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Thread: Advice on purchasing first hone set

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    Member gkofsky's Avatar
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    Default Advice on purchasing first hone set

    As a new SR shaver, and an avid DIY guy, I've been researching hones a bit, but I'm not quite ready to buy yet. I am on a budget, but I also don't want to end up with crap stones that I'll need to replace. Also I've heard that there is a razor club in the area, and I'd like to get a honing lesson before I try it myself.

    My question is, would this be a good first set of hones, or would I need to add any finer stones to this set?
    3 Piece Waterstone Set - Rockler Woodworking Tools

    I'm also considering the quarter Norton set I saw on whipped dog.

    Thanks for your help!

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    Senior Moderator JimmyHAD's Avatar
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    I would recommend a full size Norton 4/8 combo stone. I haven't had any experience with the king but I don't think 6k is quite enough to offer a truly smooth shave. I know the 8k is enough. As for cut up Nortons ........ waste of $ as far as I'm concerned.
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    Senior Member Siguy's Avatar
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    gkofsky,

    May we know your budget? Also, what is your intent with the stones(ie-honing or maintenance)?

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    Member gkofsky's Avatar
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    I am looking to keep the cost under 100, preferably no more than 60 to 70ish.

    At this point I would probably be doing more maintenance than full honing.

    I've also tested out setting a bevel using a block of polished stone tile with 1000 grit wet/dry paper stretched over it, with successful results during my first razor restoration.

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    aka shooter74743 ScottGoodman's Avatar
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    I have owned quite a few stones in my straight razor journey and will leave you with two recommendations: Naniwa or Norton. One is no better than the other, just preferences. There is more information available on the norton stones though.
    Northeastern Texas & Southeastern Oklahoma Mentor/Helper...PM me if I can assist you.
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    Senior Member Proinsias's Avatar
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    The 1K/6K King combo stone covers a lot of ground for not much cash. A finisher does help but can be easily done with a little chromium oxide on balsa or leather. Another fairly minimal set up is a small coticule, slurry stone and 1K bevel setter.

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    Senior Member meleii's Avatar
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    I can recommend the naniwa super stones from experience. Very consistent and quite affordable. The Norton set is extremely respected here and a 4/8k can be bought from srd for about $80. I personally have had the king and other than the 1k felt let down by them.

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    Member gkofsky's Avatar
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    Thanks for all the advice! This will help a lot when I finally get around to buying some hones. I'll probably look more into the Norton hones, though I've found that there are plenty of good reviews of the King stones as well.

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    Senior Member Iceni's Avatar
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    Depends on your mindset.

    If you want a cheap hone now with a mind to upgrade later then the 1/6K king combo isn't a bad stone. I have one, and have used it as my only hone for 6 months.

    The 1K side is pretty slow, But it's also very forgiving. The 1K is actually hard to fault other than it been a little slow. Even professional honers like Gssixgun use it.

    The 6K side isn't a fine polishing stone. It still leaves some scratch marks, In saying that if you then take your razor to Crox on a strop it gives a perfectly shave-able edge. The biggest thing about the 6K side is getting it so you don't slurry. If you use it with slurry it's faster but also not as smooth. If you take an oil soaked cloth and sit the 6K side on it for a few minutes till the hone picks up the oil on the face it'll stop making so much slurry. And then when you hone it'll take less water on that side, and give a better polish. My 6K side has been oil soaked in this manner.


    If you don't plan on upgrading then don't get the king. It's as simple as that. Go directly to Norton or Naniwa. The Naniwa super stones get my vote for the simple reason they offer a full hone system, All the way to 12K. The Norton stones stop at 8K so you will have to have another brand of stone if you want a finisher. Naniwa also have a combination super stone that may be of interest to you.

    Amazon.com: Super Stone Combo Pack 3000 + 8000 (No Stand Included) stone by Naniwa: Health & Personal Care


    With the king your upgrade path looks like this.

    1/6K king
    5 + 8K naniwa stones or similar after 6 months (totally replacing the 6K side)
    12K naniwa after another 6 months.


    The 1K side of the king doesn't need to be replaced, but if you pick up a full set of higher grit stones then the upgrade to naniwa 1 + 3K stones is actually pretty cheap.

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    Senior Member RollinCoal69's Avatar
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    Not to hijack the thread. but I am in the same boat. Looking at stones an trying to decide what the best deal is. I honestly think I am eventually going to get the Norton 3pc waterstone set from SRD with the steelex stone holder. Not the cheapest set you can get but definitely covers the right steps an is basically all in one set. Price aint bad either.

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