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    Username Post: Takenoko 8k = Arashiyama 6k        (Topic#850519)
    Dave_Martell
    Master Member KnifeNut!
    *
    04-25-09 11:12.11 - Post#1824758    



    A few days ago a fellow forum member "spaceconvoy" posted a question in this thread asking about the OEM for the Takenoko 8k. I read the thread and went to find him the answer but realised I didn't know it.

    So then, either that night or the next, spaceconvoy contacts me through a PM and asks me what I know about this as well as the Arashiyama 6k's OEM. I replied that I knew who the Arashiyama OEM was but didn't know the OEM for the Takenoko. He then hit me with something....he told me that he was told by a store owner located in Kyuto that there is not really a Takenoko 8k, it's just a re-branded Arashiyama 6k. I was floored and started looking into the matter trying to get to the bottom of it. Now remember folks....I have Arashiyamas (at this point) on their way to me from Japan and I'm already selling the Takenoko!!!!

    So after checking with some people and searching around I come to find out that the Takenoko is (for the most part - retail wise at least) not even available in Japan yet the Arashiyama is everywhere!

    The person that I buy the Arashiyama from confirms 100% that this is a 6k stone and it's made by the same company in Kyuto that produces the Kitiyama. Both stones are synthetic/natural stone mixed. What could not be verified one way or the other is the true source of the Takenoko as all of my contacts get it through a 3rd party.

    So at this point it's starting to stink a bit more than I like but I could only wait to get the Arashiyama Japan delivery in so that I could do some comparison testing. I wasn't able to get to this right away but I spent the afternoon today testing both stones side by side.

    I took pictures of new stones, measured them, lapped them both, then sharpened with them. IMO, these two stones are one in the same, just packaged different. They both have the same exact dimensions (including the base), same color and flakes, same feel, same smell, same sharpening characteristics, everything - EXACT! Those of you who own a Takenoko will confirm that it's a unique stone in many ways and you would also have to admit that it'd be nearly impossible to mistake it's identity.

    Here's a couple of pictures of the stones sitting side by side...






    Now that I'm sitting back thinking about this it occurs to me that this makes sense, this stone being a 6k rather than 8k because it cuts so fast yet doesn't provide a clear shiny finish. I can see where someone would have said, "hey this stone is as good as an 8k so let's sell it as that too". Plus, this stone has been reported by so many people (myself included) as being a stone that will allow a jump from the 1k(ish) range easily skipping the middle range. Well guess what, we weren't skipping the middle after all.

    So here I am with a (small) metric assload (as DC says) of Arashiyama 6k's in stock and also selling Takenoko 8k's as well. I've decided to only continue to sell the Arashiyama 6k version as this seems the more honest thing to do.

    To be truthful I'm more than a little pissed off about being somewhat duped and thus duping my customers in return. I'm not upset about selling this stone labeled as 8k because I still feel it's a great stone that could easily be an 8k and those who bought the Takenoko version got a great stone. I'm upset with the fact that I sold one of each to some customers meaning that they bought two of the same stones from me and that's just not good. And on that note....I want everyone to know that if you purchased both stones from us (JKS) then we will take back one of them for a full refund even if the stone has been used. Please contact me if this applies to you and we'll straighten things out.

    Also, while I have your attention, please beware when stone shopping because there's a few vendors who sell both of these stones and one even states the Arashiyama is a 7k. Caveat Emptor!


    *Special thanks to "spaceconvoy" for the tip and for all your research into this. I'm grateful that you brought this to my attention so that I don't have to take part in the shenanigans.




     


    Throw3636
    Master Member KnifeNut!
    *
    04-25-09 11:26.09 - Post#1824763    


        In response to Dave_Martell

    That's why we love you so much around here - you are honest and forthcomming with information
    Thomas



    George: So... my whole life, everything... All I get to keep are thoughts and memories?
    Rube: That's all we ever have, Peanut.




    Edited by Throw3636 on 04-25-09 11:26.58. Reason for edit: No reason given.
     
    mongatu
    Master Member KnifeNut!
    *
    04-25-09 11:28.14 - Post#1824766    


        In response to Dave_Martell

    That's really interesting to say the least and coming from you, pretty conclusive, imo. They sure look almost identical in critical respects in the photo. I remember Ken saying he thought the Takenoko sounded more like a 6k from the way people described its performance, even though he hadn't tried one. So good call there, Ken.

    Your conclusion makes total sense to me based on how the Takenoko performs, and I'm actually glad to hear this because it fits even better in my line up as a 6k than I thought it did as an 8k. I mean I always thought it was kind of odd how well the Takenoko does on my Tadatsuna as a starting stone followed by the Naniwa 10k as a finishing stone (sharpening every two weeks or so). Now the mystery is cleared up.

    And it makes total sense why I had stopped using my Shapton Pro 5k in my line up and had substituted the Takenoko for it.

    So I just have to get used to calling this stone a 6k. I still think it's a really great stone.
    Peter
    sharper-knives.com


     
    Throw3636
    Master Member KnifeNut!
    *
    04-25-09 11:35.57 - Post#1824770    


        In response to mongatu

    I do not think there are nearly as many different makers of synthetic Japanese waterstones as there are brands. I always suspected most of them beeing OEM's - and for sure all those sold under the lables of knifemakers!
    Thomas



    George: So... my whole life, everything... All I get to keep are thoughts and memories?
    Rube: That's all we ever have, Peanut.


     
    Marko Tsourkan
    Master Member KnifeNut!
    *
    04-25-09 14:43.42 - Post#1824879    


        In response to Dave_Martell

    • D_R_Sharpening Said:
    And on that note....I want everyone to know that if you purchased both stones from us (JKS) then we will take back one of them for a full refund even if the stone has been used. Please contact me if this applies to you and we'll straighten things out.




    I was planning to purchase Arashiyama at a later time, but would be interested to buy now if anyone decides to take Dave on his offer above. It's very generous of him, but nevertheless, it's a money loosing proposition.

    So, if you purchased both stones and will keep one only, put it in For Sale section. Post for what you paid (no need to discount).

    Marko
    I love fools’ experiments. I am always making them. C.Darwin

    Join Me on Facebook

    www.markotsourkan.com


     
    Dave_Martell
    Master Member KnifeNut!
    *
    04-25-09 14:52.58 - Post#1824887    


        In response to Marko Tsourkan

    Thanks Marko, that's very nice of you.



     
    Marko Tsourkan
    Master Member KnifeNut!
    *
    04-25-09 14:55.38 - Post#1824889    


        In response to Dave_Martell

    I think it's the other way around, Dave -
    I love fools’ experiments. I am always making them. C.Darwin

    Join Me on Facebook

    www.markotsourkan.com


     
    spaceconvoy
    Master Member KnifeNut!
    *
    04-25-09 17:20.34 - Post#1824974    


        In response to Dave_Martell

    Like I told Dave in our private topic, I was in no position to judge whether it was true or not, since I haven't used either of these stones. I was just trying to find out why the Takenoko was completely unavailable here in Japan when I stumbled across this info. Even if I had both stones side by side in front of my face, I don't have the experience say for certain, which is why I brought it to Dave.

    Anyways, thanks for clearing up another mystery. It seems the more I learn about Japanese OEMs, the less I want to know.
     
    Throw3636
    Master Member KnifeNut!
    *
    04-25-09 18:05.10 - Post#1824988    


        In response to Dave_Martell

    On that topic I think we should start makeing a compilation which stones are made by whom and which are actually identically but sold under another brand.

    If I remember there was also this one:
    Naniwa 8k = Kitayama 8k = Ice Bear 10k
    Thomas



    George: So... my whole life, everything... All I get to keep are thoughts and memories?
    Rube: That's all we ever have, Peanut.


     
    Loup Garou
    Master Member KnifeNut!
    *
    04-25-09 18:23.06 - Post#1824997    


        In response to Throw3636

    No, the Kitayama 8k is famously rebranded as the Ice Bear 10k. It’s the most widely used polishing stone in Japan, but is supposed to glaze relatively easily. The King 8k has natural stone powder as well and doesn’t glaze, but it’s not so popular. Fish didn’t like it over the Shapton 8k, but his favourite stones were Shaptons.

    The Naniwa 8k is something different. There’s the Superstone and also the Pure White, which is a magnesia stone and its own line. The Naniwa Pure White is supposed to be one of the best 8k stones. It has beaten 12k stones in ‘contests’, and Usui Kengo proved it was possible to use it to get single digit micron shavings with planes, which was not conventionally thought possible with an 8k. But I’m not sure exactly how to pin down its performance.

    It’s supposed to have some crazing or cracking issues if used extensively. Pam uses it to sharpen her chip carving knives, and says it has slightly faster and nicer finish than the Shapton Pro 8k. But she won’t use it on kitchen knives and uses an awase instead, so there’s no reference point. Ken has one but has never gotten around to using it extensively.
     


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