Nakayama Karasu

Light Karasu 1

Nakayama ‘Phantom’ Karasu 

This really is quite a lovely stone. It is a Karasu, but it not the typical heavily spotted type we see most often. The ‘crow’ pattern is present, in an almost translucent way, along one side – seemingly deep inside the stone. 

Most of this stone’s top surface seems to be more of a Kiita though, but in sections it is somewhat translucent and the Karasu pattern shows through lightly. Some will call this a ‘Phantom Karasu’ pattern, and while that does describe the stone well - I do not believe that it is an ‘official’ designation that is commonly used in Japan.

At any rate – this is a not a very very hard stone, but it certainly is hard enough for use with Mikawa Shiro Nagura and Tomo Nagura without concern. The honing sensation, or feedback, is very smooth, very consistent. 

While this is not a super-hard glassy-top stone, it is still quite a nice finisher for straight razors. I find stones like this to be exceedingly easy to work with. To sum it up, they’re mildly challenging, but not in a frustrating way.  

I had a little bit of history with this Nakayama before it became mine. Shortly after the original owner purchased it, he sent it to me to check out. During that trial period, I enjoyed honing on this Karasu so much, that when it arrived here the second time, I lapped it immediately and honed up one of my favored razors right away. 

Normally – most Jnats go through a waiting process before I get to them, but I couldn't wait to get a blade on this one. I was rewarded with a silky honing experience throughout the entire Nagura progression, and the edge was absolutely sterling; smooth and keen. 

Approx. Dimensions: 7.25 x 2.5 x 0.56” / 184 x 64 x 14 mm

Weight: 16.1 oz / 467 g


© Keith V Johnson 2014 - 2018