Hand Tools Archive

The fine ones aren't too bad...
Response To:
Re: Edge chipping, again. ()

david weaver
I never noticed any edge life lost if the finish stone was used properly. They are strong cutting, but the particle size in the finer stones are very small and nothing detrimental ever occurred with any of the tools I used with them (including japanese tools).

When japanese irons tend toward 64-66 hardness and are truly at that level, they can be trouble even for good natural stones.

It's relatively common now in japan to work all the way through synthetic stones and then make a lateral move to a natural stone or two (some of the sharpening procedures are arduous).

the first stones in most kits in japan are carborundum, and the damage to a temperamental blade usually occurs there and is brought out by later stones. The 1k shapton is about as harsh (similar fineness) as a king 800, just a harder binder.

It's possible to sharpen razors on the 12/15k shapton stones without issue, too, but they do expose temperamental razors. The solution there is often the same - increase angle slightly (with tape on the spine). I ditch the razor in that case or sell it as temperamental, but there are plenty of people doing that with good effect.

My experience in testing irons on this go-around leads me to believe that 1 micron abrasive edges or smaller (even if they are diamond) will outlast natural stones, that most of the edge defects using them are due to the substrate. I still like natural stones and will continue to finish irons with the washita (for the XHP) and if carbon steel, with another finer natural stone, but I can't claim that I saw any issue with 1 micron diamonds.

Long story short, I recognize what's happening with winston's iron - I'd give him about a 25% chance of the issue being solvable with stones or reduced hardness or both.

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