Reply by David Kirtley

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Posted on Lathe Chisel Sharpening ANGLES and/or BEVELS PER TOOL

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David Kirtley

1286 posts in 3024 days

#1 posted 01-14-2013 09:16 PM

The angles are in the same range as regular wood chisels and planes. Higher angle for figured woods. Very steep for scraping.

The gouges will have what is referred to as a fingernail grind. The main idea is to have the bevel radially ground so it will be good for coming in at different angles and for doing a cut while rotating the tool. The gouge is a bit special in that it is a “self-jigging tool”. You can ride the bevel to act like a depth stop for the cutting. 30 deg or so is a good start for softer wood (and green wood) and 40 deg for more hard woods. These are a fairly recent invention. Previously this work was done with hook tools and ring tools (not for cutting rings—the cutting edge is a sharpened cylinder that is a bit tricky to sharpen)

The scrapers are all pretty easy. Almost 90 deg and you are good. The less than 90 deg part is to give clearance behind the cutting edge. Really should only be used for trimming and handling nasty grain.

Parting tools generally have a lot of clearance (bottom and sides) and are either done like a really thick but narrow scraper or are kind of a weird bevel on the top and bottom. Diamond shape in profile. This is to reduce friction while cutting. They generally have a pretty beefy cutting edge because you ride them pretty hard. One of the harder tools to get used to. The angles are usually about 60 degrees and up for the cutting edge The diamond shaped ones are usually sharpened the same from each direction so you can use them either side up.

The skew…. This one is different. It gets 2 bevels like a knife. Sharpened at the same angles as a knife. 20 deg or so from each side. Many people are afraid of skews. They can bite. The thing is, this is your surgeon’s scalpel. It can be dainty for working on delicate features. It can also remove material at a frightening speed. It’s main purpose is slicing.

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