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  1. #1
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    Thumbs up New ceramic sharpening stones

    Following on from some new ceramic stones that Joe (ODS) let me try out at teh show:



    As you all know, part of my business is a professional sharpening service. I sharpen everything from kitchen knives to chainsaws, scissors, chisels, handsaw, axes, etc, etc. I probably sharpen between 20 and 150 edges every month.

    I decided not to go for machines like the Tormec because they are not so versatile and they cost a bomb to replace the stones. I have an Edge Pro Por version, but I don't use it much becasue it is bloody expensive to run (stones are £10 a pop and I get through them quick!)

    Most of my commercial sharpening is done freehand using bench mounted waterstones. I tried DMT diamonds and they don't last well enough from me (I killed a DMT stone in 6 months!) and oil stones are messy nad a sod to true up. I've taken a real liking to ceramics because they are always flt, they will take a long time before any truing is needed, the are clean as they use water and they cut very quickly even on very hard blades.

    My only problem with ceramics was always that the coarsest grit you could get was about 800g, not much good for general sharpening since it's always te ecoarse stone that wears out the quickest. Joe has just started to get some ceramic bench stones in grits ranging from 120g to i think it was about 30,000grit! He was knid enough to let me try a couple of them for my sharpening demo yesterday.

    I was very impressed with them. I have been using a Spyderco fine benchstone for about 18months now and though it is great, blades seem to slip on it and you only get a polished edge as it's about a 2000 grit.

    I tried his 120grit solid ceramic bench stone to re-grind the edge on a 440c knife. If I were at home I would do this part on my grinder, and at shows I would either use a file (most people don't carry hard knives) or the 250 grit waterstone. The ceramic showed a little wear in that the painted logos were removed, but it was still more than flat enough fo the purposes of a coarse grit. If i had used my waterstone then I would have to spend half an hour truing it up again, the ceramic will work alot harder.

    I also tried the 2000 grit glass backed ceramic block. This is cheaper than the solid ceramic blocks, but will of course have only half the life before truing. Since that will be a couple of decades for most people i don't see that as a problem! I put a scry sharp edge on my own W2 everyday knife (RC 60-61). I was very impressed. As mentioned above I use a spyderco stone of the same grit, so I was able to compare teh two fairly. This stone allowed the knife to bite a little which was good as it meant that you could feel how much pressure to apply and makes it easier to keep an angle

    in brief:

    Good points-

    -the slightly open texture of the new stone allowed water to stay on the stone longer than spayderco stones. Water is needed as a lubricant to prevent it from clogging, but it tends to run straight off of ceramics.

    - it is wider than a normal waterstone (2.8" rather than 2"). this makes it alot easier to sharpen longer blades and wide flat blades such as planes and drawknives.

    - the stone will last a lot longer than normal waterstones, especially when sharpening hard knives or funny shapes such as curved gauges. particularly good with the coarse grits

    - Easy to clean. I washed the stones off in soap and hot water before returning them to Joe wiht virually no loading.

    - Fast removal of metal. the stones' open texture allows it to bite into the steel better than most other sharpening stones or any sort.

    - to true these stones up, the manufacturers sell a lapping plate, but each stone comes with an abrasive powder of the correct grit for lapping.


    bad points-

    - initial outlay. though Joe ahsn't got a final price for these yet, the price per stone is likely to be about three times that of a manmade waterstone (natural stones are expensive anyway). But when you consider that they will last a lifetime and you only need a couple of grits, that is not much to pay!

    - choice. at present there are about a dozen grit sizes in each range, I expect Joe will want to stock only the most versatile grits. I would suggest the 120g, 320g, 500g,1000g, maybe the 8000g. when it comes to how fine an edge to put on the knife, it depends waht it is desinged for; unless you are a sushi master or you are using fine wood carving tools that require a polished edge, 1000g is more than good enough (general purpose knives might be better off with around 500g!)


    So what are these wonder stones? they are made by Shaptons and Joe has already posted about them on the Exeter show thread. but here are the stones that Joe will be stocking (hopefully in the next couple of months).

    The solid ceramic blocks

    The half ceramic on tempered glass

    As soon as Joe gets them into stock I will be having solid blocks in 120g, 320g and possibly 1500g; and the glass backed stones in 500g and 4000g. Obviously since that is likely to be costing me about £300 I will spread the cost over a period (unless joe wants to provide some )

    I would like to thank Joe for the chance to try these fantastic stones out and I would thoroughly reccomend them to anybody who want the best sharpening stones around.

    If anybody wantsa to try them for themselves, I will take any that I have with me to the Midland game fair in september. I will even teach you to use them if you're not sure
    Don't just tickle it...


    dave budd handmade tools knives, tools and courses makin' them! 2014 Course List NOW ONLINE!

  2. #2
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    Re: New ceramic sharpening stones

    slightly off topic mr budd, have you ever try to use an ordinary stones instead of edge pro brand on your professional version?
    friend of mine have tried one, and the stones just slightly thicker. i believe it'll cost lesser than branded one, just need some extra jobby attaching it to the blanks.

    currently im using apex version, and nearly used the medium one. i will try to do it and let you know (if i made it )

    cheers, tomo

    ps, you got pm

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    Re: New ceramic sharpening stones

    I'm working on bringing the price on the edge pro stones down for here in the UK. Ben the Owner of Edge Pro and I have talked on this , and Dave and I talked about this at the show as well and think we have devised a plan that should make stones for the system much more cheaper, but still maintaining the stone that Ben suggest for his sharpener.

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    Re: New ceramic sharpening stones

    you're champion joe , at least i dont have to think hard to replace it

    and please inform us if it is done, i mean the reduced price

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    Re: New ceramic sharpening stones

    I've just spoke with Shapton and they advised me they are making some updates to their site, so some links may not currently work... the site had some updates made over the weekend, hence some links still not fulling working on their site.

    Dave,
    I'm glad that the Shapton Stones have met your needs. The new ceramic to glass stones that Shapton have produced are aimed directly at the knife market.

    The ceramic on glass stones have a useable thickness of near that of 7mm, but being mounted on a tempered glass plate that is 5mm thick this means you can continue to true this stone all the way down the glass without worry of it breaking in half as it wears over time.

    The solid professional series which Dave was drooling over and so were many other people are 15mm thick so you'll get a good life out of these.

    As Dave said the average user will see near a life time out of use for most of the stones, those that are in the profession of making or sharpening knives will still see a long life span, and with the lapping plates that Shapton offer you can maintain that near perfect flat surface for the life of the stone.

    cheers,
    Joe

    PS. Dave... Shapton also have also wanted to read your review and I'll pass this link on to them. So if anyone else has specific questions then ask them and I'm sure Shapton will take the time to answer them back.
    Last edited by ODS; 01-06-06 at 01:12 PM.

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    Re: New ceramic sharpening stones

    Just to let you know that I've made a update in Dealer Sales section in reguards to these stones...

    cheers,
    Joe

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    Re: New ceramic sharpening stones

    great, thanks Joe. I'll be in touch in the next couple of weeks with my first order!
    Don't just tickle it...


    dave budd handmade tools knives, tools and courses makin' them! 2014 Course List NOW ONLINE!

  8. #8
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    Re: New ceramic sharpening stones

    those shapton ceramic whetstones look good so I'm thinking of saving up for some. But what grits shall I get? At the moment I've got a double sided whetstone with a coarse on one side and a fine on the other, but I'm not sure what grit they are and it's pretty worn out. It seems to me that these shapton stones will last me a life time so I'm sure they'll be a good investment.

    Any advice most appreciated thanks

  9. #9
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    Re: New ceramic sharpening stones

    Quote Originally Posted by ODS
    The solid professional series which Dave was drooling over and so were many other people are 1.5mm thick so you'll get a good life out of these.
    surely that should be 1.5cm or 15mm

    I thought that cermaics were normaly used dry (and cleaned with soapy water). Can you do that with these benchstones?
    WARNING contents of this post may not be consistant with reality
    Please copy and paste the following to taste !,'.()"";:?

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    Re: New ceramic sharpening stones

    Quote Originally Posted by Andy
    surely that should be 1.5cm or 15mm

    I thought that cermaics were normaly used dry (and cleaned with soapy water). Can you do that with these benchstones?
    oops.. I've made the change to the size.

    The professional series is designed to be used wet with little to no slurry. You can clean them with basic water. Since your not building up a slurry and your washing them to remove such there is little to be washed and cleaned up later on.

    The are Japanese Ceramic Waterstones (Ceramic Whetstone), they are not your average ceramic stones like spyderco and such. These have been specially formulated.

    http://www.shaptonstones.com/information/care.php

    http://www.shaptonstones.com/informa...wtosharpen.php

    http://www.shaptonstones.com/information/faq.php

    Here is the link for the Diamond Lapping Plate:
    http://www.shaptonstones.com/stones/...ng/diamond.php

    you'll need broadband to view it quickly, otherwise, load the page and go have dinner then come back

  11. #11
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    Re: New ceramic sharpening stones

    Just to add to what joe has said. Cermaic stones like the spyderco benchstone are designed to be used dry, but i find that if you lubricate them then it is a lot easier to clean them, particularly if you sharpen cheap satainless knives that tend to clog more quickly.

    In terms of grit to go for, I would suggest no finer than 1000grit for general purpose knives, unless you mostly use it to sharpen chisels in which case maybe 2K or eben 10K. The finer the polish, the easier the blade will push cut, but also the less bite it has and the more quickly it will feel dull. For your coars stone, I would suggest somewhere in the region of 250 to 500, preferably toward the coarser end. Most stones will make the jump from 250 to 1000 easily anough on a narrow piece of metal such as a cutting edge
    Don't just tickle it...


    dave budd handmade tools knives, tools and courses makin' them! 2014 Course List NOW ONLINE!

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    Re: New ceramic sharpening stones

    well, u can call me an ol' stoner if ya like, but i be trawling old waterstone post deposits, lookin for pearls .. erm, no, diamonds n such [ok wisdom-pearls]

    im currently attempting assembling a waterstone/whetstone kit, as can be seen here: http://www.britishblades.com/forums/...e-water-stones

    so, Dave Budd .. whats your current population of stones lookin like?

    got any good locals yet, ie UK-sourced naturals?

    and [etc]
    in my dream i had a new knife .. so i put it under my pillow for when i awoke ..

 

 

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