View RSS Feed


Diamond Plates VS Naguras

Rate this Entry
by , 04-22-2012 at 11:11 AM (3566 Views)
[COLOR=#000000][FONT=Times]I know many will maybe disagree with me but her you go :)
[FONT=Times]Iíve always been against using diamond plates on Fine Japanese Natural Stones for making slurry![/FONT][/COLOR]
[COLOR=#000000][FONT=Times]Below, I outline the most obvious pros and cons of using either. With this information you can then decide for yourself what you want to use on your hard Japanese Natural Stones. :)[/FONT][/COLOR]

[COLOR=#000000][FONT=Times][B][U]Diamond Plates:[/U][/B][/FONT][/COLOR]


[COLOR=#000000][FONT=Times]Always flat,[/FONT][/COLOR]
[COLOR=#000000][FONT=Times][I]so your stones get flattened every time you use it[/I][/FONT][/COLOR]
[COLOR=#000000][FONT=Times]Very easy and fast to make slurry with[/FONT][/COLOR]

[COLOR=#000000][FONT=Times][I]You lay it on top of your stone and rub- easy enough[/I][/FONT][/COLOR]
Diamond plates last you a lifetime,[/FONT][/COLOR]
[COLOR=#000000][FONT=Times][I]assuming you only use them to make slurry[/I][/FONT][/COLOR]

[COLOR=#000000][FONT=Times]Your hone wears out much faster[/FONT][/COLOR]

[COLOR=#000000][FONT=Times]Cost of diamond plates is very high[/FONT][/COLOR]
[COLOR=#000000][FONT=Times][I]Good ones, necessary to not destroy the stone surface, are even more expensive,
and it takes time to break in a cheaper diamond plate so that it does not gouge out the stoneís surface.[/I][/FONT][/COLOR]

[COLOR=#000000][FONT=Times]By far, the most problematic- You remove big chunks of your stone every time you make slurry[/FONT][/COLOR]
[COLOR=#000000][FONT=Times][I]This can cause an uneven texture in the slurry mix if you are not careful (NOT GOOD)
In the best case, this makes your natural stone act like a synthetic, because the particles you remove from the stones surface will be in chunks rather than plates.
This then leads you to only be able to extract one result from your J-nat, so itís very limiting.[/I][/FONT][/COLOR]

[COLOR=#000000][FONT=Times]In short, Your stone will not give you 100 % performance.[/FONT][/COLOR]

[COLOR=#000000][FONT=Times]note: Read this Article about plates and chunks in[B][U] [URL=""]JNS Grit, Fines and Hardnes[/URL][/U][/B][/FONT][/COLOR]


[COLOR=#000000][FONT=Times][I]Cheaper than any diamond plate[/I][/FONT][/COLOR]
You can have many of them[/FONT][/COLOR]
[COLOR=#000000][FONT=Times][I]All will produce different results with the same base stone[/I][/FONT][/COLOR]

[COLOR=#000000][FONT=Times]You can go from coarse Nagura to very fine Nagura[/FONT][/COLOR]
[COLOR=#000000][FONT=Times][I]This allows you to use your hone as a multi purpose tool[/I][/FONT][/COLOR]
You will smoothen your hone each time you use a nagura[/FONT][/COLOR]
[COLOR=#000000][FONT=Times][I]This will in turn make the base hone finer over time (the more you use a Nagura on your hone the better results it will give you)[/I][/FONT][/COLOR]
Particles will always be flat (plates) because you do not dig into the stone.[/FONT][/COLOR]

[COLOR=#000000][FONT=Times]Your main hone will last much much longer !![/FONT][/COLOR]
[COLOR=#000000][FONT=Times][I]This can be done several ways, but the most effective is to use a small nagura to only make slurry on the high spots of your main stone.[/I][/FONT][/COLOR]
[COLOR=#000000][FONT=Times][I]I would personally rather keep a 400+ euro base stone for my entire life, than a 100 euro diamond plate ;)[/I][/FONT][/COLOR]
Not Foolproof[/FONT][/COLOR]
[COLOR=#000000][FONT=Times][I]It takes time and experimentation to extract the full potential of each nagura, but anyone can learn.[/I][/FONT][/COLOR]
Some hard naguras can be difficult to make slurry with[/FONT][/COLOR]
[COLOR=#000000][FONT=Times][I]Some may scratch your stone if you are impatient.[/I][/FONT][/COLOR]
Difficult to choose a good quality Nagura[/FONT][/COLOR]
[COLOR=#000000][FONT=Times][I]They are all different and may have inclusions just like all natural stones[/I][/FONT][/COLOR]
Here is a image of my well used Ozuku that have been used only with Naguras.
After 6 month i decided to lap it, but first i razed slurry with Atoma 1200
You can clearly see where Diamond plate hit the stone !


I also asked Iwasaki san and Mizuochi san if they used Atoma or Diamond plates on they Jnats.[/FONT][/COLOR]
[COLOR=#000000][FONT=Times][B]And answer was no, and they never had !!!!!![/B]
So i really don't understand why using diamond plates if there are so many cheaper and better options with Natural Naguras.
Of course you decide your self whether you will like to use Diamond plate or Natural Nagura on your Jnat.
But be aware that you will not get 100 % performance out of your stone !

Updated 04-22-2012 at 11:16 AM by maxim207



  1. gssixgun's Avatar
    The only thing I see missing from this blog is the Base:

    IE: The base stone determines what is going to work and how it is going to work, until you take the time to learn how your base stone works first everything else is a moot point...

    I do not agree with your assumption that unless you use nagura that you will not get 100 % from your honing, I agree that you need to try all of the options with your razors before you decide on one path..

    I really think that the base stone itself along with your honing style determines what is going to give the best outcome... basically this is where the romance with a natural stone begins

    Good write up here
  2. maxim207's Avatar
    I do not meen that if you dont use Nagura you will not get 100 % of your hone, but i do meen that if you use diamond plate you will not.
    I think 100 % come from not to use either diamond plate or Nagura hehe

    But yes you are totally right Base stone is most importent player her ! And i think to smoothen it dose improve performance of your base stone, like on Arkansas stones.

    Thanks for reading
  3. Jimbo's Avatar
    I am not sure I fully understand. To me the comparison between nagura and diamond plate is apples to oranges. When you use nagura, unless it is tomonagura you are not using the stone's particulates at all are you, or at least compared to the nagura particles the actual stone's particles are secondary? I might be reading it wrong, but if I am I then fail to see the point of using increasingly fine nagura.

    When it comes to tomonagura, I would argue that hiving off even 1/20th of your Jnat for this purpose would be equivalent to God knows how many diamond plate slurry sessions (10,000? 20,000?) particularly if you use one appropriate for the job such as a 1200 Atoma or something of similar quality. Let's face it, if you use a crappy diamond plate on a $300+ Jnat you get what you deserve IMO!

    Don't get me wrong, I do like the idea of the nagura honing method, but I don't think I agree that diamond plates on Jnats will be sub-standard.