Looking to replace my previous stone. Also wondered about a Steel

Discussion in 'Cooking Knife Reviews' started by onepiece, Mar 30, 2012.

  1. onepiece

    onepiece

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     I have a Victorinox Forschner 8" Chef's Knife, and was previously using this stone for sharpening:

    http://www.cutleryandmore.com/norto...ombination-oilstone-sharpening-station-p15312

    I no longer own the stone due to moving to a new location, and was looking for something to replace it.  Was wandering if at this price point what stones would be a better option.  I also wondered if I should purchase a Steel or not, and if so, which one?

    One reason I am asking is because there are so many options around the $60 price range.  Here are some of the stones I have seen that are near my price point:   

    http://www.cutleryandmore.com/global/combination-water-stone-p11298

    http://www.cutleryandmore.com/henckels/twin-pro-250-1000-combination-japanese-water-stone-p19691

    http://www.cutleryandmore.com/messermeister/400-1000-grit-combination-sharpening-stone-p122887

    http://www.cutleryandmore.com/wusthof/combination-ceramic-water-stone-base-p16011

    I would prefer to use Amazon if possible since I have some credit I need to use up over there, but it isn't necessary.  
     
    Last edited: Mar 30, 2012
  2. chinacats

    chinacats

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    Funny, I didn't know that there were 'German' waterstones...I truly have no idea, but would guess these are all made in Japan?  Curous as to why you want to go to water stones from oil stones?  Unless you are planning on purchasing a harder steel knife, the oil stones may perform at least just as well if not better...

    If looking for a combination water stone, I would think you would want something like 1k/4-6k.  The stones you've linked all have a very coarse side which would be good when you have a completely dull edge or nicks that need to be removed, but not so good for just occasional sharpening.  I would think that for the same price you may be able to find a Norton combination water stone which would be fairly good quality for the money.

    As to a steel, if you don't have one...YES, you need one, and it doesn't have to be expensive.  If you are not sure of the difference of why/when to steel as opposed to sharpen, please ask.

    Cheers,

    Chinacats
     
    Last edited: Mar 30, 2012
  3. onepiece

    onepiece

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    I am not quite sure why a steel is needed when using a stone to sharpen the knife regularly.  

    I have heard to use a steel before using your knife, but that sounds excessive, but I am not sure.

    Personally I don't if I go with a Water stone or Oil stone, I just wandered if there was something 

    better in the $30-$60 range.  I don't see myself going to a Japanese knife within 6 months, but in a year maybe.

    The Forschner has been great through out the long while I have had it though.  
     
  4. chinacats

    chinacats

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    When you sharpen, you create micro-serrations that help you cut.  When the knife hits something hard (cutting board, hard food, etc...) these serrations tend to bend.  The purpose of the steel is to re-align these serrations so that the knife will cut cleanly (European knives need to be steeled much more often than sharpened-which is a good thing).  When you sharpen, you remove these serrations and create new ones...may not be a bad thing, but seems to be an unnecessary waste of blade edge.  Easier to take a few swipes on a steel and not remove as much blade material (easier on the knife and you).  One other thing to look at is that on some knives the more steel you remove, the thicker the blade becomes as you work your way up the knife--not a good thing for cutting geometry--though there are ways around this but they require removing even more steel.

    Again, a steel and stone are used for different things...as to which steel or stone to use it will be important to know what you plan on sharpening...if a new knife in a year, I would take that into consideration.

    If someone could clarify it may help...feel like a butcher with that explanation...

    Chinacats
     
    Last edited: Mar 30, 2012
  5. boar_d_laze

    boar_d_laze

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    Knife edges tend to roll over in waves.  Those waves are called "burrs" (and also "burs").  The burrs need to be straightened (aka "trued') or removed.  Some knives are made from alloys which are  sufficiently "tough" that they can be trued by steeling fairly frequently.  That's a good thing, because those alloys are frequently very "strong" and tend to bend easily. 

    However, any alloy which is frequently bent back and forth will fatigue, and tend to break or tear along the bending crease.  Harder, "stronger" alloys are particularly susceptible to breaking so it's usually not a good idea to steel them; or at least to be very, very careful when doing so.

    Unless you're using a steel to purposely "chase the burr" as part of the de-burring process I recommend that you only use a few, very gentle strokes for you steeling regimen.  For knives made from harder alloys -- say 60RCH and up -- I think stropping on a piece of newsprint is a better idea than using a rod; because the contact patch from a round or oval rod is so small it concentrates a lot of force.  

    When the alloy has fatigued beyond a certain point by repeated truing, the knife will need to be re-sharpened.  This is true whether or not the edge has actually worn down.    

    Steeling has very little to do with "micro-serrations" or serrations of any sort -- other than some steels tend to create serrations by scuffing the bevels.  Those serrations can be good or bad things, depending.  As a general rule, the more coarse the steel the larger the serrations and the greater the serration effect.  But that's a different post.

    BDL
     
  6. onepiece

    onepiece

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    So I have been thinking and going through old posts on here and I have found a few stones that should be fitting for my needs.

    http://www.chefknivestogo.com/kingcombostone.html

    http://www.cutleryandmore.com/norton-water-stones/1000-4000-grit-combination-whetstone-p14155

    http://www.cutleryandmore.com/tojiro/1000-3000-grit-combination-water-stone-base-p117827

    I don't let my Chef Knife get too beaten up, and If I had a stone I would probably sharpen on a monthly basis.

    I don't think I would need a very low grit (Lower than 800), so the combination stones of 800 and 2000+ seem to be about right.

    I imagine myself picking up a Tojiro DP or Mac Chef series knife in the future.  

    Any ideas why some of the stones are insanely expensive when the combination stone has the same grit and is cheaper?

    http://www.cutleryandmore.com/tojiro/sharpening-stones

    Does anyone know if the Tojiro DP is thinner than an 8" Forschner/Vict?
     
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2012
  7. boar_d_laze

    boar_d_laze

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    Thinner?  A little.  Most Forschners are pretty darn thin, but not as thin as most good Japanese made knives.  If you're comparing chef's knives/gyutos, there's really no comparison. 

    I'm a big fan of Forschners in general, but not their chef's knifes.  They take so much pounding they're always bent out of true and need too frequent  steeling.  I can put up with a lot of neediness from a carbon Sab because they get so sharp and the profiles are so good -- but Forschners don't bring enough to the table to make it worthwhile.   

    The Tojiro is much harder and doesn't need nearly as much steeling.  On the other hand, you want to be careful steeling it, because the "core" alloy, VG-10, is hardened to a point where it can be a little chippy.  Stropping on newsprint, shirt board, or manilla folder paper might be better.

    Without knowing what you're trying to sharpen and your skill levels -- all of the stones you're pointing at are pretty good.  I'm not a big fan of combi-stones because the sides wear unevenly, you ALWAYS have to flatten, and they tend to come apart; but a lot of people like them because they require less initial outlay. 

    BDL
     
  8. onepiece

    onepiece

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    The stone I will be using will be used to sharpen my 8"  Forschner Chef Knife, and most likely a Tojiro in the near future.  

    I am not going to lie and say I am great with a stone.  I was semi decent with my Norton stone, but I no longer have it due to moving to PA.

    So not being great (I could get the knife sharp enough to shave my arm easily), and being out of practice for numerous months doesn't leave me with much.

    Any opinions on a decent clip on guide (I didn't use one before, but I might this time around just for starting out)?
     
  9. onepiece

    onepiece

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  10. scubadoo97

    scubadoo97

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    The TojiroDP has harder steel but may be a little more prone to microchips
     
  11. pohaku

    pohaku

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    Might actually be this one if they get them back in stock.  I'm waiting to pick one up, although I'd like a 240mm one.  I do have the Tojiro, so I'd have some basis for comparison.

    http://www.chefknivestogo.com/riar21.html
     
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2012
  12. duckfat

    duckfat

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    Most dealers carry them and they are usually all the same brand. Not a great long term solution but if they help you get started there is no reason not to use one.

    Dave
     
  13. onepiece

    onepiece

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    Thanks everybody!  

    I am not too worried about the micro scratches because I tend to try and take good care of my belongings.

    I don't use glass or bamboo cutting boards, but a softer plastic one (My Forschner has made cuts in the board).
     
  14. onepiece

    onepiece

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    So I was wondering about going the route of non combination stones, and found this:

    http://www.chefknivestogo.com/ki800grlast.html

    It doesn't seem to come with a base though.  Can you sharpen without a base?  

    What is the cheapest base I could get?
     
  15. chinacats

    chinacats

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  16. scubadoo97

    scubadoo97

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    This stone holders are inexpensive and work well for a wide variety of stones.  I even use my Shapton Glass Stones in this holder.  It just sticks up over the rubber but works fine.  I even put my coarse DMT plate in there and then use my magnetic backed strop on the metal DMT to hold it in place.

    When sharpening I put my stone holder on an old cutting board and bridge my sink so I keep the mess in the sink and water is always available.
     
  17. onepiece

    onepiece

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    Glad to hear the info.  I found a similar base to what you posted on Amazon (because of free shipping and such) and here it is:



    So I guess I have decided on that 1K King Stone as well as that base.  Will purchase the base soon and the stone a little bit later on.  
     
  18. johnr

    johnr

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    OnePiecekeep in mind that the grits you used on the Forshner with Oil Stones are likely different than the Japanese grits.

    http://www.fine-tools.com/G10019.htm

    With my softer steel knives (like Forshner) I use an ANSI grit size stone of about 800-1000, finish with a soft steeling and/or stropping and if needed about 300 ANSI for thinning. For standard food prepping I find I don't need much else.

    I purchased my stones many years ago from Razor Edge Systems  but you may be able to find similar stone at a lower cost somewhere else.

    I also have a belt sander but that's a separate discusion.
     
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2012
  19. onepiece

    onepiece

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    I see.  I intend to get a Tojiro DP or similar, so I feel it is probably more important the stone I get is good for sharpening the me expensive J-Knife.  I was going to go with the 1K King stone and purchase a higher grit to use in combination with it.  I try to take decent care of my knives, so don't think I would let my knife get dull enough to need a sub 1000 grit stone.

    You said you use around 1000 grit for softer knives, so what ANSI (or JIS) grit do you use for harder knives?
     
  20. johnr

    johnr

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    I only have one J knife ... a petty (gifted ot me) which is a size I almost never use... so usually I will use the same stones or my belt sander has higher micron grit and leather belts. But I really can't remember the last time I sharpened or even used this knife.

    About the only think I think it's good for is when I want to trim/prep chicken thighs for BBQ competitions which is 2-3 times a year.

    The lower grit stones are when you need/want to thin the edge some.