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Sharpening stone lessons learned

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  • Sharpening stone lessons learned

    After a search for the optimum sharpening solutions, and trying several techniques and materials including the scary sharp honing method, I encountered the Natural Arkansas stone. Up until about 6 months ago i never knew they existed. I was doing an ebay search and came across them. And let me tell you, they are AWESOME. They can be a bit pricy to get cut in lengths and widths that will make the veritas honing guide worth while. At least 6" is sufficent but i went with 8". I also went with 2" wide. (except for my soft arkansas, that is a 4X10) I will explain why in a minute.

    FIRST if you do use these stones, unless you have the means to have a brass wheel turned (thank you my friend), DO NOT use the #22 Somax Jig,43078&ap=1

    If this does not take you to the item it is item number 60mo7.01

    The reason being is that whatever they made the stock wheel out of, it degrades from the abrasive and it will clog the softer stones.

    The softer stones are more porous and as such, use a light honing oil in lieu of smith's honing compound. Reason being the smith's is more expensive than the light honing oil and those soft stones do absorb a lot their first few uses.

    Use the smiths, however, on the harder grades, it truly works wonders and cleans the stone for you.

    I spent the money on the full set, soft through the transluscent. The transluscent for woodworking tools is a nice to have not a need to have.

    the veritas jig system is awesome on these stones, especially since you can set that micro bevel. Once you get it set, (the bevel) and put that micro bevel on it, the harder stones just remove all the scrape marks and leave a beautiful polished finish. The most amazing thing is that i have chisels that i can shave hair off my arm with, and will cut skin with.

    These stones are INCREDIBLE. But be careful where you buy.

    The color in many cases tells you nothing about the abrasiveness of the stone. And different dealers grade their stones just a little bit different. The gentlemen I deal with was able to get his hands on a TRUE wa****a arkansas stone for me. Now the only other place i have seen these described is in the woodcraft catalog. The wa sh it a pit has been closed for a few years but any of the grades are coming from the wa sh it a mountain/quarry so you are not always getting what you may think you are.

    I guess years ago Norton made a true wa sh it a stone it was a lilly white stone and is hard to come by these days.

    In my opinion, nothing sharpens and polishes the edge on woodworking tools, knives, etc better and more efficently than the True Natural Arkansas stones. They can be a bit pricey but well worth it if you are getting what you are paying for!

    Just my two cents on sharpening


  • #2
    What's da matter? Can't sleep? [img]tongue.gif[/img]
    "Did you put the yellow key in the switch?" TOD 01/09/06


    • #3

      actually yup you got me there. i am on a bunch of medications for my back while I await surgery, some nights it knocks me out, other times it wires me for some reason.

      So i poke around here or on a few other boards, or just play a game until i get drowsy.

      Thanks for noticing LOL