Rika vs SG4000 - a (useless) comparison

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esoo

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A Rika and Shapton Glass 4000 lent to me by my coworker. Two Tojiro Shirogami knives in need of sharpening. Sounds like a comparison in the making
20200701_151241.jpg


Sharpening process
Shapton Pro 1000
Test Stone
Black latigo strop

Everything set on the SP1000, equal number of passes on the test stone, equal number of passes on the strop.

End result?
Both the Nakiri and Santoku ended up sharp. The edge goes to the santoku sharpened on the Rika - on the same piece of paper a pure vertical down cut will cut while the edge sharpened with the SG4000 won't. Push and pulling either blade on paper results in a nice clean cut.

I lent my Shapton Glass 6000 to my coworker otherwise I'd throw it into the mix.

Is this comparison meaningful? Probably not. Given my skill as a sharpener I suspect that someone else could get entirely different results.

Now have at it with the comments.
 

Knife2meatu

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The opposite, if anything. The Glass require a steadier hand to really benefit from. It's very easy to round the edge if your angle gets too high.
Interesting. I've not tried the Glass stones. Would you say the Pros behave similarly in this regard, compared to the Rika in the same respect?
 

Steampunk

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Thank you for the review. It is really useful!

You're fishing for comments... Here are mine...

You need more confidence in yourself; your self deprecation isn't deserved. Keep your humility, as this will keep your mind open, but there's no need to apologize for trying to share your observations with the intent to help others. Even if you're not the most seasoned stone user, your observations are always truly useful to people who want to learn about these stones... Just try to be observant, and share all the little details you notice while testing those stones, and you'll end up making someone's life a bit easier with the things you share. Just like with this review... By testing stones, trying to suss out what makes one better than another, your reviews will just grow in their usefulness to others. Don't stop.

When testing, you don't know a stone until you can get that perfect edge with it... All stones can achieve it. It just sometimes requires a technique alteration, or using it on a different knife/tool. If you own a certain knife, and someone else narrows in on the stone that gets the best results on it, that'll make your life better. Be that person for someone else... You have good testing discipline. Keep it up!

Also, add some more materials into your edge test... Slice some paper towels, or some peppers/tomatoes to evaluate tooth as well as push-cutting refinement.

I own the Shapton Glass 4K HR, and have had my eye on the Rika 5K for years... Your review helped me, and I'd like to pick one up. Thank you. :)

- Steampunk
 

esoo

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@Steampunk - thanks for the kind words. I've seen where my sharpening has sucked. I just made the change from Japanese style (back and forth) to Western style (sweeping the whole blade) and saw a dramatic improvement in my sharpness as I now don't wobble the blade as much. I actually raise a burr now as to before I could not for the life of me.

I posted this as I thought it could be about as good of comparisons as you can get - same type of steel from the same company sharpened by the same person using the same technique. Being KKF, I expected some random comments.

As for tests, yes I should provide more results of the edge - I just have cut anything else yet to see where they were at. Making dinner soon so time to do some more tests.

I should note this about the Rika - my coworker perma soaks it, but it had been in a box for a week before this test. It was still damp, I soaked it for about 10 minutes before use, and I didn't see any air bubbles come out when it went into the water. The Glass 4000 was submerged into the water and then used.
 

Steampunk

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@Steampunk Being KKF, I expected some random comments.
I wish this wasn't so... :(

KKF has the potential to be a great place for people to learn about knives and stones. There are talented people here with a lot of knowledge, and anyone interested in kitchen knives or sharpening stones/techniques that suit them can learn on a forum like this, but unfortunately the attitude of some makes this a less friendly place than it really deserves to be. :(

Your commentary is really useful... No ego, just real experiences... I hope you post more, because we need members like you.

- Steampunk
 

Kawa

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A little offtopic, so not too many words.
I'm new here (maybe a week) and my general opinion is that most people are really helpfull and kind toward eachother. I've been active on a Dutch motorcycle forum for 17 years, and there is a lot more nasty words towards eachother...

On topic
@esoo, i might understand your test wrongly. I asume u ended with the santoku on one stone and the nakiri on the other, right?
U did not finish both knives on both stones (to check per knife per stone which endend up sharper), right?


If my assumption is right, could it be that the nakiri for example, has a different geometry? Thicker behind the edge? Or does the santoku has a more acute angle?

This might be variables to check upon, just to give you some more to think about 😅. I really like what you did (those kind of comparing tests), but I also know out of experience with bowlingballs that 2 different variables can really ruin a 'right' conclusion.
No critics, just trying to be helpfull to let you make your own best conclusion
 

esoo

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From dinner prep:
On onions:. Horizontal cuts made by the Rika sharpened blade were slightly easier. Rest of the onion didn't notice a difference between blades.

On apples: I had to dice up 6 apples for the recipes I was making. On a push cut, I noticed that the Rika sharpened blade is easier - needing a touch less force on the cut. Tap chopping I noticed no difference.
 
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esoo

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A little offtopic, so not too many words.
I'm new here (maybe a week) and my general opinion is that most people are really helpfull and kind toward eachother. I've been active on a Dutch motorcycle forum for 17 years, and there is a lot more nasty words towards eachother...

On topic
@esoo, i might understand your test wrongly. I asume u ended with the santoku on one stone and the nakiri on the other, right?
U did not finish both knives on both stones (to check per knife per stone which endend up sharper), right?


If my assumption is right, could it be that the nakiri for example, has a different geometry? Thicker behind the edge? Or does the santoku has a more acute angle?

This might be variables to check upon, just to give you some more to think about 😅. I really like what you did (those kind of comparing tests), but I also know out of experience with bowlingballs that 2 different variables can really ruin a 'right' conclusion.
No critics, just trying to be helpfull to let you make your own best conclusion
Yes - the santoku was finished on the Rika, the Nakiri on the Glass 4000.

As for difference between the grinds, both being Tojiro from the same line, I would expect the grind to be similar. If anything, the Nakiri should be slightly thinner as I tried to thin it at one point.
 

daveb

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Thanks for the write up. I like the 5K Rika paired with the Shapton or with the Bestor 1200. Your results are similar to my experience.

When comparing stones I find it useful to bring two similar knives to as sharp as I can get them and then compare how much effort it took to get there.
 

esoo

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Thanks for the write up. I like the 5K Rika paired with the Shapton or with the Bestor 1200. Your results are similar to my experience.

When comparing stones I find it useful to bring two similar knives to as sharp as I can get them and then compare how much effort it took to get there.
Considering where I'm at with learning, it was easier to try and recreate the same actions on each stone and see what the results were.

As speaking of sharp, this is the first time for me that knives have wanted to stick in the board after sharpening - and this was the case for both knives.

I also stropped my HD2 on the Rika while I was doing this. It was about 20 passes on each side, but it seemed to respond very well. Ghosted through the potatoes I quartered for dinner.
 

kayman67

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So, first thing, both sharp, but not same sharp. Too many reasons why this happened. You could do them again and see what's going on, switching the knives. What I've noticed is that some stones also do better with different techniques, but don't change too many things yet.
Anyway, to some level, in the kitchen, this initial sharpness might not matter. Emphasis on "might", because after that initial sharpness, what I've seen is that sometimes even knives that can perform the same tricks right away, won't perform the same on the long run. So I usually say something about the edge after using it for a while.
 

esoo

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Very true, until you switch the knives & re-do the sharpening, can’t drew any conclusions
It is perfectly reasonable to draw a conclusion - it is just wise to understand the circumstances under which that conclusion is drawn.

Even if I were to swap blade/stone, I can think of a ton of reasons why you couldn't correlate the results from above to any new results. As well, if I were to try to recreate what I did above, I might get a different result. Consistency in testing is hard. Any protocol that you could come up with to have a controlled comparison of the stones, I can come up with a reason as to why it is invalid. Double test with swap stones/blades? The reasons just increased by an order of magnitude.
 

daveb

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Trying to quantify a qualitative measure.- gets a little muddy sometimes.
 

kayman67

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It is perfectly reasonable to draw a conclusion - it is just wise to understand the circumstances under which that conclusion is drawn.

Even if I were to swap blade/stone, I can think of a ton of reasons why you couldn't correlate the results from above to any new results. As well, if I were to try to recreate what I did above, I might get a different result. Consistency in testing is hard. Any protocol that you could come up with to have a controlled comparison of the stones, I can come up with a reason as to why it is invalid. Double test with swap stones/blades? The reasons just increased by an order of magnitude.
I just did it with same knives or over a long period of time. This way anything would even out.
 

Ruso

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Rika is a great stone. Paper, I think, is a good medium to test the edge - paper does not care about the geometry just how sharp the very edge is.
 
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