Register a free account now!

If you are registered, you get access to the members only section, can participate in the buy & sell second hand forum and last but not least you can reserve your preferred username before someone else takes it.

Mystery hone - What is this thing?


Well-Known Member
I picked this hone up for free today! I dunno what it is, but I can tell you what it isn't. it doesn't have the feel of a black ark or the slurry. It feels like a less glassy C12k. It has a feeling of very fine abrasion, it is very hard and was glass-like before I lapped it. Slurry stone doesn't produce slurry like a BBW or a Coti, much slower and it scratches the surface. In real life it is a very light green color with darker streaks running through it. It does have one tiny inclusion that looks like a red garnet out of a BBW. Ive taken pictures with water,dry,slurry, and with a tape measure if it helps. It was about 5/8" to 11/16ths thick before I lapped it.








Hmmmm looks like a German razor hone…. One of those… Thur… something... i hear the green ones are much preferred by some folks.:thumbup:

Run a few laps with a blade across the thing with slurry and see if you get swarf from the steel.
I did about 10 laps and it got a little darker. The slurry is already darkish to begin with. It didn't darken nearly as fast as a coticule though.
I tested a razor on it, so far so good. I can't give a definitive answer on anything yet. When I slurried it up it smelled like something really familiar. I can't figure out what it is, maybe dust/mustiness? It smells different than a coticule thats for sure.
If you lap a Thuringian\Escher\German waterstone when the hone is dry it will produce a "bluish color" powder. It will also lap very easily.
I wish I could take better pictures :blush: Thanks for the tip randy. It seemed like a pain in the ass to lap this thing on 320 sandblaster paper. My coti was a heck of a lot easier. It seems almost as hard as or even harder than a c12k? Maybe after Im done testing it I will send it to someone for evaluation. I don't know what shade a green escher is, but mine is a darker forest green with olive spots.
Here are some better pictures showing the surface pattens and color of the hone. I use a paper towel for color reference.




If it laps harder than a coticule or a ch12K then it is not a thuringian\escher type stone. Your task now is to figure out its proper place in the honing cycle. 500 grit-1k-4k-8k-finisher.
randydance062449 said:
If it laps harder than a coticule or a ch12K then it is not a thuringian\escher type stone. Your task now is to figure out its proper place in the honing cycle. 500 grit-1k-4k-8k-finisher.

Natural Stones vary quite a bit in hardness from one to the next within the same type. It seems dubious to suggest that hardness is conclusive that this is NOT an Escher. However, I agree that the "grit" of the stone should be tested. Not so much a grit number, but where it would fall in a hone progression.

This stone does remind me of this stone used by Joel of B&B.
With slurry this hone cuts quite quick. It looks sandblasted just like a coticule. I would say it cuts a little slower than a coticule with slurry though. The sound it makes while honing is the same with water, but with slurry it is a little less noisy than a coti. I just tested it against my norton 8k to see if it was an improvement or not. The finish is more mirrored than the 8k, but it is a lot less consistent. Probably due to its natural nature (im no tree hugger!). under the microscope the scratches are smaller, but there are errant scratches that are a little deeper. The TPT feels different from a coticule too. The coticule edge feels fine and sticky after stropping. This one feels like the edge is harder? I don't know about that one, i will retest again later.
I think I heard somewhere that yellow/green eschers were a lot harder than the blue/greys, but I don't know how it compares. I lost an escher on ebay for 5 dollars. The hone went for 286 I think? Its funny that the next day I find one! I still wish I had another thurry to test against :-/
Try to get a hold of Sham, he goes by the name of Chess1 on Badger&Blade. He's quite knowledgeable when it comes to determining mystery hones.

Slurry color and hone surface Looks like slate to me, but what do I know?

Best regards,
Ive got a welsh dragons tongue. This one does have similar slurry color with a slight green tint. It doesn't have the same feedback though.
Ok I went back and tried to lap my C12k to compare the two. I forgot how big of a PITA that 12k was! So I may have been a little over zealous in rating the hardness of this one.
It looks a LOT like a "Frankonian" hone, and the hardness sounds like it too. But these are pretty recent introductions to the hone world...

Where did you get it?
Well Jim, There is an antique store I frequent that has a lot of stuff. The razors are on a shaving mirror/wall stand. I dunno what you would call it. There is a drawer that pulls out and I had never checked that. I pulled it out to find 2 damn fine gillette news, 2 crappy straights, and a worn out dished hone! I took the hone and lapped both sides which took about 1.5 hours.

I dunno if this sheds any light on the matter, but it does leave a weird edge. When I hone it on the 8k norton and go to the mystery hone after im done the edge feels dull. It doesn't grab my thumb hardly at all compared to a coti or norton. However, after stropping it does pop hairs better than a coticule. My razors sound different when shaving off of it too. I don't know if I like the edge better than a coticule, I need to send it to someone to test it out! My knowledge with stuff like this is lacking and a second opinion that could tell me exactly how it acts would be nice.
This definitely looks like a thuringian to me, if it is, you're one lucky s.o.b. :D

Vintage those can be worth a lot of money,especially if it's escher, but that's doubtful. Try using it with water and no slurry after an 8k.