Waterstones - which ones to get??

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Hi guys,

I have been sharpening stuff (chisels, knives, plane blades) on oil stones and more recently my £5 sharpening kit, and can get them v.sharp. However as my oilstones are ancient, they are starting to become less level than they should be, so I thought its time I bought some waterstones :) .
However, on axminsters there is a large variety of grits etc and I am unsure which I should get. :confused:

Any help here much appreciated,


fred gordon

Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)
Mar 8, 2006
I got the combination Japanese Waterstone from Axminster last year. It was a great buy. Thoroughly recommend it. :)


Oct 24, 2006
Red Deer, Alberta, Canada
I am no expert sharpener. I bought a 1000/4000x combination stone and am pretty with it. I can nearly get my knives razor sharp, and I'm pretty sure that's due to lack of skill more than a failing of the stone.


Full Member
I just bought the Ice bear kit from Axminster, 800 grit and a 6000 grit, comes with a nagura stone (creates a slurry on the 6000 grit) and a non slip holder, I also bought a 1200 grit stone, from reading up various forums these three stones will serve me well. BTW a leather strop, (belt) isnt a bad addition from all accounts, I'll have to either dig out an old belt or nip down to the charity shop. Hope this helps
Cheers guys,

I will probably go for the same set up as you Gailainne. I'm fine with the oilstones etc really, but I just would prefer stones which are in good condition to save my £5 kit for the rucksack.

As for strops, I used to use a belt like many here do, but I have since progressed to ablock of wood with buffing compound charged leather stuck to it - much more portable and useable in the field, and I also find I can get better results with it too IMO. For chisels I tend to use cardboard on a flat surface charged with compound to prevent the slight convexing that is formed by stropping on leather :)


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