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Thread: Found new norton washita stones

  1. #61
    Quote Originally Posted by Rafael Herrera View Post

    As I noted above I measured its specific gravity last night and it came to about 2.03, which is at the bottom of the coarseness scale given at the Dan's web site. One of my washitas measured at 2.35 which comes within the expected range for a fine washita.

    From looking at the Dan's Whetstones website, a soft arkansas has a higher specific gravity than a washita. That means a soft ark is more compact than a Washita, I believe that also means that a soft ark is harder than a Washita, not the other way around.

    Given the apparent coarseness of this stone, it may turn out to be a good stone to have in the workshop. Since it's in the lower end of the compactness scale, it will wear out faster than harder Arkansas stones.
    Hi Rafael,

    A couple notes. The SG numbers you quoted from Dan's refer to THEIR "Washitas," which are not from the Pike mine. Everyone I've talked to who has used one of these stones says they are simply coarse soft Arks, nothing like vintage Washitas. A related point is that Dan's soft Arks have a reputation for being finer than soft Arks from other dealers, e.g. Natural Whetstone.

    The Federal standards for soft Arks say they are below 2.2 SG, so the new "Washita" you measured at 2.03 seems right for a soft Ark. There is no Federal standard for Washitas, but the number you got (2.35) seems right for a vintage stone--they are nearly always heavier and harder than soft Arks. I don't consider myself a true expert, but if you ask a real expert, e.g. Dave Weaver or Darryl Gent, they will tell you the same thing.

    To sum up: A vintage Washita is usually heavier and harder than a soft Ark, but will cut as quickly and last longer. If you have a stone that clocks in with a low SG number like 2.03, and appears more porous than than a vintage Washita, then it is probably just a coarse soft Ark, regardless of what the label says. That's not to say it's a bad stone--a soft Ark is very useful!--but it's not a vintage Washita.
    "For me, chairs and chairmaking are a means to an end. My real goal is to spend my days in a quiet, dustless shop doing hand work on an object that is beautiful, useful and fun to make." --Peter Galbert

  2. #62
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom M King View Post
    If it wears out, that won't be the last $37, including shipping, that will go down the drain.
    Well ainít that the truth...Iíll spill more than $37 worth of oil!! 😆

  3. #63
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    Hi Steve,

    I don't have samples of soft arks, vintage or otherwise. It'd interesting to hear from other people. I'm also not sure if a "soft" arkansas means a coarser, more porous stone than a Washita, in all instances. That doesn't seem to be the case for the Dan's ones. From the geological survey I posted above, a distinction is made between Arkansas and Ouashitas (or Washitas) stones, they have different applications. However, that report is over a century old, so the industry probably evolved and what gets called a soft Arkansas may be different in recent times.

    I have three Washitas that from their size seem to be factory made and two others that from their non-standard size may be older and hand cut. If factory made I'm assuming they were selected to an specific grade.

    I measured their SG and they were all very close. In the picture below, from left to right the SGs are: 2.37, 2.29, 2.31, 2.35, 2.03, and 2.44. The two with highest SG are the non-standard sizes. These measurements were made with a kitchen scale and on stones the were rectangular in shape. I measured the weight in grams and the volume in cm3, the ratio of these two numbers is the SG. There're errors, but these measurements should be good enough.

    The new Norton Washita doesn't seem to be of the same class as these vintage ones. It is basically less dense, but only use will tell us if it is equivalent to the old washitas.

    Is it a real Washita? Probably not. Did it come from the Washita mine? who knows, it may have, but it would not have been labeled Washita in the old days.


  4. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by Michael J Evans View Post
    received mine today as well and it has a couple gouges in it... Sent a email to sharpening supplies to see if they'll do anything about it.
    Curious what happened.

    As for the thickness, they market it as 1/2" and it really is 1/2" thick, but, the box says 1", which is really odd.

  5. #65
    [QUOTE=Andrew Pitonyak;3075904]Curious what happened.

    Looks like they hired some beginner rock maker. But the important thing is the boss will make it right.

  6. #66
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andrew Pitonyak View Post
    Curious what happened.

    As for the thickness, they market it as 1/2" and it really is 1/2" thick, but, the box says 1", which is really odd.
    There were likely a lot of old boxes still in stock and it was more economical than printing new boxes for a one time product.

    jtk
    "A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty."
    - Sir Winston Churchill (1874-1965)

  7. #67
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    stones.jpg

    Amazing what one can find, just walking around,,,,
    molder planes.jpg
    Tractor Fest, 2015...West Liberty, OH...

  8. #68
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andrew Pitonyak View Post
    Curious what happened.

    As for the thickness, they market it as 1/2" and it really is 1/2" thick, but, the box says 1", which is really odd.
    They are supposed to be shipping another stone today. Hopefully it arrives in a decent amount of time. Last one took 14 days.

  9. #69
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Koepke View Post
    There were likely a lot of old boxes still in stock and it was more economical than printing new boxes for a one time product.

    jtk
    Agreed
    For some of the packaging at my work we use very generic packages and then out the appropriate stickers or barcodes.

  10. #70
    Reposting this question since last post was buried in the thread...

    I received a NOS washita but noticed a significant bowing along length and matching concavity on reverse side.

    is this useable as is or does the stone need to be dressed flat, and what would be a good method?

    Jesse

    92CD58A7-33EB-46EF-92A6-9E64CAFE377D.jpg
    Last edited by jesse ross; 12-05-2020 at 12:48 PM.

  11. #71
    Quote Originally Posted by jesse ross View Post
    Reposting this question since last post was buried in the thread...

    I received a NOS washita but noticed a significant bowing along length and matching concavity on reverse side.

    is this useable as is or does the stone need to be dressed flat, and what would be a good method?

    Jesse

    92CD58A7-33EB-46EF-92A6-9E64CAFE377D.jpg

    Jesse,

    Several others have received stones with a bow, my stone has a slight hump on one side but not bad enough to return it because the other side is close to flat. A hump is hard to remove, if it is significant I would return the stone for no other reason than the stone is thin and while using it correctly will cause little wear if you flatten both sides you might not have enough stone left.

    If you decide to flatten the stone loose diamonds or diamond plates would likely be your best bet but that is a guess on my part as I've never needed to flatten a Washita or Ark stone.

    ken

  12. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by jesse ross View Post
    I received a NOS washita but noticed a significant bowing along length and matching concavity on reverse side.

    is this useable as is or does the stone need to be dressed flat, and what would be a good method?
    Jesse, I believe these are newly mined and not NOS.

    Mine also arrived with a hollow on one side and a belly on the other. I thought of lapping the hollow side with silicon carbide grit on float glass, as I've done before on other stones. It doesn't take long.

    My thinking is that if it's used mainly with chisels and knives, the hollow doesn't matter. If using the bellied side, it eventually will wear into flatness.

    I'm concerned that if I were to use it on plane irons that I wanted the edge to be straight, the unevenness of the surface would result in an undesired camber along the edge.

  13. #73
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    Mine has a hole missing, on one side, with a pencil circle around it. I'm not worried about it. For the cost, including shipping, I'm glad to get it. That kit stays in my truck, and handles the sharpening chores when I'm away from my sharpening sink. It fills a slot that I worried would be lost. I haven't even checked it for straight. It will do what I want it to regardless.

  14. #74
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    ... and the stones stock is gone....

  15. #75
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    I figured they probably just struck a little vein of it, when they were quarrying. Since I hadn't seen one similar for 46 years, I was glad to get one, defects, and all.

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