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How to tell the grit of a sharpening stone & recommendation

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How to tell the grit of a sharpening stone & recommendation

I have a sharpening stone that I inherited from my Dad, and I have no idea what grit it is so I'm not sure if I should use it on my Christmas-gifted Masakagi Kiri Gyoto chef's knife. The only things I have to go on are the "Norton" stamp on one end and the letters "B6 IN XT6" on the box lid. It is definitely dual grit, as it has a dark side and a light side, but without knowing the grits, I'm loathe to use it. Do those markings mean anything to anyone here? If I cant sufficiently identify this, anyone have a recommendation for a good dual grit stone to keep this thing as razor sharp as it was when I got it?
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I think it's pretty much impossible to tell the exact grit if not explicitly labelled. But it should be fine for general kitchen use. Go by feel. If you can actually feel the grains of the stone then it's a course grit only meant for re-profiling the edge or on terribly dull blades - ie, rarely used. A medium grit should feel almost smooth to the touch and be used as the main general purpose sharpener. A fine grit would feel almost smooth as glass. You don't know if it's an oil or water stone so I'd just use water on it. Also, I'd definitely get a hone - I like ceramic ones. This would be most important to keep your knife sharp on a daily basis. You'd sharpen only once every couple of months. I actually sharpen only about twice a year with my EdgePro kit.
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DiceMan wrote: I think it's pretty much impossible to tell the exact grit if not explicitly labelled. But it should be fine for general kitchen use. Go by feel. If you can actually feel the grains of the stone then it's a course grit only meant for re-profiling the edge or on terribly dull blades - ie, rarely used. A medium grit should feel almost smooth to the touch and be used as the main general purpose sharpener. A fine grit would feel almost smooth as glass. You don't know if it's an oil or water stone so I'd just use water on it. Also, I'd definitely get a hone - I like ceramic ones. This would be most important to keep your knife sharp on a daily basis. You'd sharpen only once every couple of months. I actually sharpen only about twice a year with my EdgePro kit.
Thanks for the info DiceMan. Upon reflection, it may be that the box isn't the original so the markings may not be relevant. As to the hone, Knifewear sells a black ceramic honing rod for $60, and I was looking at a King 1000/6000 stone for ~$45 on Amazon, I'm thinking of getting both (Knifewear is where my wife got the Masakagi, unfortunately she didn't know that they will throw in the hone at 1/2 price with any knife order), that would just about cover me then, correct?
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Tapout123 wrote: Thanks for the info DiceMan. Upon reflection, it may be that the box isn't the original so the markings may not be relevant. As to the hone, Knifewear sells a black ceramic honing rod for $60, and I was looking at a King 1000/6000 stone for ~$45 on Amazon, I'm thinking of getting both (Knifewear is where my wife got the Masakagi, unfortunately she didn't know that they will throw in the hone at 1/2 price with any knife order), that would just about cover me then, correct?
I think your dual grit stone (likely course to medium grit) + the 1000/6000 stone + a ceramic hone should be adequate for your new knife. This will most definitely get your Masakage to a shaving sharpness. You can get it quite a bit sharper than that with more gear but it's not needed. Oh and PLEASE don't use any course stone on your new knife, even when it starts to get dull - it will be tragic if the edge gets ruined!

Your challenge will not be lack of equipment. It will now be practicing your sharpening technique. I've never been good at hand sharpening so I had to buy a system with set guides and such.
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Regardless of what grit the stone is or isn't I wouldn't practice/learn on your good knife. Get a crappy Dollarstore knife if you don't have one and practice on that first.
We're all bozos on the bus until we find a way to express ourselves...

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Following up. I have a Lansky sharpening system and a Spyderco Sharpmaker as well as the aforementioned stone. I used the Lansky for the first time today (bought it about a decade ago and completely forgot I had it) on a small cheap utility knife and I have to say it did put a reasonable edge on it, however it's almost impossible to do a nice smooth motion with it, and trying to only draw the stone over the blade from front to back is very difficult. The Spyderco is a decent sharpener, and I've used it for years on my old Costco Henckel (non-twin) knives, but I've just never been able to achieve a really REALLY sharp edge with it. It's designed to hone to either a 40 or 30 degree edge (they recommend 40 for day to day), but somehow, even at the 30 degree (15 degrees per side) it just never really gets me the edge I'm looking for. This is why I'm going to try a stone, I'll have complete control over the angle and stroke and virtually every video I've seen on sharpening a really good knife involves a stone. The King stone comes with an angle guide, that should help me get the feel for the right angle and practice the motion safely, and I have several older cheap-ish knives to practice on.

Thanks for all the responses so far, it's very helpful feedback.

Anyone here ever use the Spyderco and have better results than I did? How about the Lansky?
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Markham
Tapout123 wrote: Anyone here ever use the Spyderco and have better results than I did? How about the Lansky?
I get very good results with the Spyderco, but did buy additional stones on trips to the US.
I have used the Lansky as well, but find the setup a pain and the best tool is the one you actually use.

What kind of knives/steel are you sharpening, and what is your technique with the Spyderco. It is pretty much foolproof.
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mdl.tor wrote: I get very good results with the Spyderco, but did buy additional stones on trips to the US.
I have used the Lansky as well, but find the setup a pain and the best tool is the one you actually use.

What kind of knives/steel are you sharpening, and what is your technique with the Spyderco. It is pretty much foolproof.
I have an old Costco Henckels set that I had been using until Christmas. As you say, the Spyderco is pretty much foolproof, and I use it according to the instruction manual. It might be that the Henckels simply cant hold a great edge. I actually hadn't realized how "dull" they were until I got the Masakagi. It was so sharp out of the box I literally was hesitant to use it, for fear of cutting off my (or someone else's) finger, whereas now I simply cant cut happily with anything else. I've been using it virtually every day since I got it, and while it's still sharper than any other knife I own, it's not as sharp as it was and I want to be able to properly sharpen it myself. Is the Spyderco up to using on a bi-metal Japanese knife?
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Markham
Tapout123 wrote: Is the Spyderco up to using on a bi-metal Japanese knife?
I have used it on a lot of knives, including Japanese. I generally avoid knives with any kind of serrations, or coatings though.

I think you may be expecting too much from the Costco knives. They are relatively cheap, and targeted for a certain market.
Then again, I tend to go for knives like this: https://www.canadianoutdoorequipment.co ... knife.html

The problem with knife sharpening is you can almost make it your life's ambition to get good at it .
I don't have that kind of time! I played with many other systems and the Spyderco I can use anytime.

If you want to use it better, I would use the marker trick to make sure you are hitting the edge right.
You can also look at diamond stones if you want to reprofile or have dull blades.
Essentially, you are looking at new stones anyway, and the Spyderco offers great profiles and utility.

Good luck!
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This is a good question, I bought myself a universal knife that can be used simultaneously for boning and for fillet here Shun Classic 6-Inchof the 6-inch long blade with up to 33 layers of stainless steel, 16-degree blade cutting angle. The time will come and I will need to sharpen it but I'm afraid that I can spoil it. What kind of grinding I must to use for such a knife so as not to damage it and sharpen.
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Any value recommendations for a sharpening stone?

Reddit and r/chefknives pointed me to the King or Suehiro 1000/6000 combination stones. The cheaper of the two being $46 on Amazon. Reddit warned against the other cheap no-name stones on Amazon. I found a dollar store sharpening stone at my parent's house and gave it a shot. It worked okay, but I didn't get the razor sharp edge I keep seeing the pros accomplish. I think I had the technique down pretty well.

Just wondering if a better stone will help me get better results, and if there are any better value picks than the King mentioned above.
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I know lot of YouTube expert sharpeners recommend 1000/6000 grit but their knives are already in great shape. IMO the 1000/6000 stone for regular person is not right. You don't need 6000 grit as it's way to fine. The 1000 will take you forever to get a burr if you don't put enough pressure.

The 400 is much much easier to get a burr and the 1000 is fine enough to get a nice working edge. Perfect match for regular non knife obsessed type knife ppl.

I got the Bearmoo combo stone. I think it's a 400/1000 stone. I think King also makes a 400/1000 stone.

We're all bozos on the bus until we find a way to express ourselves...

Failure is always an option...just not the preferred one!

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