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Hopefully this will be my last question for awhile. I have the Arashiyama 1k and 6k. I feel like I need another stone like a 3k between them so I don't have to work the 6k so much. Would I benefit from this or should I just hang though until I get a better feel with what I have. I am still very new with free handing.
_________________ Those who say it can't be done are always passed by those doing it.
I don't think you need another stone, especially at this point in your journey.
Your 1k edge is the foundation, so when you say you are "working" the 6k a lot, this probably means that you are not spending enough time on the 1k. All the 6k should be doing is polishing the 1k edge - refining it, in other words.
My travel kit consists of two splash and go stones - a 1k and a 5k - and it is more than sufficient for everything but major edge repair.
I usually prefer a 2k over a 3k inbetween. Do you need it? Well that depends on the steel - and personal preferences. In general for softer steels, bigger gaps are OK. For more abrasion resistant steels use smaller gaps. So the answer won't be the same for each knife.
First perfect your 1k edges. Then use what you have to 'get' how it reacts to what you sharpen. Then consider adding a mid grit stone. Consider the 2k Nubatama Ume, 2k Chocera or 2k Shapton stones (Pro or Glass) as first choices. Often you will start at 2k skipping the 1k depending on edge condition.
You mention the 2k Nubatama Ume, 2k Chocera and 2k Shapton pro or Glass as your first recommendations. Where in that lineup would you place the 2k "Green Brick of Joy" http://www.chefknivestogo.com/naao2kgrbr.html by Naniwa? I quote your review of it -
"By: Ken Schwartz Mountain House A long time favorite stone of mine. It is the ideal stone for European knives,allowing you to go from a very coarse stone or plate up to a level of finish more than adequate for European knives. Also works well in a sequence for harder Japanese knives too. Using the dried mud from lapping the stone dried on paper gives you an excellent ’stone paper’ for polishing the sides of your knife. Very smooth stone with excellent feedback. HIGHLY recommended stone."
I have been thinking of using this stone as my next step up from my 1k King stone from Lee Valley, but I am also thinking of getting an Edgepro Essential kit, and was waiting till the Edgepro version of this stone was back in stock before making my final decision which way to go.
Like Rick said....if you do a good job with a 1,000 grit stone, you should have very minimal time on the 6k....like less than 5 minutes. Once you get that bevel set, it's quick time with each stone after.
Same is true if you start with a 500 grit stone....after that it's 3 or 4 minutes with each stone after. You might spend 10-15 minutes with the first stone setting the bevels though.
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