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Illyria

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I went on a small hike today and saw a stone that looked pretty flat, so I threw it in my backpack for a little diy project and got a bit carried away and finished it today.

Friend who's into geology says that it looks metamorphic and maybe schist composite. No idea what that means.

Flattened it on my belt sander with a 36 grit belt and then finished it up with my atoma 140.

It has surprisingly nice feedback and doesn't have any apparent toxic spots.

It's definitely on the harder side, but less so than my okudo suita (4+)

Edge feels a tiny bit more refined than my Gesshin 4k, but has more tooth to it.

I'm absolute **** at polishing, but thought I would show a quick picture of what it does to iron clad blue 2.

Ended up at 225mm x 75mm and 45mm thick and weighs in at 1459g

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JDC

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Lucky you! I went to find stones today but all three were too hard to be used for knives.
 

Illyria

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Lucky you! I went to find stones today but all three were too hard to be used for knives.
I really wasn't expecting to get a remotely usable stone out of it. It was honestly just an excuse to not work today, haha.

Overall I'm pretty pleased with it, although I definitely don't need any more stones.
 

nakiriknaifuwaifu

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I really wasn't expecting to get a remotely usable stone out of it. It was honestly just an excuse to not work today, haha.

Overall I'm pretty pleased with it, although I definitely don't need any more stones.
This is very cool. I lack the tools to be a lapidary artist; would you consider selling them? I'm intrigued buying a random stone.
 

JDC

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I really wasn't expecting to get a remotely usable stone out of it. It was honestly just an excuse to not work today, haha.

Overall I'm pretty pleased with it, although I definitely don't need any more stones.
Then the day was even more rewarding :)

The stone under the scope looks very similar to my Ozuku Asagi

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The Ozuku is much finer, maybe because that it's clearner and harder.
 

applepieforbreakfast

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That finish looks really nice!

What sort of geographic regions(?) can produce stones like these? Anything in particular that lets you know that a stone might be worth investing the time to make it useable?
 

Illyria

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That finish looks really nice!

What sort of geographic regions(?) can produce stones like these? Anything in particular that lets you know that a stone might be worth investing the time to make it useable?
This stone was found in Santa Fe, NM. 7,200' elevation.

It was a pretty random pick. I just chose one that was flat and looked fairly uniform.
 

Illyria

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This is very cool. I lack the tools to be a lapidary artist; would you consider selling them? I'm intrigued buying a random stone.
Haha, I'm going to keep this one to mess around with, but now I'm really interested in looking for more stones. I'll keep you posted if I can find anything of interest.

Then the day was even more rewarding :)

The stone under the scope looks very similar to my Ozuku Asagi

View attachment 95075

The Ozuku is much finer, maybe because that it's clearner and harder.
It looks really similar to my okudo suita under the scope, but definitely isn't as fine.

I'm going to go out next week and look for some other stones to try out.
 

JDC

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I may visit some friends in Santa Fe this winter
Haha, I'm going to keep this one to mess around with, but now I'm really interested in looking for more stones. I'll keep you posted if I can find anything of interest.



It looks really similar to my okudo suita under the scope, but definitely isn't as fine.

I'm going to go out next week and look for some other stones to try out.
I may visit some friends in Albuquerque this winter, will keep an eye on stones 😅
 

tincent

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What type of scope are you using? Nice scope shots too.
 

ma_sha1

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What a great idea!!

I used to live in the mountains where there’s a lot of slate, I think they are good for finishing knives also. You can split them open, they often turn into flat sheets & they are softer than other stones

I might need to keep an eye out for DIY stones on hikes from now on
 

VICTOR J CREAZZI

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I do quite a bit of sharpening stone hunting in Colorado. I've found a few slates that are pretty good. There is a local guy that sells Ancient Ocean stones that he finds here. I have an interest in geology that helps me rule out certain areas, and pick out others that I want to check out . The Roadside Geology books are a good place to start IMO.
 
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cotedupy

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I remembered this post in the back of my mind when walking through the bush here and came across a lot of very similar looking rocks, and also a lot of grey slate. Have taken a selection home with me, and will report back...
 

Illyria

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I remembered this post in the back of my mind when walking through the bush here and came across a lot of very similar looking rocks, and also a lot of grey slate. Have taken a selection home with me, and will report back...
Going to be heading out on another hike this week to look for some more stones as well.

Let me know how yours turn out!
 

cotedupy

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So this afternoon I flattened a couple of the smaller ones I picked up. The type that I had hoped was a bit like yours actually turned out to be no good at all, large particles and very hard. But the bit of slate I tried was interesting.

Here it is after flattening and being dunked in water. With a pretty reflection of a tree! The lines in it are just in the stone, it's already completely flat:

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I trialled it with some wet n dry 320 grit sandpaper, and it got a bit of mud. Also weirdly in the shape of a tree:

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Moving on to a knife... I used Tosa blade straight from the factory (so not really sharp at all), and didn't start or finish on any other stone, just this.

It didn't really raise much of a slurry, just a little bit. The stone seemed quite hard in general, no risk of me digging into it or anything. It took about ten mins but I got the knife sharp enough to be vertically push cutting through paper. Which I didn't think too bad for a random and quite small bit of slate I found on the ground!

Would never have thought about picking it up if it wasn't for this thread so thank you @Illyria
 
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cotedupy

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And a Q for you and other experts...

You can probably tell I know nothing about natural stones. I've never seen one or used one, unless this odd bit of slate counts, so apologies if this is very basic... If a stone such as this is not raising much mud, and seems quite hard, does that mean that if I'm sharpening a knife to reasonable sharpness as I did, that it will be removing a fair bit of metal? Or the other way wound? (It did take quite a while.)

And if you could make a guess from what I've said - what, if anything, would this kind of slate be best used for in terms of sharpening/finishing? (I only ask because there's a huge amount of this stuff around here, so if it has a better use than what I tried I might make myself a proper stone...)
 
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cotedupy

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Have just given it another couple of mins and the knife is properly sharp now it seems. But nothing like the kind of toothy edge which sticks in a fingernail, that I get when using my normal (synthetic) waterstones. I need to start reading more about all this!
 
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VICTOR J CREAZZI

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If a stone such as this is not raising much mud, and seems quite hard, does that mean that if I'm sharpening a knife to reasonable sharpness as I did, that it will be removing a fair bit of metal? Or the other way wound? (It did take quite a while.)
I don't think that there is any correlation between hardness and abrasive content for random stones. There would possibly be correlation within a particular stone deposit.
 

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