Best combo stone in a budget ?

Discussion in 'Cooking Knife Reviews' started by luis j, Mar 14, 2013.

  1. luis j

    luis j

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    Hi guys...

    A friend of mine asked me for some advice on sharpening stuff in a tight budget. My first opinion was the CKTG 5 piece set , but he said that he preferred a combo stone... Then I told him to get the Gesshin 1000/6000 wich I have never used but since the quality of my gesshin 8000 is so good and Jon Broida service was so professional, I didn't hesitate on giving him that piece of advice, but seems like he finds it too expensive.

    I remember that my first stone was a combo stone, an Oishi 1000/6000 wich I found very acceptable and made me happy for a while until it crumbled like a cookie when I started to give it professional use and abuse, I may suggest this one since it worked fine for me  as long as I kept it for my personal use at home.

    But before that I'll like to ask for something else based on your experience. Maybe the king 800/6000  ?

    I tought about the 1000/6000 suehiro, but after reading about it, I got a bit discouraged.

    Am I missing any good choice? Let me know guys, all your imput will be very appreciated.

    Luis
     
  2. texomajim

    texomajim

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    I don't have anything bad to say about that stone, it is what I learned to sharpen on.  It is also known as SteeleX from some vendors.  They are smaller than other more expensive stones, but I still think for a starter stone they are good. 
     
  3. mike9

    mike9

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    The problem with most of the combo stones I've seen is the 1k side is a soaker and the 6k side is splash-n-go.  If you soak the whole stone the 6k side suffers and degrades like yours did.  Better to get two stones for a little more money.
     
  4. knifesavers

    knifesavers

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    Take note on Jon's 1K/6K is that #1 he says it can soak and it is 2 full size stones

    : When we decided to make this stone, we took two amazing full-size stones and put them together."

    It is 205×73×50㎜ thick so imagine 2 of your 8K's back to back.

    That is a lot of rock for $135.

    One day I have to take a trip up to check one out but I'm intrigued to revamp my waterstone kit with one

    Jim

    BTW what did you read on the Suehiro?
     
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2013
  5. mike9

    mike9

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    Well there you go - Jon sells great product.
     
  6. luis j

    luis j

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    Hi guys...

    Thanks for the valuable advice. As I told you, my friend can't go out of budget, my suggestions were towards the Gesshin 1000/6000 or the 3 stone combo (5 piece set) from CKTG but seems like he's on budget for getting a regular combo stone like the king, the Oishi or the Suehiro. I told him that if he likes this hobby (As a professional chef he must) he's going to end up buying again new stones to replace the first combo stone. I'll talk to him into getting the good stuff since the beginning, but I'm not sure if he's going to have the will or the money.

    Best regards guys, and thanks for the info, I'll keep an eye on the thread. I was asking for a stone for my friend but I think that I'm going to end up buying the Gesshin for myself. Looks cool and that will help me while traveling when invited to food festivals or for consulting jobs out of town. Looks convenient to travel with just one stone instead of my 1200, 5000 and 8000. I'm sure that while out of town I can live with a 6000 polished edge, and even more if it is up to Gesshin standards.

    /img/vbsmilies/smilies/thumb.gif

    Luis
     
  7. boar_d_laze

    boar_d_laze

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    Luis,

    Ask Mark about his $60 Imanishi 1K/6K combo.  Other than noting its presence, price, size and grit levels on the CKtG site -- which seem to fit the bill -- I know nothing.

    BDL
     
  8. luis j

    luis j

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    Looks like a very good option and Mark states in his site that is the best combo stone that he carries... The downside: Out of stock, but looks very promising. I already got in the list to see when it's back in stock again.

    Thanks a lot! /img/vbsmilies/smilies/thumb.gif
     
  9. franzb69

    franzb69

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    dave martell's site japaneseknifesharpening has a pretty good combo stone as well. you might as well check that out.
     
  10. rick alan

    rick alan

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    Thought I'd chime in here.  In my ignorance I had bought the Shun steel/combi-stone (1k/6k) set.  The steel is useless of course, and I hated the stone at first.  Instructions said to soak 30min, at which point both sides are awfully soft.  Brilliant as I am I finally figured 5 min is enough soak time and, low and behold, the stone is still on the soft side but much less so and does not produce nearly so much mud.  Problem is it's full of pieces of black crap just hard enough to do a little damage to your edge, I've dug out about 6 of theses1.5-2.5mm chunks so far, all from the 6k side, and haven't worn the stone all that much yet.

    The 1k to 6k does work, but you do have to spend considerable more time on the 6k of course.

    The Iminishi sounds very good and they seem to be back in stock.  I'm still getting the hang of water stones so will wear at my Shun for a bit more, I'm happy with the speed of the 1k side and will likely stay with that for a 1k, but next stop is going to be Jon's Geshin line, at least for the 400 and 8000, possibly adding something in between.

    Rick
     
  11. jake t bud

    jake t bud

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  12. boar_d_laze

    boar_d_laze

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    Gesshin 400, 2K and 8K is about as good and complete a set as you can get.  Each of these is both far faster and leaves a significantly finer finish than their grit numbers would suggest.  If you had those three, it's unlikely you'd need anything else.  They are so darn expensive, but if any stones are worth that kind of money it's them. 

    I've tried all three, already have the 8K, and will plan to add the other two as my current stones die.

    BDL
     
    Last edited: Apr 5, 2013
  13. duckfat

    duckfat

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     The last thing a new sharpener needs is a 400 grit stone no matter who it comes from or what brand it is. The combo stone from Jon would be a great pick and 1K/6K should carry even an advanced sharpener a very long ways. The stone from Jon is a lot of bang for the buck. I wouldn't even waste time looking beyond that if I was starting over. That stone is all most home cooks would ever need and even for a professional Chef it would be a mighty handy combo stone.

    Dave
     
  14. boar_d_laze

    boar_d_laze

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    It's a good idea for a beginning sharpener to stay away from fast coarse stones.  They can cause a lot of hard-to-correct damage if you can't hold a consistent angle.  If a beginner asks, "Do I need a coarse stone as part of my first sharpening kit?"  I agree that the answer is "No." 

    However, because wear and re-sharpening move the edge ever higher up the knife face to an increasingly thick area of the knife; and because there's a natural tendency for bevel angles to become increasingly obtuse with each re-sharpening, occasional but regular thinning is a good idea.  And because chips happen, it's also nice to have a fast, coarse stone for repairs.  Most of my knives need to go to the coarse stone every fourth or fifth sharpening.  I don't see why the same wouldn't be true for other peoples', whether used in a home or professional kitchen. 

    If your experience is otherwise and you don't want to use a coarse stone, please don't do it on my account.  Whatever makes you happy makes me happy for you. 

    As to the Gesshin 400, I was not addressing a new sharpener.  I was talking to Rick Alan -- which should have been clear because I quoted him -- who is an "almost intermediate;" and who brought up the subject of the Gesshins himself.  My current coarse stone is a Bester 500 which I bought "barely used" from KC when he decided to (obsessively) try something else.  Whatever that one was, he'd switched to the Gesshin 400 and was raving about it before his untimely death.  

    Just for the record, "the combo stone from Jon" is the King 1K/6K.  Buying from Jon is a good thing because he's a great guy who runs a great store and you might as well establish a relationship with one of the few best people in the business, plus his is the hard to find 8" long stone.  So, if you want a King 1K/6K, by all means... go ahead and buy from JKI. 

    That said, Kings are okay, especially for the price, and may be the best choice for some people in some circumstances; but they are by no means the only good choice for a beginner.  By way of example, the 10mm Naniwa 1K and 5K separates are worth the extra $30 compared to the King for their nearly splash and go convenience as well as their better consistency and far better speed.   

    BDL 
     
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2013
  15. ordo

    ordo

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    @bdl: I was not a believer in GlassStones until i bought a #1000. Quick, effective, really splash and go. How are the coarse ones?
     
  16. duckfat

    duckfat

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    A fast stone may be nice for some but unnecessary for most. When I say that I'm referring to the so called "starter" kits that often get linked to from different dealers such as in the OP. Coarse stones in a starter kit are not suited for a noob not only for the reasons already listed but also the extra expense starting out. In addition most sharpeners who advance will end up with a DMT for flattening so another coarse stone is a bit redundant.

    As far as the frequency of needing a coarse stone all I can say is my knives haven't seen more than a 1K in years...as in at least the last four or five years. A 1K and 5- 6K set or combi stone along with a flattener will carry the vast majority of sharpeners for many, many years.

    Chips really shouldn't happen with normal use. At least not beyond what a 1k or DMT can take care of.

    Dave
     
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2013
  17. boar_d_laze

    boar_d_laze

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    They're good stones.  For a few reasons which don't run counter the virtues you wrote about, I never much really cared for the entire GS series.   They were the stones du jour for a couple of years and sold like crazy.  Some of the adopters moved on, some did not.  Right now they appear to be going through a sort of renaissance, partly as a reaction to a sense that the Chosera (the next stone du jour after the GS) might not be all they were cracked up to be. 

    A great many people whom I respect love GS, while others are even more dismissive than me.  The three sharpeners I respected and respect most are in the "not-a-fan" camp.   I'm not sure if that negativity means my opinion is biased or not.  All of which is a very long way of saying "take it for what it's worth."

    The 320 and 500 GS coarse stones are decent performers and fair value for their highish prices, better than anything cheaper.  Better they may be, but they still fit within the rubric of "all coarse stones suck."  I prefer the Beston 500 and Chosera 400 to either, and much prefer the Gesshin 400. 

    I don't know any of the higher quality "extra coarse" 200ish water stones well enough to comment, but think if I regularly moved enough metal to merit something that coarse, I'd investigate a belt sander. 

    BDL
     
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2013
  18. boar_d_laze

    boar_d_laze

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    Which DMT?  The two DMTs most often recommended for flattening are the XC, and the XXC.  The usual recommendation for a flattener is for the XXC, because it's so much better (for flattening) than the XC, that it's worth the extra price.  The DMT Diasharp C isn't recommended for a flattener, because it sucks for the purpose. 

    The XC is extra coarse (XC, get it?) and the rough equivalent of JIS 280; while the XXC is extra frikkin' coarse (the second X departs from the ordinary naming convention), and the rough equilvalent of JIS 100.  Not only that, or maybe because of it, both leave much worse scratch than a Gesshin 400 or Beston 500, while cutting much faster than ordinary, low grit number, coarse stones like a "Pink Brick" or Norton Coarse India.  The XC and XXC are just about the last stones I'd suggest to someone who can't hold an angle well enough to sharpen with confidence and consistency. 

    Maybe I misunderstand your point, but it seems to me that if you're recommending using either the XC or XXC you are in fact not only recommending the use of very coarse stones indeed.  

    Since you've been around so long, and I repeat myself so often, you know that I recommend that beginners stay away from using (if not buying) coarse stones until they've reached competence with the phrase, coarse stones have consequences.

    In case a beginner is reading this, it bears repeating:  Coarse stones have consequences.  And if that's not bad enough, it's not very often that you can fix a screw up on a finer stone than the one you use to screw up in the first place, so those consequences can only be repaired on a -- wait for it -- coarse stone.

    BDL
     
    Last edited: Apr 8, 2013
  19. rick alan

    rick alan

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    I know BDL doesn't care for diamond stones but in all fairness I had a cheap 1k DS from WT tool that put on a very decent edge, much better than the [cheap quality] 1k waterstone I have.  It's perfectly adequate but stopping at hat level of finish just doesn't make me happy.  Proper polish is worth the effort in both sharpness and durability.

    Rick
     
  20. boar_d_laze

    boar_d_laze

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    There are diamond stones and diamond stones.

    What I don't like about most of them for everyday sharpening use is that they tend to wear very quickly, making them expensive long-term.  Atomas and their replaceable skins are supposedly better than DMTs in that respect -- as well as in seveal other ways -- but (a) I've never used them and am only passing along the gossip; and (b) Atomas are pricey upfront. 

    Strongly agree that 1K* is not a good working edge for most knives nor for most purposes.  Lots of reasons, some of which require long, technical explanations.  There are a lot of other opinions on this too.  Might be worth its own thread.

    BDL

    *Even the nominal meaning of grit numbers depends relative to grit size depends on the grading standard.  Your Japanese water stone is graded, "1K" on the JIS scale.  Your "1K" diamond, quien sabe?  
     
    Last edited: Apr 8, 2013