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Thread: Suehiro Rika 5000x WaterStone w/base

  1. #1

    Question Suehiro Rika 5000x WaterStone w/base


    I'm very new to sharpening, and I bought a number of water stones off of this site, specifically a 500x, 1200x and the 5000x in the subject line. As I was practicing just now, when I got to the 5000x I noticed that the knife started "carving notches" in the stone (for lack of a better description). In other words, it didn't slide across the stone like the 500x and 1200x, but actually when down into the stone. Is this because I soaked it too long? Is it because I pushed down too hard?

    Also (to hijack my own thread) ... which stone do I used to create the secondary bevel? I created it using the 5000x, not sure if that is correct or not.

    Either way, this was my 3rd practice and it nicely cuts through paper with ease (though the blade has the scratches to show for it ).


  2. #2
    That means you're not holding your angles steady enough, and raising the spine too high, causing the edge to gouge the stone. Harder stones like the Besters are more tolerant and harder to gouge. Softer stones like the Rika gouge easier with just a slight change in angle (although the Rika isn't that soft). It can be frustrating, but it's good practice because you'll know when you're off.

  3. #3
    Yup that's it - too high of an angle is the problem - not the stone.

    As to your other question...

    The primary bevel is the cutting edge. This can be created by any stone you like but is most easily achieved by a few passes at a slightly increased angle of attack on your finest stone. The thing is that maybe you shouldn't worry about doing this on purpose though. The reason is that you, as a new sharpener, likely wobble enough that you're already creating multiple bevel facets along the edge and trying to purposely add more may do nothing more than thicken the edge.

    Keep up the practice and the scratches and stone gouging will eventually stop happening.

  4. #4

    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Salt Lake City, UT
    Yup, been there done that, oddly enough on the same stone, as already said keeping a consistant angle really worked for me.

    When I first started I watched on the videos on youtube, etc and it always seemed like they were going at crazy fast speeds, naturally that is the speed I tried to go, not taking into consideration that most these guys, Jon, Dave and Maxim have been doing it for years. I am still a noob, but the best thing for me was to slow WAY down, I look like a friggin snail compared to the pros, but it worked for me.

  5. #5
    Nobody mentioned the marker trick, so I'll throw it in there just in case.

    Take a magic marker and run it along the edge of your knife once you get the bevel set(I.E. right off the 500). Let it dry a second, and then put it to your stone. After about 2 strokes, you should be able to see where you are holding the edge. If you are hitting the edge, but not the back, lower your angle. If you are hitting the back and not the edge, pick it up a bit. I still do this when blades give me too much trouble, just to be sure.

  6. #6
    Allow me to be a prophet - once you lower your spine and find the right angle (+1 on slowing down and using a marker until you get the hang of it) that Rika 5000x will become your favorite. That stone is a thing of beauty! Heck, I'm thinking of getting one for my wife for our anniversary (beats what I got her last year!)

  7. #7
    i totally agree... the magic marker trick works well for people who are trying to learn... and dont feel like you have to go fast. Go slower until you get the feel for it.

    The rika is a very user friendly stone in my experience.

  8. #8
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    San Diego, CA
    Quote Originally Posted by JBroida View Post
    the magic marker trick works well for people who are trying to learn...
    I guess I'll be learning for a long time. I still like to use the magic marker trick. As for the Rika being your favorite stone... It's a nice stone. It's like a Superstone that you have to soak, IMO. As far as primary bevels are concerned, I'd encourage you to play with it. If your edge is doing what you want it to do, don't even bother. If you feel it isn't strong enough then give it a microbevel. If you need more strength, give it a primary with a larger included angle. I do agree with Dave that if you are gouging your stone a fair amount, putting a second bevel on it is sort of a moot point.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by tk59 View Post
    It's like a Superstone that you have to soak, IMO.
    So, which grit SS would be closest to the speed of the Rika? 3000 maybe? I really like the Rika but a splash-and-go equivalent would be mighty tempting...

  10. #10
    i think tk59 is talking purely in terms of resultant edge, and in that case its probably close to a 3k ss... but with some work, you cant get something like a 5k ss out of it... they are very different stones though. the rika is muddy and has great feedback... also, you can get really cool contrast between hagane and jigane with the rika, which you cant with the ss stone.

    Splash and go can be convenient sometimes though

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