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Thread: Sigma #400 waterstone

  1. #1
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    Sigma #400 waterstone

    I ordered and received a Sigma #400 water stone from Stu at TFJ and thought I would let everyone know what I have found out so far.
    First I like the stone.
    It seems to do all the things Stu says it will.
    I don't understand feedback from a stone so I can't comment on that.

    I used it to flatten the back of a Stanley #80 blade from Hock that I have been working off and on for several weeks with little results.
    This stone flattened it up fairly quickly without dishing out. The back and stone remained flat after flattening. No "repair" work when I went to the #1000 Stone.

    The finish this stone leaves is really pretty good for a rough stone. My Sigma#1000 removes these scratches quickly. Less time than when I using the #1000 first to sharpen.
    This stone does not leave a large burr on the cutting edge. I like that. My Shapton 320 leaves a giant burr.

    The stone is hard but does cut quickly. Depending on what your idea of quick is. It cuts about 2 to 3 times faster that my #1000.
    Compared to the Shapton Pro 320 it cuts faster and stays flatter.

    I have heard from another Creeker that this stone is not nice to the Atoma flatting plate. I use an old Diaflat 320 plate for this stone only.

    All in all, I am happy with this stone and would recommend it to anyone wanting a nice #400 stone.
    The price seems good to me at about $70.00 delivered.

    BTW, Stu refunds over charges in shipping. I thought this was very impressive. It may have only been $1.28 but still impressive.

    My other stones are Sigma #1000,#6000 and #13000 from Stu at TFJ.
    No problems so far and I don't see any in the future.
    The Woodworking Hermit.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
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    I really appreciate this review. The stones you have are exactly the ones I am considering.

  3. #3
    +1!!!!!

    Thanks.

  4. #4
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    Sep 2011
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    Eureka Springs, AR
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    My girlfriend ordered the exact same set from Stu; and we've used them for several months. It's the happiest we've been with sharpening, a real pleasure. Note that we mostly use O1/W1/Japanese white steel.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
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    Pennington, NJ 08534
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    Nice review Dale.

    I have been using the Sigma #400 and find that what you flatten it with makes a big difference. After reading about how hard it is on the Atoma 400, I added an Atoma 140. The Atoma 140 flattened the Sigma #400 in a flash and, as an added benefit, makes the Sigma #400 much more aggressive. Leaving the slurry on makes the stone even better.

    In my attempt to eliminate sandpaper completely, I has been using loose grit to make the Sigma #400 even more aggressive, but didn't like the mess (I don't have a sink). So, I recently got the massive Suehiro Cerax #320 from Stu. I knew it would dish easily, but also had faith that the Atoma #140 would fix it easily - it does. The Cerax #320 is lightening fast. I still follow up with the Sigma #400 before going to the finer stones, but the Cerax #320 / Sigma #400 combination means I now don't use any sandpaper above 120 grit.

    I believe Stu has a new double sided stone that acts like a Sigma #400 on one side and a Cera #320 on the other. Too late for me, but I'm still happy.

    Steve

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Friedman View Post
    ...I believe Stu has a new double sided stone that acts like a Sigma #400 on one side and a Cera #320 on the other. Too late for me, but I'm still happy.
    Just hold on, these things wear out eventually.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Curtis View Post
    Just hold on, these things wear out eventually.
    Yeah, but not likely in my lifetime.

    Steve

  8. #8
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    Dec 2012
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    Sorry, who is "Stu at TFJ"? Does he have a web site?

    Thanks,
    Ryan

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ryan Mitchell View Post
    Sorry, who is "Stu at TFJ"? Does he have a web site?

    Thanks,
    Ryan
    Stu (also goes by Schtoo) is Stu Tierney
    www.toolsfromjapan.com
    There are two links - one to his blog and the other to the store.
    If you got to the store, make sure you change the currency from yen to dollars to avoid price shock.

    Steve

  10. #10
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    Dec 2012
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Friedman View Post
    Stu (also goes by Schtoo) is Stu Tierney
    www.toolsfromjapan.com
    There are two links - one to his blog and the other to the store.
    If you got to the store, make sure you change the currency from yen to dollars to avoid price shock.
    Thanks, that was helpful.

    Looks like a starter set for a beginner like me is going to cost about $200 after shipping. That's a big chunk of money that I'd rather use to acquire tools. Is there a better way to get started in sharpening? Should I start with sandpaper?

    Ryan

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ryan Mitchell View Post
    Thanks, that was helpful.

    Looks like a starter set for a beginner like me is going to cost about $200 after shipping. That's a big chunk of money that I'd rather use to acquire tools. Is there a better way to get started in sharpening? Should I start with sandpaper?

    Ryan
    That kit, while not inexpensive, is probably about much bang for buck as you'll find anywhere.

    That said, this will get the job done. Stu's sigmas are markedly better (faster, stay flatter, get things sharper with less work), but the Norton 1k/8k I linked to will give you perfectly acceptable results.

  12. #12
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    Just my opinion here Ryan. I have purchased and tried several sharpening methods and mediums as just about all of us here at the creek have.
    After much messing around I have found that if you are going to spend good money on cutting tools then spend some good money to get them sharp and keep them sharp.
    Sharpening equipment is like gas for you car. An evil necessity. There are a lot of different ways to get sharp. Some take time, some take time and money and some just don't work.
    A good set of stones works for me. The cost was well worth saving my wasted time with some of the other cheaper methods.

    Buy a good set of stones the first time and be done with it. Learn to use them. Find out what sharp is then you can mess with the other systems.
    We all spent far too much time when we were learning trying to figure out if the medium was wrong, if the method was wrong or if it was us.
    We wonder how sharp is sharp. Start with sharp then look around for other mediums.
    Last edited by Dale Cruea; 12-10-2012 at 2:14 PM. Reason: Spell errors
    The Woodworking Hermit.

  13. #13
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    Dec 2012
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    Brownsburg, IN
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    Thanks for the advice, Chris and Dale. I like the idea of the Norton starter set. I was leaning towards sandpaper but I think you have swayed me to stones. Perhaps later on I will upgrade to the Sigma stones.

    Ryan

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