Square & strop for sharpening chisels and plane blades???

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Forum topic by startingfromscratch posted 07-07-2010 09:55 PM 1676 views 0 times favorited 5 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View startingfromscratch's profile


69 posts in 3215 days

07-07-2010 09:55 PM

Barrage of questions from me…but we’re slow at work this week.

I’ve been collecting equipment for sharpening with the scarry method. I want to have all my ducks in a row before I try my hand. I have a granite tile (12×12), a veritas mark II, sandpaper through 600 grit (still need to find some 1000, and 2000 grit), and baby oil. The last three things I think I need to collect are a square, 3m spay adhesive, and some type of strop.

What do folks use for a square when sharpening chisels and plane blades? Do I need to buy engineering squares? I’ve had my eye on the woodpecker small one…but it’s $20 which seems like a lot. And it’s small. Can you use it to check plane blades? Or….can I just get away with using my 12” combo square or 4” tri-square?

With just starting out learning how to sharpen…should I worry about stropping or can I let that go until later. Do I need to buy the graphite powder or whatever? Just trying to get a sense of whether everyone uses more than oil or water stones or sand paper or if that’s just high end, meticulous sharpeners…

5 replies so far

View Div's profile


1653 posts in 2963 days

#1 posted 07-07-2010 10:20 PM

So many different sharpening techniques…! If you go the sandpaper way, I would use paraffin as a lubricant.
If you mean the square is for checking if your edge is square to the edge of the chisel, I don’t think it is such a big deal. I’ve never done it, use my eye. Your combo square will be good enough if you do want to check it though.

Don’t get too bogged down with technical details, you have enough stuff. Just GO FOR IT!! You’ll find your way quickly. Soon you’ll be shaving! As for stropping, that is fine tuning, don’t worry too much yet. Later on, stick a piece of leather to a bit of wood and use rubbing compound from the auto shop. Works a treat for me and it is cheap.

-- Div @ the bottom end of Africa. "A woodworker's sharpest tool should be his mind."

View PurpLev's profile


8536 posts in 3671 days

#2 posted 07-07-2010 10:26 PM

+1 to what he said

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

View startingfromscratch's profile


69 posts in 3215 days

#3 posted 07-07-2010 10:48 PM

Excellent, thx!

View rtb's profile


1101 posts in 3736 days

#4 posted 07-08-2010 12:39 AM

I don’t even use a lubricant and get along just fine

-- RTB. stray animals are just looking for love

View b2rtch's profile


4861 posts in 3071 days

#5 posted 02-01-2012 02:43 AM

I have been buying my abrasives from klinspor
(, I have been very happy with them

-- Bert

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