Woodstock D1130 1000 Grit and 6000 Grit Japanese Waterstone best price

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Woodstock D1130 1000 Grit and 6000 Grit Japanese Waterstone

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I bought this stone for $30. It is more expensive compared to typical oil stones which only cost $3-10. However, a waterstone grinds more uniform and the resulting edges are more polished. 

This combination 1000 + 6000 grit Japanese waterstone is 2" wide, 8" long and 1" deep. It is an artificial water stone. A waterstone works fast and consistent because it constantly reveals new grinding surfaces. This also means it wears out fast and one must keep its surface flat by lapping the stone frequently. This stone is fairly soft even for a waterstone, so I need to lap the stone once per knife, unless I am doing a compound bevel edge, then I may do one more when I switch the angle. I recommend getting a diamond stone for lapping, like this: DMT W6FP 6-Inch Diamond Tabletop Whetstone, Fine Grit, DMT W6CP 6" Diamond Whetstone Sharpener - Coarse With Plastic Box or others. A diamond stone not only can work as a lapping stone, but it functions as a coarse sharpening stone. The real important point is not what you use to keep this stone flat, but the fact that you must have a mean to do so. You do not have to get a diamond stone. 

I have one criticism. I wish the 1000 and the 6000 grit surfaces are not equally thick. Because the 1000 grit surface wears out much faster than the 6000 grit surface, it would have been nice if the 1000 grit surface is twice as thick as the 6000 grit surface. 

***A short explanation of waterstone for those unfamiliar with it*** 
Japanese waterstones are known for its unique performance. Water is essential for the sharpening performance of these stones, thus their names. They are quick to work with. This is because waterstones are made with small abrasive particles which are loosely held together. During sharpening, the surface particles easily come loose and revealing new layer of particles for fast and consistent sharpening. The loose particles are then carried away by the surrounding water and form a slurry which also assists the sharpening process. The disadvantages of waterstones are that the stones wear out fast and the slurry can be messy. 

*Update on Jun 08, 2010* 
I have worn the 1000 grit side down to 1/8", while the 6000 grit side is 3/8". I have upgraded to a 2000 grit and a 5000 grit Naniwa Super stones. In comparison, the Naniwa Super stones are more expensive, but higher performance and larger. Although I have out grown this combination stone, I don't regret buying it. It was relative inexpensive and it is soft, which is a good stone to learn. Although a softer stone requires frequent lapping, it has a nice feel to it and provides decent feedback.

 

I'm a novice at woodworking and I didn't go for five stars here only because I am not able to see, for lack of anything much to compare it to, that the product is really superlative. 

I used it only with the Robert Larson 800-1800 Honing Guide that I also got from Amazon, and I first read the relevant portions of The Complete Guide to Sharpening and The Handplane Book [Illustrated]. (Those all seem to be good-to-very-good items too, by the way.) 

With all of that preparation, how could I go wrong? Well, I didn't. I managed to do a pretty good job on a Stanley plane iron that, as purchased, was not only unsharpened but never properly ground. 

Tip #1 (unless you know more than me, and you well may): if you have to grind a bevel flat and the 1000 grit side of this waterstone is too fine for that, tape a cheap sheet of wet-and-dry 600-grit sandpaper down to a flat surface (I simply used a Formica tabletop) and grind first with that. This will conserve your waterstone for the better licks. 

Tip #2: If you have the Larson guide you don't need to remove it when you flip the iron over to hone the flat side (it had looked at first to me as though that would be necessary).

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This article was published on 2011/04/14