Hand Tools Archive
I didn't know Shapton recommended soaking their Pro stones. I purchased mine because the scuttlebutt on the forums was that you could just spritz them, which seemed like a huge advantage over the King stones I had.
The 5k always felt like sharpening on a wet tire. And as Derek said, it loaded up quickly. I ended up flattening more to remove the loading than to true the stone. I have tried soaking it for a few minutes but not as long as you say. I believe you when you say it improves the stone, but to be honest I don't have any desire to mess with synthetic waterstones anymore, at least on any regular basis. No sink in the shop and don't feel like messing with stone ponds or whatever.
What I've found is that fine india > soft ark > translucent works great on my WS#2 chisels and plane irons, leaves a nice kusumi finish. Works great on my Blue #2 Gyuto as well. But I'm not aware of anyone else who routinely uses Arks for J-tools, so maybe I am missing something.
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