the grandiose synth kasumi thread

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Hz_zzzzzz

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I see a lot of mistakes in the polishing process in this post. Most of them come from leaving scratches from rougher stones and not understanding how to polish a knife. Unidirectional polishing will yield bad results.
Can you elaborate a little bit? I’m learning this and any knowledge would be appreciated.
 

memorael

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Can you elaborate a little bit? I’m learning this and any knowledge would be appreciated.
Sure, see the thing is, if you polish your knife in the same direction (meaning using the same strokes all the time) the lower grit grooves after a while tend to form channels where the new abrasive compound run through and so the lower grit scratches don't get abraded. There's ways around this, usually it involves using higher grit stones and then going down again and then up again until the scratches are gone... takes forever. If you polish in one direction say this one -> \ then when you use a higher grit stone change the direction in order to reveal those hidden scratches and cut across them... I don't know if that makes sense? So if your knife is say perpendicular to your stone try doing parallel motions with the next stone. This has some diminishing returns, after a while going from like 5k to say 8k this doesn't make that much of a difference but when using something really course then using a 1k you will notice the effect. Also I would say around 3k to 5k is where the whole direction thing really makes a difference. If you do this correctly once you get to your highest grit or finishing stone you shouldn't see any and I DO MEAN ANY!!!! scratches that aren't all in the same direction and they should be even, meaning the all look the same.

Some abrasives like Japanese naturals cut differently than synthetic stones which is why some polishers only use synthetics up to 1k or 2k. As I understand it, lower grit naturals are basically sandstones with quartz or silica abrasives that are inferior to synthetics but once you get to AOTO levels, the stones abrasive is microscopic plankton and what not the basically turned into some abrasive that I can't recall.... Could be silica too, but the shape of the abrasive is potato chip formed and so when it cuts the steel it basically slices a thick groove that is very shallow, this is why Japanese Naturals don't mirror polish (I know there are exceptions and I mean mirror polish in like clearly mirror polish think naniwa 10k clear) you do get a clear reflection but it is almost always hazy or cloudy. In essence if you want to get the best polish and a clear contrast use synthetics only up to 1k or 2k and then a good Japanese aoto and nothing other than Japanese naturals for a classical Japanese polish. I however have messed around with other stone and stuff and you basically just go through the aoto take a while getting a nice even surface ready to get polished even further and boom, you use another sharp abrasive and in come the grooves again. Nothing wrong with it but its not the classical Japanese polish most people try to achieve.
 

Hz_zzzzzz

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Sure, see the thing is, if you polish your knife in the same direction (meaning using the same strokes all the time) the lower grit grooves after a while tend to form channels where the new abrasive compound run through and so the lower grit scratches don't get abraded. There's ways around this, usually it involves using higher grit stones and then going down again and then up again until the scratches are gone... takes forever. If you polish in one direction say this one -> \ then when you use a higher grit stone change the direction in order to reveal those hidden scratches and cut across them... I don't know if that makes sense? So if your knife is say perpendicular to your stone try doing parallel motions with the next stone. This has some diminishing returns, after a while going from like 5k to say 8k this doesn't make that much of a difference but when using something really course then using a 1k you will notice the effect. Also I would say around 3k to 5k is where the whole direction thing really makes a difference. If you do this correctly once you get to your highest grit or finishing stone you shouldn't see any and I DO MEAN ANY!!!! scratches that aren't all in the same direction and they should be even, meaning the all look the same.

Some abrasives like Japanese naturals cut differently than synthetic stones which is why some polishers only use synthetics up to 1k or 2k. As I understand it, lower grit naturals are basically sandstones with quartz or silica abrasives that are inferior to synthetics but once you get to AOTO levels, the stones abrasive is microscopic plankton and what not the basically turned into some abrasive that I can't recall.... Could be silica too, but the shape of the abrasive is potato chip formed and so when it cuts the steel it basically slices a thick groove that is very shallow, this is why Japanese Naturals don't mirror polish (I know there are exceptions and I mean mirror polish in like clearly mirror polish think naniwa 10k clear) you do get a clear reflection but it is almost always hazy or cloudy. In essence if you want to get the best polish and a clear contrast use synthetics only up to 1k or 2k and then a good Japanese aoto and nothing other than Japanese naturals for a classical Japanese polish. I however have messed around with other stone and stuff and you basically just go through the aoto take a while getting a nice even surface ready to get polished even further and boom, you use another sharp abrasive and in come the grooves again. Nothing wrong with it but its not the classical Japanese polish most people try to achieve.
Thanks. Basically we need to change direction to completely remove lower grit scratches, and switch to Jnat after maybe 2k for more scratch-less result. Makes a lot sense to me.
 

jwthaparc

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I hope these two pictures prove my point.

Just because there are deeper scratches, it doesn't mean the person didn't remove scratches from lower grits. Some stones leave deeper scratches along with finer ones. I wanted to clearly show this.

These are going along the edge, left by my king 300. You can clearly see they are all running that way.
20210901_065126.jpg


Then we have my chosera 800. The scratches here are going perpendicular to the ones of the king 300, and you can see the king 300 scratches have been erased.
20210901_070101.jpg


My point is, there is a good chance what you're seeing isn't people leaving scratches behind from lower grits. Some synthetic stones tend to leave deeper scratches. Which is kind of the point of this thread. To find synthetic stones that are good for kasumi finishes, and avoid ones that leave ugly scratches.
 

memorael

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I hope these two pictures prove my point.

Just because there are deeper scratches, it doesn't mean the person didn't remove scratches from lower grits. Some stones leave deeper scratches along with finer ones. I wanted to clearly show this.

These are going along the edge, left by my king 300. You can clearly see they are all running that way.
View attachment 140419

Then we have my chosera 800. The scratches here are going perpendicular to the ones of the king 300, and you can see the king 300 scratches have been erased.
View attachment 140420

My point is, there is a good chance what you're seeing isn't people leaving scratches behind from lower grits. Some synthetic stones tend to leave deeper scratches. Which is kind of the point of this thread. To find synthetic stones that are good for kasumi finishes, and avoid ones that leave ugly scratches.
I can see the scratches left behind from the king 300 running in the other direction, this isn't easy stuff too do and it takes a long time to practice. I would suggest you jump to a really fine stone on this exact knife and polish lightly, just enough to see what is going on, you should clear up enough to see theres still scratches going in both directions.
I mean no disrespect, if anything comes across as it, I assure you it isn't, just got on the forums again after like a 10 year hiatus don't want to start beef with no one.
 

memorael

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Thanks. Basically we need to change direction to completely remove lower grit scratches, and switch to Jnat after maybe 2k for more scratch-less result. Makes a lot sense to me.
There's that and also, use a higher grit polish to reveal the lower grit scratches, think like maybe 10 passes or something to the liking of that, if you polish to much you can run the risk of making the scratches harder to see.
One other thing I forgot to mention, if you use stones that load up or fail to keep them clear the steel bring removed will scratch the knife too so... yeah... there's that to take into the equation too.
 

jwthaparc

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Ummm. What are you talking about??? Here I even went and dug out my macro lens to prove my point.

Here's another picture of it.
20210902_124837.jpg


Here it is with the macro on. Tell me where you see scratches from the king 300?
20210902_125551.jpg


Now there are various little scratches and even a small chip on it now because I threw it in this container, because I only use it as a utility knife. But I dont see any king 300 scratches.
20210902_125625.jpg
 

jwthaparc

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I spent a couple seconds on the stone just to get rid of the random scratches from being in the box to show it.

20210902_130607.jpg
 

memorael

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I spent a couple seconds on the stone just to get rid of the random scratches from being in the box to show it.

View attachment 140623
Well... there's two things going on right here. The first one and more important one, AS I MENTIONED in my first post, changing the direction removes the older scratches better than keeping the same direction going. The first pic in your post where you are proving MY POINT the scratches are going in the direction parallel to the edge. On the second pic the scratches are clearly going about 45 to 60 degrees from the edge.

The second one, I can clearly see you used another stone to re sharpen the knife, the finish is obviously better and not only that but it seems you used an aoto stone, unless I am wrong, the picture you took of the knife is on top of a stone that looks like one. Whatever it is it is clearly a higher grit finish. Also I can still see theres a scratch pattern going in the opposite direction once again proving my point, up on the left side of the knife there's a lot of dots instead of scratches. EXACTLY what you would see if you form an X scratch pattern.

If your looking for a fight or whatever I'm game, just make sure your prepared to loose.

Here are your pics with the obvious king 300 scratches.
 

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jwthaparc

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Well... there's two things going on right here. The first one and more important one, AS I MENTIONED in my first post, changing the direction removes the older scratches better than keeping the same direction going. The first pic in your post where you are proving MY POINT the scratches are going in the direction parallel to the edge. On the second pic the scratches are clearly going about 45 to 60 degrees from the edge.

The second one, I can clearly see you used another stone to re sharpen the knife, the finish is obviously better and not only that but it seems you used an aoto stone, unless I am wrong, the picture you took of the knife is on top of a stone that looks like one. Whatever it is it is clearly a higher grit finish. Also I can still see theres a scratch pattern going in the opposite direction once again proving my point, up on the left side of the knife there's a lot of dots instead of scratches. EXACTLY what you would see if you form an X scratch pattern.

If your looking for a fight or whatever I'm game, just make sure your prepared to loose.

Here are your pics with the obvious king 300 scratches.
The stone it was sitting on top of is a venev 240 I was currently using to flatten the back of a plane blade when I dug the kiridashi out of that tub it had been rattling around in. The only aoto I have is super scratchy and would leave a really ****** finish. The only scratches going parallel to the edge on it are from it literally being bumping and scraping against hardened steel. If you look closely you can even see a chip at the edge that wasn't there too. That's why I spent about 10 seconds on the chosera for the final picture in my post to clean those scratches off.

If by the second shot you can clearly see the exact same deep scratches left by the chosera 800 on the left side of the blade.

Actually I'll post a picture of it polished by my aoto in a second when I have time.
 

jwthaparc

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I wanted to highlight some of scratches left on it going in other directions that you can clearly see.
20210903_112751.jpg


The point is, I left the same finish as the original picture, but there are a bunch of surface scratches. That took literally no time at all to get rid of.

I probably should have said this in the original post, but I got rid of the king 300 scratches way before I stopped sharpening with the chosera 800. I spent probably ten minutes on it before I took the original picture, because the polish kept coming out really uneven in the top left. If you can see anything at all (which I still can't see, and couldn't see in person) it was probably because i wipe the blade dry the same direction as the 300 grit scratches go.

Edit: this is the every first picture you can see the blade isn't fully dry, and the direction it smeared when I wiped it off with my dirty sharpening rag.
20210903_113955.jpg
 

memorael

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I wanted to highlight some of scratches left on it going in other directions that you can clearly see.
View attachment 140758

The point is, I left the same finish as the original picture, but there are a bunch of surface scratches. That took literally no time at all to get rid of.

I probably should have said this in the original post, but I got rid of the king 300 scratches way before I stopped sharpening with the chosera 800. I spent probably ten minutes on it before I took the original picture, because the polish kept coming out really uneven in the top left. If you can see anything at all (which I still can't see, and couldn't see in person) it was probably because i wipe the blade dry the same direction as the 300 grit scratches go.

Edit: this is the every first picture you can see the blade isn't fully dry, and the direction it smeared when I wiped it off with my dirty sharpening rag. View attachment 140759
ok cool, post the pictures of the aoto finish, I'd like to see them.
 

jwthaparc

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ok cool, post the pictures of the aoto finish, I'd like to see them.
Ok. This is the aoto. I'm at work right now, so I dont have my macro lense. When I get back I can upload another macro.

This one does have scratches I didn't get rid of for sure. I just didn't feel like spending any more time on it.
20210905_150801.jpg


anyway. It leaves a wierd scratchy finish. Most likely the worst of all my stones.
 
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Pie

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I've struggled to get anything close to this on my NP3K. All I get is a streaky mess with some haze and some shiny polished. What kind of pressure do you use? How much mud? How much water? Thanks for any insight.
That used to happen to me! Like every time until this one. Was pretty close to selling it out of frustration. I can’t pin down exactly what it was I did this time, but it was off SP120, SG220, NP400, NP1k -> NP3k. Heavy focus on thick mud and low pressure to maximize contrast on the NP400 and 1k.

I suspect the good results are from doing a complete convex thinning (poorly, I might add) to get rid of as many low spots as possible. The bevel is mostly even, which I’m guessing is the reason the polish turned out even. I used heavy pressure with clean water on the hagane, full length strokes. On the jigane I used medium then light pressure, taking advantage of the smooth watery mud formed from the previous step. Medium length strokes, not quite the super short precise ones. This part the stone still feels like it’s cutting ever so lightly, instead of polishing, to give you a landmark for pressure. Light pressure once-over the whole bevel short stroke with heavy mud (careful to not scrub the core steel too much) and you get very close to mirror core, nice soft fine cladding. Most jnat finishers I have will add a sort of pearl finish to the mirror, giving it some texture if you like. Keep in mind my very shaky attempt at hamaguri sharpening made it much easier to focus on core and cladding separately. A completely flat bevel I find chatters and streaks uncontrollably.

Hope this helps, both my polishing and explaining skills need work.
 
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Heckel7302

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That used to happen to me! Like every time until this one. Was pretty close to selling it out of frustration. I can’t pin down exactly what it was I did this time, but it was off SP120, SG220, NP400, NP1k -> NP3k. Heavy focus on thick mud and low pressure to maximize contrast on the NP400 and 1k.

I suspect the good results are from doing a complete convex thinning (poorly, I might add) to get rid of as many low spots as possible. The bevel is mostly even, which I’m guessing is the reason the polish turned out even. I used heavy pressure with clean water on the hagane, full length strokes. On the jigane I used medium then light pressure, taking advantage of the smooth watery mud formed from the previous step. Medium length strokes, not quite the super short precise ones. This part the stone still feels like it’s cutting ever so lightly, instead of polishing, to give you a landmark for pressure. Light pressure once-over the whole bevel short stroke with heavy mud (careful to not scrub the core steel too much) and you get very close to mirror core, nice soft fine cladding. Most jnat finishers I have will add a sort of pearl finish to the mirror, giving it some texture if you like. Keep in mind my very shaky attempt at hamaguri sharpening made it much easier to focus on core and cladding separately. A completely flat bevel I find chatters and streaks uncontrollably.

Hope this helps, both my polishing and explaining skills need work.
Thanks. All interesting things to think about. My attempts have been on flat bevels, only my practice kiridashi and a moritaka honesuki. I spent considerable time flattening them and removing low spots, so that's not the issue. I guess I'll have to keep experimenting. After much frustration with the NP3K I decided to pull out the 6K side of my old King KW65 and it worked a treat. In no time I had a very even kasumi (save for a few scratches) on the iron and a polished core steel with lots of contrast. I guess a soft, muddy synth like that is the way to go.

Here’s the Moritaka after the King 6k

AC0871F6-7BFE-4EF6-84C9-4AA0CCB10F1D.jpeg
33EB93EB-D6AD-4F39-9801-A34F1371C61E.jpeg
C65B5BCB-0558-45D8-A544-A6B5247F85CD.jpeg
 

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Thanks. All interesting things to think about. My attempts have been on flat bevels, only my practice kiridashi and a moritaka honesuki. I spent considerable time flattening them and removing low spots, so that's not the issue. I guess I'll have to keep experimenting. After much frustration with the NP3K I decided to pull out the 6K side of my old King KW65 and it worked a treat. In no time I had a very even kasumi (save for a few scratches) on the iron and a polished core steel with lots of contrast. I guess a soft, muddy synth like that is the way to go.

Here’s the Moritaka after the King 6k

View attachment 142639View attachment 142640View attachment 142641
Hugely jealous of the moritaka honesuki. Polish looks good too! There’s some high grit synths that can produce nice kasumi for sure. Kitayama 8k comes to mind, although I haven’t touched that one in a while. These days I take it to 3k and on to jnat prefinisher. Arashiyama 6k is one id like to try. NP3k is capable of quite a fine polish on the cladding (for the grit rating), kinda weird, quite fast too.

I believe more screwing around may be warranted, something (you might not even know what it is) will click at some point in time and you’ll end up with better results. Pressure and mud were repeatable keys for me.

Happy polishing!
 

jwthaparc

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Thanks. All interesting things to think about. My attempts have been on flat bevels, only my practice kiridashi and a moritaka honesuki. I spent considerable time flattening them and removing low spots, so that's not the issue. I guess I'll have to keep experimenting. After much frustration with the NP3K I decided to pull out the 6K side of my old King KW65 and it worked a treat. In no time I had a very even kasumi (save for a few scratches) on the iron and a polished core steel with lots of contrast. I guess a soft, muddy synth like that is the way to go.

Here’s the Moritaka after the King 6k

View attachment 142639View attachment 142640View attachment 142641
The king 6k can give some really nice results.
20200822_191443.jpg


This is a picture I took a couple years ago of my tojiro shirogami 210. I finished with my king 6k (long gone now) and rubbed some of the slurry on the bevel to make sure it evened out.
 

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No grandiose kasumi, but a look at scratch pattern with an even less grandiose blade.

IMG_0390.jpg

This an Higo Aogami 100mm. And my first go on a new Nanohone 200.

Obviously the knife has that shifty grind nearing the handle. Last Higono I had (lost/stolen/alien abducted) was even worse with a big recurve at the edge. This one a sort of concave low spot/OG, but minimal recurve. Anything of the likes reminding of most edges on cheap western knives with a full bolster. It's like you'd have understood by now when a design is just bad.

Back to scratches now...

IMG_0392.jpg
IMG_0393.jpg
IMG_0396.jpg


About the Nanohone: Contrast is good - not like it's important at that level anyway, but still... Behaved scratch pattern. Didn't feel particularly hard nor soft, nor particularly muddy or not. It IS truly splash and go but does soak a bit of water to start. Dries faster than my SP320 did when left to dry. As long as I won't polish a proper sized blade, hard to say much about water behavior in serious work. Has sort of a porous, very grainy feeling. Readily releases abrasives, I'd guesstimate somewhat as dishy or a bit dishier than SG500. For coarseness it's generally very well behaved, but it's not like I'm thrilled with it or something. I do like how it polishes - seems a good start. It's hard enough to validate work on a wide bevel, but I'd still be inclined to make sure I have a very hard stone to follow up. It has enough give for convexing work. Sort of imperfect middle ground but can sure be of good use if the progression is well thought from it. Couldn't say much about speed from this polishing session but I feel it won't be as fast as the best I've seen in these grits. All in all, I'd say that if a Cerax 320 would be harder and splash and go, possibly a bit faster, Nanohone 200 would be it. Weird to compare the Nano to such a muddy dishy thirsty stone, but really it's the one it made me think about the most. If in doubt about this statement, try a non-permasoaked Cerax 320 with very little soaking time (I did a few times in the beginning) and compare the feeling. Even the scratch pattern resembles a Cerax 320 that wasn't soaked enough. Same ballpark dark kasumi and quite good contrast, as well. Will probably try some soaking periods with the Nano and see what happens... hoping what happens won't be its demise.

And more scratches still - gracieuseté of SG500 this time.

IMG_0400.jpg
IMG_0401.jpg


It's not that it took time to cover up the Nanohone scratch pattern, however it took more time than I expected to clean it, and still wasn't perfect. Not just especially around the low spot, but as you can see, a bit of everywhere. Either SG500 takes much more readily from either a (well soaked/perma) Cerax 320 or even my Sigma 240... or either it's working on such a small bevel that completely puts me off my marks. It really wasn't a pleasurable experience polishing the Higo, even counting out the handle being a PITA.

IMG_0402.jpg
IMG_0405.jpg

Under it's better angle though, blade looks like finer factory belt pattern... or so.


A testament of real splash and go coarse stones...
IMG_0407.jpg
 

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Now... it was time for my favorite polisher.

I give you... Imanishi 1200!

IMG_0408.jpg
IMG_0409.jpg
IMG_0410.jpg

IMG_0412.jpg

IMG_0413.jpg


I tried to take a picture of the hollow nearing the handle, which was quite clearly visible looking down the edge with the naked eye... in picture not so much it seems. But still...

IMG_0414.jpg


After a final go with metal polish and oil.

IMG_0416.jpg
IMG_0417.jpg
IMG_0419.jpg


Edge is Nano 200 - SG500.

Had some unpacking to do at work this morning. A pleasure to use.
 

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No grandiose kasumi, but a look at scratch pattern with an even less grandiose blade.

View attachment 143979
This an Higo Aogami 100mm. And my first go on a new Nanohone 200.

Obviously the knife has that shifty grind nearing the handle. Last Higono I had (lost/stolen/alien abducted) was even worse with a big recurve at the edge. This one a sort of concave low spot/OG, but minimal recurve. Anything of the likes reminding of most edges on cheap western knives with a full bolster. It's like you'd have understood by now when a design is just bad.

Back to scratches now...

View attachment 143980View attachment 143981View attachment 143982

About the Nanohone: Contrast is good - not like it's important at that level anyway, but still... Behaved scratch pattern. Didn't feel particularly hard nor soft, nor particularly muddy or not. It IS truly splash and go but does soak a bit of water to start. Dries faster than my SP320 did when left to dry. As long as I won't polish a proper sized blade, hard to say much about water behavior in serious work. Has sort of a porous, very grainy feeling. Readily releases abrasives, I'd guesstimate somewhat as dishy or a bit dishier than SG500. For coarseness it's generally very well behaved, but it's not like I'm thrilled with it or something. I do like how it polishes - seems a good start. It's hard enough to validate work on a wide bevel, but I'd still be inclined to make sure I have a very hard stone to follow up. It has enough give for convexing work. Sort of imperfect middle ground but can sure be of good use if the progression is well thought from it. Couldn't say much about speed from this polishing session but I feel it won't be as fast as the best I've seen in these grits. All in all, I'd say that if a Cerax 320 would be harder and splash and go, possibly a bit faster, Nanohone 200 would be it. Weird to compare the Nano to such a muddy dishy thirsty stone, but really it's the one it made me think about the most. If in doubt about this statement, try a non-permasoaked Cerax 320 with very little soaking time (I did a few times in the beginning) and compare the feeling. Even the scratch pattern resembles a Cerax 320 that wasn't soaked enough. Same ballpark dark kasumi and quite good contrast, as well. Will probably try some soaking periods with the Nano and see what happens... hoping what happens won't be its demise.

And more scratches still - gracieuseté of SG500 this time.

View attachment 143983View attachment 143984

It's not that it took time to cover up the Nanohone scratch pattern, however it took more time than I expected to clean it, and still wasn't perfect. Not just especially around the low spot, but as you can see, a bit of everywhere. Either SG500 takes much more readily from either a (well soaked/perma) Cerax 320 or even my Sigma 240... or either it's working on such a small bevel that completely puts me off my marks. It really wasn't a pleasurable experience polishing the Higo, even counting out the handle being a PITA.

View attachment 143985View attachment 143986
Under it's better angle though, blade looks like finer factory belt pattern... or so.


A testament of real splash and go coarse stones...
View attachment 143987
Try giving it a soak. It's resin based, so no worries about the binder leaching out.
 

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Try giving it a soak. It's resin based, so no worries about the binder leaching out.
Thanks for reinforcing that. It's on the long list of sh!t I still have to try on that stone.
 

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Here is the result of a quick polish on the Arashiyama 6k on my Shiro Kamo Aogami #2 iron clad. Mirrorish core with light gray jigane. There are some scratches, but they are uniform.

Arashiyama was a relatively forgiving stone (compared to the NP3K I am used to) and hadn't much issue with streaks and shiny spots.

The patina pictures are after I prepared some Bolognese sauce for Pastitsio ( greek food, which consists of 3 layers. Pasta, Bolognese sauce and bechamel sauce on top, baked in the oven)
 

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After Arashiyama I went to Morihei Karasu 9k. Similar finish, but with less scratches and shinier-closer to mirror hagane. It was a quick polish that took me less than 5 minutes. Karasu is a really nice stone, pretty forgiving as well.
 

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Pie

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After Arashiyama I went to Morihei Karasu 9k. Similar finish, but with less scratches and shinier-closer to mirror hagane. It was a quick polish that took me less than 5 minutes. Karasu is a really nice stone, pretty forgiving as well.
This looks great!! Sounds like you have the pre and finisher figured out. I’ve always wanted an arashiyama, but never got around to getting one..
 

Thpp9

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This looks great!! Sounds like you have the pre and finisher figured out. I’ve always wanted an arashiyama, but never got around to getting one..
Honestly, Arashiyama was an impulse buy. I wanted just to get Karasu but I decided to save some money on shipping, so I ended up getting both on the same order.

Overall, for the price, it is a pretty decent stone. Polishing on it was pretty effortless as well. There were some scratches, but i think if I spent some more time on the hagane, it would come out pretty good. Also, it felt nice for sharpening and after some leather stropping action, it popped hairs and had enough bite for tomatoes and bell peppers skin.
 
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