Sharpening stone question
#11
  
I got this stone at a local thrift shop for $12. It's got lots of life left in it but I'm not sure how to best use it. I've been using scary sharp to this point but am trying to switch to stones or diamond plates. What confuses me is that the sticker says that it works best with oil and that it can be used wet or dry. I thought stones were either oil or water, not both. It's a really corse stone so when I put a few drops of oil on it, it just soaked in. Does it need to be drenched in oil? My other big question is how to flatten it. I have one of those grey flattening stones with the diagnial groves that I use for my 5000 stone. I tried flattening the stone in question on it but it ended up dishing the center of the flattening stone...


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#12
  Re: Sharpening stone question by mr_skittle (I got this stone at ...)
This will not be very usable stone for ww'ing plane irons or chisels because: 1), its not a true Arkansas stone, (which is the only oil stone I would ever use) and 2)  it also appears to be pretty coarse which will limit use to rough work.

If you want to move to stones, don't buy stuff like this.  Instead, trust me, you will be further ahead buying the best quality stones you can afford. No, you don't need Shapton's or the expensive Japanese stones, but you plan to spend $2-300 just to get started.

I like diamonds for coarse work and water stones for final honing.  Starting out,  I suggest a couple diamond stones like 600/1200 (I like the Dia Sharp plates rather than mesh) and a couple water stones in finer grits like 4000/8000 (IMO the Norton 4K/8K combination is a great value).  This will get 90% of all the work you will do.  For those instances where an extra coarse grit is needed  you could still use sandpaper.

I would also strongly recommend a leather strop no matter which method you use.
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#13
  Re: Sharpening stone question by mr_skittle (I got this stone at ...)
It looks like what Norton calls India stones, aluminum oxide in a hard bond. I use them for my sharpening routine; coarse india, fine india, hard arkansas(its the mid grade variety; pricier than soft, way cheaper than black or translucent) and strop. For flattening, diamond is probably the only method that would work. Aluminum oxide is about as hard as silicon carbide. New 8x3 india stones are around 20 smackaroos.
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#14
  Re: Sharpening stone question by mr_skittle (I got this stone at ...)
Oh ya, they do take a bit more oil than an arky stone, I just use mineral oil, much cheaper than honing oil in a bottle and effectively the same thing.
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#15
  Re: Sharpening stone question by mr_skittle (I got this stone at ...)
(04-19-2017, 09:23 AM)mr_skittle Wrote: I got this stone at a local thrift shop for $12. It's got lots of life left in it but I'm not sure how to best use it. I've been using scary sharp to this point but am trying to switch to stones or diamond plates. What confuses me is that the sticker says that it works best with oil and that it can be used wet or dry. I thought stones were either oil or water, not both. It's a really corse stone so when I put a few drops of oil on it, it just soaked in. Does it need to be drenched in oil? My other big question is how to flatten it. I have one of those grey flattening stones with the diagnial groves that I use for my 5000 stone. I tried flattening the stone in question on it but it ended up dishing the center of the flattening stone...

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It's hard to guess from the photo what type of abrasive this is...At first I thought it was silicon carbide {corundum} but not sure now...When a porous stone like this is used with oil, it will reject any water that it is subjected to, because the pores are now waterproof...so I would continue to use a very light oil...the lightest you can get, OR I would use Mineral Spirits..{ Scented Lamp oil will also work if the smell of MS is objectionable}...
....Depending on how much it is "hollowed", you might be able to flatten it on coarse wet/dry sandpaper..I have flattened many of them on a stationary belt sander. Using a foot switch, I place the stone directly on the belt/platen and hold it with both hands, then step on the foot switch to start the motor. Keep the stone flat on the platen until you are satisfied that it has become flat again..Then step off the switch and stop the belts movement before lifting the stone...They can be made quite flat that way.
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#16
  Re: Sharpening stone question by mr_skittle (I got this stone at ...)
(04-19-2017, 04:07 PM)Timberwolf Wrote: ...........................
It's hard to guess from the photo what type of abrasive this is...

It says on the label aluminum oxide vitrified bond.
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#17
  Re: Sharpening stone question by mr_skittle (I got this stone at ...)
+1 on the belt sander for flattening.

If it's too coarse for most of your regular woodworking tools, keep it around for axes and hatchets. Sometimes with axes you want a pretty coarse stone to start out with, especially if you've gone too long between shaprenings.
Steve S.
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#18
  Re: Sharpening stone question by mr_skittle (I got this stone at ...)
(04-19-2017, 04:07 PM)Timberwolf Wrote: It's hard to guess from the photo what type of abrasive this is...At first I thought it was silicon carbide {corundum} but not sure now..


The label says it's aluminum oxide.  "Minalox" was the brand name made by Wisconsin Abrasive Company.  That would make it the equivalent of a Norton India stone, which is also aluminum oxide.  Minalox is a fairly common stone.  Nothing to brag about.
Still Learning,

Allan Hill
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#19
  Re: Sharpening stone question by mr_skittle (I got this stone at ...)
Brand new Norton India stones are cheap. If you want this type of stone, look at a two sided medium/fine. Nortons come oil impregnated, but I would buy a bottle of the Norton oil to go with the purchase.

When Norton introduced the medium, it was said to be the equal of their washita. In my book, vintage stones are readily available at any flea market, dirt cheap. Clean this stone up (artificial stones such as this, stay flat a long time) and begin to use it. See how it feels and then decide what your next step will be. If you shop flea markets, run your fingernail on this stone, and when you come across a used one, subjectively test it the same way. Pretty soon, you'll come across some finer stones. Soon you'll be asking how to clean them. Soon you'll be asking what a washita looks like, or a fine Arkansas and so forth.
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#20
  Re: Sharpening stone question by mr_skittle (I got this stone at ...)
(04-20-2017, 05:28 AM)Tony Z Wrote: Brand new Norton India stones are cheap.  If you want this type of stone, look at a two sided medium/fine.  Nortons come oil impregnated, but I would buy a bottle of the Norton oil to go with the purchase.

When Norton introduced the medium, it was said to be the equal of their washita.  In my book, vintage stones are readily available at any flea market, dirt cheap.  Clean this stone up (artificial stones such as this, stay flat a long time) and begin to use it.  See how it feels and then decide what your next step will be.  If you shop flea markets, run your fingernail on this stone, and when you come across a used one, subjectively test it the same way.  Pretty soon, you'll come across some finer stones.  Soon you'll be asking how to clean them.  Soon you'll be asking what a washita looks like, or a fine Arkansas and so forth.
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+1 on flea markets.............I have been snagging them for forty years or more..I sold a vintage Belgium Coticule new in the box by Norton last year for $245.00..{ I got it at an MWTCA tool meet for $10.00 } and last week sold a vintage translucent Arkansas razor hone in an oak box for $63.00...They're out there and can usually be had for peanuts......many of them are in good condition but some require a ride on the belt sander... Big Grin
I find it odd that many tool collectors do not know much about vintage stones, but I still don't feel it's my job to "educate" them... Laugh
"By God, we are First Marines, and all the communist bastards in the world cannot stop us from going where we intend to go"
Col. Chesty Puller USMC  At the  Chosin Reservoir North Korea 1950, "The Forgotten War"


Jack Edgar, Sgt. USMC Korea 51/52





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