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Should I get a sharpening jig?

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Forum topic by Marn64 posted 10-10-2016 09:29 PM 747 views 0 times favorited 24 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Marn64

209 posts in 253 days


10-10-2016 09:29 PM

Topic tags/keywords: question jig plane sharpening

So I have only recently been getting into hand sharpening and I’m pretty good with bench plane blades but absolutely garbage at sharpening chisels and as such I have yet to even sharpen some of my stanley 45 blades. Should I get a sharpening guide for chisels and small plane blades? If so, do you have a preferred brand?
Thanks,
Benjamin

-- Benjamin, Milwaukee


24 replies so far

View gargey's profile

gargey

490 posts in 243 days


#1 posted 10-10-2016 09:36 PM

Yes, the Lie Nielsen one. It’s very expensive, but it works well. Spending time sharpening, and/or sharpening poorly are worse than not having it, in my opinion.

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AandCstyle

2575 posts in 1724 days


#2 posted 10-10-2016 10:32 PM

Benjamin, this is one of those questions that can evoke strong emotions. I bought and use a Veritas MK II honing guide. I would buy it again if mine were lost. Yes, I admit to using “training wheels”; I’m not proud. haha

-- Art

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fuigb

404 posts in 2425 days


#3 posted 10-10-2016 11:33 PM

+1 on the Veritas 3. I felt that my free hand work was acceptable until I tried the jig and realized how lousy I was. If one can learn free hand from a master then go for it and save the expense of a jig. But if you’re self-taught / in a talent desert then get the jig and experience a quantum leap in the quality of your bevel and edges.

-- - Crud. Go tell your mother that I need a Band-aid.

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gargey

490 posts in 243 days


#4 posted 10-10-2016 11:38 PM

Not to mention it might take some time to undo the the stuff you do wrong with freehand sharpening, if you’re not well versed in it.

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Stevedore

67 posts in 1492 days


#5 posted 10-10-2016 11:41 PM

I had varying success for many years with manual sharpening, and with a couple of jigs. I recently bought the Veritas MK II, and am quite happy with it as compared to my earlier efforts. It’s easy to set the angle & holds the chisel/iron securely, giving consistent & repeatable results.

-- Steve, in Morris County, NJ

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waho6o9

7179 posts in 2044 days


#6 posted 10-10-2016 11:45 PM

+ 1 on the Veritas honing guide, it’s the best.

Fuigb, AandCstyle know their stuff.

Great projects Art!

View jmos's profile

jmos

737 posts in 1837 days


#7 posted 10-11-2016 12:03 AM

I started with a cheap side clamping guide, and it was much better than nothing, so if you want to go inexpensive it is still worth it.

I bought the Veritas Mk II and really like it. It was not great for small chisels, they tended to shift and were hard to clamp, but then they came out with the side clamping head and solved that problem. If you go Veritas, buy both heads (their Deluxe set has both.) I imagine the same goes for the L-N and you should buy the separate chisel jaws.

Another aspect is sharpening cambered blades. The wide roller in the Veritas does a great job keeping the jig stable, but you need to buy and extra cambered roller to easily camber blades. It looks like the L-N has a narrow roller; it may be a little less stable, but you can camber a bit easier without changing the roller.

It looks like both systems come in at about the same price; expensive, but well worth it IMHO. I don’t think you could go wrong with either.

Garrett-Wade has a Kell model I’ve never tried, it’s a bit less expensive but looks interesting.

-- John

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HokieKen

1807 posts in 606 days


#8 posted 10-11-2016 12:42 AM

I’m just the opposite, I can hone my chisels freehand no sweat. If the bevel gets a little round, I just give it a hollow grind. Plane blades on the other hand, never come out to my liking without a jig. I use the original Veritas guide for my plane irons and it is super. As said before though, it’s bad about letting narrower chisels “wander”. If I used a guide for chisels, I’d get the Veritas mk2 with the narrow blade add-on.

-- Kenny, SW VA, Go Hokies!!!

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BurlyBob

3695 posts in 1733 days


#9 posted 10-11-2016 02:21 AM

I’m another fan of the Veritas jig.

View MikeB_UK's profile

MikeB_UK

42 posts in 502 days


#10 posted 10-11-2016 09:06 AM

Make one, if you like the general idea after a few goes (and feel the need to upgrade) buy a decent one.

http://www3.telus.net/BrentBeach/Sharpen/station.html#jig

-- I've worked out how to sharpen, now how do you get blood out of pine?

View rwe2156's profile

rwe2156

2200 posts in 948 days


#11 posted 10-11-2016 12:08 PM

No, just figure out what you’re doing wrong. Critical thing when starting is don’t move your arms. Lock the elbows and rock the body. Once you get the muscle memory associated with the angle, you don’t have to think about it.

In the end, you’ll be further ahead learning freehand because you get back to work quicker.

-- Everything is a prototype thats why its one of a kind!!

View Combo Prof's profile

Combo Prof

2385 posts in 745 days


#12 posted 10-11-2016 01:09 PM

I bought a veritas MK II and its fine to use, but it takes time to set up for each blade or chisel width. If you are doing a bunch of chisels is a little anoying. Now I use a side clamp eclipse style honing guide: the Robert Larson Honing guide.. You can get a new one for about $12 to $15. But it needs some easy modification. See also the Chris Schwarz article: Tune up a cheap honing guide. You will also need to make an easy jig for setting the honing guide. One such is shown in this article.. I make individual jigs for each desired angle. Measurements are given on the side of the Robert Larson Honing guide. I also own a Veritas MK I. I don’t always use the guide. In between uses I sharpen free hand.

-- Don K, (Houghton, Michigan)

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Combo Prof

2385 posts in 745 days


#13 posted 10-11-2016 01:12 PM



I bought a veritas MK II and its fine to use, but it takes time to set up for each blade or chisel width. If you are doing a bunch of chisels is a little annoying. Now I use a side clamp eclipse style honing guide: the Robert Larson Honing guide. you can get new for about $12 to $15. But it needs some easy modification. See also the Chris Schwarz article: Tune up a cheap honing guide. You will also need to make an easy jig for setting the honing guide. One such is shown in this article.. I make individual jigs for each desired angle. Measurements are given on the side of the Robert Larson Honing guide. I also own a Veritas MK I. I don t always use the guide. In between uses I sharpen free hand. I use different guides for different purposes.

- Combo Prof


-- Don K, (Houghton, Michigan)

View Marn64's profile

Marn64

209 posts in 253 days


#14 posted 10-11-2016 01:33 PM

Wow, lots of responses, thanks everyone!
What is all of your opinions on the Irwin Sharpening jig at lowes? I don’t need (or want) something expensive like the Lie Nielsen jig yet (I am saving up for some guitar woods). Is the Irwin jig pure trash or better than nothing?

-- Benjamin, Milwaukee

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waho6o9

7179 posts in 2044 days


#15 posted 10-11-2016 02:02 PM

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