Well the tally is in and the 208 is ahead at the moment with a whopping 4 shaves since my last honing session which took me 4.5 hours and that is unacceptable. This morning's shave was great with the 208 but NOT without some tugging and pulling. I could use a pasted strop to bring the edge back some, but to me that's only delaying the inevitable. My experience tells me that NOT going from a lower grit stone and NOT going past 8K is a mistake especially now that I'm celebrating 1 year this week of consistent straight razor use. I will more than likely get around a grand total of 7 multi pass shaves before having to go to either a pasted strop and/or a water stone with the Gold Dollar 208. It would definitely go much longer between honing sessions if I started with a lower grit stone and went past the Norton 8K with a finishing stone of 12K or higher :
The Jinhou is pretty much toast after only 3 multi pass shaves which is really sad because it took even longer to get shave ready than the 208 did. But I blame myself for this because I didn't start with lower grit stones and wanted to be cheaper than I actually should have been. But in the end, experience is the pay off because I now know exactly what the Norton 4/8K combo stone is capable of and where abouts it should be in the progression which is mid range at the most:
I've basically been setting bevels with the 4K side for about a year now which is too high of a grit to be starting at. I should have started around either a 500 grit and no higher than 1,500 grit to set bevels with because that's the meat and potatoes of honing. I also should have invested in a finishing stone as well instead of stopping at 8K as well. But you live and learn from it and use the experience to your advantage. My next honing session will be much different compared to the last one and there will NOT be any doubt about both razors being shave ready.