Thu Dec 12, 2013 9:37 am
Well there's the green brick - so called aototoishi and the synthetic or blue aoto. NEITHER of these stones have anything to do with a REAL aoto.
The green brick is a nice stone - certainly for it's price. Although more expensive I would use a 2k Nubatama Ume personally anytime. A bit softer, far more pleasurable to use and does an excellent job. Just a better stone. I refer to it as the olive brick of joy.
Now a real aoto is a natural stone. It gives a very different edge. One distinct advantage of a natural aoto is that the grit refines itself with use unlike synthetics so it spans a grit RANGE. You can go from a relatively coarse edge to a refined edge on the same stone. There are a number of different types of aoto, some harder to come by than others. The Aono aoto is what is used most often and one that meets most users needs. I have these in various sizes to accommodate a wide budget range. I particularly like a Monzen aoto - It is soft and muddy - like a 1200 Nubatama but the grit is capable of great refinement. Then there are other less common aoto Kouzaki, Wachi Aoto, etc that I have a limited supply of. Some of these are a bit harder and softer, so you can get something that exactly fits your needs. This can get to be a long topic. If anyone wants more detail just contact me at ksskss at earthlink.net and we can arrange a phone chat and go into more detail.