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Arkansas Whetstones
Genuine Arkansas Whetstones from Dan's Whetstone Co., Pearcy AR - in the Ouachita Mountains near Hot Springs AR, USA

Dan owns over 500 acres of mineral properties and controls several quarries that supply the various grades of Novaculite used by Dan's Whetstone Company.  According to reserve projections these will supply the next four generations or more with all the 100% real natural Arkansas Novaculite rock needed to continue providing product for our customers. (snipped from Dan's website)

Products include:

Bench Stones:

Bench Stones are commonly used for sharpening knives and cutting tools.  Bench Stones may be packaged in natural wood boxes and are also available permanently mounted in a wooden box.  Bench Stones are available in Soft, Hard, True Hard, Black Hard and Translucent grades and classifications.

Combination Bench Stones:

Slip and Multiform Stones:

Pocket Stones

Pocket Stones are perfect for on the spot touch-ups.  These stones come with a leather sleeve to protect and store the sharpening stone or you can purchase the stone in a plastic tube.  Pocket stones are available in Soft, Hard Select, True Hard, Black Hard and Translucent grades and classifications.

EZ Hones:


Dan's EZ Hone offers a new and simple approach to mastering the art of knife sharpening.  It is so simple that even a novice sharpener can achieve a keen, sharp edge.  The end blocks are designed with reference angles cut in so that the user will have a reference for each and every stroke, while eliminating that occasional steep angle which can counteract any improvement.

The EZ Hone Knife Sharpening Systems are available in 4", 6" and 8" lengths. You may choose the 3-stone model which comes with a Coarse, Medium and Fine stone or the 4-stone model that comes with a Coarse, Medium, Fine and Extra Fine stone.  (Coarse--Silicon Carbide, Medium--Soft Arkansas, Fine--Hard Arkansas, and Extra Fine--True Hard Grade)  Dan's also makes 2-stone Bench EZ Hones that are available in four different combinations of stones.


Soft Arkansas (Medium) is the most popular of the grades of Novaculite.  It is an all-purpose stone used by woodcarvers, sportsmen, butchers, commercial knife sharpeners and even housewives.  This stone is used by people who desire keen, sharp edge on their knives and tools in a minimum amount of time.  Soft Arkansas stones may be  white, gray and black, or pink and gray in color.

Hard Arkansas (Fine) is most suitable for fine polishing and the maintenance of a fine edge on knives or tools.  Hard Arkansas is often referred to as "White Hard."  However, users should be aware that Hard Arkansas often has color variations also.  To our knowledge, this color does not interfere with the honing process by any means.  Hard Arkansas stones are popular among woodcrafters and a variety of industries including the dental industry.

Translucent Arkansas (Extra Fine) stones are classifications included in the True Hard Arkansas grade category according to specific gravity under density standards.  The reason there is a classification in this grade is because of color preferences by customers.  Translucent stones may be a uniform, translucent shade of gray white yellow, brown and sometimes even pink.

Black Arkansas (Ultra Fine)  Black Arkansas stones are black or blue-black in color.  This crypto-crystaline novaculite structure is the most dense and therefore has the properties to achieve the finest polished edge possible.


ColourNatural Arkansas Whetstones are available in various grades and classifications.  Users should be aware that color is not the determining factor in grading Novaculite.  Some users have been defining whetstone grades by color, but the same colors may be seen in more than one grade and classification.  Different grades of Novaculite also have a noticeable difference in texture.  The softer the stone, the coarser the surface of the stone feels; harder stones, such as the True Hard and Translucent, have  a smoother glassy feel.

Quality Classification:  Being Natural Stones, occasionally there may be a minor imperfection found after the Stone is cut to size.  Rather than recut to a smaller size, these Stones are graded and offered at a reduced price.  Minor Imperfections may include: Small Holes, Small Crack or Seam, Stone cut Undersize.  Three grades:

1st Quality: No Imperfections at all.

High Quality: One side with no Imperfections, minor imperfections on the other side.

2nd Quality: Minor Imperfections on both sides.

Honing Oil:  Always use light grade oil as a wash (to float the iron particles away) and to clean the stone after use.  Never use heavy oils (unless reduced with kero), never use neatsfoot oil - these will plug the stone.

Dressing the Stone:  To keep the Stone flat and to refresh the grit - use a fine or coarse Diamond Plate with Kero, Mineral Spirits or even WD40 as a wash.

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