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Water Stone or Oil Stone?

post #1 of 3
Thread Starter 

Alright so the deal is...I was helping my grandparent clean out their attic and came across some old stones. All 3 in the box brand new! Of course no writing on the boxes. Is there some way I am able to tell whether they are water stones or oil stones?

All input is appreciated, thanks in advance

post #2 of 3

N.America did not have a waterstone tradition, and it is only since the late '70's/early '80's that waterstones entered the market. 


Generally, anything older than 30 years would almost certainly be oilstones--assuming your grandparents are from the U.S....



Soaking the stones in water won't hurt one bit, and there are as many "recipies" for lubricant for oilstones as there are people--some even advocate the use of a dishwashers.


Try them out, if there are three, it's a good guess that they will be course, medium, and fine.

...."This whole reality thing is really not what I expected it would be"......
...."This whole reality thing is really not what I expected it would be"......
post #3 of 3

As 'Pump said and for the reasons he gave, they're more than likely oil stones.  North American oilstones come in three basic "flavors."  Silicon carbide; Aluminum oxide, and (natural) Arkansas. 


If you post pictures, I can probably tell you type and manufacturer.  If you can do a good job of describing their appearance -- including size, color and how they feel to your fingertips when rubbed lightly -- that might be enough.  Also, check the sides of the stones to see if there's any labeling or marking there.



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