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Old 03-12-2008, 10:13 AM   #1
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Sharpening a Japanese knife

I just picked up a Tojiro Flash damascus knife and was wondering what the best type of stone to use for it is. Im familiar with sharpening on a stone and have a fairly steady hand. But do water stones work best for japanese knives or am i better off getting an arkansas stone or one of DMT's Diamond surfaces? im probably going to be sticking to japanese knives from now on too, this one just blows the henkels and whustoff's i have away. Thanks in advance for all the wonderful feedback i know im going to get :)

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Old 03-12-2008, 11:58 AM   #2
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Waterstones are the tried-and-true way to sharpen Japanese knives- that's the Gold Standard, but there's no reason you couldn't use other typed. I'd avoid diamond stones but others use them to good effect. Be aware when you sharpen that Japanese knives are generally ground to a much finer angle than German knives (although you probably already noticed that).

I'd recommend Dave Martell's DVD set "The Art of Knife Sharpening" to get you started. He's the owner & operator of JapaneseKnifeSharpening.com and is a wizard with a stone. His 2 disc set will teach you virtually everything you could want to know including the care and selection of waterstones and his techniques for finding the angle.

Good luck! I think you're already finding out that Japanese knives can quickly become an addiction!
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Old 03-12-2008, 06:17 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Witchlord View Post
I just picked up a Tojiro Flash damascus knife and was wondering what the best type of stone to use for it is. Im familiar with sharpening on a stone and have a fairly steady hand. But do water stones work best for japanese knives or am i better off getting an arkansas stone or one of DMT's Diamond surfaces? im probably going to be sticking to japanese knives from now on too, this one just blows the henkels and whustoff's i have away. Thanks in advance for all the wonderful feedback i know im going to get :)
You can keep this knife going for a long time with waterstones. I would avoid DMT DiaSharps except for reprofiling with an XXC. I use Nortons with great success but if you don't mind the price Shapton GlassStones yield an excellent highly polished edge with minimum effort and no need for soaking. They are less messy - basically the latest thing.
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Old 05-02-2008, 02:12 AM   #4
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I just bought a Tojiro DP 6" Honesuki and am wondering how to go about sharpening it when the need arises. Its a one-sided blade. Its a cheaper knife i got for both experimentation and practice with different edges.

I own a 1000 and a 6000 grit wet-stone as well as an array of steels ranging from smooth to coarse to diamond (though i dont think they are used on one-sided blades as much).


Many thanks. ~Y
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Old 05-02-2008, 09:05 AM   #5
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I just bought a Tojiro DP 6" Honesuki and am wondering how to go about sharpening it when the need arises. Its a one-sided blade. Its a cheaper knife i got for both experimentation and practice with different edges.

I own a 1000 and a 6000 grit wet-stone as well as an array of steels ranging from smooth to coarse to diamond (though i dont think they are used on one-sided blades as much).

Many thanks. ~Y
The very best information I have ever seen on the subject is here.
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Old 05-02-2008, 09:49 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Yonsen View Post
I just bought a Tojiro DP 6" Honesuki and am wondering how to go about sharpening it when the need arises. Its a one-sided blade. Its a cheaper knife i got for both experimentation and practice with different edges.

I own a 1000 and a 6000 grit wet-stone as well as an array of steels ranging from smooth to coarse to diamond (though i dont think they are used on one-sided blades as much).


Many thanks. ~Y
95 swipes on the bevel side and 5 on the flat side.
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Old 05-02-2008, 10:05 AM   #7
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You can keep this knife going for a long time with waterstones. I would avoid DMT DiaSharps except for reprofiling with an XXC. I use Nortons with great success but if you don't mind the price Shapton GlassStones yield an excellent highly polished edge with minimum effort and no need for soaking. They are less messy - basically the latest thing.
You have such cool tools.

Seeeeeeya; Goodweed of the North
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Old 05-02-2008, 10:41 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by Jeekinz View Post
95 swipes on the bevel side and 5 on the flat side.
If only it could be that easy, but it's not.

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Old 05-02-2008, 11:38 AM   #9
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If only it could be that easy, but it's not.

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Why not?

Here's another good source of information. Amazon.com: The Razor Edge Book of Sharpening: John Juranitch: Books

I have another title, but cant remember it off hand. I'll try to post it tonight.
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Old 05-02-2008, 12:01 PM   #10
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Why not?

Here's another good source of information. Amazon.com: The Razor Edge Book of Sharpening: John Juranitch: Books

I have another title, but cant remember it off hand. I'll try to post it tonight.
I've had the Juranitch book for years. Good basic information but we've come a long way since then. The book is twenty-three years old. Juranitch assumes that all angles are flat because he's sharpening chisels. Not so in this case. The entire backside of a Japanese single bevel knife is hollow ground as is the large bevel on the front, a totally different animal than Juaranitch was dealing with. He's probably never even seen a Japanese knife. Anyway, I shelved his book a long time ago because I'm really not interested in sharpening ice augers, chain saws, arrowheads, and fish hooks. He also shamelessly pushes his products in a book that I had to pay for. Good basic information, that's it.

Did you read the reference I posted above? That is the way you sharpen a Japanese knife.
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