one joinery question and one sharpening question

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Forum topic by jbird posted 01-06-2011 05:06 AM 1088 views 0 times favorited 2 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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5 posts in 3164 days

01-06-2011 05:06 AM

1st the sharpening question:

Is there any rule of thumb about how much to increase the grit when moving up through them? Obviously we dont sharpen using a 200 grit stone then pull out the 4000 grit stone…nor do we use 320 grit paper then use the 400 grit either.

Next the joinery question:

I watched an online episode of “The Woodwrights Shop” and Roy showed a blind, mitered dovetail joint..from the outside it looks like a regular miter joint but pull it apart and there are dovetails in the middle. When would you use this joint and why?



-- Ancora Imparo - Michelangelo

2 replies so far

View richgreer's profile


4541 posts in 3274 days

#1 posted 01-06-2011 05:16 AM

The rule of thumb that I have always heard with respect to sandpaper is the “50% rule”. Each step up should be about 50% greater than the previous step. For example, 80 grit, then 120, then 180, then 270 . . . Yes, I know there is no 270 so you jump to 300. I emphasize that this is a rule of thumb for sandpaper and wood.

I think the same rule would work for the lower grits when sharpening. However, when sharpening irons or chisels if seems common to go up to 1000 or 2000 and then jump to 6000 or 8000. I go to 2000 with the scary sharp and finish on a 6000 water stone.

Can’t answer your joinery question.

-- Rich, Cedar Rapids, IA - I'm a woodworker. I don't create beauty, I reveal it.

View cabmaker's profile


1740 posts in 3008 days

#2 posted 01-06-2011 05:28 AM

jbird, your first question will solicit answers all over the place. For me , I do not have a defined regamental procedure. It depends on whether its a plane iron, chisels, planer knives, etc. It too depends on the condition of the edge to be addressed. For example for a quickie on a toolbox chisel I typically go straight to the gray wheel. Nevermind, life is too short for all that , It sounds like your asking for a common progression for basic user sharpening. ie: chisel, assuming the bevel is ok and is jointed well I usually start on a 400 grit wheel. then I will go to 800 paper on granite, then1200, and usually final lapping is done on 1800 or so paper and granite.
I pretty much treat plane irons the same way. I do not have trouble shaving hair off the arm with this procedure. Question 2 is about a blind dovetail. That joint has been around for a very long time and can typically be found in pieces that required strength (drawer), had high exposure to view and did reqiure the tails to be revealed as in the day it was not particualry celebrated because craftsmanlike joinery was the norm in standard pieces. It was in the day of no pin nailers and titebond.

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