In this video, I review the Nubatama Bamboo 2000 grit stone. This review was perhaps the single video I most dreaded doing. Taking a stone straight out of the box. One take to demonstrate why this stone is the most expensive out of the entire series of Nubatama stones to date! What could this stone possibly do to make it so valuable? I went into this thinking surely I would be disappointed. I figured that it might be the first stone where I might have to do several takes to try to determine what features might show it's worth.
I was SOOO wrong! I was stunned in the middle of the video at what I saw and immediately 'got' it. It was all I could do to not say some exclamations that would contain profanities expressing my total surprise. It was like looking into the window of a mind that had influenced this stone's creation based on generations of knowledge and knowhow to create one of the most amazing synthetic stones I've had the pleasure to use! Yea, that good!!
The knife I used in this video is a Takeda 311 mm wa sujihiki - traditional Japanese handle on a long slicer. This knife had many owners. I had previously thinned the edge to 3.0 degrees per side, followed by adding a 5.0 and then a 7.0 degree microbevel consistently over the entire length of the blade, something really beyond the capabilities of a freehand sharpener, using a device called a Gizmo. Since the last time an edge had been put on this knife it had developed a fine patina. Synthetic stones had been used to do this unusual edge design, so the edge showed a patina with a uniform finish.
So I began like any other video in the series testing porosity. Similar to the 1500 grit stone in porosity - essentially a near splash and go. Immediate impressions - very smooth, fast cutting with high abrasive content quiet, slight mud, excellent feedback. Reminds me of a 10k Chocera feedback. I mention that some of the metal swarf will be the patina coming off. As a natural stone feel it is like a less muddy Hakka or a Yaginoshima Asagi.
Now it gets real interesting. The mud starts acting like a natural stone mud 'cushioning' between the stone and the knife. Perfect for single bevels. I save the mud back on the stone and look at the side of the knife. That's when my jaw dropped.
I'm looking at a pleasantly high contrast finish looking like a sophisticated natural stone finish. Not a tasteless 'faux' natural finish like you see with an 800 King that is used by some to cover up mistakes, but a beautiful finish.
I suddenly 'get' what this stone is all about. Why it is worth what it's worth or more. It is a perfect prepolisher for natural stone finishes, leaving a gorgeous finish in it's own right. And it's not all looks - it also produces a very respectable edge too. The closest thing to a holy grail of synthetics working like a natural. This is a stone I know I will be using a LOT. On clad knives, honyaki knives, damascus (layered) single beveled knives and woodworking tools or any knife wanting a presentation edge that would appeal to Japanese sensibilities. Combining this with various natural stones will be a real treat that lies ahead. So exciting!