Belgian Blue Whetstone

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Nemo

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Did you ever watch Outback E.R.? I liked it. Those [email protected] were tough as nails. Patients would drive two or three hours to get treatment at the hospital. They were pretty stoic about their injuries as well.
I saw a few episodes. The long distances involved can definitely make it difficult to get timely care.
 
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Early Christmas present from my wife today. I’d mentioned this stone, all thanks to this thread, to a friend who inturn told my wife. Great feedback and even better edge. 😃 @cotedupy you should be getting commission for all this publicity!
 

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cotedupy

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Kawa

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Thinking about asking a BBW for christmas. I only have synthetics now, and I want to try the 'toothy yet refined' experience a natural stone has for myself.
I like to finish my knives at a high gritt(5-8k), but I have to admit most steels don't hold it for long, leaving me with a slick, non cutting edge after a while.

Does it matter where I get my BBW from? I'm not talking shabby places, but I can order directly from ardennes-coticule or from some other respected sharpening gear sites.
I'm talking quality wise, not pricewise per se. Or are all the BBW's more or less the same?
 

Pie

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Thinking about asking a BBW for christmas. I only have synthetics now, and I want to try the 'toothy yet refined' experience a natural stone has for myself.
I like to finish my knives at a high gritt(5-8k), but I have to admit most steels don't hold it for long, leaving me with a slick, non cutting edge after a while.

Does it matter where I get my BBW from? I'm not talking shabby places, but I can order directly from ardennes-coticule or from some other respected sharpening gear sites.
I'm talking quality wise, not pricewise per se. Or are all the BBW's more or less the same?
Sir. It’s a crime, although not necessarily your fault, that you haven’t tried natural stones considering what magic you can extract from synthetics.

I second this for the glorious edges, as well as almost synthetic speed that BBW bring to the table.

If it were me, I’d ask if @cotedupy is willing to chase down another goose 🙂. Pretesting of natural stones is just about the only way to know exactly what you’re getting in terms of fineness and cleanliness. Perhaps this doesn’t apply as much outside jnats but there’s some… variation sometimes. That being said retailers for this sort of thing do have to maintain a reputation, I can’t imagine they’d sell a bad stone. From the actual origin, no less.
 

Kawa

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Thx for your answer.
I am aware its a natural product, giving it variations among stones. Not as much as coticules do I believe (if I informed myself correctly), but still.
Thats the scary part of this natural rabbit hole I guess. That's why, if I buy, it will be from a respected place.

I notice the thrustworthy retailers all have about the same price.

When reading the JNAT topics, I sometimes notice people buy a 'fake' stone of ebay or something. Just a weak stone with a stamp on it or whatever the shimmy seller did to get way too much money.

Thats about what I mean with quality.
Let me rephrase:
What would be reasons to buy directly from ardennes-coticules, instead of dictum or knivesandtools? Can I expect the same quality stone, keeping natural variationsin mind?
Or is it, for example, known that Ardennes-coticules keep the finest stones and sell the coarser ones the other retailers?
 

cotedupy

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What would be reasons to buy directly from ardennes-coticules, instead of dictum or knivesandtools? Can I expect the same quality stone, keeping natural variationsin mind?
Or is it, for example, known that Ardennes-coticules keep the finest stones and sell the coarser ones the other retailers?


Yes, I think you probably could expect the same quality regardless of vendor. I'm not speaking from first hand experience but that would be an educated guess because...

IME Belgian Blue doesn't have anything like the level of variation that yellow coticule does. Obviously there is some, but really it's all pretty good, and certainly quite similar in terms of sharpening.

The minutiae of polishing can show up small differences between stones, and naturally bonded BBW, or stone that's from next to the coticule layer, tends to be a little bit faster usually. But really - from the dozens and dozens of BBW stones I've used there haven't been any that I didn't think were good, and the variation is small compared to most other types of stone.
 

enchappo

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That’s the answer I was hoping to hear!! Thanks both.

Adding a wet pic and one with some Atoma slurry just for fun…

FE517177-CE97-4063-A97E-3E709C89DDC1.jpeg


And then one of the coti side (along with another coti I picked up with it) just because we all like pictures of rocks:
16D184A2-5313-4EEF-B62F-C347C968D838.jpeg
 

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cotedupy

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That’s the answer I was hoping to hear!! Thanks both.

Adding a wet pic and one with some Atoma slurry just for fun…

View attachment 210443

And then one of the coti side (along with another coti I picked up with it) just because we all like pictures of rocks:
View attachment 210444


Sweet stones!

As Skylar said - the colour is a dead giveaway, afaik no one has ever glued a coti onto a purple slate. That’d be confusing af!

The other thing in your first pics that showed it was clearly Belgian Blue are those little pinprick dot patterns it has. The large majority of BBW has that in some form.
 

enchappo

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Sweet stones!

As Skylar said - the colour is a dead giveaway, afaik no one has ever glued a coti onto a purple slate. That’d be confusing af!

The other thing in your first pics that showed it was clearly Belgian Blue are those little pinprick dot patterns it has. The large majority of BBW has that in some form.
58CD28EF-78CA-460C-993B-6E1DAFE33ECE.jpeg

You mean this stuff? That’s a great tip.

Tbh I assumed it was BBW when I got it, but that was only because I thought coti and BBW always came paired (naturally or otherwise)… so then when I realised that sometimes coticule was just bonded to slate I thought I better check!
 

cotedupy

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View attachment 210658
You mean this stuff? That’s a great tip.

Tbh I assumed it was BBW when I got it, but that was only because I thought coti and BBW always came paired (naturally or otherwise)… so then when I realised that sometimes coticule was just bonded to slate I thought I better check!


Yep exactly. Look like very small, dark pinprick dots, and you get them on most BBW but not on purple slates. They're actually red if you look up close / under a scope so could be garnet for all I know, but I guess not because with visible bits of abrasive like that the stone would be very coarse.

And you're right - it was overwhelmingly likely to be BBW, I've had dozens of old cotis and not one has been slate-backed. It's a relatively recent thing done by AC once people started realising how good BBW was, so they could sell that separately and just use cheap imported slate to back yellow coticules.

In the past BBW was regarded as fairly useless, few older cotis show any sign of wear or dishing on the BBW side, and many have chips or bits out of them like yours does in the middle there. It was just used as backing because that's what they had to hand at the quarries.
 

enchappo

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Yep exactly. Look like very small, dark pinprick dots, and you get them on most BBW but not on purple slates. They're actually red if you look up close / under a scope so could be garnet for all I know, but I guess not because with visible bits of abrasive like that the stone would be very coarse.

And you're right - it was overwhelmingly likely to be BBW, I've had dozens of old cotis and not one has been slate-backed. It's a relatively recent thing done by AC once people started realising how good BBW was, so they could sell that separately and just use cheap imported slate to back yellow coticules.

In the past BBW was regarded as fairly useless, few older cotis show any sign of wear or dishing on the BBW side, and many have chips or bits out of them like yours does in the middle there. It was just used as backing because that's what they had to hand at the quarries.
As usual, both impressed with and appreciative of your knowledge on stones like these! Love it.
 
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