new stone, Norton Ascent

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spaceconvoy

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What in the heck is this thing? There are zero results in the archive here. Sounds like Norton tried to create a synthetic novaculite. Has anyone used one and do they live up to their claims?

"No Flattening Required - Norton Ascent Stones start flat and remain flat. Checking a stone for flatness before every use is not needed.​
"Used Dry - Norton Ascent Ceramic Stones do not require any oil or water when sharpening. No preparation or cleanup is required.​
"Knife sharpeners will value the Norton Ascent Ceramic's flatness as well of course, but also their ability to handle super hard alloys. Hone exotic steel knives to razor sharpness quickly and efficiently."​
 

inferno

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sounds like a spyderco fuzed aluminum oxide type stone. buy one and report back!

i have the UF and its not very nice. could be good for razors but thats it. but mine is lapped to like 15k.

missarka is another similar one. but now its porous unlike the spydercos. not very nice that one either. i gave mine away. i had 4 of them. the missarkas are waterstones though.
 

KingShapton

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What in the heck is this thing? There are zero results in the archive here. Sounds like Norton tried to create a synthetic novaculite. Has anyone used one and do they live up to their claims?

"No Flattening Required - Norton Ascent Stones start flat and remain flat. Checking a stone for flatness before every use is not needed.​
"Used Dry - Norton Ascent Ceramic Stones do not require any oil or water when sharpening. No preparation or cleanup is required.​
"Knife sharpeners will value the Norton Ascent Ceramic's flatness as well of course, but also their ability to handle super hard alloys. Hone exotic steel knives to razor sharpness quickly and efficiently."​
More specifically, it looks like Norton has come up with a replacement, a substitute for translucent Arks. That makes sense somewhere, I recently read on the sharpeningsupplys website that the Norton translucent bench stone is no longer available because Norton has stopped dismantling it.

I've read something here and there about the Norton Ascent Ceramic Stones in the Bladeforum. Technically it has to be the same foundation as the Spyderco Stones. But with the difference that the stones from Spyderco are not really flat from the factory and Spyderco leaves it up to the buyer to flatten these stones. Sal explains this with the production costs/sales prices which would otherwise (for a really flat stone) be far too high.

The Norton Ascent, on the other hand, are said to be really dead-flat and the surface is said to be better finished, which would explain the significantly higher price.

How fine the respective stones are, regardless of whether they are Norton or Spyderco, simply depends on the conditioning of the surface. Technically, the Spyderco fine and the Spyderco Ultra fine are the same stone, only the surface of the ultra fine is more finely finished. And like @inferno, I finished my ultra fine even finer, down to 12-15k. Still, in my opinion, this stone is no substitute for a translucent Ark, not even close!

In general, the artificial ceramic stones like Spyderco fine, ultra fine and also the Norton Ascent have the same curse and blessing at the same time - you can condition the surface finer. But that also means, as I have experienced first-hand, that the stones become finer and slower with normal use. To the point where they do almost nothing. Then you have no choice but to condition the surface again (with loose sic powder), i.e. to make it less fine again. This is also confirmed by Sal himself, which can be read in the Cliff Stamp Forum and in the Spyderco Forum.

And at the latest, it becomes noticeable when stones are not completely flat...then it becomes a tedious, ****** job!

Personally, I can't get used to the concept! I am in the process of selling my Spyderco stones and I am absolutely not going to try a Norton Ascent, even for free!
 

Vamtal

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Norton video about Ascent:
Ascent product pdf: https://www.nortonabrasives.com/sga...roducts-ceramicbenchstones-nortondiy-7437.pdf

Both sources compare fine Ascent stone with Hard Arkansas:
"The fine grit Ascent ceramic bench stone has been
designed to impart an edge slightly sharper than our natural
hard Arkansas stones. The ultra-fine Ascent ceramic stones
will take you even farther; honing and polishing an already
sharp edge to a new level of sharpness." (from pdf)

hard ceramic stone without binder is not for me -> mainly for two reasons:
1) the speed of these stones gradually decreases a lot - the grain becomes dull but not replaced by a new one + the stone becomes clogged over time
2) the effective grit changes - it becomes finner and finner
 
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cotedupy

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Norton translucent bench stone is no longer available because Norton has stopped dismantling it.
Yes, this is the Translucent replacement.


Do we know this for a fact then...?

When I tried to find out about it I got the impression that it was only the 3" wide hard ark bench stone they'd stopped...
 

kayman67

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Yes, I've read about it at some point last year. This is fairly new. Can't seem to find it again. It was presented as a replacement.
They also stopped listing both 8" stones altogether and bigger, not just 8x3". Ascent line was presented as available in the future from 4" to 11" in 2 possible grits (fine and ultra fine). So my guess is they will eventually replace all hard arks and translucent. Kinda makes sense.
 

KingShapton

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No, we don't know it as a fact. I don't have any more information than sharpeningsupplies regarding the translucent wide bank stone.

But if the wide bank stone is discontinued, then either the raw material runs out, or the processing and sale are no longer economical. And that's exactly where the Ascent come into play, the comparison with fine Arkansas stones is already made by Norton himself in the item descriptio
Do we know this for a fact then...?

When I tried to find out about it I got the impression that it was only the 3" wide hard ark bench stone they'd stopped...

n.
 
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Norton themselves, at least in the video, says it can be a replacement for a Hard Ark. That could just be a terminology thing but if it is indeed a Hard Ark equivalent, then my question becomes why would I want to sped $150+USD on it?

Also, that's the guy Norton chooses to roll out their new sharpening stone?! "As you can see here, as I smash this knife into this stone..."

:oops:
 
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Desert Rat

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Fits the IM-313 and can be used as a replacement for a hard ark. So it's approximately 2 1/2" x 11 3/4". Norton has never produced a hard ark for the 313.

The surface of that stone sure does look corrugated. By design I guess?

Anyway this is the direction I am going to go. No sense in staying in the stone age....


not really.
 

kayman67

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Well, depends. I used one for some years.
SmartSelect_20220317-171633_Chrome.jpg

SmartSelect_20220317-171704_Chrome.jpg
 

Desert Rat

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Well, depends. I used one for some years.
View attachment 170288
Yes, Norton stopped making these big boys, but I don't know when exactly. I only ever saw one, labeled.
Ya, I never seen them. Did they have a translucent? That would be somthing!

I know Norton offers a soft in a set with the system but I have not noticed it being sold separately. Which is kind of odd unless I missed it and that could be.

Did you get a full set from Sharpening Supply's and load them in a 313?
 

KingShapton

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There used to be a white ceramic stone from Smith, I think 12-15 cm long and 4 cm wide. Also made from the material of the Spyderco stones, so presumably also from the material of the Norton Ascent. I must still have it in some drawer, maybe I can find it again.

A comparison with one of the Norton Ascent stones would interest me purely out of curiosity.... but the Norton Ascent don't seem to be available in Germany or Europe yet....or I'm too stupid to look properly...

Regardless, I wouldn't want to spend money on any of the Ascent Stones (as I said before), at most, just out of curiosity, for a Pocketstone of them.
 

kayman67

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That Smith was quite coarse, but had the potential to be burnished well enough. I had one until a few months ago. 15x4cm should be.
Yeah, some sort of ceramic particles, but didn't look like Spyderco.
 

KingShapton

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That Smith was quite coarse, but had the potential to be burnished well enough. I had one until a few months ago. 15x4cm should be.
Yeah, some sort of ceramic particles, but didn't look like Spyderco.
I'm glad that my memory didn't let me down with the measurements.

You're right, the Smith stone was relatively roughly finished compared to the Spyderco's, but I conditioned the surface more finely back then and it worked fine. From my memory, the stone could at least keep up with the Spyderco's. I really have to look for it.
 

kayman67

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I wonder why they stopped selling them. From China? I never had packaging.
 

KingShapton

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I wonder why they stopped selling them. From China? I never had packaging.
That's right, I didn't have any packaging either, you're right.

Unfortunately, Smith products are very sparsely available in Europe anyway. So I never thought about why the ceramic stones are no longer offered...

I know that Joe Calton swears by Smith's coarse diamond stone, you hardly ever find it here, and if you do find it, it's only in the small version. With the fine diamond stone it is exactly the other way around, mostly you only find it in the extra-long version, but not as a small version.

I generally have the impression that Smith is withdrawing more and more from the European market.
 

kayman67

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Had this. Not a bad combo, albeit haven't seen much usage. I imagine it would have been better with that ceramic and not the ark.
 

KingShapton

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Now that I think about it, the European market might not be that interesting for American grindstone manufacturers. This could be the reason that Smith products are only available here on a limited basis and the reason that the Norton Ascent are not offered here.
 

M1k3

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Now that I think about it, the European market might not be that interesting for American grindstone manufacturers. This could be the reason that Smith products are only available here on a limited basis and the reason that the Norton Ascent are not offered here.
I've heard about some European streets and buildings are built with sharpening stone material. Haven't heard anything like that about America..
 

kayman67

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Now that I think about it, the European market might not be that interesting for American grindstone manufacturers. This could be the reason that Smith products are only available here on a limited basis and the reason that the Norton Ascent are not offered here.

From a historic perspective, Europe never was a good place for sharpening products. Funny enough, most synthetic US products have their roots in Europe, but there was very little to no interest here.
 

KingShapton

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I've heard about some European streets and buildings are built with sharpening stone material. Haven't heard anything like that about America..
That's in UK, Greece and parts of Italy I'd I remember correctly. I am very happy that there is nothing like this in Germany, otherwise I would be in trouble....Partial dismantling of houses and streets that do not belong to you will certainly be punished and prosecuted by law ;)
 

cotedupy

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I've heard about some European streets and buildings are built with sharpening stone material. Haven't heard anything like that about America..

Hindostan stone has been used a lot for building in Indiana. Especially apparently gravestones, as it's very weather resistant. (Which is what makes me hope that soaking them, as I like to do, won't do any damage).
 

cotedupy

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From a historic perspective, Europe never was a good place for sharpening products. Funny enough, most synthetic US products have their roots in Europe, but there was very little to no interest here.

Apart from the UK perhaps. (Which despite our continuing efforts to f everything up in that regard, I still consider part of Europe!)
 

M1k3

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Hindostan stone has been used a lot for building in Indiana. Especially apparently gravestones, as it's very weather resistant. (Which is what makes me hope that soaking them, as I like to do, won't do any damage).
Sounds like I need to make a visit to Indiana... Recommend any particular cities?
 
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