Posted By: Scott MarshallMost impressive especially with diamond spray. Extremely versatile.
The Balsa medium can do a lot of things, from fairly aggressive scratch removal to ultra fine polish, depending on the abrasive used, it's concentration, and it's age. The Balsa takes your palette of abrasives and adds another character to them, just as changing leathers does. Every person who is a sharpening enthusiast or professional should have a few Balsa strops ready to go. After some experience, you'll know when it's time to go to the Balsa to bring the edge in.
I'm a carver and while I like roo with flexcut gold (or some green stuff of unknown origin that I've used for years) for day to day use on my carving knives, Balsa with .5um diamond is quickly becoming my favorite 'touch-up' strop that I keep on the bench while carving. It gets to looking kind of rough after some use, but still does a great job. The Balsa/.5um diamond combo seems to cut a bit faster (especially when fresh), and the edge last a bit longer before needing a touch-up. Balsa excels for gouges, as it will almost completely form itself to match a profile if you dedicate a "slot" to the tool. The only 'downside' is that it's best to dedicate a pair of grooves to a specific tool shape, so you'll want several balsa pieces to cover your favorite profiles. Each piece will usually have room for several tools.
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