 AM
Well it looks like Sachem Allison will be passing on his turn, so the stones will go to Collin (Nilloc) and then head Southwest.

Collin, can you please make arrangements with Matt about pickup/shipment of the stones?

Updated List:

First Region
Marko
JohnnyChance
SachemAllison - forgo the pass-around this time
MattRud (NYC) - has them currently
Nilloc (NY, Long Island) - next

Second Region
tk59 (SoCal)
Johndoughy (TX)
PabloZ (NM)
SpikeC (OR)



Thanks,
Marko

DeepCSweede
12-30-2011, 06:33 PM
Thanks for the update Marko
I am seriously considering the set but was thinking of replacing the sigma 1k with a Chosera 1k. Thoughts anyone?

Marko Tsourkan
12-30-2011, 06:50 PM
Chosera or JNS 1K would be a good replacement. I think JNS 1K will feel very similar to Sigma II 3, 6, 10K - solid feedback and very and almost no dishing. That is what I was going to get to replace my Bester 1200.

M

Schtoo
12-31-2011, 03:16 AM
I wouldn't replace my Chosera 1K with a Select II 1K. Completely different animals and not properly comparable.

Sigma Power have several different stones in the 1K range, and of all of them, the Select II (being talked about here) is the last one I'd compare against the Chosera. Not fair to the Select II for feeling or user friendliness, not fair to the Chosera for outright speed.


Just to be clear, there are two VERY distinctly different Sigma Power stone lines, the Select II and the ceramic. They have virtually nothing in common except the name on them. The stones being tried out in this thread are the Select II, and they're specifically intended for very tough steels like HSS, all Stainless and Power metal. They also work quickly on less tough steels, but dish faster too because that's how they work.

I hope that clears things up, because I wouldn't want anyone to think these are the only stones Sigma Power put their name on, nor are they be-all and end-all from Sigma Power.

(Oh, the Select II line now has 10 stones in it...)

Stu.

JohnnyChance
12-31-2011, 04:04 AM
I wouldn't replace my Chosera 1K with a Select II 1K. Completely different animals and not properly comparable.

Sigma Power have several different stones in the 1K range, and of all of them, the Select II (being talked about here) is the last one I'd compare against the Chosera. Not fair to the Select II for feeling or user friendliness, not fair to the Chosera for outright speed.

Yeah, that is how I felt about the 1k Select II. I haven't use a lot of stones, but it felt much more coarse than my Bester 1200. Closer to my Chosera 400 actually. The sound and feeling Marko mentioned while flattening I did notice at first, but it seemed to bother me more when someone else was flattening the stone. When I was doing it, it didn't bother me at all (just like nails on a chalkboard, the one doing the scratching isn't as affected as much). It was fast however. I prefer the Bester and if I need something faster I would prefer to have a 400-600 stone anyway and could use that. But if you just wanted say a 2 stone setup I think this would be a good option as it is fast at the edges are still pretty nice.



(Oh, the Select II line now has 10 stones in it...)

240, 1k, 3k, 6k, 10k and what are the other five?

Marko Tsourkan
12-31-2011, 11:29 AM
Just to clarify things, I think my next stone purchase will be JNS 1K, Sigma II 6K, and Sigma II 10K (Tools from Japan). Sigma II 6K and 10K dish very little, I barely noticed any dishing, to be honest, have very good feel to them and I like how they worked on 52100. Sigma II 3K was also very good, but I found it not necessary if you plan to follow with 6K. If you plan to stop at 3K, it might be a good stone to have as well.

JohnyChance sharpened other steels so he can chime on it.

M

Dave Martell
12-31-2011, 11:37 AM
Stu,
What coarse grit options does Sigma offer? I'm always looking for coarse fast cutters that don't dish easily - not always an easy find.

Rottman
12-31-2011, 11:45 AM
Dave, there's a 120 grit black stone from Sigma that dishes very very little. It's also available in oversize 205x75x50mm. I think KCMA reviewed it on FF a while back. Flattening it with the enclosed loose SiC 36 grit on a glass plate is a sound devised in hell....

Dave Martell
12-31-2011, 11:50 AM
Dave, there's a 120 grit black stone from Sigma that dishes very very little. It's also available in oversize 205x75x50mm. I think KCMA reviewed it on FF a while back. Flattening it with the enclosed loose SiC 36 grit on a glass plate is a sound devised in hell....


Oh yeah I remember him reviewing that, thanks.

maxim
12-31-2011, 11:54 AM
I have sigma II 1 k honestly i dont like it at all, so i andet to give it out to one of my studens at work :(
Sound is like Marko describe very annoying and very slow too.

Marko Tsourkan
12-31-2011, 12:10 PM
I didn't get to the 'slow' part - flattening and very little time on the stone (Sigma II 1K) ended it for me. I can barely tolerate sound my Bester 500 makes when flattening it, but until I find a better substitute for it, I am stuck with it. I am too interested in a new coarser stone.

M

Schtoo
12-31-2011, 12:12 PM
Dave, there's a 120 grit black stone from Sigma that dishes very very little. It's also available in oversize 205x75x50mm. I think KCMA reviewed it on FF a while back. Flattening it with the enclosed loose SiC 36 grit on a glass plate is a sound devised in hell....

Oh I like that description! I'm going to use that in the care and feeding video this stone needs.

Anyway yeah, there's the #120. An absolute monster of a thing, and a bit of a problem child as well. Folks who know stones get along with it well. New folks, not so much. The Select II #240 isn't bad, but it does dish. I want that stone with a stronger binder, but won't get it because...

There is the Sigma #400. I'll make this real simple for you. Cuts like a GS #500, stays flat like a King #300, will not clog (unless you push it waaay too far) and it's splash and go and engineered to be like that. You will probably want this one, so where do I need to send it? Should probably have thrown it in with this pass-around, but I only had a prototype then, no production stones.

The Sigma 3F Carbon #700 is also not bad. It does dish a little, but it's not uncontrollable and will cut through anything you got. Name your steel, it'll chew it up real nice. Needs a little mud before it really starts working hard, then tends to cut without dishing uncontrollably.

And that's about it. There's also a #600 they have, if you have a spare couple of Franklins. I'm going to see if they'll slip me one gratis for testing and yes, I do like my chances on that one. :)

Johnny, the full line up is;

240, 400, 1000, 1200, 3000, 6000, 10000, 13000, 1000/6000 and 1200/13000.

The 400, 1200 and 13000 are not sintered SiC.

The 400 is white alundum, but something different from normal. Not a pretty stone, but the description of what it's like is above. Hooks into hard HSS as well as an Atoma #400.

The 1200 is one I've only seen in pictures. Still waiting on that one. Apparently it creates 'ink' and they're playing with a new form of alundum. Sounds promising, and if it's dish resistant, should be an animal.

The 13000 is the same as it always was, with a new purple label.

Sigma call these stones "Select II" in order to maintain a brand name in the international market that's already got a foothold. I stupidly said "ok" to sticking the new label on the 13000, and hey presto, it pops up a month later in Germany. Oh well.

The combo stones are new, but nothing different.

And that's it.

Now I've been going at it for 16 hours straight here, only stopping to say "happy new year" so I think I'll hit the hay.

Happy new year all, goodnight!

Stu.

Schtoo
12-31-2011, 12:19 PM
I have sigma II 1 k honestly i dont like it at all, so i andet to give it out to one of my studens at work :(
Sound is like Marko describe very annoying and very slow too.

I don't know that it's 'slow' as much as it's 'stupid'.

In my own testing, it's the fastest #1000 stone on the planet. Nothing else comes close, but the sound and dishing is the same regardless of the steel on it.

20 strokes on CPM 10V @ HRC 64 or 20 strokes on damascus backed white steel, same amount of dishing.

But you also need to put in the first 10 strokes to get the thing to start working too. Before that, it's pretty lifeless. Once it gets a little mud up, then it starts working and working very hard.

Even so, it's not a favourite of mine but some folks love the thing. If there was a little binder in it, I think it'd be a much nicer, better stone for the 'normal' steels, but it would give up some of the speed it has on the really tough stuff.

I'm not even going to ask you to give it a second chance. I know that when I get a stone that's just 'blech' then it's really difficult to come to terms with it, even if it should be good.

Stu.

Marko Tsourkan
12-31-2011, 12:20 PM
Stu, how does 400 sound while flattening compared to 1K?

M

Rottman
12-31-2011, 12:27 PM
I chamfered the edges of the #120 with a 60 grit lapping stone I had around, it's pretty obvious who won:
http://i893.photobucket.com/albums/ac136/Rottman666/forums/DSC00065.jpg

maxim
12-31-2011, 12:43 PM
I had it for 4 month in pro kitchen so i gave it enough time. :)


I don't know that it's 'slow' as much as it's 'stupid'.

In my own testing, it's the fastest #1000 stone on the planet. Nothing else comes close, but the sound and dishing is the same regardless of the steel on it.

20 strokes on CPM 10V @ HRC 64 or 20 strokes on damascus backed white steel, same amount of dishing.

But you also need to put in the first 10 strokes to get the thing to start working too. Before that, it's pretty lifeless. Once it gets a little mud up, then it starts working and working very hard.

Even so, it's not a favourite of mine but some folks love the thing. If there was a little binder in it, I think it'd be a much nicer, better stone for the 'normal' steels, but it would give up some of the speed it has on the really tough stuff.

I'm not even going to ask you to give it a second chance. I know that when I get a stone that's just 'blech' then it's really difficult to come to terms with it, even if it should be good.

Stu.

Schtoo
12-31-2011, 02:46 PM
Stu, how does 400 sound while flattening compared to 1K?

M

What does the #400 sound like when it's flattening an Atoma?

It's not easy, the stone is very hard, but will flatten with a diamond plate. Quite smooth all things considered and nothing like the gravelly sound/feel from the Select II 1K. But the #400 doesn't dish much. A real hard workout only needs about 10 passes with an Atoma #400 to flatten out again.

If you've ever worked with a Shapton GS #500, it's very similar to that except it stays flatter, resists clogging better and is 5 times thicker. Works just a little slower than the GS though, that's the trade off. The Chosera #400 I also have doesn't even compare. The Cho dishes more, cuts MUCH slower and clogs more quickly, although it's easier to flatten than the Sigma but the Cho does need soaking.

I'm trying very hard to put this into the right terms here, but really, there's no other stone like it I've ever heard of. It's the only stone I've ever used where I covered my mouth and laughed, so surprised, shocked and elated at how well it works, and you probably have some idea of how many stones I've got around here.

(it's less than 100. I think... I could be wrong and have crossed that number...)

Maxim, I don't doubt you gave it a fair hearing, nor that you didn't like it.

(I also suspect the SII 1K is why they've worked on the #1200. We shall see what it's like...)

Stu.

Marko Tsourkan
12-31-2011, 02:52 PM
Sounds good.

mattrud
01-13-2012, 03:56 PM
I have used quite a few stones. I currently use beston 500, bester 1200, rika 5k, and Geshin 8k. Some of these stones I may swap out for other stones when they are used up but overall they exemplify the types of stones that I have a preference for. Mainly softer stones with the focus on feedback and that leave a bit more toothy/rough finish for its grit range. The only stone I am not a huge fan of is the beston 500, which is a very good coarse stone, but it is the only one I would buy a replacement for before its time is spent. So on to the sigma series…

1,000-
I did not have as much of an issue with this stone as Marko did. I agree that it did not make a “pleasant” sound but I did not have an issue with it. The stone is harder then what I usually use. Not as hard as either the shapton pros or glass series (I am not a fan of these for kitchen knives) but certainly on the harder end of the spectrum. The stone grinds at a very good rate. It does not work much mud at all and does not load up. The finished edge was very clean and on the more refined side for a stone in a similar grit range.

3,000-
First off depending on the stone lineup you have I do not see the need to have both the 1000 and 3000. If have a lower grit stone for slight changes to the bevel or in case you really need to remove metal you could easily make the jump to the 3k because it grinds rather quickly yet leaves a nice edge. It will also work well for normal maintenance. It is in line with the 1k stone, hard, grinds fast, does not get muddy, and does not load. The final edge is again a bit more polished then stones in a similar grit range. But the edge does have nice bite and cuts well. I can imagine some professionals here that like coarser edges liking the edge produced.

6,000-
The 6k acts in a similar manner as the other stones do. This one builds a little bit of mud and will just slightly load up after some work, but it does not load up anywhere near as much as most polishing stones I have used. I would say it feels somewhere between the takenenko and the shapton pro series in similar grit range. Leaves a near mirror polish and a nice edge. It is a finer cutting edge then the rika and takenenko but toothier then say a shapton, kitayama, or king.

10,000
This stone is probably my favorite of the line-up as well as the 3k. Again it cut and feels in a similar manner as the other stones. Leaves a very polished edge but still cuts with some toothy-ness, not as much bite as I like but a very good edge all in all. Works a touch more mud but still very little even with heavy pressure. It loads a little bit more then the 6k but not to the point where I need to clean off the stone.

The biggest thing I liked about all the stones is how little they dish or would require flattening. They cut fast and leave very good edges. I happen to have a preference for softer stones with better feedback. I just personally feel I have more of a connection with them. I also like edges that are slightly less refined. I will say if I sharpened a lot of knives or did it for more for a professional means I would heavily consider these stones. The edges look great, perform extremely well at all grit levels and the stone is going to stay flat for a long time without needing to be lapped.

WillC
01-13-2012, 04:23 PM
Mattrud, nice review, can you tell me a bit about the feel and hardness of the 10K?. I have the 13K and love the way it cuts. Its hard as in resistant to dishing but does have a chalky fragile feel, especially when soaked its sooo easy to slice into it a little. I've come to the conclusion I prefer a harder stone with good feedback the chosera 5k feels nice to me, now its broken in for example.

mattrud
01-13-2012, 04:39 PM
the 10k is hard and resistant to dishing as you mentioned for the 13k. It has a firm but smooth feel with a slight amount of give but not what I would consider to be anywhere in the realm of say a gesshin or naniwa super stone as far as creating mud or soft. It is a bit harder then the immanishi and jks 10k, builds up less mud, does not load anywhere near as much as those two and seems less resistant to dishing. Those two have a bit of a chalky yet smooth feel to them where I feel the sigma is more of a clean smooth feeling.

WillC
01-13-2012, 04:52 PM
That sounds good. I like the 13k, it gives a polish unbelievably quickly for a high grit stone but I'm fining it a bit high maintenance cleaning flatting after every use, not because it dishes but the surface marks very easily. It too loads with swarf but it doesn't seem to stop it cutting.

mattrud
01-13-2012, 04:54 PM
I did not find the sigma 10k to load too much. I have used several other 10k stones that loaded more. I did not see a need to clean off the 10k stone while sharpening.

Marko Tsourkan
01-13-2012, 06:32 PM
Great review, thanks Matt -

Are the stones still with you, or Nilloc has them?

M

Chef Niloc
01-13-2012, 07:59 PM
My wife just told me the stones came, just in time for the weekend

Chef Niloc
01-13-2012, 08:00 PM
Great review, thanks Matt -

Are the stones still with you, or Nilloc has them?

M
See above post

Marko Tsourkan
01-19-2012, 06:45 PM
Hey Chef,
how do you like the stones so far?

M

Chef Niloc
01-20-2012, 12:21 AM
I just finished up with them, got to see who gets them next (I'll check after posting this).
I purposely did not read any reviews on these stones at all, I don't even know what they cost.
1k cuts fast and doesn't dish out but it leaves scratches that are hard to get rid of.

I did not like the 3k. 1st it feels a little sticky and 2nd it didn't pare well with the 1K as it was almost just as fast and easy to skip it and go to the 6K. 3K stones are kind of a picky thing for me, I have yet to find "the right one". In a 3K stone I'm looking for a stone that will, one easily get rid of 1K scratches and two give me a expectable finished edge if I chose to stop with that stone. This stone did neither.

The 6K was the one I liked the best. I don't think I have ever used a 6 before? But I also don't think there is much need for one. That sad it had a good feel and sound to it and left a nice even scratch pattern. As I sad above it cut fast, so fast that the 3k was not really needed.

The 10k was a good stone, nice feel speed ext. ext. The only thing with it was that I felt it was a little soft and come time for a 10K might as well just go for a jnat

End vote is that they are good stones, but I would have no place for them in my lineup. I still have not looked to see what they cost but ill assume they are in the chosera ballpark? I like them more then Chosera's


10K

http://i198.photobucket.com/albums/aa214/celtic2174/dc4f10e2.jpg

Back down to aoto then upto okudo


http://i198.photobucket.com/albums/aa214/celtic2174/be9691e5.jpg

Marko Tsourkan
01-20-2012, 12:46 AM
Actually, they are less expensive than Chosera, particularly 10K. Great review, thank you.


M

tk59
02-15-2012, 06:56 PM
All of these stones are relatively fast cutters on a wide range of steels from carbon to highly wear resistant to stainless. The finish is nice but not super shiny at each grit level. They also seem to be on the hard end of the spectrum. I thought the feedback was decent at each grit range. The one I really didn't like was the 1k stone gouges pretty easily and drinks water like a 500 grit. As I was sharpening on the freshly flattened stones, I could feel the texture changing as the knife gouged into the stone here and there. That wasn't a good feeling and I felt I couldn't sharpen several knives in a row without flattening again. In contrast, I can sharpen quite a few knives without the need for flattening on a Chosera, Gesshin 1k, Bester 1.2k. I think I'd even prefere a 1k superstone which is my least favorite of that series. At some point, I might have to get one of the higher grit stones. If I bought one, it would be either the 3k or 6k.

Pabloz
02-15-2012, 11:20 PM
I guess I'm up next....if the stars align just right the Dragon Slayers could see them. If not me then Eamon will have them both at the same time. That would be a really cool passaround, NO???? Stones married to a blade!

tk59
02-16-2012, 12:22 AM
I'm going to let them dry out for a while. I will try to send them on Monday, unless that's a holiday. If that's the case, then Tuesday.

Pabloz
02-16-2012, 12:45 AM
10-4...THANK YOU.

Schtoo
02-16-2012, 08:56 AM
All of these stones are relatively fast cutters on a wide range of steels from carbon to highly wear resistant to stainless. The finish is nice but not super shiny at each grit level. They also seem to be on the hard end of the spectrum. I thought the feedback was decent at each grit range. The one I really didn't like was the 1k stone gouges pretty easily and drinks water like a 500 grit. As I was sharpening on the freshly flattened stones, I could feel the texture changing as the knife gouged into the stone here and there. That wasn't a good feeling and I felt I couldn't sharpen several knives in a row without flattening again. In contrast, I can sharpen quite a few knives without the need for flattening on a Chosera, Gesshin 1k, Bester 1.2k. I think I'd even prefere a 1k superstone which is my least favorite of that series. At some point, I might have to get one of the higher grit stones. If I bought one, it would be either the 3k or 6k.


Thanks for that, and I let Mr. Sigma Power know that these were my own thoughts (specifically the 1K) as he handed me the new Select II #1200 today.

The #1200 is nothing like the #1000. In fact, there's no stone in this grit range I've ever heard of that's like the #1200. Still working it out, but for now, I can tell you it's NOT a 1K stone...

It's umm, I can't really say just yet. Not enough time with it and I'm still working it out.

Very interesting and very promising.

Stu.

Marko Tsourkan
02-16-2012, 09:19 AM
So we have 3 people on the list on the West Coast who would l like to try these stones.

Johndoughy (TX)
PabloZ (NM)
SpikeC (OR)

You guys will have to work out logistics among yourselves.

If anybody else would like to try these stones, please post in this thread. You don't have to be on the West coast.

M

tk59
02-16-2012, 10:47 AM
Oops. I just assumed PabloZ was next. Where should I send these off to? I guess it makes more sense to send them to SpikeC then PabloZ then Eamon. Plus, SpikeC posted in the thread first. If you guys want to switch places, let me know. Otherwise, I will plan on sending them to SpikeC.

tk59
02-16-2012, 10:49 AM
I just realized my post reads like I had major gouging issues with all of the stones. Really, it was the 1k that was pretty bad, in that regard.

Marko Tsourkan
02-16-2012, 02:01 PM
It would make sense to send these stones to whoever is closer. They move at a good pace, so you guys should get them soon, even if we change the order slightly. So, tk, send it to Spike.

M

SpikeC
02-16-2012, 03:39 PM
Sounds good to me!

Pabloz
02-16-2012, 10:28 PM
If it's ok with everyone, Spike can send the stones to Eamon and I'll send Eamon the Dragon Slayers at the same time that way he can have another Christmas party. Then Eamon can send the stones to me and I'll get em back to Marko and the D/Srs can go next on the list. Will that work for everyone?

SpikeC
02-16-2012, 11:23 PM
Fine with me.

Chef Niloc
02-18-2012, 03:44 AM
If it's ok with everyone, Spike can send the stones to Eamon and I'll send Eamon the Dragon Slayers at the same time that way he can have another Christmas party. Then Eamon can send the stones to me and I'll get em back to Marko and the D/Srs can go next on the list. Will that work for everyone?

Eamon+Dragon slayers+sigma's!!! Boy I wish I was next on the list for the dragon's




Redemption

tk59
02-21-2012, 02:05 PM
These stones are off to SpikeC.

SpikeC
02-23-2012, 09:52 PM
And they landed today!

SpikeC
03-03-2012, 07:18 PM
The stones are off the Eamon.

tk59
03-03-2012, 07:20 PM
How did you decide to pack 'em?

SpikeC
03-03-2012, 07:27 PM
I let them dry pretty well and just packed them as they came. As the boxes are now wrinkly they probably can't get any worse! This way they can still breathe a bit.

SpikeC
03-03-2012, 07:34 PM
I liked these stones pretty well. I didn't get to the 10,000 one, but the others had a nice feel and worked well on the O1 that put on them. I would seriously consider the 1000 when I need a replacement for the Norton that I have in that slot. Lately I have been going from the Norton 1000 or the fine DMT to an Ozuku that Maxim sent me, so I'm not in the market for any thing else. If I want to get really fine I use a Shobudani with Maxim's nagura, or one of the Chinese with nagura. Finishing with the Ozuku gives a nice edge, tho!

proacrz
03-10-2012, 11:30 PM
Just to give you heads up.

Stu from Tools from Japan has agreed to provide 4 Sigma Select II stones for a pass-around.

These are Sigma Select II #1000, 3000, 6000 and 10000 stones.

They will be available in 3-4 weeks.

I am new to organizing a pass-around, so I will have read up on it and talk to people who have done it to figure out how to manage it best. There will be some conditions, so please stay tuned.

Marko


Hi Marko, Is it still possible to get in on this pass-around? I've been in touch with Stu, and he suggested I try. If it's too late, then no worries, just let me know.

Many thanks, Peter

Marko Tsourkan
03-11-2012, 08:11 AM
Hi Marko, Is it still possible to get in on this pass-around? I've been in touch with Stu, and he suggested I try. If it's too late, then no worries, just let me know.

Many thanks, Peter

Where in Hawaii are you? Are there other folks in Hawaii who want to try these stones?

M

proacrz
03-11-2012, 01:37 PM
Where in Hawaii are you? Are there other folks in Hawaii who want to try these stones?

M

I'm on the "Big Island". I'm not aware of others here who sharpen with waterstones, but I can ask around. I know several carpenters, sculptors and chefs, so maybe there will be some possibilities there.

Thanks for getting back to me.

Peter

Eamon Burke
03-15-2012, 11:02 PM
First off, I should say that the boxes of 2 of them was soggy and kinda moldy when I got them, I think the stones retained some more moisture than the sender expected, and the boxes paid the price! I've got them drying on a cooling rack right now, just because of this.

I got to try these on single bevel, double bevel, carbon, stainless, pm, soft, and hard steels. Really got the gamut--blue steel, spicy white(guess who's), VG-10, 154cm, whatever Randy's got in the dragon slayers, etc.

1k: As is the consensus, this stone is the worst of the bunch. It dishes easily, and leaves a finish that is almost identical to my GS 500. It does cut fast enough, and it is nice and wide. It also does do a LOT better when you work up a good mud on it. Very raggedy edge.

3k: Totally lost in the crowd here. I have no idea why this stone exists, honestly, the finish is not much different from the 1k, and cuts almost as fast. You can skip this and go to a 5k or so and never know the difference. IMO, you should only bridge gaps like 1k to 5k if you are working with a material you REALLY want to be careful with, like straight razors, or finishing a new custom blade. The edge was grabby, and came out a lot better on the VG10 than anything else. Not a suitable stopping point for going to strop though. The feedback was the best of the bunch, though--this stone is like the one guy in the family with red hair.

6k: Things are looking up! This stone left an interesting edge. Imagine a Rika edge, but shinier and slippery. The Rika gives a really hazy finish for a 5k, so it's not surprising that this one is shinier, but it leaves an edge that cuts about the same but has a tendency to run on food. Stainless steels followed up with a diamond strop did well off this one. Not great feedback. It's muddy enough that it resists "faceting", and leaves a more even finish.

10k: This was the most useful stone out of the bunch--hard, fast as heck for a 10k, with terrible feedback. I don't mind bad feedback, I do a lot of my sharpening on Shapton Pros. It puts out a very even, shiny finish, that is polished as a 10k should be. Not suitable for gyutos and chefs, the edge will run like crazy and not bite into the skin of even citrus. But for touchups on sashimi knives, parers, letter-opening pocketknives or other high-polish items, it does really well! I would say that if you wanted a good touch up stone for a yanagiba or whatever, this would be a good choice.


Overall, I would say this is a mixed lot. Nothing screamed "Amazing! Buy me!" to me, but none were really so terrible I wouldn't use them. The 10k is the one that I think performs a job that few, if any, other stones do, but it is a very narrow job(fast, High polish touchups from a soaker).

Thanks for them! There were fun to use, surprising little group of stones. It is hard to tell what they have in common, but that's what made it so fun! It's like a box of chocolates.

Johnny.B.Good
03-15-2012, 11:16 PM
Nice writeup Eamon.

Sounds like you really put in some time with these boys...

Marko Tsourkan
03-15-2012, 11:37 PM
Are there any other forum members in Hawaii besides Peter who would like to try these stones? Stefan, Darwin? I probably missed some more.

M

Schtoo
03-17-2012, 08:03 AM
Thanks Eamon,

Very useful information there, but still not 'out of the norm' at all.


Just as an observation, there is another, new Select II #1200 stone. I think I mentioned this, nobody said boo about it so I dropped it until I had some more time with it myself.


The only way I can relate how the #1200 works is to offer it up as a comparison against other stones I've used in the #1000 grit range.

Feeling, second only to a Chosera. Silky smooth, tells you what it's doing for the most part but as it's a seriously hard stone, there's only so much it can tell you.

Dish resistance, as good as or better than a Shapton Pro.

Finish, second only to the Naniwa Superstone.

Speed, compares favourably to everything else. Slightly faster than a Shapton Pro, not as fast as the Select II #1000.

Steel hard/tough Capability, no limit. It bites into anything you got. One of the 'biti-est' stones I've ever used, and was a bit of a shock the first time I used it.

Not too shabby, considering that the stones it's compared to in each category are, in my opinion, the best at what they do. To roll all of the good points of several stones into one is no mean feat.

In short, it's the yin to the Select II #1000's yang. Similar in some respects, but completely opposite in others and I dearly wish I could have sent it instead.


Anyway, that's all I got.

(Except for the #3000's yin in a month or three...)

If someone wants to take on the #1200 that's already used the #1000, I'll fire one off next week to Marko.

And on the boxes, yeah, they've been left wet at least once. A note to whoever has the stones from here on out, make sure the stones are dry before boxing them up, please. Stick them somewhere warm/hot, in the sun, near a fan, whatever. These aren't delicate little petals, they'll put up with more than you can throw at them, aside from a hammer.

Stu.

Eamon Burke
03-17-2012, 11:12 AM
I let them stand on a wire cooling rack on their sides for 48 hours, so they should be dry by now, but that 1k sure is thirsty!

Honestly, the stone the 1k reminds me of the most, is the Naniwa 150 grit Omura. Large, thirsty, muddy, aggressive, noisy. Should have said that to give a reference.

If you have a stone that's 1200 grit, faster than a a Shapton Pro, Harder than a Shapton pro, with an even finish, I'd be MAJORLY interested in that. No kidding. I like my stones hard as hell, and fast as possible, with good resistance to loading(who likes lapping ultra hard stones? Not me!).

I have to say that after several days, the pocket knife I finished the edge on with the 10k stone has held up really well. It's sharper(cuts better but still holds up) than it gets off a high grit belt, which is saying something.


Stu, are these stones seriously binder-free? If so, why aren't they totally uniform in appearance?

Schtoo
03-17-2012, 01:55 PM
The 1K, I canned it basically, so they made the #1200. I was diplomatic about it, but I still explained that it was just too soft. Some folks seem to like it, but the #700 is similar but has a binder, so holds up better and is even faster. Oh well...

There's a dye to colour the higher grit stones, but any binder used to make them is burned out when they're fired. I just looked at a 6K and 10K, and the spots are likely stains from the binder, bits of steel or just random junk. Translate that as "I don't know what the heck they are, and they won't tell me!" But the 4 stones sent that have Select II on the box are binder free.

Of the 4 other stones with the Select II on the box, there's the #240, which is the same as the SiC/sintered stones you've got now. Quite soft, but fast, fast, fast. Great if you can live with it like that. The #400 which is a AlOx stone with binder (can't sinter AlOx) and I won't call it a proper Select II. The #1200 which is again AlOx but is like the old ceramic cranked up to 11. More abrasive, different tougher binder, tighter grit size tolerance and finer abrasive. And the 13K which has been around for a long time, but they relabeled it Select II so they could get folks overseas to sell it with a common label.

(Seeing the #400 and #1200 available in Germany grates on me. Especially the #400 since I have the prototype and the "one that didn't make it" sitting on my fridge...)

The #1200 is very, very good. The first time I used it, I sharpened my knuckles. The blade stuck to the stone from pure 'bite', not stiction. Never had that before. I tested it side by side with the Shapton Pro, and found it to stay just as flat or flatter in every circumstance I tried and was 10-20% faster to get the same amount of work done. It's only something you'd notice if you kept track of things and did it side by side, but it's there and measurable. For finish, I compared it side by side with a Chosera 1K and various other things. Finer scratches, very even and a better finish (by eye) than everything aside from the polish a Superstone gives. But the 1200 kicks the living snot out of the Superstone in very other regard you might mention. It nearly starts polishing, which is unusual and yet, it's still working hard. Refuses to clog, but it will load very heavily. Can be blacker than black, but it's still working. There's virtually no mud created with a blade only, but if you get a mud worked up with a diamond plate, then it will tend to create a little more mud slowly.

Lapping is easily done with an iWood or Atoma plate, but a DMT #320 has some trouble. After sorting out the sides of my solid gyuto and then putting a completely fresh edge on the knife, there was some dishing, but not much. Atoma sorted it out in about 10-15 strokes, and the bulk of the stone was flat after a few swipes of the Atoma. Just getting the hard worked middle was where the effort was needed. Seems to not like soft clad knives so much though. Need to work that out. I think that perhaps the soft cladding tends to pick up random particles, and make a mess of things. The stone is intended for HSS, so soft metal isn't what it was made for. Seems to be ok, but not as nice as it could be in that regard.

It does need soaking, but once it's done, it's not thirsty.

And at the rate it wears at, dang thing will last forever. It's eye opening, and my go to stone now.

But folks who like mud? Don't touch it.

Just had a good old crack at my cheap yanagi, and after plenty of work, it's still very, very flat and fixing up what the Sigma hard and Shapton Pro etc. have done to that knife. The soft metal is starting to take a polish (no loose grit at all) and the 'mud' looks more like dirty mercury than slurry.

That's about all I've got on it right now. I keep putting it to the test, and it keeps on doing well. There's bound to be something it sucks at, but I haven't found it yet (aside from being completely useless at kasumi, unless you load it up with something else first.)

Stu.

tk59
03-17-2012, 02:52 PM
I'm interested in trying out the 1.2k. :)

Marko Tsourkan
03-17-2012, 08:48 PM
I'm interested in trying out the 1.2k. :)

Me too. Stu, sure please send my way and I will pass around. I have 2 ~ 1K (one of them Bester 1200) stones at the moment, curious how 1200 Sigma II fares against them.



Folks in Hawaii -
is there more interest to try Sigma II than one person? For logistical reasons, it would make sense to send a package half-around the world, if there are more than one person interested.

M

SpikeC
03-18-2012, 02:34 PM
I would love the chance to try the 1200!

Marko Tsourkan
03-18-2012, 03:56 PM
I would love the chance to try the 1200!

The 1200 stone will be on its way to me shortly. I will pass it around.

M

proacrz
03-18-2012, 05:10 PM
Marko, this is Peter in Hawai'i. While I haven't found any other Forum members here, I have found a couple of woodworking friends who are interested. If they would need to join the Forum, please let me know.

Thanks, Peter

Eamon Burke
03-20-2012, 04:44 PM
Where are these stones going now? I need an address.

Marko Tsourkan
03-20-2012, 05:01 PM
Eamon,
please hold on sending these stones out.
We are trying to figure out what to do about them. Detail to follow.


Marko

tk59
03-21-2012, 01:25 AM
I'm out of the 1.2k passaround. I've been thinking about acquiring a stone like this so I decided to trust Stu on this one and grab it. I'll post a review in a new thread (unless the passaround review starts first).