A Paean to the Cerax / Ouka 3k

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KingShapton

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Grayswandir

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Haha! I think that might’ve been me too... Need some advice on a stone...

Glad you like!
I thought it might be you, but I was too lazy to go back and look for the thread. Thank you for the wonderful recommendation. The Suehiro stone is really great, I love the way it feels. I don't have a single regret about buying it. Another forum member recommended I buy the King Ice Bear 4K, a synthetic made to mimic the feel of natural Jnat stones, but by the time he chimed in on our conversation, I had already bought the Suehiro (and I'm glad I did). I'm still curious about the Ice Bear, but it's something I'll probably check out later on down the road, just for kicks.

Now I've been looking at the Cerax 8K stone. I wonder if it's as good as the Naniwa 8K Snow White? Since buying the Suehiro, I've also picked up a Shapton Pro 12K stone (Kuromaku). The Shapton is really nice, but the surface needed to be dressed before first use. It scratched up one of my straight razor blades right out of the box. I was surprised the Shapton didn't come ready to use straight out of the box. The Suehiro was perfect right out of the box.

After a gentle lapping with my little Atoma 1200, the Shapton is now as smooth as a baby's butt and puts a ridiculous mirror polish on my straight razors.

Thanks again, now I have another quality whetstone manufacturer that I can trust.
 

Grayswandir

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branwell

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Sometimes the good is so close that you overlook it for all the other stones ...;)
Yea, I'd been eyeing this stone for a while. I think I put off getting one because of the Rika. While I've always liked sharpening on the Rika, the edges I got never quite did it for me. At its grit level, the edge never felt as keen as I thought it should and never had the bite I like. It was fun to do slurry mixing on but as a standalone....

And yes, I know condemning a whole brand because of the experience of one stone is pretty lame :)

Speaking of slurry mixing, the Ouka and Aoto are made for each other resulting in an edge that feels like one sprinkled fairy dust all over.
 
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Grayswandir

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Yea, I'd been eyeing this stone for a while. I think I put off getting one because of the Rika. While I've always liked sharpening on the Rika, the edges I got never quite did it for me. At its grit level, the edge never felt as keen as I thought they should be and never had the bite I like. It was fun to do slurry mixing on but as a standalone....

And yes, I know condemning a whole brand because of the experience of one stone is pretty lame :)

Speaking of slurry mixing, the Ouka and Aoto are made for each other resulting in an edge that feels like one sprinkled fairy dust over it.
What is the Aoto?
 

ModRQC

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Yeah I touched up my HSC AEB-L and Ittetsu White #1 just yesterday using it. 😍

I mean, I had/have fine stones that were pretty nice, and some that I really like, but this is something else. Guilty pleasure equivalent to having a piece of cake at 2 AM while the spouse is sleeping. Neither of these knives really needed a touch up yet. But more than the rest, and I just wanted to use the Ouka.

I'm even contemplating buying another Rika. Perhaps I didn't get that stone back when I had it... I looked the entire Cerax line, tempted to try some of the med grits. All this because of Ouka.

I want to buy stones everyday because of Ouka. I want to buy another Ouka (mine is dwindling fast these days) and permasoak it.

I'm sure there's a rehab center somewhere that deals specifically with Ouka addictions?
 

Grayswandir

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An Aoto is a soft Japanese Natural stone. They are usually used standalone but prefer to use them to make slurry on other stones where you create a blend of the JNat and the synthetic to sharpen on.
I have one Jnat, it's an Ohira Tomae, I think it's on the softer end of the Jnats. It's a nice stone, I've been learning on it the past month or so with straight razors.
 

branwell

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Can anyone compare the Ouka to the Naniwa Pro 3k?
The Ouka is a soaker. Chosera / Pro is a splash and go.
The Ouka is medium hardness. The Chosera / Pro is hard.
The Ouka is a little faster than the Chosera / Pro.
In my opinion the Ouka has a better feel. Its creamy like the Chosera / Pro but has a little more texture going on.
The Chosera / Pro can feel a little glassy on 65 rockwell steel, the Ouka doesn't.

Which would I pick? Well, I sold my Chosera 3K a couple months ago where the Ouka is my current favorite finisher for an allround kitchen edge :)
 

Dominick Maone

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The Ouka is a soaker. Chosera / Pro is a splash and go.
The Ouka is medium hardness. The Chosera / Pro is hard.
The Ouka is a little faster than the Chosera / Pro.
In my opinion the Ouka has a better feel. Its creamy like the Chosera / Pro but has a little more texture going on.
The Chosera / Pro can feel a little glassy on 65 rockwell steel, the Ouka doesn't.

Which would I pick? Well, I sold my Chosera 3K a couple months ago where the Ouka is my current favorite finisher for an allround kitchen edge :)
Wow. That’s really saying something. Was planning on buying the Chosera, but will go with the Ouka. Thanks for the detailed reply.
 

inferno

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if you're gonna get a chosera, get the 2k imo. its very good and finishes at about 3k. the 800 is good too. the 1k not so much.
 

Dominick Maone

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if you're gonna get a chosera, get the 2k imo. its very good and finishes at about 3k. the 800 is good too. the 1k not so much.
My plan is to get the best stone of every grit. I know different lines are different true grits, but I can not help myself. I don’t like the way Shapton pros feel, except the 2k and maybe 120. And I think maybe the Choseras are similar. I already have way too many stones. Looking for a 3k, and 6k to finish them out. Then again, when someone says a stone is awesome (like the ice bear 4000) I get a strong urge to try it out. So buying one of those soon even though I have a SG4K.
 

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Knife2meatu

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@branwell

Interesting thing about [my own, bought from Lee Valley] Ice Bear 4k: It's actually the 6k King (s-3 in my case) -- I got Lee Valley customer service to admit this and reimburse me due to their erroneous labeling.

To be quite fair, Lee Valley explained that they sold it as a 4k due to the somewhat loose particle grading in the King 6k; they explained the largest particles within the matrix places it roughly around the 4k mark, relative to the other stones they sell.
 

cotedupy

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@branwell

Interesting thing about [my own, bought from Lee Valley] Ice Bear 4k: It's actually the 6k King (s-3 in my case) -- I got Lee Valley customer service to admit this and reimburse me due to their erroneous labeling.

To be quite fair, Lee Valley explained that they sold it as a 4k due to the somewhat loose particle grading in the King 6k; they explained the largest particles within the matrix places it roughly around the 4k mark, relative to the other stones they sell.
That is interesting! About a month ago @ModRQC asked a question about the King 4k and posted a link to the Lee Valley website... and I replied saying I thought they'd got the picture wrong and that it showed the 6k instead: Help Needed: Rough Times...

Clearly they got the picture 'right', but are just selling the 6k as 4k... which seems stupid. And probably a breach of Trading Standards law.
 

cotedupy

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I feel the IB 4K has an amazing edge, one of the best for kitchen carbons. Very keen with great bite, but its not in the same league feel wise to stones like the the Ouka.
Ouka is just in a world of it's own in terms of 'feel'... you can see why I was in love! (And nice to hear I wasn't being an idiot and it's getting the seal of approval from proper pros too!)

Also - tell me about these Nubabtamas... do I need one in my life?
 

Ruso

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Very tempting to try, the stone sounds amazing, but not sure what use will it have. Does it replace Gesshin 2K or Rika?
 

ModRQC

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@branwell

Interesting thing about [my own, bought from Lee Valley] Ice Bear 4k: It's actually the 6k King (s-3 in my case) -- I got Lee Valley customer service to admit this and reimburse me due to their erroneous labeling.

To be quite fair, Lee Valley explained that they sold it as a 4k due to the somewhat loose particle grading in the King 6k; they explained the largest particles within the matrix places it roughly around the 4k mark, relative to the other stones they sell.
Thanks for that. So I won't be buying it with them. This very sounds like BS.
 

branwell

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Interesting thing about [my own, bought from Lee Valley] Ice Bear 4k: It's actually the 6k King (s-3 in my case) -- I got Lee Valley customer service to admit this and reimburse me due to their erroneous labeling.
Sry to hear that. I have the King S1 and S3 6K's and the Icebear 4K.
As far as I can tell, the two 6K's are the same except for size. The feel the same, smell the same ( the 6K has a distinctive smell ), create the same edge and are as slow as each other.

The IB 4k is a different color, smells different, has a family resemblance feel wise but is much much faster and leaves an edge that has noticeably more bite than the 6K. I'd say Lee Valley where playing games. No way the 6K and 4K Kings are anywhere near close enough to be considered the same.
 

Knife2meatu

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@branwell

To be clear: Yes, there is a 4k King -- which gets sold under the Ice Bear brand also, I assume; much like other Matsunaga products.

And I didn't say Lee Valley says the 4k & 6k Kings are the same; I said they sold the 6k as a 4k stone.

And to once more be quite fair, Lee Valley doesn't sell it as an Ice Bear, they sold it as a King. They just happened to ship it in an Ice Bear box bearing the label F #4000...
 

branwell

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Very tempting to try, the stone sounds amazing, but not sure what use will it have. Does it replace Gesshin 2K or Rika?
Cant speak for the Geshin.

In use, the Ouka feels like a slightly harder lower grit Rika. Its still got the nice creamy feel but has a bit more granular feel as lower grit stones do.
I never got along with the Rika because while I liked sharpening on it, I never felt I was getting a great edge from it. The edge I would get while good, was not as keen as other stones I have in that grit range and it also lacked bite without doing something like adding Aoto slurry to the mix. The Ouka on the other hand has good bite and is pretty keen for a 3K so to me, the Ouka is a better stone. But that's just me. Others might prefer the Rika.
 

branwell

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Also - tell me about these Nubabtamas... do I need one in my life?
I think so. One of the Platinum's for sure. I have a 1K and a 1.5k and both are better than any other stone I have in that grit range. Short soakers, very fast, great feedback and interestingly, both are feel wise compatible with the Ouka and compliment it well. Am super tempted by the Platinum 6K but think I might try the Suehiro 6k offering first as I'm going to marry the Ouka and she might get jealous if I switch teams so fast :)

Other Nubatamas I have.

Bamboo 5k. Don't like. Its slow, fairly numb feeling and cracks. I affixed mine to a back plate but just not a fan. I did see a vid of Jeff using one which was clearly faster than mine. I asked Ken about it and he said they didn't change the formula but who knows.

Ume 1K speckled. If you want to get things done this is a fast stone, but I'm pretty sure its closer to an 800 than a 1K. Its also a bit gritty feeling so I'm not really a big fan.

Bamboo 400. Not convinced. Its kind of muddy but can still feel glassy on hard steels. I prefer the Chosera 400 and way prefer the Carter Pride 600 ( not sure if this is the same as the Pride 600 ) in this slot which smokes them both in speed and feel.

Nubatama 150. This is a reasonably fast stone but its gets muddy with a lot of loose grit so can produce a not so great haze right above the bevel line. I prefer the Shapton Pro 220 in his slot.
 
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