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Forum topic by jim1mckenna posted 1662 days ago 1733 views 0 times favorited 17 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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jim1mckenna

51 posts in 1690 days


1662 days ago

Topic tags/keywords: question chisel shaping sharpening

I know there is a lot ot there on sharpening but I have more Questions. I have a cheap set of stanley chisels I have been trying to sharpen for a while today, I have a tirger 2000 and I cant get them sharp is it me or are the chisels garbage. The funny thing thing is the smallest chisel of the set witch is 1/4 sharpend great, but the rest not so much, I mean I can cut through wood but it is not very good or clean. So do I get new chisels or keep trying and if I go for new one what are some cheaper ones I could start with. I know alot of people like diferant sets, but if they are all steel and can be sharpend the same way why buy like a 60$ chisel and not a whole set for 60$.


17 replies so far

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reggiek

2240 posts in 1869 days


#1 posted 1662 days ago

Pretty much everything can be sharpened…the difference in most chisels is the material they are made out of and how long it holds the edge….the better chisels are made with better alloys and methods of curing so they have better strength (harder edges) and durability. For regular chisels…once you get the proper bevel…it is best to hone them on a waterstone or whetstone….and/or a strop. I only use a grinder to get the bevel and fix any chip out on the edges….then I sharpen on a diamond stone – I only go back to a grinder to fix the bevel and clean up any chipped edge. You only have to slide them over the diamond board a few times. I then put a bit of honing compound on a leather strop and run them over it a few times….you get a shiny and very sharp surface that way. If your tools are not sharpening it could be that you are rounding or squaring the edge…..make sure you are following the bevel angle when you sharpen…and do not cut it too steep….the max bezel I ever put on a chisel is 45degree…the higher the angle – the shorter the time it stays sharp in most cases (it can also cause you to rip the wood instead of cut it)....I typically run around 25-35degree bevel.

I am planning to do a diamond sharpening video as soon as I can get the time – and someone to hold the camera.

-- Woodworking.....My small slice of heaven!

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mike85215

127 posts in 1743 days


#2 posted 1662 days ago

Jim….One of my Christmas presents this year was a Worksharp 3000. I can and will tell you that it is wonderful !! I sharpened the blade for an old Stanley/Baily #5 and then proceeded to use it to clean up the chipbreaker as well as other parts for the plane. But back to your question/comment I have a set of Craftsman chisels that I have for work and I also have a set of MHG chisels that only I use in my workshop at home. Just before the new year holiday I offfered to sharpen one of my coworkers chisels….BIG MISTAKE !! They were from Harbor Freight, over the long weekend I sharpened all three sets at the same time. There is no question that there is a big difference between them !! My wife even came out into the shop and I handed her three chisels one from each set, she immediately saw the difference and pointed it out to me before I had asked. So in my opinion there is a huge difference, but as in all things it does come down to does the cost justify the desire. I do believe that we all should at least once in our lives treat ourselves to the “best” just to see why they are called the “best”.

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Rileysdad

110 posts in 1877 days


#3 posted 1662 days ago

Jim, if I were you I think I’d keep working on the Stanleys until you figure out your best method of sharpening. Everyone’s got their own tricks, but there are three things you need to do: 1) lap the back; 2) grind/set a bevel; 3) hone the edge. You can use sandpaper on glass or granite, waterstones, machines, or other means; but all three are essential. Once you decide on your method and gain some confidence, I’d buy a new set of chisels. Irwin Marples Blue Chips are pretty good for the money. $36 for a set of 4 on Amazon. If you don’t do a lot of hand work, they’ll be just fine.

-- Measure twice, cut once, buy extra stock.

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jim1mckenna

51 posts in 1690 days


#4 posted 1662 days ago

mike she saw the difference in what way the look, the feel, or the sharpness.I wold love to buy the best but woodworking is new for me I have bought so much stuff, and some I dont use, I just dont want to make a misatack and buy junk that I will not be happy with , I have more time then money so if the big differance is the time you have to take with sharpening the tool I dont mind that right know I dont do alot of hand work but I am starting to get in to it. Plus I am saving my treat for a really nice plan. thanks for the info.

I bought alot of stuff for sharpening because I was advised it would me easyier I have the Scheppach TiGer 2000 it has a 2000 grde stone and a honing lether,a grinder wit a med stone, a cheap honing jig, and a combo water stone 1000 grid and 6000 grid. I think I should be able to use the tigir to get my chisels sharp then hone with the leather and be done.
I am kinda confused about the honing that is done on the lather not the stone right.

this is my process I use sandpaper to get the back flat then put on tiger and get nice bevel, this is where I am not sure but anyways I then take my 6000 grit stone and once again do the back intil all the scratches are out then I put in the jig and do the bevel with the 6000, then to the leather that is it. I did notice tonight after I take chisel off tiger and put in jig and start to hone it the stone only hits the very front and the heal and I continue to hone intil the whole thing is shinny. maybe that is a mistake. hope you understand my baboling, and I do appreceate the advice, but I really want to get this procedure down. S I will take any and all advise.

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile

TopamaxSurvivor

14590 posts in 2275 days


#5 posted 1662 days ago

My guess is you need to start with some lower grits to get it going. The 1000 to 6000 are for honing the after you get a basic edge. The leather is to strop after you get done with the honing.

-- "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

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mike85215

127 posts in 1743 days


#6 posted 1662 days ago

Jim…The difference that my wife and that I saw was in the sharpness….all three brands of chisels were set to the same degree of bevel. Believe me I really do understand not wanting to invest more than you have to…Most of my tools have been purchased with deep discounts if they were new or I waited and bought used to help save money. If you are not going to use chisels frequently I am not sure if it is a good investment for you to buy the better brand. I can tell you that I bought my MHG’s this last summer from Hartville Tool Company at 60 % off ( I believe that I got the set for around $40.00).....Patience does pay.

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reggiek

2240 posts in 1869 days


#7 posted 1662 days ago

The correct way to sharpen is to start first by creating the proper bevel. The bevel is all important…I could devote a whole blog to this…but most of the chisels you receive are factory beveled…. once the tool is beveled correctly then you can apply the edge….your edge should follow the plane of the bevel….if you have a good bevel but make the edge too steep or too shallow you will most likely end up with round off or squaring….think of the tool as two planes – You want these planes to intersect at a sharp edge – try putting two straight edges on the chisel top and bottom (literally and figuratively) – at the point the straight edges meet should form an angle…if the material line of the top or bottom of the chisel does not lie within the straight edge the tools planes will meet at an elongated angle or drop off too sharp and leave a void before the meeting of the two straight edges. The grinder removes the material in order for the edge of the chisel to meet at the equidistant angle…that is what I call proper bezel. If the bezel is wrong then you will constantly form a square or rounded edge and using the tool causes this to accelerate. If you make a proper bevel…and you sharpen along those planes…you do not have to remove much material to get a very sharp edge…that is why proper sharpening should take only a few strokes along a stone….the stone leaves a burr or small splinters of metal on the edge….honing by fine particle stone or leather strop removes the burr – if you do not remove the burr…it will catch on the wood and cause the tool to dull quicker and can cause the tool to cut a jagged rather then smooth cut.

Another long winded post….I am hoping to show this graphically on a video…it is very difficult to try to learn how to sharpen correctly by reading instructions….I find it easier to learn by demonstration and by doing.

-- Woodworking.....My small slice of heaven!

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jim1mckenna

51 posts in 1690 days


#8 posted 1662 days ago

Ok I did somemore searching and I think what most people do is find there methed with what they have so with that said I think I will just keep trying with what I have . I read a really good article about the sharpening method here is where you can read it http://jszcbf.wordpress.com I found it to be very helpful. So thanks to everyone ,tomorrow I will give it another try.

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TopamaxSurvivor

14590 posts in 2275 days


#9 posted 1662 days ago

Lots of videos on U-tube

-- "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

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JSZ

37 posts in 1662 days


#10 posted 1662 days ago

Thanks to JIm McKenna for the link to my blog. I have written quite a few posts since the first Sharpening post, so for anyone who is interested, here is a link to the first of the series: http://jszcbf.wordpress.com/2009/07/08/.

From that post you can just navigate forward in time to read the rest of them.

I hope readers find it useful!!

-- -- Do Good Work. Jeff Zens, Custom Built Furniture, Salem, OR. http://jszcbf.wordpress.com

View a1Jim's profile

a1Jim

111999 posts in 2176 days


#11 posted 1662 days ago

There is a lot of advise here and lots sharpening approaches but it doesn’t have to be complicated. Tage frid use to sharpen his chisels on a belt sander. I like a little more sophisticated approach but not by much. Before I bought my worksharp 3000 I use to have a piece of glass and sand paper in grits from 100-600 and hold the angle by eye across the glass going through the grits . I did this for years and my chisels could always shave hair off my arm. This method is called scary sharp by Mike Dunbar. Marpels chisels are fine for around $40. a set.

http://books.google.com/books?id=nPYDAAAAMBAJ&pg=PA66&lpg=PA66&dq=scary+sharp+system+mike+dunbar&source=bl&ots=hRCdDAsoRc&sig=DyzdL1fyRSsm-KTTDHQgB1DT8fI&hl=en&ei=HChES_rJLoGutge5ipiMCQ&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=10&ved=0CCcQ6AEwCQ#v=onepage&q=scary%20sharp%20system%20mike%20dunbar&f=false

-- http://artisticwoodstudio.com Custom furniture

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jim1mckenna

51 posts in 1690 days


#12 posted 1661 days ago

JSZ no problem thank you I read the whole post and found it very helpful, like I said everyone has there way you just have to find you own. like some people say you first get the bevel others say you first get the back flat, I am sure there are many of ways to get perfectly sharp tool,but I do like your method although I donot have many stones to get up to 8 or 12000 grit I will get to 6000. I think I finally understand the process and will give it some practice I think I just thought buy buying the tigir 2000 it would sharpen everything with out the use of stones and sandpaper and all else that goes with the process, But Iwas wrong although it does make putting the bevel on faster I think I could of done just as well with out the michine. so with that I will countinue to try and post my results I do appreciate all the advice from everyone.
Jim

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JSZ

37 posts in 1662 days


#13 posted 898 days ago

I have sharpened tools for a very long time. Like many other woodworkers, I fell prey to the well-developed and possibly well-intentioned sales pitches for “the best sharpening machine ever” at The Woodworker’s Show and in the trade magazines. The truth of the matter is that, while all of these machines work at some level, none of them do as well as what you can do by hand, at a fraction of the price.

A Tormek costs close to $800.00 if you add a few tool-holding appliances. Other knock-offs cost less, but they are still pricey. And all these machines do, sales pitches to the contrary, are to produce a slow and safe hollow grind. They do not hone: you still need to do that. So you need to spend money on stones, irrespective of how you get the hollow.

In hindsight – yes, I own a Tormek – that money would have been better spent on a reasonably slow grinder and a lesson or two on how to hollow-grind tools without burning them. It can be done. It is not hard to learn, and takes only modest practice. Same with honing.

I now use a hand-cranked grinder for a lot of my work. That cost me less than $50, including a new wheel and the parts and material necessary to build a tool rest. (Here is a link to a description of that tool rest.) The hand-cranked grinder is nice and quiet, it’s still slow, but not as slow as the Tormek. Yes, it is possible to burn a tool, but you have to try hard to do it.

There is no substitute for knowing how to grind, and for knowing how to hone. If you don’t know how, you really can learn. Take a class from someone who knows how to sharpen. Join your local woodworking guild, and ask a member. Sharp tools open doors for your woodworking, and once you pass through the doors you won’t ever look back.

-- -- Do Good Work. Jeff Zens, Custom Built Furniture, Salem, OR. http://jszcbf.wordpress.com

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lwllms

535 posts in 1880 days


#14 posted 898 days ago

Jim,
Jeff is right, learn to grind. The other thing is that virtually all the sharpening problems I see when out teaching workshops originate on the flat face of the tool. Learn what flat is and be a bit anal about flat. Learn how to create a repeatable flat face. The bevel is the easy part, master keeping your stones flat and the flat faces of tools flat and you’ll be on your way. I don’t like honing guides because they cause people to focus on the bevel and those that concentrate on the bevel end up with a hit-or-miss sharpening effort.

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BobM001

388 posts in 929 days


#15 posted 897 days ago

I had poor results with a honing guide too. Until I purchased the Veritas MK2. The results I’m getting with it are nothing short of AMAZING. But the axiom of flattening the back still holds true. It’s amazing how much “new” tools are out of true when it comes to being flat on the backs. I also invested in the DMT Duo mounted stone in coarse(325)/fine(600). The coarse side doubles to flatten my fine grit water stones to prevent them from getting a hollow center.

As an example of “new” tools being true. I purchased a BN set of the old Stanley yellow handle “Contractor Grade” chisels from 1/4” – 1 1/2” off eBay for cheap. A set of “beaters”. It took me over an hour to get the back flat on that 1 1/2”. Now onto the bevel is next.

Bob

-- OK, who's the wise guy that shrunk the plywood?

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