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Whetstone advice for beginner

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

Hi,

I am a home cook and have 2 global knives G2 and G1.
I just ordered a Misono Swedish Steel Carbon 240 mm Gyuto as I found a lot of reviews online that recommended that knife.
Anyhow I now would like to get a sharpening kit just to use for these knives and perhaps a few other family members knives.

I have been reading around a bit and have a hard time making up my mind.

For now I am torn between to options. Either I get a combo stone like a King 800/4000 or 1000/6000 or a Naniwa workstone 1000/3000.
Or I get two individual stones.

I live in Sweden so I would probably order online directly from Japan as it seems to be my best bet.
I can get a 1000/6000 king with Nagura for $46. About the same for either 800/4000 or 1000/3000 Naniwa.

On the other hand I could get:
One single 1000 King for $20.

And either:
A 4000 F-3 King for $33 or a 6000 S-3 King for $29 or a Naniwa Super Stone (thin glued to a base) 5000 for $46.

So I am looking at the price range of $46 - $66 for these options.

Do I need a nagura if I have 2 stones? I think I will get a drywall screen to flatten the stones.
If I can just as well have 2 stones as a combi + nagura I guess it is worth the $3 to get individual 1000 and 6000 king compared to the combo-stone and a Nagura?

I have read that Misono Carbon does not tend to be well suited for a honing steel as the knife is asymmetrical?
In that case I guess it would be a good thing to have a 5000 splash and go stone like the Naniwa SS as I could (and would) take that out more often to just touch up the knife (I know the hone does not really compare to the stones but a honing stone should straighten the edge of the knife as well as remove a tiny bit of metal, right?). A soaking stone seems like much more of a commitment so I probably wouldn't use it as often as the splash and go.

Thoughts? Recommendations?

Thanks,
Mike

post #2 of 7
I don't use nagura on any synthetics.

See this article

http://japaneseknifesharpening.blogspot.com/2009/08/nagura-whats-it-really-for.html?m=1

Asymmetry is not the reason against a steel. Its because the knife is harder carbon steel.
post #3 of 7

Hardness isn't the reason any more than asymmetry is. Both can complicate or prevent steeling in certain contexts, but neither inherently precludes steeling. The steel in a Misono Sweden is hardened to around 60 HRC. My understanding is that hardness shouldn't be a barrier to steeling as long as you use a rod that is significantly harder than the blade. Ceramic rods like the Idahone are certainly harder and shouldn't pose the Misono problems on account of hardness. Smooth steels (*not* ordinary grooved steels) with Rockwell hardness in the mid 60s presumably work too.

 

Likewise, highly asymmetric knives are hard to steel since you have less room for error on the smaller side of the bevel, but you can certainly steel a knife with 60/40 asymmetry or even a little more. roosm, I'm not sure what the factory edge on your gyuto looks like, but symmetry/asymmetry is something you can easily change as you sharpen it.

 

I think the main reason most people would discourage steeling a Misono Sweden (or modern, hard Japanese knives in general) is that the knife can take a really nice edge, and steeling on any kind of ceramic or grooved steel rod, or even on a smooth steel or borosilicate rod with all but the best technique, will instantly remove much of the polish you gave your edge. This isn't much of an issue with softer, European stainless knives simply because they don't get very sharp to begin with. It's a tougher call with something like a carbon Sabatier.

 

roosm, I don't have advice on your low cost stone questions, but I do recommend stropping over steeling if you want to be able to frequently touch up your knife without a trip to the stones. I recently obtained the Richmond 4 piece strop kit [1] and really like it, but there are less expensive options. Galley Swiller posted what seems like an excellent description of how to make a stropping kit yourself. [2]

 

Additionally, if you're stropping just for touch ups and not for initial polishing as part of the sharpening process, you could always strop on your stones. A popular alternative to splash & go stones, by the way, is to get stones that you can permasoak. You just leave them in a plastic container filled with water, and they're always ready to go. Change the water every few weeks. If you decide to go that route, make sure you research whether the particular stones you're thinking of buying can stay soaked without disintegrating.

 

[1] http://www.chefknivestogo.com/haamstkit.html

[2] http://www.cheftalk.com/t/82913/stropping#post_488091

post #4 of 7
I would recommend the combi stone available from japanesechefsknife.com 1000/4000 I think.
To me it is far better than the king stone I had previously, I don't have any experience with any other stones though....
post #5 of 7
The Misono will require a serious initial stone sharpening when you receive it. They come out of the box with an overly convexed, relatively weak, highly polished edge, by factory buffering.
I would suggest to put straight bevels on it at a far lower angle. That means that you will have to remove some steel.
My suggestion were to build a right bevel at 10 degree, and deburr the left side at 16 degree or so. Once done, remove the shoulder on the right bevel to convex it for better performance. Don't do that on the left side or the blade will steer clockwise.
As for the stones, I would choose a Naniwa Pro -- the former Chosera -- 800 and 3000. The 800 is your workhorse, the 3k just for stropping, deburring and touching-up. The final results of these stones correspond more or less to 1200 and 4k JIS. Get them with knivesandtools.de
post #6 of 7
About steeling: it weakens any edge. It's an emergency solution. Once you use a rod, ceramic or not, you will have to use it again very shortly. The explanation is simple: you're trying to redress a failing edge, and fatigue the steel a little more by doing so. A failing edge should be abraded, not redressed.
For touching up I use my finest stone, and if just a few edge leading strokes don't work, I go to the next, coarser one.
post #7 of 7

The Iminishi 1/6K combi is back in stock, add the 400k along with it if you like.  Those be just about your cheapest "good" options, and actually excellent stones.  I never used myself, but from chatter about I'd say better as well as cheaper than the 5pc kit CKTG sells.

 

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

http://www.chefknivestogo.com/imtwosi1kst.html

 

Rick

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