One of my friend's husband is an avid fisherman. And like most guys, he puts things off to the last minute--like a nine dollar fillet knife.
Well, a polisher's life is not all redheads and petty arrests, oh, 75% of it maybe, but we also have to work. And where there is construction there is dirt and destruction.
I am very picky about my stones, even after polishing a putty soft fillet knife.
I am fortunate to have Ken as a supplier he got me a full size Atoma flattening pad, stiffened by 1/2 inch of solid aluminum. The sides are dead straight, and as I flatten the stone, I hold it against the edge to ensure the stone is true and uniform.
You will notice the three pencil "X" marks on the middle of the stones. When they are removed, the stone is dead flat.
Then, as you see, the edges are turned 45 degrees to the Atoma, and lightly burnished. This is where I think Wingnut's scratches came from. A freshly sharpened stone has wicked edges.
Everything--including the Atoma--is then drenched in fresh water to remove the swarf, and then blown dry with a heated motorcycle blower.
...ain't scratched a knife yet...