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

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148 posts in 2579 days

#1 posted 01-14-2013 11:46 PM

When Reed raises the angle of the tool for the finishing cuts he is definitely using it more like a skew; for the initial cuts I would still argue that its more of/mostly a scraping cut – imho demonstrating you can get awesome curlies from a scraper :D. You can obviously make scraping cuts with a skew as well but that’s not generally its normal domain.

I would also note one thing I figured out that helped me a lot with scrapers (at least getting started) is to not leave the grinding “burr” on it. The burr makes it cut (and thus grab) a lot more aggressively. That’s probably fine if you’re used to it but can suck it into the wood in a hurry if you’re not expecting it and can cause a “bad day”. I mostly just hone the top a few strokes on a stone after grinding and its all good. Cuts slower but a lot easier to control.

You are so very very correct on the dust versus shavings comment, regardless of the tool (even scrapers) you can get nice shavings when you’re touching it correctly and dust is a sure sign you’re doing it wrong.

Spot on the skew, I would also caution that touching the heal – while not dangerous like the point – is annoying because you keep getting these awesome backward spirals. It took me a while to figure out that, despite what the folks in the videos might say, you don’t really want touch either end of the skew to the wood1 in planing/carving mode but for cutting beads you are using the edge just barely back of the heal (the closer you get the better the cut until Ziiiippp a spiral :D).

[1] the obvious exception to this is when the skew is point down and you are making parting type cuts with it.

Here is a really good illustration of the “practice piece” for skew work:

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