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Thread: Best brand arkansas stones

  1. #21
    Senior Member JellyJar's Avatar
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    Outback: The pattern on the medium is really nice.

    Euclid: I didn't see that on the site. Pretty cool info. My black ark is flattened on both sides, one burnished the other not. I've played around with it a bit but nothing serious. The un-burnished side does seem to cut more than polish. When I start to give real attention to learning that stone I'll probably start a thread and get some tips.

    Wow! That was some fast shipping. Got home tonight and there was a package on my desk.

    The medium (soft side)
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    And the fine (hard side)
    Name:  Fine side ark.jpg
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    Right out of the box, not even wiped down. The colors are messing with me a little as I'm used to the hard having the whiter color but that's how their labeled. I also noticed the same colors for single stones at Dan's website. Must just be this particular vein.

    They look pretty flat to a straight edge but just to make sure I think I'll do a grid and run them over 600 a little.
    O'Toole's commentary on Murphy's Law: Murphy was an optimist.

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  3. #22
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    For kitchen, pocket knives.... I found well finished surgical Black, and trans arks both black and white to hard and didnít really improve edge for the amount of work.

    I was trained and worked a chef in an earlier career. And found those super polished bevels were impractical. Iím guessing the max grit stone I ever used cooking professionally was 1k.

    As far as size get the biggest you can afford. I have many 6x2 arks. Few 8x2 arks, and one 10 x3 surgical that is pure luxury. Plus for larger knives it will be much easier to hone on larger surface. Plus large stones are just sexy

    For for non razors edges ARk I would suggest lower progression then finish with a trans white or hard ark finished a bit coarse 320- 400 grit loose SiC.

    I found a company called natural whetstones to have some great prices and some larger stones

    Also be careful they sell a composite Hard ark. I actually like for non razor edges

    Danís has best reputation for best lapped and flat out of box. If you are capable and willing you can get a lesser finished ARK at a lower price, and do the work yourself
    Last edited by biglou13; 12-19-2019 at 04:26 AM.
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  4. #23
    Senior Member Brontosaurus's Avatar
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    Hope I'm not raining on the parade, but the currently named "hard Arkansas" is actually a denser soft Arkansas following the older categorization. Dan's "true hard," "translucent," and "black hard" grades are hard Arkansas stones of old.

    For more on this, see the following chart as linked: https://www.danswhetstone.com/inform...ne-grades-101/.
    Striving to be brief, I become obscure. --Horace

  5. #24
    Senior Member JellyJar's Avatar
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    Good to know. Whatever they want to call it, if it gets my edges where I want them, I'm good with it.

    I did get a chance lap it and both sides were dead flat right from the start. I hit both sides with 400 and finished the fine side with 600 and added a bit of bevel to the corners. The sides are much smoother to the touch now.

    I haven't decided if I want to burnish either of the sides yet. I'll figure that out after I see what it will do as is.
    O'Toole's commentary on Murphy's Law: Murphy was an optimist.

  6. #25
    Senior Member JellyJar's Avatar
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    I honed up a pocket knife and a touched up a couple of kitchen knives with some Smith's honing solution. I'm really liking this stone. The edges came out quite well. The 8" length was nice with the longer kitchen knives and I find the 2" width easier to hold. All in all I think it's going to work out well.
    O'Toole's commentary on Murphy's Law: Murphy was an optimist.

  7. #26
    Senior Member blabbermouth
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    I'm a little late to the party, but I've got a few stones from Best (Soft and hard Arkansas) and my translucent came from Dan's. Best's stones are Arkies, there's no doubt in my mind there. They do get the job done as well as any other Arkansas soft & hard stone I've ever owned. And they came pretty well flattened too. I'd say there's nothing wrong with them, but I do prefer my Dan's stone. Probably because it's a full inch thick and stands up higher above my sharpening stand. The Best stones I always feel a need to set the stand or stone on something taller to make up the difference.

    If I'm holding the rock I prefer 6" x 2" but most of my honing is on a bench stone and I prefer 8" x 3" when it's possible. An 8" x 2" profile works well enough though. It's not too terribly important, if you're diligent you can do anything with a 4x1 that you can with an 8x2 stone. Just takes a little longer and a little more patience.

  8. #27
    Senior Member JellyJar's Avatar
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    Good to know the Best stones aren't junk.

    I've been quite happy with the Dan's 8x2 combo. I hold my stones and don't have overly large hands, so the 2" width has been nice. Sometimes I'll get cramps in my holding hand with 3" stones.

    I agree with the extra thickness being nice. I've used 1/2" thick stones with knives for years, but the crazy sharpness of razors has made me much more conscious of where my holding hand is relative to the edge.
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    O'Toole's commentary on Murphy's Law: Murphy was an optimist.

  9. #28
    Senior Member blabbermouth
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    Agreed, 1" thick stones in the hand are much more comforting. When I'm using something the thickness of the average barber hone I am very, very wary of where the blade is, where it's going, and where my fingers are in relation to that.
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  10. #29
    Senior Member blabbermouth outback's Avatar
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    I hone everything, with stone in hand. The thin, 1/2" stones, I hold in the palm of a open hand, finger tips out of the way.

    By holding a stone in hand, it acts as a gimbal bearing. If I apply too much pressure to the heel or toe, the stone will tilt to match, ensuring even pressure though out the length of the blade. In short, no honing off the edge of the stone, common when honing on a flat, fixed surface.

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