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What a ripoff! You have my sympathy. The stones don't appear to be knife related in any reasonable way.

Only you can decide whether the effort pursuing this farther with Paypal will be worth the money-back reward. You've already been through it and know what's involved.

If the vendor is 330.mate, it's worth mentioning that he has overwhelmingly positive feedback which leads me to hope that the situation can be resolved quickly. If not quickly resolved, no matter who the vendor is you should certainly tell your story on E-Bay.

Good luck!

BDL

PS. The carbon wears off kuro-uchi finishes pretty easily. I'd say that for a "go-to gyuto" in a home kitchen environment, given normal use and cleaning, a couple of years at most before seeing visible wear. At that point, you're going to have to try and scrub the rest of it off and allowing or forcing a patina, or use some other anti-corrosion regimen.
 
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