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Forum topic by Richard Alexander posted 08-28-2010 11:29 PM 5940 views 0 times favorited 8 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Richard Alexander

78 posts in 3045 days

08-28-2010 11:29 PM

Topic tags/keywords: lathe sharpen tormek jigs question sharpening

After reading a ton of LJ posts, I’m ready to bite the bullet and buy a Tormek T-3. My primary use will be for lathe tools. Will the mult-use jig and the gouge jig cover my needs? I’m not sure if i need to invest in any Dvds or angle setting devices or anything else needed for someone new to properly sharpening tools. It seems that Toemek jigs are the way to go but I’m open to other alternatives.

Richard A.
Broken Arrow, OK

-- Richard- Tulsa, Oklahoma

8 replies so far

View rance's profile


4255 posts in 3124 days

#1 posted 08-28-2010 11:34 PM

Careful with the ‘accessories’ with any of those ‘systems’. You can spend as much on those as you did the machine. I see the Tormeck more for flat tools like chisels and plane blades. For lathe tools I’d prob. recommend a slow speed(1750 rpm) grinder.

FWIW, did you attend a Tormeck ‘demo’ in the last week?

-- Backer boards, stop blocks, build oversized, and never buy a hand plane--

View lew's profile


12017 posts in 3719 days

#2 posted 08-29-2010 12:08 AM

I bought a Tormek many years ago and love it. I use the universal gouge jig and multi jig a lot.

I also use my grinder. The Tormek is really great for those razor edges but sometimes the grinder is faster for touch ups- especially for scrapers.

As Rance said- the accessories ain’t cheap.

-- Lew- Time traveler. Purveyor of the Universe's finest custom rolling pins.

View Chrmakr's profile


20 posts in 2992 days

#3 posted 08-29-2010 02:03 AM

I do a fair amount of turning and have to agree with Rance. While I respect the sharpening abilities of the Tormek and the various jigs available, considering the cost and your use for primarily sharpening lathe tools, I have found a grinder with the basic Wolverine system and a Woodcut Tool Holder satisfies my sharpening needs. I might suggest calling the folks at Craft Supplies USA in Provo, UT (1-800-551-8876) and speaking to one of their knowledgeable people in the technical department. They carry several of the sharpening systems, including Tormek, and can give you advice based on their turning experience as well what would work best for your needs.

Hope this helps…Doug

-- Doug Roper Chairmaker and Instructor,

View Richard Alexander's profile

Richard Alexander

78 posts in 3045 days

#4 posted 08-29-2010 06:00 AM

I appreciate the responses. No demos this week I’m just tired of the hack job I do with a stone After your responses I did some more research and now realize that the best sharpening system depends on the tools you are using. I kept reading how the Tormek gives the best edge. After doing some more research I now realize that too sharp an edge may not be the best for lathe tools.

I’ll have to give the Wolverine system another look. There are plenty of places to spend the money I’d save. I’ll check out Craft Supplies as well.


-- Richard- Tulsa, Oklahoma

View TheWoodNerd's profile


291 posts in 3155 days

#5 posted 08-29-2010 07:36 PM

+1 on the Wolverine. I tried out the Worksharp (hated it) and play around some with the Tormek (too messy, too fussy, too expensive). The Wolverine is fast, easy, and relatively inexpensive.

-- The Wood Nerd --

View mcase's profile


446 posts in 3093 days

#6 posted 08-30-2010 04:27 AM

Let me first state that I’m a satisfied Tormek owner. I own the full size model that they currently called the t7. Despite some serious mistakes in their well printed directions (anyone interested can contact me) I’m completely satisfied with this machine. With the accessories it can do a great number of things very, very, well. It can true and sharpen 13” planer blades and flatten and precisely grinding all your chisels and planing irons. The results are better than those I used to get from professional grinding services. Nevertheless, it was priced to the very top of a realistic price point when it was $500.00. There really is not all that much to this machine from a manufacturing perspective. Its a heavy gauge sheet metal box with a small electric motor and a single arbor that rides an vinyl bearings. No ball bearings, no titanium, no computer chips nothing that can really justify the price. But at $500.00 it was painful, but not impossible. Now they have really set it out of reach by raising the price to $600.00. Retailers tell me that the Tormeks were slow sellers at $500.00 and that at $600.00 they gather dust. So the answer? IMO Tormek should lower the price to a reasonable price point. But no! instead they came out with a Mickey Mouse version, the T3. This one is plastic with a weeney little 8” wheel. They are asking $350.00 for this toy! And IMO its a toy. Did they bother to tell you about the 1/2 hour run time limit? Yeah, you heard right, 1/2 hour’s work and the little toy overheats and according Tormek has to shut off in order to cool down. So despite my satisfaction with the t7 I feel Tormek has just gotten completely ridiculous with their pricing. You’ve stated that you have followed the posts so you have probably read the great long-term comparison of the Tormek and the Jet sharpener at Joe’s conclusion are very well thought out and I agree with him that the T7 Tormek is better than the Jet, but remember he was comparing apples to apples – the T7 compared to the Jet. The T3 on the other hand is not an apple, its a lemon and would not even qualify for comparison with the Jet sharpener. If the t7 was still $500.00 or less as it should be I would tell you flat out to buy it over the Jet and certainly over the T3 toy. But now Tormek wants $600.00 for the t7. Well, nuts to that. You can get the Jet for only $299.00, half the price of the T7 and $51.00 less than the T3 toy! While the Jet is not quite as good as the T7, it is a comparable machine not a toy like the T3. So my conclusion is that the T7 is now grossly over priced. I also consider the T3 to be a joke and that asking $350.00 for it is absolutely obscene. If I was currently in the market for a wet grinder I probably balk at the T7’s price. I would not even consider the T3. I would buy the Jet grinder for $299.00

View Kindlingmaker's profile


2656 posts in 3490 days

#7 posted 08-30-2010 06:52 AM

I have a Jet but have regretted ever since on not getting a Tormek…

-- Never board, always knotty, lots of growth rings

View Richard Alexander's profile

Richard Alexander

78 posts in 3045 days

#8 posted 08-31-2010 03:53 AM

Thanks Mcase for the detailed response. At some point I had assumed that the Jet was comparable to the T-3 because of the price similarity. . Thanks for setting me straight. It looks like I’ll ge going with the wolverine system for now. As just a hobbyist, Im betting it will meet my needs.

-- Richard- Tulsa, Oklahoma

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