I often get questions on why and how to correctly use Japanese Natural Stones. I’ve also recently noticed that many of my reviews and guides have been lost in my subforum as new threads have been created. So, I decided to make a “Guides Compilation” and post it as a sticky here in my subforum!
After testing more than a thousand Natural stones from Japan, Europe, and the US. I’ve developed some methods which I feel work the best.
Some of my information on the subject comes directly from Iwasaki san, Shigefusa, stone miners, and even a few highly respected sellers in Japan.
I’ve also personally tested all of my stones and methods on a number of blade and steel types, including: Razors, Japanese tools, Western tools, Swords and Kitchen knives.
I took all of this information/experience and used it to make many guides on my website. You can find them in the new Wiki section! (see below)
These methods, although not the easiest to learn, are the most correct way of using your Japanese Natural Stones, and when used properly are the best way of bringing each stone to its full potential!
It’s true, there are easier and less traditional ways of using J-nats. You can call me a purist, but I do not see why anyone would want to learn the wrong way first! A traditional blacksmith does not start out experimenting, he starts out learning what has already been tested and proven effective. The after he has learned the correct and traditional artform does the student begin experimentation and changing methods.
Traditional methods have been used for centuries, and for good reason. They have been developed by masters, much more skillful and knowledgeable than many alive today. They discovered over lifetimes, not days/months, or even a few years what works best for each stone. They developed these methods for many reasons. Not only do they provide the best results, but they allow you to use your stones for lifetimes, not years. The current and non-traditional methods I have seen showing up lately will not help you or your Natural stone at all!
Remember, sharpening with Japanese Natural Stones isn’t just about making sharp knives or tools, it’s about preserving some of the tradition currently being lost through the impatience of the new age. It’s true, everyone wants to achieve the best finish and most sharp tools possible, but we should also want to preserve our piece of stone history as long as possible, if for no other reason than they are very expensive.
Here are links to some of my guides
How to use Guide.
Why you should Not use diamond plates as slurry stones!
General Info about Jnats.
About Asano Naguras
Fingerstones and how to use them:
Kasumi finish on double beveled knives!
About mines and Stratas:
Medium stone Test:
Big test , includes western and Japanese natural stones:
You Tube playlists:
Hamaguriba edge on single Beveled
Flattening Jnats (how to lap)
Microbevel on singlebeveled knives
Polishing blade from start to finish ( long)
Links To Customer Stone Reviews