Switch to full style
Post a reply

Re: Help choosing a set of stones

Tue Oct 01, 2013 8:26 pm

maybe 400, 1k, 3k, 8k?

Re: Help choosing a set of stones

Wed Oct 02, 2013 2:06 pm

Mark's Nubatama 3 stone set might be a great place to start a stone collection. Those 3 stones were chosen carefully for maximum versatility, plus you'll get a discount over purchasing everything separately.

Jason B. had repeatedly stated that the 150 to 1K Ume is no problem (but he sharpens for a living). I would think you could add the 400 Latte as a good fit if you felt the need for another step between those, or for situations that wouldn't require something as coarse as the 150. IMO the 5K Bamboo is as high a you'd need to go for kitchen knives, but if you wanted to add an 8K or a JNat later for the heck of it, more power to you :-).

Dropping the Shapton 2K into the mix doesn't make sense to me, as it's such a different stone than the Nubatamas, both in feel and finish, but the experts here could talk more about this component in your proposed progression.

Enjoy whatever you get. Mark doesn't sell any bad stones :-).

Re: Help choosing a set of stones

Wed Oct 02, 2013 3:01 pm

I go bamboo 150 to the Ume 1k all the time and it works just fine for me. I do have the bamboo 400 and latte 400. I just find I rarely use them.

Re: Help choosing a set of stones

Wed Oct 02, 2013 8:31 pm

Cool. Thanks Branwell, it's good to know that it works for us mere sharpening mortals. Not dissin' on your skills at all :) .

I've been comtemplating getting the 150. My coarsest stone is a Shapton Pro 320.

Re: Help choosing a set of stones

Thu Oct 03, 2013 1:30 am

Ok so this is a good progression? Straight from the Nubatama set but without the extras, which makes it bit over $218.
Nubatama Bamboo 150
Nubatama Ume 1k medium
Nubatama Bamboo 5k
If I was to get 1 more stone which would make for the best finish, stone between the 150 and 1k or between the 1k and 5k?

Re: Help choosing a set of stones

Thu Oct 03, 2013 5:22 am


I have quite a number of finishing stones including the Bamboo 5K and what I tend to do is rotate them round a bit.
No one stone is the perfect finishing stone. They all leave a character to the edge that has it pros and cons depending on what you are cutting, mood, etc. I find it nice to have verity.

If you want something that can slot in between the Ume 1K and Bamboo 5K or act as a finishing stone by itself, the Rika 5K is truly exceptional. Why another 5K you say? Well, the Rika more like a 3K that only works at a 5K if you get some mud going and then work the mud. Its also in my opinion, by far the best stone feel wise in that grit range.

Another option would be to look at a Japanese Natural stone some times referred to as a JNat. The feel of sharpening on them and finish they leave is quite different to that of the synthetic stones. I have several. The one I come back to most is the Meara. Its somewhere in the 5K / 6K range and smells like a rain forrest in use.

Re: Help choosing a set of stones

Thu Oct 03, 2013 4:59 pm

would the rika be a toothy 3k finish if not using the mud?
now comparing the rika and bamboo, would the rika be more of a cloudy finish because of the mud?
if they are very similar would a 6k or 8k bamboo fit better?
thanks for all the help

Re: Help choosing a set of stones

Thu Oct 03, 2013 5:46 pm

Hi Slice

The Bamboo 5k and Rika 5k are very different, but then again, I've not seen two of any different brand or series of stone of the same grit be the same.

If you are looking for a polished edge, you probably want something up in the 8k plus range and something not muddy, maybe a shapton glass stone. It should be said though that 8k edges are only really nice when they are fresh. As soon as they dull a little, there is little to bite into the food and they feel extra dull.

I think the best thing is not to over think it at this stage. Just get something good like the Nubatama set and use it for a while. It will give you some reference points. Once you have those you can say you want sethingn softer, harder, shinier, toothier relative to what you have. In the end you will have a great selection of stones and will have a blast.

It should also be pointed out that sharpening tequnique makes a huge difference to how a perticular stone will work.

Freehand sharpening is far more of an art then a science in my opinion. :)

Re: Help choosing a set of stones

Fri Oct 04, 2013 7:38 am

Thanks branwell, once I get a good technique down I'll probably only sharpen these stones with the new knives I recently got from here and use the edge pro with shapton GS for all the other kitchen knives.
question is - once I set a edge with the 150 would I mostly be using the 1k for touch ups or when would I be using the 150?
I'll be going with the 3 stone set but just wondering if the 400 latte would be good also so I don't have to take so much metal off using the 150?

Re: Help choosing a set of stones

Fri Oct 04, 2013 8:28 am

For maintenance sharpening, I think start on the 1K and finish on the 5K.

You would use the 150 when you have sizable chips to remove or when you want to thin the knife, or when your friends bring their rounded edges over because you are now the guy in town that can save them from a life of dullness :)

That is not to say the 150 does not get a lot of use. A ton of the blades performance comes from how thick the blade is right behind the cutting edge so keeping it thin is as important as sharpening.

I hear you on not wanting to remove too much metal, but the 150 is easy to finesse. If you lean on it, it will remove metal pretty fast. If you go lightly, it wont. I am not sure there is much to be gained by getting a 400 grit stone. I'd save your money and once you have a set and get some idea of your preferences, then you can start exploring options from a point of a known reference.
Post a reply