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Michael Doran

Sharpening stones- what do you use?

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Nice to hear the positive reviews of the Shapton stones...  have to get one sometime soon.

 

I still have the King stones I started with 30 years or so ago...  and a couple of the Frictionite barber stones I got when in school.  All still work quite well.  I recently ordered one of the King combination stones (the ones with the plastic separator laminated between the two stones 1200/8000) just for convenience sake when trekking to Oberlin (travel light!), but I'm finding I use it quite a bit (more than I expected) in the shop.  

 

I do have a diamond plate for flattening.  Just find it handy, but it's getting noticeably duller.

 

I work kind of like like David describes.  I rely on the grinder for moving any significant metal, then hit a medium (800 or 1200) stone, then a fine (8000) stone, strop, and cut.

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Hong Da, lucky you finding natural stones for nothing. My husband likes the King stones, and will likely keep buying them, but he really wants something straight out of the earth. It's hard to know which ones are best because they are normally so expensive.

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Hong Da, lucky you finding natural stones for nothing. My husband likes the King stones, and will likely keep buying them, but he really wants something straight out of the earth. It's hard to know which ones are best because they are normally so expensive.

I didn't realize how lucky I was at the time. Yeah the natural stones can be very expensive and I wouldn't even know how to choose one. I've heard there's a shop in San Fransisco that sells smaller cut pieces of Japanese stones but if you want something full size then it's in the hundreds of dollars......like on this website: http://www.japanesenaturalstones.com/japanese-natural-stones/?sort=newest&setCurrencyId=3

Maybe you could get on a knife maker's/sharpeners forum but be prepared for some very technical replies, opinions, super magnified pictures and everything else. :D

Maybe research online where you can get small cut-offs to try out before investing in a larger stone?

If I find that San Fransico shop name I'll post it on here.

 

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Nice to hear the positive reviews of the Shapton stones...  have to get one sometime soon.

 I recently ordered one of the King combination stones (the ones with the plastic separator laminated between the two stones 1200/8000) just for convenience sake when trekking to Oberlin (travel light!), but I'm finding I use it quite a bit (more than I expected) in the shop.  

............then hit a medium (800 or 1200) stone, then a fine (8000) stone, strop, and cut.

That King combo is what I would go for if I didn't have my natural stone.

I had a Shapton guy come around my shop to do a demo once. He went through all the different grits and  showed me all the accesories. Quite expensive for the whole deal and we had a lot of disagreement about just jumping from something like 1,000 to 8,000.....he insisted this can't be done :P

What's really nice about them is you just need to spray a little water on  and they remain wet for quite a while. Plus they are quite hard so don't need flattening often. I would like to get a lower grit one. On the 16,000 grit one I have I noticed it blocks up......but using a slurry stone solves that problem.

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I have a number: Diamond, Oil, Arkansas, 800 & 8,000 King and a few shaving hones including a Frictionite that Jeffrey mentions.

They all work! Currently for the fine stone I'm using an old Scots hone, I think a type of slate. Not as soft as an 8,000 King and cuts a touch slower. Not as slow as my fine Arkansas though, which I haven't used in decades.

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I have heaps of stones: diamond ,waterstones, tam o shanters . But generally find a combination Norton waterstone is the one i use the most.Simple ,fast ,needs flattening quite often but that only takes a few mins under a tap with a few rubs on their flattening stone. I have a Naniwa superstone that i use as well but only for knives for cutting bow leather.

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 I had a Shapton guy come around my shop to do a demo once. He went through all the different grits and  showed me all the accesories. Quite expensive for the whole deal and we had a lot of disagreement about just jumping from something like 1,000 to 8,000.....he insisted this can't be done :P

What's really nice about them is you just need to spray a little water on  and they remain wet for quite a while.

That's one thing I really like about them. They either aren't porous, or only minimally so. The porous stones I had eventually loaded up with minerals from the water, and stopped cutting fast.

 

That's funny about the Shapton salesman. I've had strange stuff like that happen with hand tool makers or salesmen too... insisting they know more than a professional who actually works with this stuff every day. But I guess he'd rather sell five stones than one or two. ;)

 

Weisshaar was a little like your teacher. Not much tolerance for mincing about with sharpening... going through a succession of five different grits, etc. when the outcome wasn't any better.  Not that we didn't experiment with methods which were very slow and time consuming, but the atmosphere was much better around the shop if Hans didn't catch you at it very often. :)

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My 'go to' stone is mud stone for final edge or touchups,  it is a high carbon stone found Ohio or Pa ( for those that are gleaners)  It looks like a the black surgical stone but works better

 

It is slate-like in that it was formed in laminations and is fairly soft (also great for marking or writing on cement)

 

 Mud stone is the last step before the metamorphous to slate (a million year process)

 

Jim

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Michael,

 

I've been using the Shapton GlassStones for the past couple of years.  I'm very happy with them.  They need minimal flattening every now and again.  They are not hard like ceramic stones and not soft like the water stones.  1000 grit is excellent when you take the tool off a grinder and the 8000 grit is perfect for polishing.  I have the 4000 grit too but tend not to use it much.  I think you'd be very happy with them.

 

Stephen

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Mmm - so many words what's there left to add...

 

Maybe from this...

 

post-98-0-11134200-1432320299_thumb.jpg

 

to this...

 

post-98-0-78695900-1432321545_thumb.jpg

 

which resulted in this...

 

post-98-0-75483800-1432321013_thumb.jpg

 

and the retirement of all the miscellaneous objects in the first picture.

 

That shaving was produced under the weight of my No 6 Stanley (admittedly scraped to dead flat and trued up nicely) being pushed horizontally by a couple of fingers. Measures 0.0006" at the thickest.

 

cheers edi

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That's one thing I really like about them. They either aren't porous, or only minimally so. The porous stones I had eventually loaded up with minerals from the water, and stopped cutting fast.

 

That's funny about the Shapton salesman. I've had strange stuff like that happen with hand tool makers or salesmen too... insisting they know more than a professional who actually works with this stuff every day. But I guess he'd rather sell five stones than one or two. ;)

 

Weisshaar was a little like your teacher. Not much tolerance for mincing about with sharpening... going through a succession of five different grits, etc. when the outcome wasn't any better.  Not that we didn't experiment with methods which were very slow and time consuming, but the atmosphere was much better around the shop if Hans didn't catch you at it very often. :)

Yeh...yr respected boss Hans W had a point

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I originally used Kings, now use Kings and Shaptons (gradually making the shift once the Kings wear out.  I have found that I get a better edge when I stop with the 4K Shapton than when I go on to the 8K.  Probably user error.  At the bench, I still like the Belgian yellow which I think is the equivalent of 8K.  Spritz with water, take a few swipes, and the edge is ready to eat more wood.  And the stone hardly wears at all.  Best of all, the Belgians appear to have found more seams and production is up again.  

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Mmm - so many words what's there left to add...

 

Maybe from this...

 

attachicon.gifDSC08959.JPG

 

to this...

 

attachicon.gifDSC01431.JPG

 

which resulted in this...

 

attachicon.gifDSC01106.JPG

 

and the retirement of all the miscellaneous objects in the first picture.

 

That shaving was produced under the weight of my No 6 Stanley (admittedly scraped to dead flat and trued up nicely) being pushed horizontally by a couple of fingers. Measures 0.0006" at the thickest.

 

cheers edi

 

Hi Edi Malinaric
 
I am interested in your sandpaper over glass.
What brands, grits and lubricant do you use?
 
Thanks in advance
Tango

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Hi Edi Malinaric
 
I am interested in your sandpaper over glass.
What brands, grits and lubricant do you use?
 
Thanks in advance
Tango

 

 

Hi Tango - My Dad taught me how to sharpen things using whetstones over 60 years back. Some of those in the first pic are his. I was quite happy using them - even putting razor edges onto hand axes.

 

Then I stumbled over Brent Beach's waterpaper on glass. Initially I was a bit skeptical - smacked of snake-oil - but gave it a try.

 

It works.

 

This You Tube shows Brent in action.

 

 

 

Brent is a little generous with his use of abrasive paper - as you can see in my second picture, you only need a small piece ~ 65mm x 65mm - makes it quite economical too.

 

I use water rather than oil - just to reduce the chance of joint contamination. Works just fine.

 

Grades of 3m  paper used - first 15 micron, then 5 micron and finish with 0.5 micron.

 

Also, the touch up station is compact and just sits on the side of the bench - no searching for the right stone, always dead flat, easy to keep clean - just a quick wipe with a paper towel, no disadvantages at all.

 

Read Brent's entire site, it's well worth ii.

 

When his tests showed that the laminated Stanley blade was superior in edge holding performace I hauled the one I had, out of retirement and set it up. He was right - it is superior to the japanese blade that cost me an arm and a leg. Toured the local flea markets and managed to pick up a second Stanley laminated blade - still looking for more. The shaving was produced by that Stanley blade.

 

cheers edi

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I also love Shapton.

If you buy only one stone, I'd recommend #1500 Shapton (blue,Professional).

I have #5000, #8000 but I use #1500 most often.

Highly recommend.

I use sharpening jig(home made) for plane blades, this stone works best.

 

Shapton ceramic (or glass) is different.

I use #1000 and #4000.

 

KYC

 

PS: I use coarse King stones for cleaning Shapton stones.

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Weisshaar was a little like your teacher. Not much tolerance for mincing about with sharpening... going through a succession of five different grits, etc. when the outcome wasn't any better.  Not that we didn't experiment with methods which were very slow and time consuming, but the atmosphere was much better around the shop if Hans didn't catch you at it very often. :)

My teacher studied in Germany......he often said we were being treated easily :)

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I see leather strops mentioned a lot on this thread ... the guitarmaking community (leastways those among them who exchange ideas and methods) have mostly abandoned leather strops and instead use a piece of  MDF charged with green compound for the final stropping. The idea seems to be that the "give" on the leather makes for a microscopic rounding of the edge, whereas  the hardness of the MDF  preserves both sides of the edge without any rounding.

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I see leather strops mentioned a lot on this thread ... the guitarmaking community (leastways those among them who exchange ideas and methods) have mostly abandoned leather strops and instead use a piece of  MDF charged with green compound for the final stropping. The idea seems to be that the "give" on the leather makes for a microscopic rounding of the edge, whereas  the hardness of the MDF  preserves both sides of the edge without any rounding.

Makes some sense. When I strop on leather I'm always carefull not to put much pressure on because of that reason. I find I can keep an edge for 3 or maybe 4 stroppings and then it's back to the stone. I think I might try what you mention and see if it can  get a little longer life out of the edge.

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I see leather strops mentioned a lot on this thread ... the guitarmaking community (leastways those among them who exchange ideas and methods) have mostly abandoned leather strops and instead use a piece of  MDF charged with green compound for the final stropping. The idea seems to be that the "give" on the leather makes for a microscopic rounding of the edge, whereas  the hardness of the MDF  preserves both sides of the edge without any rounding.

 

You need some give or you'll only sharpen a minute area - basically what the steel "gives". MDF has a lot of dust in it. Scratches.

I glue one sheet of good copier paper on a piece of MDF. Copier paper is dust free. Use one of those positioning glues, non water based. Paper shrinks.

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I see leather strops mentioned a lot on this thread ... the guitarmaking community (leastways those among them who exchange ideas and methods) have mostly abandoned leather strops and instead use a piece of  MDF charged with green compound for the final stropping. The idea seems to be that the "give" on the leather makes for a microscopic rounding of the edge, whereas  the hardness of the MDF  preserves both sides of the edge without any rounding.

Yes, leather will round off some. I try to keep it to a minimum. If the rounding is only very slight, it doesn't seem to interfere with accuracy, and with slight rounding, depth of cut can be controlled with downward pressure on the cutting tool (since the wood deflects slightly), and not just the angle of approach.

 

When touching up with a strop between honings, I'll do most of it on the side which is away from the work. Rounding doesn't really matter there.

 

Didn't care for MDF when I tried it. Too much embedded grit (incorporated during manufacture) that screwed things up. Maybe just a flat piece of maple would work fine.

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