So, I did a search and could not find a consolidated thread on the subject, so I thought I would start one...but then again, I am blind so if there is already a thread then please forgive me.
So what prompted this you might say:
In the past few weeks, I have had a few people send me J-nat stones to evaluate, each for different reasons. In essence, all were unhappy with their performance, and after numerous attempts to make things go the "right way", all were ready to give up.
This should never happen....
One should never become so frustrated with a subject that is supposed to bring joy and a feeling of accomplishment that they are ready to throw in the towel and move on to something else.
So, upon evaluation of the stones and the knives they were trying to sharpen, several problems became evident, which I will not go into, but this prompted me to start thinking about my own journey through sharpening, from synthetics to J-nats, from the EP to free hand sharpening. One thing is for sure, I made lots of mistakes, and even still continue to fix errors in my technique on a regular basis. But, I thought it would be nice if everyone could get together and pool some knowledge about their sharpening experiences. Specifically, talk about their mistakes, glaring or subtle, with the hope that it could turn into a great resource for anyone who may be having trouble.
I will go first with something simple, elegant, and very very necessary.
Make sure your stones are well lapped and well dressed.
I know it may seem like common knowledge to everyone, but even I fall into this trap on occasion. And 3 of the 5 stones I recently evaluated also suffered from it.
It is easy to be excited about a new stone and forget to completely lap it before taking it out for a test sharpen, which is apparently what happened to several of my newfound friends. Once I spent 20 minutes lapping the stones, something that had apparently never been done, they were actually amazing!!!
So who is next?