Norton Flattening Stone - Canadian Woodworking Magazine

Tool Test


Norton Flattening Stone

Norton waterstones are fast becoming my favourite. They are of a generous size (3" wide, 8" long), cut aggressively, wear less quickly than other waterstones, and are competitively priced. Nonetheless, as with all waterstones, they wear away quickly – which is what they are designed to do. This means that you need to constantly re-flatten them, else your honing will be for naught. One common way to flatten is to rub a coarser waterstone against a finer grit stone, and to rub the coarsest stone against a block of concrete, a diamond stone, or sandpaper adhered to glass. European Hand Tools has a new product that really simplifies, and considerably speeds up, the flattening process.

Their new Norton flattening stone (1" x 3" x 8") is a coarse grit silicon carbide stone with diagonal grooves cut into one face. These grooves provide space for the slurry removed during the flattening process to run off. The advantage of these stones is that they are extremely flat, and have a very hard bond specifically engineered to flatten waterstones. In use this stone produced an extremely flat surface on a range of waterstones, from 200 grit to 4000 (including non-Norton brands). You do need to impregnate your stones with water before flattening. A few strokes of your waterstones over the flattening stone after each use will ensure that your stones remain constantly flat. Efficient, effective, affordable.

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