In the cosmic order of things, there is a balance made up of equal opposites. Newton said, “To every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.” The Asian Yin and Yang are basically two sides of the same coin, so to speak. Even though I have been very vocal about the fact that no one should dismiss the quality of the stock Edge Pro stones, I can’t help but feel that there is or are some factions of the Edge Pro user world that feel or may feel threatened by the arrival of the Shapton and Chosera stones for the EP. The following is basically a short stream of consciousness that reveals both sides of the coin from my point of view. (Just in case you don’t need the philosophy, I’ll conclude that the Shapton and Chosera EP stones are nothing but good for the Edge Pro.)
The Edge Pro is a great sharpening device, and the EP stock stones have long been the sole choice for it.The arrival of Shapton and Chosera stones creates 2 thoughts – the first is that now EP users will have even more flexibility and options for obtaining great results. The second is that it creates confusion in an otherwise very simple and straight forward (yet very effective) method of sharpening.
It is this second thought that keeps me up at night asking “What if EP users don’t want more options?” After all, as a freehand sharpening stone user, it can be very expensive and time consuming to play around with all of the stones on the market. There is always another possible combo that might work better or faster for a specific knife or tool (that thought keeps me awake, too!) For so long, the Edge Pro has “kept it simple,” offering a single choice of reliable stones and tapes. The idea of opening up the options (or simply having more than 1 option) might cause a loss of stability to long-term users, and confuse or even worse, repel prospective newcomers.
Another issue is the possibility of dividing EP users, since there will inevitably be a “contest” where epic battles will be fought between those with preferences for the different stones. This could also lead to a loss of stability to long-term users, and confuse or even worse, repel prospective newcomers.
However, against these negatives, there are positive possibilities for the arrival of what seems to be direct competition for the stock stones. It hit me that, just like Harley Davidson motorcycles, there is a whole industry of accessories that revolves around the motorcycle itself. You can get custom engines, lights, alarms, luggage, wheels, rims, apparel, etc., that are all for Harleys, but not necessarily made by Harley (I’ve used this argument before). This accessorizing by other companies has not taken away from the appeal of the motorcycle, but has, in fact, added to it. No other motorcycle company has such a large and dedicated “culture” around it.
If you liken the Edge Pro to a Harley, the introduction of the Shapton and Chosera EP stones compliments and raises the status of the Edge Pro. With all due respect to the other sharpening devices out there, no one has deemed it necessary (or more accurately, on one has deemed it cost effective) to actually enhance the functionality of the basic design without changing the device itself (for example, you see lots of usually inferior or altered copies of the original, or DIY projects that boast their inexpensive material costs). In other words, adding or using the Shapton and Chosera EP stones does not change the Edge Pro anymore than adding a chrome kit to your Harley changes it. Much to your satisfaction, you are still purchasing and using the Edge Pro.
To conclude, The Edge Pro has just started it’s own culture, making the negative notions of this endeavor seem petty.
Watch out Harley-Davidson!!! : )
Tags: Chosera, Chosera Edge pro, Chosera EP Stones, Edge Pro, Edge Pro sharpening, Edge Pro stones, EP stones, jende industries, knife sharpening, Shapton, Shapton Edge Pro, sharpening, sharpening with an edge pro