Where to purchase hones?

Mark

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Hey @Mark - what would you recommend as a finishing hone to touch up kamisori and straights from time to time? Let's say price is not an issue. One day I'll get a full set of gear but for now I'm only interested in a finisher.
There are so many that I wouldn't even know where to start, but personally after trying a handful of different naturals, German slates, english slates, chinese stones, etc.. I found the Japanese natural stones offered the best results and you don't need to spend that much. Although a 12k for all straight razors is very acceptable, it may not be enough for kamisori. Pick up a Shobu for very little cost and it will be more superior than just about any synthetic. JNS carry them in a 2x6 for around $85 but seems like they're out of stock for now
 

bald as

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Some excellent info in this thread.

@bald as - where did you purchase that Chinese natural? It's put an amazing edge on your Benkei kamisori.
http://www.finetools.com.au/products/mujingfang-natural-water-sharpening-stone-13-000-grit

This is the one I got. I have found it to be very good but I certainly do not have the experience or understanding that @Mark has concerning stones. I have a 12k Shapton as well but prefer the Chinese stone myself. The only drawback with the Chinese hone is it is a "slow" cutter, but for a novice like me that is actually a bit of a plus. I can see you will want to keep your kamisori in pristine condition so follow @Mark and his advice that way I can from time to time have the pleasure of watching you work an "ultimate" rock.
 

Mark

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That specific chinese waterstone you have @bald as would be the finest of all the Cnats. You're spot on with speed, although cutting power is nice it's not the most important thing when learning naturals as you mentioned as they are a completely different animal, but it definitely works and not bad for the price for someone that just wants to get a feel of a natural stone when moving on from synthetics. Keep it up.

Some tips for tuning a final edge on that stone...
If you want to lean more towards sharp, use the 12k shapton as a prefinisher and finish off with light water strokes on the Cnat, even light slurry more of a hazy natural edge.

If you want to lean more towards comfort use an 8k as a prefinisher and raise a heavy slurry on the Cnat and work it in for a while and slowly start diluting and finish on light slurry. It's personal preference between the two, this one happens to be my preferred edge but also requires more work to achieve.
 

Mark

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@Mark Where would I get a slurry stone to use with the C-nat or could I create a slurry with the 12k shapton rubbed on the C-nat?

Steve
I definitely wouldn't mix and match synthetic slurry with natural stones. You don't have to go on the hunt for a matching nagura. Using a diamond base slurry will do the same thing, that way the slurry is guaranteed to be purely from the base stone.

In this case I would recommend a DMT credit card size diamond plate, but before I do I have to ask, what are you using to lap your stones to keep them flat? Sand paper wouldn't really cut it with a Cnat unless you're using lots of sheets but a full size DMT or Atoma will definitely do it and raise a slurry at the same time. I have a new Atoma for lapping and a well broken in and worn DMT for raising a slurry on my naturals, the diamonds are pretty dull which is good because it doesn't leave scratches on the stone.

Alternatively, you can buy a DMT D8C or Atoma #400 for everyday lapping. I personally lap my stones before every use. And a Atoma 1200 for raising a slurry or in my case a worn out DMT.
 

khun_diddy

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I definitely wouldn't mix and match synthetic slurry with natural stones. You don't have to go on the hunt for a matching nagura. Using a diamond base slurry will do the same thing, that way the slurry is guaranteed to be purely from the base stone.

In this case I would recommend a DMT credit card size diamond plate, but before I do I have to ask, what are you using to lap your stones to keep them flat? Sand paper wouldn't really cut it with a Cnat unless you're using lots of sheets but a full size DMT or Atoma will definitely do it and raise a slurry at the same time. I have a new Atoma for lapping and a well broken in and worn DMT for raising a slurry on my naturals, the diamonds are pretty dull which is good because it doesn't leave scratches on the stone.

Alternatively, you can buy a DMT D8C or Atoma #400 for everyday lapping. I personally lap my stones before every use. And a Atoma 1200 for raising a slurry or in my case a worn out DMT.
Hey Mark, is there any risk of diamond particles breaking off and combining with the slurry?
 

bald as

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I have a lapping stone that keeps the stone true. I intially lapped the Cnat with wet and dry and it was a very looooooooong process. I actually lapped both sides and being a natural stone each side has a slightly different character.
 

Mark

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Hey Mark, is there any risk of diamond particles breaking off and combining with the slurry?
Some claim that it can happen so not impossible for a defect to occur. It has never happened to me even with my well bashed DMT and Atoma. I believe it's very likely to happen if you buy third party or generic/cheap brands that aren't as good in quality that will do more harm than good. There are many others that have been doing it daily for years without a complaint. I ONLY use DMT and Atoma and have now fully switched to atoma #400 for everyday lapping, although still using my DMT the Atoma #1200 takes over as my hard bevel setter and slurry generator on naturals.

Diamond plates are very essential for every honer imo unless you're using diamond film.
 

Pjotr

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I recently found that Tools From Japan are very well priced too with their Shaptons, Chosera and Naniwa SS and they're the main suppliers for Suehiro Gokumyo 10k 15k and 20k
Yes, I've bought a few stones through them. A single size Suehiro Cerax 320 grit and a Suehiro 5000 grit. All for knife sharpening. Don't use the 5000 grit much. Only when I'm feeling anal but a 5000 grit edge disappears quite quickly. In any case, Tools From Japan are excellent to deal with.

By the way, if you're looking for a cheap method for flattening your stones, use coarse grit wet and dry sandpaper on a flat bench top surface. Works a treat. You'll get half a dozen goes with a single sheet for an outlay of a few dollars. The only real drawback is that it's a bit messy.
 

Mark

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My stones arrived today.
Naniwa Chosera 1k
Shapton Pros 5K, 8K, 12K
Atoma Diamond Plate 400grit

All from Knives and Stones. Extremely happy with the range, price and, most of all, the customer service!
I figured this will be a good time for me to post some "how to" basics.

Chosera 1k - This is my preferred bevel setter, use this for setting a bevel.
What is setting a bevel? It is removing metal to grind in a new primary edge to prepare it for refining. The 1k is obviously an aggressive stone for straight razors but it's highly required and it is the most important stone in any honing set. 90% of your work is involved in setting the bevel, the rest is just removing scratches and polishing.

Shapton pro 5k - This is the best 5k stone I've ever tried. It's solid, fast and provides awesome feedback. This is where all of your clean up work gets done after the 1k, You are deleting the 1k scratch pattern, removing the toothiness of the edge in order to prepare it for a refinement. You can not do enough strokes on the 5k and it is impossible to overhone on it. It's my favourite in the whole progression, use until it feels like a glass surface, that's when you know it's no longer doing anything make sure you're very light on the pressure, at least on your final strokes. Still not cutting hairs? the bevel is not set, go back to the 1k and start over.

Shapton pro 8k - This is used to erase the 5k scratch pattern and refine the edge to a near mirror polish, although you can't to too many strokes here it won't take too many at all, 20-60 depending on each individual razor. This is where the edge is minimally shave ready. Use no pressure at on the 8k.

Shapton pro 12k - This is when you need to be very careful, extremely light pressure, weight of the razor or just enough to keep the blade on the stone. Here you can do too many, 15 - 25 strokes is more than enough for me, at this stage you can just strop and shave. You can strop on Chromium oxide or diamond spray 0.5um for some extra oomph to the edge but it's not required. Microchips visible after the 12k? You haven't done enough on the 5k. go back to the 5k and continue on from there.


Essentials of setting a bevel

 
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bald as

ARKO! dealer & walking ECG
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That is an interesting video. I watch that a few weeks back when I first caught the bug to try hones. He is very enthusiastic :)
 

stillshunter

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Great first instalment of the "how to" basics @Mark . Interesting video too....makes complete sense to me.

Looking very forward to the second instalment.

Hope we can set these lessons up in a space that's easy and intuitive to find for future newbies....as I fear it might get lost in a "Where to Purchase Hones" thread. This is essential stuff right here!
 

filobiblic

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Looking forward to hearing how your honing goes Stillsy.
Thanks for the posting of the honing basics and about the stones Stillsy got @Mark
 

stillshunter

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Looking forward to hearing how your honing goes Stillsy.
Thanks for the posting of the honing basics and about the stones Stillsy got @Mark
Thanks @filobiblic , I anticipate my first 50 or so hones to go as well as my first 50 or so shaves with the DE or my first 50 or so shaves with the straight. Clumsy, painful and a niggling doubt as to why I'd not chosen stamp collecting as a hobby ;)

By way of background, @Mark recommended this line-up of stones to me, so his write-up spells out the thinking behind answering that newbie question about that initial investment in honing.
 

Sxot

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My stones arrived today.
Naniwa Chosera 1k
Shapton Pros 5K, 8K, 12K
Atoma Diamond Plate 400grit

All from Knives and Stones. Extremely happy with the range, price and, most of all, the customer service!
Just priced that lot up as I was curious. $554 delivered. That's about 4 years worth of pro-hones. Still not sure I could be bothered. We'll see as time goes on.
Price checked over at http://www.toolsfromjapan.com as it was mentioned earlier in this thread. Basically the same price with middle of the road shipping.
 

eggbert

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Just priced that lot up as I was curious. $554 delivered. That's about 4 years worth of pro-hones. Still not sure I could be bothered. We'll see as time goes on.
Price checked over at http://www.toolsfromjapan.com as it was mentioned earlier in this thread. Basically the same price with middle of the road shipping.
4 years worth? I thought the straight users said it was cheaper in the long run than DE's ?
 
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