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Sharpening Saji R-2 Custom Damscus Gyuto 240mm

Sat Jun 28, 2014 3:09 pm

I wil be honest to you, i am a total newb.

I like to cook, and every time i had to use those $30, 5 piece set knifes in a wooden block, i was swearing.

Had to re-sharpen almost every time i was doing someting, cutting onions, peppers etc

Had enough of them cheap knifes so i started to visit japanese websites and got myself a knife in the description.

Some of my friends told me " you are so stupid why did you spent $500 on a SINGLE knife ? "

I told them, " i have enough of a "cheap knife BS" and I WANT someting that is goona look nice in my home :) "

I have the knife, it is sharp out of the box and it cuts like $*!@^% but have to buy sharpening stones.

I have a budget of lets say...$200 for eighter 2 or 1 combined stone, to get the knife to be stupid sharp again

If there would be a super-duper waterstone for a bargain of $300, i would get it, but it would have to be a real deal, otherwise, around $200

Please tell me also, what is better, natural stone ? or those made by factorys ?

Thank you very much in Advance for help, i will now continue reading the forum for wheatstone reccomendation......maybe i will find some answers.....

Again thanks :)

Re: Sharpening Saji R-2 Custom Damscus Gyuto 240mm

Sat Jun 28, 2014 8:26 pm

Well this is a big topic :)

First welcome to the forum! Now give us a better idea WHICH knife you bought and I can target recommendations.

So you won't achieve everything with a single stone. You will use a sequence of stones, going from coarse to fine. If you chip or damage the edge you will use coarse stones. Depending on how fine you like your edges you can go through a sequence of stones. Even for a natural stone especially for a beginner, $300 is way too much.

You need a 1000 grit stone. This is where sharpness begins, with coarser grits for repairs and changing angles. While you won't initially need a coarser stone, when you change bevel angles, you will want something coarser. And of course when you learn to sharpen all of your friends will hand you their beat up knives to sharpen with chips and broken tips. Then you will want a coarse stone. I prefer a very coarse stone for this, about 150 grit, but some like to spend more time on a 400 or 500 grit stone.

Some people will advise jumping from a 1k stone to a 6k stone. I would advise against this and have a 2k stone inbetween. Also you will need to keep your stones flat so a diamond plate is needed for this.

Your minimum initial set should be a 1k stone and very coarse diamond plate, preferably one of high quality. Perfect your 1k technique rather than jumping to a 6k too quickly. A poor 1k edge is not saved with a 6k stone. It will be more shiny, but not sharper. You can expand from there. You can save a bit with combo stones initially, but if you stay with it longer you will get individual stones. Coarse stones wear fastest, so get a combo stone that has more coarse stone than fine stone.

Expect a WIDE range of answers to your question.

Natural stones are certainly a good option, although several will try to scare you away from this as 'too complicated' but you can actually start with fewer stones with naturals since they span a grit RANGE rather than a single grit so you can space them further apart. People have been using naturals long before synthetics became available :)



Re: Sharpening Saji R-2 Custom Damscus Gyuto 240mm

Sat Jun 28, 2014 10:48 pm

It would be nice to know what this $500 knife is to help with recommendations. A very good set to start with, but as Ken mentioned, I would add a 2k to it. http://www.chefknivestogo.com/shpro3pcs ... 6-aD7GmVfA

Re: Sharpening Saji R-2 Custom Damscus Gyuto 240mm

Sat Jun 28, 2014 11:54 pm

It's a Saji R-2 Custom Damascus 240mm. I'm going to assume it's the one from JCK.

Ken covered the topic very well. Jeff pointed you to a stone set I was going to mention, though I'll mention you could buy just the 1k and 5k to test this all out. Otherwise I'll fill in with some color commentary.

You don't need to spend $300 on stones, as in all your stones combined, to get a sharp knife. $200 is your ballpark for a great core set. A 1k stone, a 4-6k stone, and some simple stropping equipment will get a knife into great form and, assuming no terrible damage, most people don't need a coarse stone to reprofile, though those who really like to sharpen usually pick some up. In the event of severe damage, you can still send the knife off to a pro (and get a sweet, sweet professional edge in the process). A lapping plate is important, but not essential in the very beginning, and sandpaper can be a decent holdover, but the plate makes it all somewhat easier. The Shapton stone set mentioned will get a knife screaming sharp and is a good sharpening core. Many people can pick up a set like that, learn to sharpen, and be very happy. The Pro stones are marvelously engineered and top notch.

If you want to spend more, you can get into some amazing stuff. Ken went to some length on natural stones, but I'll go directly to the root of what you asked. In the hands of a skilled sharpener who understands what he is doing, natural stones can produce a more versatile and impressive edge than synthetics. But you have to do a little learning. Stones like the Shaptons are very simple; start at the low grit, work up to the high grit, sharp knife. Natural stones (and some impressive synthetics) are much more nuanced. You might jump some grit ranges, use different stones based on the steel, or use various techniques to tweak an edge. If you would be interested in that, it's a rich world and you can get a knife with astonishing capabilities.

One last thing. Don't start out on your Saji. Odds are good you're going to scratch the hell out of and possibly damage the edge of the first knife you put to a stone. That's pretty normal. If you don't want to have to send your new knife to Ken for reprofiling, practice on the $30 specials first.

Good luck.

Re: Sharpening Saji R-2 Custom Damscus Gyuto 240mm

Sun Jun 29, 2014 10:46 am

Hello again, thank you for a quick reply.

Yes the knife is from JCK, and it is the custom version with Stag bone handle. $520.

I would like to go for shapton stones then.

Thinking about 1000 and 5000 grit. And since the knife is new and still sharp, i don't think I will use low grit stones.....For now

As you mentioned i will first practice on my inexpensive Stellar Sabatier 5 pc set first.

Again, thank you very much for help ;)

Re: Sharpening Saji R-2 Custom Damscus Gyuto 240mm

Sun Jun 29, 2014 5:21 pm

Sorry for doubling it

this is the knife :)


Youtube vid with different handle

Hmm... now thinking about the diference between

Shapton Pro 320/1k/5k or 1k/5k/8k

i am scared to use 320 on this knife aafter i heard noise it gives when knife edge runs on it :)

true noob i am ..

Re: Sharpening Saji R-2 Custom Damscus Gyuto 240mm

Sun Jun 29, 2014 8:11 pm

So this is a pretty good knife. Your instincts to keep the 320 away from it are good ones :)

So let's get you started. Your edges are at an angle. The 'bevel angle' You can adjust this - more acute is sharper but more delicate and coarser is just the reverse.

For a beginning sharpener, I would recommend NOT changing this angle yet. You should mark the edge with a sharpie and when you use an abrasive against the edge it should remove the sharpie marker all the way to the edge of the edge.

Your knife is capable of taking a fine edge. It is a powdered steel of relatively high hardness. You should consider maintaining your edge at a relatively fine level of finish BEFORE it gets too dull AND practice with coarser stones on OTHER knives first.

If the knife has not gotten too dull yet, you can start out on a 2k or 4k stone first and go from there. Or a 4 micron strop. Eventually you will be going to a set of stones like I mentioned initially.


Re: Sharpening Saji R-2 Custom Damscus Gyuto 240mm

Mon Jun 30, 2014 3:23 am

Thank you very much Ken!

Now next thing I need is about 10kg of onions and 10kg peppers to practise chopping.....and first aid kit :)

Re: Sharpening Saji R-2 Custom Damscus Gyuto 240mm

Mon Jun 30, 2014 6:52 am

I like this setup: http://www.chefknivestogo.com/stsetwiun ... 7FYu0AbCnk to add to any of the stone sets mentioned already. This gives you a stone holder, 140 diamond plate for flattening, and strops for bringing the edge back to life quickly w/o having to go back to the stones. I use this with my Bester 1200/Rika 5K or Nubatama Ume 1K/Rika 5K setups and it produces great edges!! Nice and refined with some tooth left for slicing proteins.

Shapton pro 320, Latte 400 or Bester 500 are all good coarse stones.
Chosera 1K, Bester 1000 or 1200, Shapton Pro 1K, Nubatama Ume 1K Medium or Hard would all be good choices for the 1K stone.
I love my Rika 5K for a final stone, and follow it up with a bare leather stropping for a refined edge with good tooth left for proteins. If I am going for a J Nat edge (which I love!), I go with my hard Aoto or Hakka stone (3-5K or 4-6K) J Nat and then strop on leather. I have a softer Aoto around 1-3K and a Shapton Pro 2K that both work well, but I usually jump from 1K to the Rika or J nat Aoto or Hakka and skip the 2K step completely so I have a little more tooth left to the edge.

I prefer a slightly softer stone to sharpen on for knives, but a harder stone on straight razors. The Shapton Pro's are very hard stones, so there are less worries about gouging them compared to a softer stone; the Rika 5K is fairly soft and can gouge easily.

Re: Sharpening Saji R-2 Custom Damscus Gyuto 240mm

Wed Jul 02, 2014 12:49 am

Yeah don't forget the strop and compound it is important.
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