The Skerper Arkansas natural axe sharpening stone is a sharpening tool with two Arkansas stones mounted to a handle. Don’t let the name fool you. It is not only a useful tool to sharpen axes, but heavy blades and long blades too. The Axe sharpening stone has two different stones with different grits. Soft Arkansas (American 400-600 grit) and Hard Black Arkansas (American 2000-3000 grit) for both sharpening and polishing of the edge.
This tool is used differently to most of the other sharpening devices. Normally when sharpening, the stone is stationary and the blade is moved over the stone. But with this one, the blade/axe is stationary and the stone is moved over the edge. The benefit of this method is that you are not required to maneuver a heavy dangerous blade over the stone. This is a safer method and you are able to sharpen a blade infinite in size. This stone is relatively compact, lightweight and is possible to be taken into the field.
About Skerper Arkansas stones
The Skerper Arkansas stones come in a variety of grits, sizes and shapes. The Arkansas stones are graded by their hardness, with five different grit sizes. Soft Arkansas is the lowest of the grits, comparable to an American 400-600 grit synthetic stone. Up next are the Hard Arkansas (800-1000 grit), Hard Black Arkansas (2000-3000 grit) and Surgical Black Arkansas (4000-6000 grit). The highest of the grits is the Translucent Arkansas, comparable to an 8000-10.000 grit synthetic stone. The different sizes of the stones will suit home sharpening that requires a big stone surface for kitchen knives, to the pocket stones for the people on the go. Whatever your sharpening needs, with Skerper Arkansas you will always have the right stone for the job.
Stone use and care
All of the Skerper Arkansas stones will benefit from the use of honing oil. Some of the products come in sets with oil and stone(s). If not, we highly recommend a bottle of honing oil to go along with the stones. Please apply a few drops on the surface of the stone and it will help with preventing the stone from clogging, reducing friction during sharpening and keeping the stone clean. Using water instead of oil is also an option. From what we’ve experienced however, the oil gives a slightly better result. Cleaning of the stone will also be a bit more difficult when using water. Especially once you’ve used the stone with oil.
These natural stones are very hard and do not need flattening as often as most synthetic stones. When sharpening, position the blade in a fixed angle. Sharpen both sides of the blade equally until they meet at the apex. Since these stones are natural products, there may be slight variations in colour to the one pictured. When using oil the stone and wood will darken but it will not change the quality of the sharpening. Once you’ve finished sharpening, wipe it with a cloth to clean the stone. Now you can safely store the stone in the leather sleeve.