Need Kasumi stone progression

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Logan A.

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Either is fine, but you already have the 1K, and it should be a pretty good one.
That was the idea. Instead of going and buying multiple stones, I could just implement that one into my current set to establish likes/dislikes. While also being able to work towards a kasumi finish. Then of course I’d move on to other stones that have been recommended
 

Logan A.

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It seems like it’s impossible to pick the “best stone” (best being relative of course) until I have experienced what I prefer in a sharpening stone.
 

Steampunk

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Stones only play a part. It's about the process.

Kasumi finishing is an aesthetic finish, that is a secondary part of the process when thinning/regrinding san-mai/laminated steel knives and tools. Either you need to start on blades that were sharpened/finished masterfully so they are perfectly ground and only need to be worked aesthetically (If you're only using medium/fine stones, with the intent of refining the blade finish alone.), or you need to plan on doing the finish-grinding work on the blades yourself to get them evened out before you can even think of creating the beautiful Kasumi's you see.

I've started many a knife, with the intent of making it pretty on a 1K stone, only to learn that I'd just gotten myself into a major regrinding project.

Before Kasumi, comes the grind. This requires at least moderately coarse stones, and some imagination of the geometry you want to create. By making the blade road even, and shaped well, you make a knife that cuts well, and can later be made beautiful.

Learn about creating a 'Hamiguri' (Clamshell) grind, before you focus on making it pretty. 'Pretty' is something of a side-effect, of a knife that cuts well. 'Pretty' cannot happen without an even, and well shaped initial grind.

Use some cheaper knives, and regrind them on coarse stones to thin and convex them, pretending you are a knife maker. That will give you the foundational skills to create an even blade road on your better knives.

Once you've ground your san-mai knives well, you can start to finish them. Here's a general breakdown...

<300-600 grit (<300 for knives with very uneven grinds, or ones which need a lot of thinning. 600-ish for ones that are already thin, and were ground very well by the sharpener.) - At this level, you create facets. You zero the edge by pressing low on the blade, then you thin the grind up by pressing higher towards the shinogi line; maybe a middle one by pressing on the center of the blade road on a very high grind.

~1000-2000 grit - At this level, you can start blending the facets together using a rocking motion as you sharpen. First, start on the Jigane (Cladding) by pressing higher up on the blade towards the shinogi. Get some mud built up, because the cladding will help the stone release abrasive. Then move onto the Higane (Core Steel), by pressing your fingers towards the edge. Polish this awhile. Then, press between the two, to generate a finer third facet. Finally, twist your wrist to rock between them. This will start to blend the grind between the facets.

~ 3000-6000+ grit - At this level, you're just further smoothing the blend of those facets, and polishing the Jigane and Higane. Where you start depends upon the stone; whether you start on the upper part of the grind (Jigane), which you've convexed, or the lower part of the grind (Higane), before you start rocking between them.

There's a ton of different stones that can build a beautiful contrast. Some rely on a sound 'foundation' for the contrast created by a coarser stone, being built up, more than others. Without an even blade road, though, these stones will just create an ugly finish.

For the initial grind, I find that Shapton Pro 220, JNS 300, Naniwa Pro 600, and Shapton Pro 1000 are great depending upon how much cut you need. For really messed up grinds, you start needing to break out coarse sandpaper, or a belt-grinder. When working by hand, you'll develop the virtue of patience.

For the foundational kasumi/blending stage, Naniwa Pro 600, Suehiro Cerax 1000, and JNS Red Aoto are amazing kasumi-creators/grind blenders (Depending upon how much cut you want to achieve, and how coarse your previous stone was. The finer the previous stone, the finer the following stone can be.). The JNS Red Aoto is fairly fine-cutting, so cannot really do much for the grind, but it'll polish well enough you'll ask yourself twice whether or not you need to take the refinement higher. The Naniwa Pro 600 to JNS Red Aoto is a nice progression. The Suehiro 1K can progress up to a 6K stone.

For the final polish, there are some synthetic stones to refine the blend and the scratch pattern... However, I find a Belgian Blue Whetstone (Yes, it is a natural, but a cheap natural that typically costs the same or less than a good synth, and cuts really well with some mud.) with a slurry stone is a really fool-proof kasumi-polishing stone on a budget. It won't polish super high, but it will create and maintain a halfway decently polished contrast, and the edge it leaves is killer in the kitchen. Short of this, something like the orange Suehiro Cerax 6K, or the JNS 6K would be a good choice to get some polish on the core steel, and refine the cladding a bit.

After you create the finish, you micro-bevel on a very fine and hard stone of your choice... Maybe it's a 6K synth, or a natural...

Hopefully this helps. Just remember, to focus on the grind first, and then the finishing second. As soon as you start touching the primary grind, you start having to think like a knife-maker.
 
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inferno

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i like these for kasumi.

1k shapton pro/naniwa pro 800 (very good)
2k naniwa pro (very good)
3k ouka/cerax (streaky)
4k cleancut kitayama (so-so)
8k cerax/traditional (streaky)
8k green suehiro (very very good)
9k karasu (almost identical to the 8k green, but splash and go)

these days i just make a flat bevel then any 1k, 3-4k, then the 8k green or the karasu. done.
 

Jurrian

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Hi,
A lot of of good suggestions here. This is what I do.
make an even scratch pattern from low grit and up. A Shapton 320 will leave be helpful in recognizing if the scratch pattern is even because it leaves a bit of dark scratches. Especially helpful in convex grinds. If the pattern is not even, it will show on higher grits. Repeat the process with 1k and 3k. I use naniwa pro or super stone, results are pretty much the same, moving towards mirror polish.
Then I use jnats, different steels will react differently.
I use and like natsuya (1-2k), aizu (3-4K) and if I’m not satisfied maruoyama shiro suita.
check out Milan’s video
http://instagr.am/p/CREwCZOi5mZ/
 

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daveb

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The cheap answer is to add a King 800 to your setup.

For a single vendor lineup for sharpening and polishing it would be hard to beat the Gesshin series.

How is your sharpening game? Suggest you focus your resources there until proficient, and then take on polishing.
 

milangravier

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A lot of the time, when you find info about stones for making kasumi, advises are about getting a kasumi with this particular stone. For exemple King 800 will give you a finish close to kasumi (means iron dark, steel bright). But actually you don't really want to have a kasumi finish at 800 grit if you're gonna go all the way up to 6k or 8k. Actually it is counterproductive as giving a kasumi, the stone will hide your bevel that you try to make clean to get the best finish you can at 8K.

I have done some video on my instagram you can look about stone polishing, and will go on about that.
About a selection of stone here is what I am using or what I would advise to someone :
Most important : good coarse stones.
Debado 180 : for shaping and giving your bevel the main plans, lines, curves. This will do about 60% of the job.
Hard coarse stone to check your bevel for low spot or uneveness : I use diamond stone but they are expensive. So you can get : shapton glass 320, nano hone 400 or jns 300, any hard stone with 220/400 grit around.
Naniwa pro 400 : it is great for erasing all the previous scratches and give your bevel the final shape. After this you'll be polishing, meaning you'll grind almost nothing on the knife, just erasing scratches.
(Naniwa pro 600 : hard stone that will erase your 400 grit scratches. Not necessary but it is faster to use it than jump to 2k directly)
Bester 2K and Naniwa 2k : Bester is hard, so will erase 400 scratches on iron, checking you got no low spot. If there is, go back to naniwa pro 400 at least. Naniwa pro 2k is softer, pretty fine and will work good on your hard steel to erase 400 scratches and for your iron to erase the bester scratches that are deeper.
Naniwa super 3k : this is a scratch eraser on hard steel. Need refresh often but work great to be sure any previous scratches are erased. Work for hard steel with this one.
Naniwa super 5k or pro 5k : will give your hard steel a fine miror finish. Work for hard steel, forget about your iron
Last stone in a synthetic progression : I will go for morihei 6 or 8k. but there is a lot that can give you a nice kasumi if your bevel is fine : bester 6k, jns 6k, naniwa pro 5k. Be good at 6k and later on your go finer synthetic or maybe naturals...!

Oh, and don't forget about an atoma 140, just necessary tool if you want to stone polish.
 

Cliff

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I am amazed how clean the bevel looks when you worked it with the Atoma 140. I've only used it for thinning, but it has left serious scratches that are difficult to get out. Are you using very light pressure to shape the bevel?
 

milangravier

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I am no more using atoma 140 for shaping because it worns too quickly... But it works fast, just you can only do about 6 or 8 blades before the plate is worn.
But yeah, I am always using low pressure when shaping because it help not to create low spot or uneveness. I put pressure only where I am sure there high spot, too much material
 

Cliff

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That was my next question -- about burning through the plates. Thinning really took a lot of life out of it.
 

milangravier

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That was my next question -- about burning through the plates. Thinning really took a lot of life out of it.
That's why I advise debado 180 now.
The diamond plate I got is 6mm vitrified diamond plate, 400 grit. I just got it recently. It is really good but expensive
 
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