Natural Stone with Two Round and Sides
The Belgian Blue Slipstone From Ardennes-Coticule is a versatile stone shaped for sharpening gouges. The Multiform stone is 100mm long x 40mm wide (approx. 4" x 1") It tapers in thickness across its width from 2mm (approx. 5/64") on one side to 6mm (approx. 1/4") on the other. Each long edge is rounded over. This combination of thick and thin rounded edges allows the stone to fit the inside profiles of a wide range of round and u-shaped gouges.
Natural Sharpening Stones From Belgium
The Ardennes region of Belgium has for centuries quarried natural stones famous as high quality whetstones. Sought after by Straight Razor Sharpeners, Woodworkers, Carvers and Leather Workers, these natural stones are not as abundant as they once were. A single quarry is still in operation in Belgium hand producing these wonderful natural sharpening stones.
Belgian Blue Stones
This particular type of whetstone is called a Belgian Blue Whetstone, or BBW for short. Characterized by a high concentration of spessartite garnets, the BBW's have a blueish-purple color caused by the presence of iron in the stone. They are known for being of very uniform quality and working quickly. Of course, as they are hand shaped natural stones, some variance of size and exact composition is normal.
Use With Water
Belgian Blue Stones should only be used with water, never oil. They are non-porous and do not absorb liquid or clog with swarf, so there is no need to soak them prior to sharpening.