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Naniwa Chosera 10000x Super Finishing
Synthetic Whetstone Review

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Naniwa Chosera 10000 Grit Super Synthetic Whetstone

I got this stone purely by the recommendation of Dave Martell of Japanese Knife Sharpening. I already had Kitayama 8000-12000 grit synthetic waterstone. You can read the details about the Kitayama waterstone in the review, but in short the stone is 8000 grit officially, and then once the slur builds up and particles break down it goes to 12000 grit, thanks to the natural Aoto stone powder in it. However, Dave is using Chosera 10K himself as a step before Kitayama and when I asked him about that he confirmed that, an gave me some details. Basically, Kitayama makes poorer 8000 stone, it's still more on 12000 side. That actually confirmed with my experience and getting the free advice from the sharpening expert like Dave is pretty serious thing by itself, that is if you take sharpening your knives seriously. So, I listened and got the stone. Running ahead, I can say the stone did both, worked perfectly and exceeded my expectations by healthy margin :) So, I am happy with it. Actually, I've picked up two whetstones together that day, this 10000x Super Finishing whetstone and King 1200 grit whetstone.

General

- Naniwa Chosera 10000x Super Finishing Waterstone comes packed in a light blue cardboard box. The stone is baseless, and the package also includes nagura stone for building up initial mud on the stone. Nagura is quite large compared to the one that comes with Kitayama whetstone and not sure what exactly is the reason, nagura itself or the whetstone, but doesn't stick as much to the stone as Kitayama nagura, although with enough water on it neither one is a problem, and both stick pretty bad without it. The stone dimensions are 209x69x31mm. It's a pretty big and heavy stone. The surface is silky smooth, and I'm having hard time telling which one feels smoother Kitayama 8k-12k or Chosera 10K. However during the sharpening I use Chosera first and then Kitayama. That's per Dave's advice, he does the same, and to make you feel better, that does work that way :)

Performance

- So far I have used several times, and one of those times was pretty hard time too. Of course, the knife that gave me the most trouble was one of the Aritsugu Knives. To be precise, that knife was Aritsugu Kamagata usuba. As usual, Aritsugus have unground edges, which requires what Japanese call Honba-Tsuke service, simply put that's some serious sharpening in case of Aritsugus, because those knives are so wear resistant and AoKo steel knives are real hard, around 65HRC. Anyway, back to Naniwa Chosera superstone performance. In short it's super good. The reasons I like it so much are: minimal water consumption, very high cutting speed, really bright mirror polished finish it produces and last, but not least, very smooth feel to it. The mud on the surface is very easy to build with the nagura that comes with it. As for the cutting speed, it was great even on Aritsugu AoKo II steel, which is hardened around 65HRC, and when I tried it on Global G-61 granton edge chef's knife, which is hardened at puny 58HRC, it simply ate the metal. I felt I could rebevel the blade with it, which I didn't do in the end, I don't want to wear it excessively and misuse it, after all, it's still ~260$ piece.

Conclusion

- Well, as you can guess conclusions are extremely positive at this point :) I'll sure let you know if I change my mind, but that's very unlikely given the stone performance on various knives. Reasonably priced for what it is, cuts fast, wears very little, doesn't need much water and produces very nice mirror polished finish. Don't know what else to ask from the high grit sharpening stone. Depending on the desired final edge, you probably very well could finish sharpening with Chosera 10K stone. Sure, Kitayama takes it further and makes further sharpening with finer abrasives easier, but not many people take the edges further than 10000 grit anyway.

Last updated - 09/01/11