Waterstones are messy!

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Forum topic by 12strings posted 02-16-2013 08:09 PM 1042 views 0 times favorited 2 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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434 posts in 2586 days

02-16-2013 08:09 PM

So, I got my first waterstones (1000 & 6000) for Christmas, and just got around to using them this week. They are Japanese waterstones…I sharpened about 8-9 chisels and 8-9 plane irons yesterday and today…starting with coarse sandpaper, then a cheap 4-sided/4grit harbour-freight diamond stone, then 1000 & 6000 waterstones.

I definitely got a better edge than I have gotten before, but especially the 6000, which is a brick-red color, is extremely messy, the 1000 is better…

I have a few questions for those more experienced:

1. People talk about doing a “quick hone” then getting back to work…it seems Like I would be more like “hone, wipe offblade, wipe blade with different oil rag to prevent rust, re-install blade, go clean off the water-stone, then get back to work.” Am I missing something?

2. For you free-handers (which I am…no honing guide…yet), do you have some trick to avoid cutting the stone…I kept getting the blade too high and taking nicks out of the stones.

-- I'm strictly hand-tool only...unless the power tool is faster and easier!

2 replies so far

View Bill White's profile

Bill White

5125 posts in 4162 days

#1 posted 02-16-2013 08:29 PM

If you are honing on a “push” stroke rather than “pull” stroke, you’ll dig into the stone.
Honing is much different from grinding.
Watch some of the zillion vids on sharpening/honing.
Just a suggestion about the learning process, and good luck.
By the way, ya can’t have my water stones.


View Loren's profile


10477 posts in 3849 days

#2 posted 02-16-2013 08:58 PM

Freehanding you want to push your elbows against
your ribs and lock your hands together, then you
sway your whole body back and forth. There are
other ways to do it I am sure but this is the way
I learned. It’s similar to centering a lump of clay on
a potter’s wheel in that you lock your elbows
against your body and use your torso muscles.

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