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Harbor Freight wetstone sharpener p/n: 95236

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Review by dsb1829 posted 03-03-2009 09:10 PM 12281 views 0 times favorited 12 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Harbor Freight wetstone sharpener p/n: 95236 Harbor Freight wetstone sharpener p/n: 95236 No-picture-s Click the pictures to enlarge them

I posted up a couple of reviews of this grinder on youtube shortly after purchase:

I don’t find myself using this tool all that much, but when I need to use it the thing is very handy to have around. Depending on your definition of sharp this could be the only sharpener in your shop. I have taken chisels from the wheel to the strop and been back to work in a couple of minutes. Not as nice as a hand-honed edge, but if you are hacking mortises or rough work it is just fine. So far I have sharpened knives, chisels, and plane irons on this machine. Nothing too hard to setup, but I do find that it takes a bit of fiddling to get the grind square. Once set you are ready to roll though.

Setup:
Quick, took about 2 minutes to put it together out of the box. You will need a wheel dresser to true up the stone. Initially I used a diamond multi-point dresser free hand and checked the stone for square. Oil the strop and charge it. It comes with an unidentified white honing paste, but I prefer green chromium oxide paste.

Issues:
- My guide bar was not square. I was able to bend it to 90 degrees and HF also sent me a replacement.
- The stop is pretty wobbly and had a bad joint. I was able to remove some leather at the joint (razor blade, rasp) to stop the thump on every revolution.
- It is a bit messy. I don’t recall the numbers off the cuff, but taking the rpm and wheel size this machine has a wheel sfpm about twice that of a Tormek so it picks up and splashes more water. The water isn’t very well contained. I currently use a tape diverter to route water back into the tray when doing wider blades.

Add-ons / Hopping it up:
- Tormek TT-50, diamond wheel dresser (much more consistent dressing the wheel)
- Tormek SP-650, stone grader (allows you to refine the grinding surface). Taking a guess at equivalent grit effect, coming off the diamond dresser the stone is probably 100-200g, rough grade approx 200-300g, fine grade 400-600g.
Many have discovered that the Jet and Tormek fixtures do work with this grinder as well. I can’t comment on jigs I haven’t tried yet.

I took off a star for some of the issues I had to work with. But for the price it is a good tool. I can’t see anything of great improvement on the other tormek clones that cost 2-4 times as much. I have see this sold as low as $60 on special. I paid about $80 and would do it again. Some knock the plastic case, but I think it is a wise thing to have around all this water.

-- Doug, woodworking in Alabama




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dsb1829

367 posts in 2312 days



12 comments so far

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Karson

34884 posts in 3085 days


#1 posted 03-03-2009 09:18 PM

Glad that you are happy. I never really ever use my Tormek. I bought every jib for it.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Southern Delaware karson_morrison@bigfoot.com †

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dsb1829

367 posts in 2312 days


#2 posted 03-03-2009 09:28 PM

Just saw this. Apparently this is what you get from Grizzly for more than double the price…

This is a jab. I think it is just an exceptionally poor job mounting the wheels combined with worst case runout on both. But it is fairly humorous.

-- Doug, woodworking in Alabama

View DannyBoy's profile

DannyBoy

521 posts in 2550 days


#3 posted 03-04-2009 12:40 AM

I guess this would be one of the good finds from HF.

-- He said wood...http://hickbyassociation.blogspot.com/

View jeh412's profile

jeh412

129 posts in 2060 days


#4 posted 03-04-2009 01:04 AM

Looks like one of the good HF finds. The Grizzly video is pretty humorous, unless you were the one who just paid for it! That’s sad. Wonder if the runout is all in the wheels or also in the arbors.

-- John, co-owner Sawdust 'n Stitches

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TraumaJacques

433 posts in 2185 days


#5 posted 03-04-2009 02:13 AM

“Who you taking too” cute! thanks for the post.

-- All bleeding will eventually stop.

View dsb1829's profile

dsb1829

367 posts in 2312 days


#6 posted 03-04-2009 05:20 PM

It is a decent tool and does what it is designed to do. Mine is in good shape and I haven’t heard much if any complaints from the peanut gallery, so for now I say that yes it is a good find. One comment on the other clones, I think the scheppach is the only other that runs this 8in wheel. Grizzly, Jet, and a couple of others run on 10in wheel. Jet is the only one that appears to use a different wheel, the rest all come from the same mfg.

For hollow grind 8in diameter is about as big a wheel as I want. The 6in wheel on my HS grinder give you more time between grinds due to the depth of the hollow.

-- Doug, woodworking in Alabama

View poopiekat's profile

poopiekat

3671 posts in 2419 days


#7 posted 03-05-2009 01:53 AM

Don’t forget that a # 95236 in one HF catalog might be the same thing with a different part number referenced in another HF catalog.

-- Einstein: "The intuitive mind is a sacred gift, and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift." I'm Poopiekat!!

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dsb1829

367 posts in 2312 days


#8 posted 03-05-2009 05:46 AM

I guess that could be an issue.

Looks like it still pops up correctly on their site using that number:
http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/ctaf/Displayitem.taf?itemnumber=95236

-- Doug, woodworking in Alabama

View Dusty56's profile

Dusty56

11663 posts in 2373 days


#9 posted 03-06-2009 08:39 AM

I went to my local HF today to check this item out …...what a shame it was …I can’t believe that management there would let that department get in such pitiful condition. The grinding wheel was only still there because the watershield was holding it from falling to the floor . The stropping wheel was tetering on the center shaft , which was pulled most of the way out of the machine. etc….. I asked the salesteam if they had one that was intact enough to plug into an outlet , and they commented that I would have to buy one and bring it home to see if it worked or not. : ( A lot of their other power tools on display were in the same or worse condition. Needless to say , they didn’t get any of my money today !

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

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dsb1829

367 posts in 2312 days


#10 posted 03-06-2009 04:43 PM

Dusty, now that you mention it, the display model at my store was laughable as well. It was missing the strop wheel and the shaft had been pulled loose. It really didn’t give me a sense of buyer confidence. I bought my machine with the thought of returning it in short order if it was as shoddy as the display. Obviously it wasn’t. I think the knuckleheads that take stuff apart to inspect them are as much to blame for the sad state of displays as the store is. That is one of the issues of tool free assembly, people without tools can and will take it apart in the store.

-- Doug, woodworking in Alabama

View pitchnsplinters's profile

pitchnsplinters

262 posts in 2123 days


#11 posted 03-08-2009 12:01 AM

Thanks for the review.

-- Just 'cause a cat has kittens in the oven, it don't make 'em biscuits.

View Hal Fitch's profile

Hal Fitch

7 posts in 2432 days


#12 posted 03-09-2009 05:48 PM

Doug, The knuckleheads were probably after free replacement parts, and I wouldn’t let them free assemble anything… I have had good luck with HF for tools I use occasionally, but would not buy them if I was in business and using one of their tools everyday. Hard to go wrong on hammers, most wrenches, etc. but as for their electric hand tools, you get what you pay for. Hal

-- dofitch

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