This gorgeous handmade ten inch combination stone is made from generous 7mm thick slices of Pierre des Pyrénées (1200 ish) and Belgian blue (4000 - 10,000) that have been glued together.
Belgian Blue (BBW) is geologically very similar to Vielsalm coticule and occurs in the same strata, it typically has a slightly lower concentration of garnets but is present in large thick seams capable of producing magnificent specimens like this.
Pierre des Pyrénées is another classic natural European whetstone, made famous in the days when scythes rather than combines brought in the harvest.
The hard wearing grey PdP side leaves a misted finish on the steel and is ideal for restoring a dull edge. Belgian blue (BBW) occurs alongside coticule, on average it has a slightly lower garnet count than the yellow (30% vs 35%), being more abundant it is less expensive than coticule and available in bigger pieces.
Blue is slower than yellow coticule, but capable of achieving the same remarkable quality of finish. Each stone is supplied with a yellow coticule slurry stone which produces a beautiful violet coloured slurry. The one shown in the photo happens to be a natural BBW/Coticule combi, but it may also be a coticule/shale. Either way, use the yellow side on the stone to raise a sharpening slurry.
The technique for Belgian blue is the same as coticule, adjusting slurry thickness and pressure to control how the stone cuts. Double cream consistency and moderate pressure for fast cutting, through to clean water and very light pressure for the finest polish.
Both Pierre des Pyrénées and Belgian blue are non-porous stones that are lubricated with water (optionally treated with Honerite gold), they do not require soaking before use - just splash and go.
Very blunt or damaged blades should be pre-sharpened on the Pierre des Pyrénées side, followed by fine sharpening on the BBW side.
250mm x 60mm (wide enough for a 2⅜" plane iron).
Supplied with a beech and birch ply storage box.
Slurry stone may vary from image.