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Rule

I've been using water stones to sharpen my Hock plane iron for a while.  I've noticed that the 1000X stone I'm using has developed a "track" where the wheel from my holder for the plane iron runs along the stone. The 4000X side is fine. I'm thinking of changing my sharpening to wet dry papers rather than water stones.

My question is this.

How many of you out there have tried this?  Are there any benefits/pitfalls I should know about?  (Joe Behar)

    I retired all my stones a few years ago.  I now use a disk sander with 400 grit to periodically true the cutting angle, then use wet/dry papers glued to glass for the rod to rod sharpening, then buff the edge with green compound on a rotary leather wheel.  Works great!  (Ted Knott)

    For my money, I think you are better off with the stones, but a lot of people swear by the SS method. You have to flatten the stones regularly during use. The very thing that makes waterstones so effective results in them wearing in this manner. I've always made a habit of rubbing the stones together after use. This seems to keep them nice and flat. Of course, if you only have one combination stone, this would be rather difficult. You can use the SS method with coarse paper to flatten the stones too.  (Larry Blan)

    Now, I straighten the stone on a wheel when needed and use a leather wheel almost all the time with a white stick. water stones will cup and they need to be flattened after almost every use. I used dry sandpaper on glass but the wheel on the Veritas guide wears down and will  wear on the inside around the axis too. I would replace the wheel but it always whore to one side or the other and the edge would not be square. after awhile I could no longer straighten it in the plane. I don't like using water or oil or silicon on my blades as a carrier because I don't want it on my cane.  (Timothy Troester)

    Have said this before, and will repeat it now.

    I am a hobbyist. Rodmaking is, for me, a pastime, i.e. "pass time".

    I am not in a rip tearing hurry to sharpen my irons, but I like to get a really good edge. I use waterstones; have tried some of the other methods, but don't like them as well as the stones.

    PLEASE NOTE THAT THIS IS JUST MY OWN, PERSONAL OPINION, AND MAY WELL BE WRONG; NOR DO I WANT TO CONVERT ANYONE ELSE,  NOR TO OFFEND THEM, NOR TO TRIGGER A JIHAD. THIS IS JUST THE WAY I CHOOSE TO DO IT!

    I don't like the Veritas jig, and so use a different design,  which I  think makes it easier to  keep the face square to the line of travel.

    I start with an 800 waterstone, move to a 1200,  then to a 6000 (used with a Nawara rubbing stone)   and finish on an 8000 stone. I use a single bevel of 30 degrees,  and I keep it sharp.

    I am NOT saying that my blades are sharper than those sharpened with other methods, but I AM saying that they are certainly AS sharp. I want to see an absolutely unblemished flat mirror surface, edge to edge, on the bevel before I consider the iron to be "done", and I have the backs polished with the same degree of obsession. I can push them through a cigarette paper when they are first out of the jig, and that is a sharp blade!

    I actually find it kind of restful, and it certainly provides a break from the concentration of final planing - and it's nice in the middle of final planing to be able to switch for a while to something that is productive, a no-brainer, and that you cannot  conceivably stuff up.

    When I finish using the 800, I briefly flatten it using the 1200  and rinse it under the tap before I put it back in the water bath; the 1200,  the 6000, and the 8000  all get the flattening treatment with the 800 stone. Each flattening takes me maybe 20 - 30 seconds, and I NEVER have dished stones.

    I can sharpen Hock irons and HSS-tipped irons in this way, but admit I am totally defeated by tungsten carbide blades. But  when we were trial sharpening a tungsten tip at a machinist friend's shop, I   found that there was no way  that we could get the edge on the TuC steel that I could get on the HSS, and more so on the Hocks, so who cares?

    And I don't get many lifts, nor many chipped nodes; and those that I do get are more relative to poor cane strip preparation, or to haste, or to fatigue, than to the blade condition. But I will say that when I first get the little whisper in the head which says "maybe it's  time to give the old blade a touch up", then it is, and I do!

    Unless time is of the essence  and you have to do things quickly, it seems to me that the answer to a problem is not to go out and  buy a new piece of equipment - it's to take the time to learn to get the best out of what you already have.  (Peter McKean)

    I have tried the sandpaper on glass method and it works.  Kind of a pain.  I gave up on the waterstone as I had problems similar to yours.  Eventually, I switched to a leather strop mounted on a 5 to 6" wooden wheel and used the Veritas (Lee Valley) green compound that they sell.  Generally, I can get the plane blades razor sharp, (use the hair on my arm to check sharpness, I know, I know) in a matter of a few minutes.  If, I have really damaged the edge, I regrind it on a white wheel, and then go to the leather powered strop.  The whole thing is powered by a 1/3 hp electric motor and it is connected to the motor shaft with a mandrel I bought at a local hardware store.  It is the same system that Tom Smithwick uses and I believe it is posted on the Tips site under contraptions.  Works well and is quick.  (Mark Babiy)

    My solution was to bite the bullet and buy one coarse diamond stone. It works great at truing the plane angles and taking out nicks etc. and it never dishes like water stones. Water stones take forever to remove relatively large amounts of steel.

    I use the water stones (600 and yellow polishing) work up to the mirror edge. After sharpening, I take the diamond stone and use it to flatten the water stones. Only takes a few seconds. The whole process takes less than five minutes to touch up a moderately dull blade.

    I don't like the Veritas jig either. It's very hard to keep the iron perpendicular to the  stone resulting in a skewed edge. The $12 Japanese job clamps the blade from the sides forcing the blade square. (Bill Hoy)

    If you will add a piece of glass,  ~ a foot to a foot and a half long, lay the waterstone on it to sharpen and periodically scrub it back and forth, the stone will always be flat.  The glass takes on a frosted look and is just enough abrasive, to flatten the stone.  (Onis Cogburn)

    Works great and unlike water stones they don't dish after each stroke. the best is hard white Arkansas stones and hard black if you want it sharp as a scalpel. It took years before I had to flatten my stones and I did it with sand paper and a plate of glass. Use mineral oil from Safeway and paint thinner mixed 50/50, that makes Norton's sharpening oil.  (Patrick Coffey)

    I've been thinking about trying a 'DuoSharp' diamond honing stone that Woodcraft has. It's a two sided steel with 600/1200 grit diamond.  Anybody used one. They are a bit pricey.   (Don Greife)

    I use the Tormek grinder. The water trough keeps the blade cool as it gets sharpened. The stone grader allows for coarse and fine grit sharpening on the same wheel. The real nice part is honing on the leather wheel that the Tormek has. Once I get the angles I want, it takes seconds to do the mirror-like honing on the leather wheel and get planing again. I rarely have to use the whetstone side.

    The Tormek is probably not worth the money if you can rig up a leather stropping set up for yourself. I usually still go back to my 1000/6000 water stones to flatten the back of the blades. I use the Tormek's stone grader to lap those waterstones. I use the Tormek to sharpen all kinds of stuff around the house, but it is still a lot at $350.

    If I had to do it over again, I would get a diamond stone and set up a stropping wheel with diamond compound. It would probably cost me $90 instead of 4 times that. (Bob Maulucci)

    You can rub the two stones together under running water, and they will stay flat.

    I do it about every other time I sharpen.  (Jeff Schaeffer)

    Since no one mentioned this method, I'll throw it in the hat. I use diamond stones. I went from a sharpening (using waterstones) ordeal to a much faster process using the double sided DMT stones with the stand. They do fine for me. Probably don't get the blades as sharp as the leather wheel method but it's fast and for me I think most lift issues were solved by changing my blade angles. Rarely lift any nodes any more. Knock on wood. Just a thought. . Also, I use a double bevel on the edge of my blades. By the way to flatten your stones, I would lay out a piece of wet sand paper and work your stone  over the surface in a circular motion until it flattens out (wet it occasionally). To determine if it's flat yet,  wet the stone until saturated. You should be able to tell pretty easily if is flattened. Like the other list members said, use a very flat (glass) surface to lay out your sandpaper.  (Randall Gregory)

    I'm very happy with the Scary Sharp method. I DO use WD40 as a lubricant and have never found it to be a problem. I think I've seen in woodworking magazines that you can use a cinder block to flatten waterstones if you don't have two.  (Art Port)

Rule

I don’t get to work every night, so after sharpening, is it best to just leave the stone in water, or take it out and let it dry.

Might be 2-3 days before I get back to planing again.  (Pete Van Schaack)

    I'll be interested to hear what others do. I leave mine in water all the time. rinse them off as needed and top off the water as it evaporates.  (Patrick Mullen)

      You put a couple of drops of soap in it, right? This retards any bacterial growth.  (Bill Walters)

      Yes, so do I.

      All four stones just stay immersed in a water bath all the time. I change the  water about weekly, and rinse off the scum every time I use a stone.

      I encounter no identifiable problems with this regime,  and  the stones are always ready to use.

      I also flatten each stone (using the 800 grit stone) as soon as I have used it each time. It takes only a couple of passes,  and   the stones are always flat and ready to use. You have to keep it pretty firmly in your mind  that these stones are expendable stores and will not last forever no matter what you do.  (Peter McKean)

    It depends on the fineness of the stone.  The coarser grades soak up a lot of water and are best left immersed but the finer ones - 6000 grade and more - are OK to use with a quick wetting and dry off quite quick.  I  only use  the latter -  for final polishing - and always dry it off these days.  The above comments apply to the Japanese water stones there are other varieties but they are outside my experience.   (Gary Marshall)

    I bought my water stone in '98, I think.  I also bought a flat Rubbermaid tray with a snap on lid.   I filled it with distilled water.  The only time my water stone comes out of the water is when I am sharpening or changing the water; every year or so.

    A recommendation: get a piece of glass about 12 or 14 inches long and 4 to 6 inches wide.  I scavenged a aquarium light shield for mine.  Each time you use the water stone, scrub it back and forth over the glass.  The stone will abrade the glass and the glass will flatten the stone.  I've been using this for three years and I haven't had to flatten the stone since I started using this method to keep the stone flat.  (Onis Cogburn)

Rule

I cheaped out and bought a #1000/#6000 Combination King Waterstone for $25.99 at Woodcraft and I put crowns on two plane blades before I realized that the stone wasn't flat and has a pretty significant concave surface. Can anyone recommend a relatively inexpensive waterstone? (by the way, the polishing side of the stone is fine, so at least I'm not totally out.) (Phil Smith)

    You can flatten your stones the same way you do your 9 1/2's sole and the back of your plane iron.  Try the sand paper on float glass trick.  It has worked on my water stones. It's worth a try  (Daniel Durocher)

    Water stones need to be flattened periodically.   I use the sandpaper on glass trick too, and also have seen a ceramic waterstone flattening tool at woodcraft.  (Brian Creek)

    I flatten my water stones with my coarse diamond stone. Rub them together under water. You will only have to do the flattening once in a while, but keep an eye on the water stone's flatness each time you use it.

    You can also flatten them on sandpaper on a glass plate. Some people just use a glass plate to flatten, letting the stone's grit to do the work. Another trick is to rub the stone on a flat cement block, also using water.  (Steve Weiss)

    I would recommend a two sided diamond stone.  They stay flat, use just a small amount of water and sharpen much faster than waterstones.  I have a set of waterstones, but find the diamond ones to work much better.  (Tom Mohr)

    Nothing wrong with your stones.  Waterstones wear quickly and need frequent flattening as you use them.  The ceramic flattening stones are quite expensive so I got a flat granite 12" x 12" stone and lay a sheet of 400 grit wet or dry sandpaper on it to flatten all my waterstones.  You'll need  to rub the waterstone wet on this for a few strokes after every two or three blades.  (Ed Berg)

    Thanks for all the tips guys. I've got a 16" piece of marble tile that I used for tuning the sole on my plane perhaps I'll use that or the diamond stone trick. Either way it's good to see that I don't have to buy another stone. (There are no phone #'s on the box, but you would think that these things would be milled true to begin with wouldn't you?) I'm out on building anymore tools for now, I'm tooled out until I get a few rods made.   (Phil Smith)

      Try asking Woodcraft if they will exchange it. Service is one of the reasons for shopping at a specialty store. Regardless, they still have to be flattened periodically. The marble tile will be fine, if it is flat.  (Larry Blan)

    Being a old fashioned guy and having made a living as a violin maker, I have to put my two cents in. Tried water stones and spent more time keeping them flat than sharpening irons. Every stroke crowns or dishes them. That's the nature of the beast and how they work. Went back to hard white and black Arkansas and haven't looked back since. Only have to flatten once a year and they sharpen irons more than sharp enough. They use hard whites and blacks for sharpening scalpels.  (Patrick Coffey)

    One can purchase from Grizzly or others a small square stone surface (usually 12x12 inches) for flattening cutting irons. They are very inexpensive ($10 to $15) and they work very well for me.  (Frank Paul)

Rule

After struggling with my plane for a while I noticed that the iron's edge had become rounded.  I checked the waterstone and it had a dip from use.  Trued it up and it soon was doing the same thing.  I used 220 grit sandpaper and a marble tile to true the plane blade and 1000 grit to get the edge back in shape.  Problem is that the sandpaper treatment worked far better than the waterstone ever did.  Going with the sandpaper here on out.  Just a FYI for newbies like myself.  (Lee Orr)

    I find it amazing the different results folks  have.  I gave up on sandpaper because it took forever to get an edge.   The waterstones do a great job for me, quick and easy.  Different strokes  for different folks.  Literally!  Send me your waterstones, I'll send  you my sandpaper.  ;^)  (Ed Berg)

    I'm not very keen on waterstones either.  Sandpaper is a great way to go, especially for beginners.  Diamond stones work great, but it's expensive to gear up with them.  My favorite is the leather wheel ALA T. Smithwick.  Once you have your bevel made it is a great way to keep planing.  (Rick Crenshaw)

    Waterstones are great, but they are a tool like any other. If you were using a knife or chisel, you would not feel it unreasonable to have to service the thing occasionally.

    Why is it unreasonable to have to service the waterstones?

    I used to use sandpaper on a plate glass sheet as a sharpening protocol, but found it to be a dirty, dusty and consumptive method of sharpening.

    To me, the waterstones were a breath of fresh air, and I can do as good a job on my stones as anyone  can do on wheels or paper, or "Scary Sharp", or whatever.  Not better, but as good.

    I have 800, 1000, 1200, 3000, 6000 & 8000.

    What I do, and it works for me, is to flatten each stone as I use it with the stone next down in series.  It takes about 10 seconds each time, and the stones are always flat.

    What amazes me always is that while people tend to resent the fact that the water stones wear out, they are perfectly happy to buy and throw out wet and dry paper.  Water stones, plane blades, planing forms, and all the panoply of rod building are, to some degree, ephemeral, as in fact are the rods and even the rodmakers themselves.

    Over a period of, say, ten years, I am quite sure that I would sooner be footing the bill for my waterstones than for ten years worth of wet and dry.

    Still, the method that suits you is obviously the best, and other people's methods will never seem right.  (Peter McKean)

    I've been using the "Scary Sharp" sandpaper method right from the get go.  I have a 18" square piece if tempered glass (also have a nice thick marble window ledge I get from Bret Reiter a couple of years ago) that I glue the pieces of sandpaper to, using 3M 77 spray adhesive.  I use these grits (though not for every sharpening): 320, 600, 1000, 2000, and then .5 micron for the final edge polishing.  On that scary sharp edge, I can count my nose hairs.  I also use the Veritas jig and angle check.  I get very, scary, sharp blades.  (Mark Wendt)

      How do you remove the paper from the glass/marble once you've glued it? I'd hate to have to go buy a new sheet of glass or marble every time the paper wore out. If removal sounds easy enough I may switch too.   (Phil Smith)

        Just a suggestion.  Prior to each sharpening ( I have 2 800 and 1  6000 King water stones) I lap each stone against each other to true them up.   You will notice an uneven wear pattern if they are not true.  Its a simple process that only takes 2-3 minutes.  I have been doing this for the past two years and my stones are wearing even and my irons are still true.  (Mike Hoffman)

        I just rip the paper off by hand and clean the glass with lacquer thinner.  (Ralph Moon)

        I put a dust coat of the 3M 77 spray only on the back of the sandpaper.  It makes for a light tack coat, and it peels off pretty easy.  Any adhesive residue left on the glass is cleaned up quickly with mineral spirits and a rag.  Only takes a few minutes to change out the sandpaper.  Or, if you can find it, you can use the adhesive backed sandpaper, though I don't know if they make it in the smaller grit range.  (Mark Wendt)

        When I use sandpaper on a marble slab for truing  stones or sharpening I found that just getting the sandpaper wet and pressing it  down on the stone holds it firmly in place.  No adhesive needed.  Just  lift a corner to remove.    (Ed Berg)

        I don't glue it on I just use a spring clamp at the base of the glass. Take it off and put on the next size grit the same way. I use about 10 or so grits and just use 6 or so strokes with each grit down to 5 micron. On a really ragged blade I have started with 60 to really hog it down. Gluing it down would mean I'd need quite an assortment of glass.  (Dave Norling)

          I kept a mirror door from a medicine cabinet we were discarding and it holds about 6 or 8 1/4 pieces of wet-or-dry side by side. I have about 8 planes and I work through all the ones I like before opening them up and putting the blades into a "Sears/ US General" guide. I swipe each one down the whole selection and replace it in the body.  In 5 or 10 minutes I'm done.

          I attach the paper with 2" masking tape at its ends and lube with WD 40 (and NO, it does NOT have silicone in it!! I've never had a problem with putting finish on a blank since I've been using it.) The only drawback is the kerosene in the WD 40 dissolves the gum on the masking tape sometimes so that I must put a finger on one end or the other of the sandpaper. Not a big deal for the advantages I've found over stones and diamonds and all the other cr*p I've tried over the years. I do still use my oilstones - to do our kitchen knives. For THAT I prefer "the old way".  (Art Port)

Rule

Question....for you folks who have used Japanese water stones.

I've begun trying to flatten the backs on several of my plane irons. I have 3 L/N planes and a couple Stanleys that will get a hock blade soon.

I have a bunch of Japanese stones (I have a woodshop so this goes back some time) and I thought I knew how to sharpen until this cane thing came about.  These stones go from 800 grit to 1000, 1200 and 8000 grit for the polish. I also have a thick piece of 3/4" x 12" x 12" "float glass" to keep these flat.

My question is this..after working the backs down to flat up to the 1200 stone and now using that polishing 8000 grit stone, I'm having a ton of difficulty getting a polish across the iron except all around the edges...maybe 1/8" in on both sides but not the front cutting edge.

Obviously somethings not flat. So I got back to flatten the 1200 stones and redo the backs which are even again, approx 1" back.

I flatten the 8000 stone again (criss-cross the stone w/pencil ines and rub on 220 wet/dry on the float glass until they all disappear) and still get both edges but not cutting edge to shine up.

HMMMMMM.....(eyes rolling back)

I maintain a three finger push on the bevel and no pressure that would lift the rear of the blade. I'm familiar with the Nagura Stone to work up a slurry on these polishing stones  and that helps a lot but still I don't get a mirror across the entire blade, even just 1/2" back from the cutting edge  (which is all you really need). I also alternate working the sides of the stone and turning it over to use both faces, once flattened.

This is my initial rodmaking step. I'm still not totally sold on which way to sharpen. The Scary Sharp looks good too and fellow rodmaker Dave Norling has shown me this method which I might very well use. But...I still have to have the backs mirrored/polished first so this is how I chose to try.  (Jeremy Gubbins)

    Three things 1) make sure you have a blade clamped in you plane while you flattening it. 2) Water stones are easily not flat. A lot of guys use them but I found that they got cupped and I spent more time flattening the stones than the blades. Sand paper on float glass works really well for this job. 3) If you are just hitting the corners on you final polishing and there is a blade clamped in the plane I would suspect the stone first, my method second, work in figure 8's with easy downward pressure not pushing away and pulling too, and the plane last. (Timothy Troester)

      Thanks but I was wanting to mirror/polish the back of my plane "blades" themselves. The bodies of my planes are good, unless they prove otherwise.

      What I didn't include in that post was how difficult is it to get that final mirrored finish w/an 8000 grit polishing stone after going through the coarser stones to get things flattened out before that last polishing?

      I'm thinking I "shouldn't" be having to rub forever using the polishing stone...but I've been wrong before.

      Typically how do most rodmakers get the backs of their blades mirrored? I'll keep working up a sweat if need be but I'm beginning to doubt myself.  (Jeremy Gubbins)

        You will have to keep working u pa sweat! go back down to the grit before the one you are having problems with and work it some more there before  you go to the next one again. that should do it. it should not have to be too much. work it in figure 8's. I am sorry I misunderstood. (Timothy Troester)

        I suspect that what you're seeing is that the blades are not truly getting flat on the coarser stones.  Try going a little more on the 800, 1000, and 1200 stones before moving to the polishing stone.

        Also, this is one of those tasks that for some strange reason seems to work much better with a Scary Sharp system than with waterstones.  My guess is that it's really tough to get waterstones flat enough for this process.

        One more thing... you really don't want to go side to side when flattening.  You want to go backwards and forwards.  Remember that any sharpening, no matter how fine, is going to leave a scratch pattern, and you would prefer that scratch pattern to be perpendicular to your edge.  (Harry Boyd)

          Thank you for your suggestion. I think I'll listen.

          Tim also suggested to go back to the more coarse stones and do some rework.

          Much appreciated.  (Jeremy Gubbins)

            Here is a thing I do, which may or may not interest you.

            When I sharpen blades, I use an Eclipse jig to hold the blade, and I work down through 800, 1200, 3000, 6000, 8000 and 20000 stones, taking enough strokes to wear the face of the blade evenly  and to put a palpable burr on the reverse edge.

            Before moving on to the next grade down, I flip the jig over and take half a dozen or so strokes on the back of the blade.  Unlike Harry, I do go side to side here as I figure if I go front to back I might gouge the stone with the leading edge of the blade.

            By the time you have sharpened the blade a couple of hundred times and polished the back of the blade as described, finishing with 20000 grit, let me tell you that they get pretty jolly smooth and shiny.

            Never, though, do they ever get nearly as smooth, flat and shiny as the bevel on the blade does.

            I think I mentioned that also, every time I have used a stone, I lap it flat using the side of the next stone up in the series, so I always have flat stones.  An old woodworker once told me that I should regard my waterstones as consumable stores, whereas he said that too many woodies regard them as a lifetime investment.  He was quite right.  (Peter McKean)

              This may be total newbie questions but, I'll ask anyway.  What is the value of having the back of a plane so polished we can  see our ugly mugs in them?  Isn't it all about the edge being razor sharp and removing the burr on the backside?  Does it make it seat better and remove blade chatter?  Inquiring minds want to know.  I am still in a steep learning curve as I have only built three rods.  Only had minor glue lines on the first rod due to my plane not being sharpened correctly.  Thanks to Mike St. Clair that issue was addressed properly.  (Pete Emmel)

                Again, it's the back of the plane BLADE and not the body of the plane itself.

                You're correct, our interest is with razor sharpness. This facilitates that. (Jeremy Gubbins)

                  You are right to say the blade.  I should have made that clear, sorry.  Maybe I am missing the boat ( which wouldn't surprise me).  Are you actually trying to get the whole back of the blade polished?  Be careful that you don't become as obsessive as I can get .  Can you see yourself in the edge and is the burr removed off the back side?  If you can answer yes, then get to planing. Then you will find out if your plane is sharp enough. If it isn't sharp enough then you can mess  with the back of the blade.  Rod building is like a Nike commercial "Just do it" .

                  Not trying to be a smart ass here but, I spent too much time on the details and missed a lot of time on the building.  Mike had to slap me around to get me started.  (Pete Emmel)

                    The cutting edge of the blade is formed where two surfaces meet.  The bevel and the back.  You cannot get a truly sharp edge if the back side has all the course grit grooves remaining.  You would then have kind of a serrated edge that dulls more quickly.   I hope this helps.  (Rick Hodges)

                No, there's no point wasting time trying to polish the entire back of the blade, all that needs to be done is to have maybe 1/2" sort of shiny, or at least showing that the stone is contacting the full width of the edge. I've sharpened plane blades this way for 25 years or more and have never felt that they weren't sharp enuf.  (John Channer)

    I think a large portion of your problem is having too large a jump in grit range from 1200 to 8000.  Working through one or even two intermediate stones, say a 4000 and 6000 would give much quicker results.  It takes one heck of a long time to wear down 1200 grit scratches with an 8000.   Your flatness is probably OK.  The polish pattern always seems to work its way in from the edges with the center polishing out last.

    I also think you should get on with planing cane and develop the polish as you go. It will come soon enough.  (Rick Hodges)

    I hope you're not waiting make your first rod until the back of your blade has a mirror finish.  If so, you may already be obsessing too much.  I started with a common modern Stanley and soon acquired better planes.  The blades I have have been lapped well enough to make good rods and are acquiring the mirror finish as I go.  I think a lot of times these differences are asymptotic.  Finer results eventually take more and more effort, but may not be entirely necessary.  (Darrol Groth)

    I invented new cuss words screwing around with waterstones.  Lots of folks have good luck with them but for me, they would never work.  I spent as much, or more, time trying to get the stones flat than I did sharpening the blades.

    The Scary Sharp worked pretty good with a Veritas MKII jig but took much longer than I have the patience for....not to mention always being out of the grit of sandpaper that I needed.

    I bit the bullet and bought a WorkSharp 3000 and haven't looked back.  (Bruce Johns)

Rule

Here is what looks like a fairly objective test of a few different water stones. I thought it might be of interest to those using or thinking about using water stones. It details the relative attributes of stones pretty well.  (Conor McKenna)

Rule

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