There is something ridiculously satisfying about producing a whetstone. There is something even more satisfying when it looks this good:
This is the very first stone, cut today, from the prospecting trip Tony and I did recently. I figured I should confirm that it is indeed the right stuff, since sometimes similar-looking stone can behave very differently.
So I cut a slab in half with a diamond wheel, marked a pattern on the stone in pencil, trimmed around it with the diamond wheel, then ground down to the pencil line with a 16 grit (yes, 16) sanding disc, then finished it with a worn masonry grinding wheel. It took me about 1.5 hours to produce this, and I’ve only dressed the honing edges – the non-honing, broad faces, are still quite rough, but when they’re wet (as in the picture above), they still let their colour through.
It feels about the same as a Rozsutec, but being brown rather than grey, the grey metal from the blade shows up instantly on the stone, and you can see that it’s certainly pulling off steel.
I gave this one – the first-fruits of our labours – to Tony; I felt it was the least I could do after dragging him around the countryside chasing rocks on his school holidays. I’ll be interested to hear what he thinks of it, but based on what I’ve already seen today I’m very confident that we’ve got ourselves some good stock, and stock that will look fantastic as well.