1x6 Arkansas Soft White
The 1x6 Arkansas Soft White stone is a medium grit Arkansas stone. It is used for initial sharpening and maintenance work and to set up the edge for finer Arkansas stones. The softer density of the Soft White stone allows for more grit release and more aggressive cutting action. It is roughly equivalent to 600 - 2K grit depending on the stone and progression.
1" x 6" x 5mm in size and mounted to a steel blank, it is used with water or oil dripped onto the surface before use. Air dry after use if water is used. With oil, you can choose to clean or not between uses.
Abrasive Material: Novaculite
Ideal place in a sharpening progression:
- Starting grit for routine touch ups, sharpening, and light maintenance
- After coarser Washita Arkansas stones and other Natural stones
- After coarser synthetic sharpening stone grits (120 – 1K grit)
- As a final stone leaving a functional working sharp edge.
- Before progressing finer synthetic stones, natural stones and strops.
The Arkansas Soft White sharpening stone works on almost all types of knives, scissors, tools and chisels, including those made with abrasion resistant steels. While the 1x6 size is meant for use with the Edge Pro, Hapstone and TSProf sharpeners, it is also a great size for a slip stone, field stone or a pocket stone for knife repairs and sharpening on the go.
This is an oilstone which can be used with oil or water. This stone can also be used in a mix and match progression of other synthetic and natural sharpening stones, as well with other brands such as Naniwa, Shapton, Suehiro, Imanishi, Spyderco, King, etc. Simply wipe the blade clean before and after switching stone types.
On More Traditional Carbon Steel and Stainless Steel Edges the Arkansas Soft White is a tried and true stone for sharpening and maintaining working edges on knives from many kitchen knife makers like Henckels, Wüsthof, Gunter Wilhelm, F Dick, Victorinox, etc. and steels like X50CrMoV15, AUS6, and 440B.
On the higher end of the hardness spectrum of traditional steel edges made with steels like 1095, 440C, 52100, Aogami White, O1, Shirogami Blue, W1, etc., the Arkansas Soft White stone is aggressive enough to cut into these harder steels, leaving a sharp cutting edge that is ready to use, and cleans and preps edges for further cleanup by finer grits. Traditionally, this stone is extremely well matched to carbon steels.
On Carbide Forming Steel and More Abrasion Resistant Steel Edges such as D2, M2, S35V, S90V, VG-10, etc., The slightly softer density of the Soft Arkansas stone abrades the matrix steel more aggressively, making the edges sharp with a bite.
Hacks and Tips:
- Using water keeps the stone slightly more aggressive. Using oil creates a paste that, over time, imparts a slightly finer finish.
- By cleaning the stone of oil between uses, the stone is more aggressive at the start. Keeping the old “seasoned” oil on the stone adds more refinement and more polish.
- Clean loaded stones with warm soapy water
- Eventually, these stones will need to be flattened. The best is a medium or fine grit diamond plate or silicon carbide powders.
Comparable Stones: Arkansas Bathesda, Arkansas Mountain View, Arkansas Hard White