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Thread: Can you identify this oil/water sharpening stone?

  1. #1

    Norton oil/water sharpening stone

    I found this in my attic a while ago, and did not know what it was. It was dirty, rusty, and very very black. It has a wooden base, which too was in need of a good clean. I have cleaned it up and I finally realised it is a sharpening stone. It has two sides, one rougher than the other (I would not be able to tall you what grade each side is). So I decided to use it tonight, and for the purposes of this experiment I used an old stainless steel knife I had from Sainsburys (so I will not ruin anything nice, just in case). I have to admit that it worked very well, the knife is now razor sharp (it can cut paper just by touching it lightly). On the side, between the two stone faces, it reads 'NORTON'. So I googled it, and found out that there is a company that makes sharpening stones called Norton, so it all falls in place. With the specimen I have being so old, I could not find it on their website, so I was wondering if anyone here can tell me a bit more about it. I attach a few pictures.

    I would be obliged if you could let me know how to use it. Do I use oil, water or just dry sharpen? In my 'experiment' I went dry, and after a while I just wet it with some water. I think it worked well either way, but please enlighten me if you can.

    Many thanks in anticipation!

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    Last edited by Psyxologos; 17-11-2013 at 02:01.

  2. #2
    Distinguished Member Ronin's Avatar
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    I have several similar soil stones - I use 3-1 oil on them and they do produce a keen edge.

    Ive now progressed to waterstones, they make a keen edge a very very keen edge……….!

  3. #3
    This is a carpenter stone the same I have, if you get a wire brush and some warm water with a little soap in a bucket and rub the with the wire brush across it you will find it comes up clean and then just use WD40 and use as normal I hope that helps you.

  4. #4
    Commonly used as said above by carpenters, mainly for chisel blades for planes, this is why my Grandad used to b*ll*ck me for cutting a furrow in it with my first penknife!
    (The Unspeakable In Pursuit Of The Uneatable.) " If I can help, I will help!." Former S.A.C.S. member!

  5. #5
    As said above, an oil stone. Clean it up well and it'll be fine for years of use.
    Use with a light oil like 3-in-1.
    Always wipe off excess oil after use, or it'll end up all gunky and not work so well.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Psyxologos View Post
    With the specimen I have being so old, I could not find it on their website, so I was wondering if anyone here can tell me a bit more about it. I attach a few pictures.

    I would be obliged if you could let me know how to use it. Do I use oil, water or just dry sharpen? In my 'experiment' I went dry, and after a while I just wet it with some water. I think it worked well either way, but please enlighten me if you can.
    It is not that old! Or maybe I am. That is a similar NORTON logo / typeface on the oil stone I bought when I went off to College in 1970. so I would put it around that period. It has obviously not seen much use so it could well have been made up by one of my little friends training to be a woodwork/metalwork teacher and stuck up in the attic when they came home from college... It may have four snipped off panel pins sticking out of the bottom to stop it from sliding around the bench...don't use it on the dining table!

    It is an oil stone so as the name implies it is used whith oil rather than water. The oil is there to carry the grinding dust away rather than lubricate so the thinner the better. 3in1 ATF diesel WD40 are fine. My furniture-maker father made up a mix of paraffin and motor oil and kept that in a Lea and Perrins Worcestershire Sauce bottle to shake out a few drops on the stone.

    ​Alan
    Last edited by Alantoo; 17-11-2013 at 12:10.

  7. #7
    My father always called them Arkansas stones after the place where they supposedly came from. I have just looked up Norton and that certainly ties in with what he said. He also said that "I would make a grown carpenter cry" hence he always snatched his oil stones away from me if I attempted to sharpen a knife on one.
    It's the calibre of the shooter that counts not the calibre of the rifle.

  8. #8
    +1 i have my old feller dads one still gives a very good edge

    Quote Originally Posted by Redmist View Post
    I have several similar soil stones - I use 3-1 oil on them and they do produce a keen edge.

    Ive now progressed to waterstones, they make a keen edge a very very keen edge……….!

  9. #9
    Thank you very much for your responses. Is there any way at all to find out what grade each of the two faces is? One seems to be fine/very fine and the other seems to be coarse. Will it be OK for me to sharpen my stalking knives there or will the coarse side take too much out of the knife? Lastly, where can I get some of this 3 in 1 oil everyone is talking about?

    Thanks again!

  10. #10
    a good old bike shop or a hardware shop like Albert E. Arkwright ( Ronnie barker) folk handles!! lol

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