Your sharpening setup

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Forum topic by Iggles88 posted 07-13-2013 03:26 AM 2733 views 0 times favorited 31 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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247 posts in 2596 days

07-13-2013 03:26 AM

Hi everyone, I’m looking into getting a new method of sharpening my tools, I’ve been using the worksharp 3000 for a little over a year but don’t feel I’m getting the best results so I want to switch. I am leaning towards the naniwa superstones specifically the 1000 and 8000 grit stones. I’m also considering getting an 8” dmt duosharp so I can flatten the waterstones. I also would like to get a new grinding stone for my grinder if possible. I’d like to do all of this and staying under 200 dollars. So what I’m asking everyone is what is your sharpening system and do you have any advice for me? Thank you everyone in advance.

31 replies so far

View Loren's profile


10477 posts in 3883 days

#1 posted 07-13-2013 03:37 AM

You don’t need anything special to flatten waterstones –
a drywall or floor sanding screen laid over any flat surface
does it quick. Used floor sanding screens work great.

I started out using Brian Burns’s sharpening system years
and years ago… then abandoned it and started honing
freehand with water stones for more than a decade,
eventually misplacing the stone box essential to the
Burns method.

Recently though I’ve reconsidered after watching a video
Brian put out and I’m building the rig to use the updated
Burns system.

I have a bunch of water stones but the soaking and
glazing can be a hassle, so I bought an EZE-lap super
fine recently (about 1200 water stone equivalent)
as I have owned an EZE-lap coarse for many years
and staying with same-thickness lapping plates makes
sense. The finishing stone is a Norton 8000 water stone.

View LRR's profile


25 posts in 2058 days

#2 posted 07-13-2013 04:39 AM

The Paul Seller’s system – with EZE Lap (coarse, fine, xfine) and a strop from TFWW you are well under $200. Another way to go is Dan’s Whetstones. Call them and ask what they have. They often have what they consider seconds that work perfectly well for chisel and plane blades. I got a set (India, Hard, Hard Black) shipped to my door for under $200.

View AKwoodwkr's profile


7 posts in 2020 days

#3 posted 07-13-2013 05:30 AM

I use oil stones. I go from the grinder to a fine India, then a translucent Arkansas, and finally a horse butt strop with green rouge. I also use a power hone in between honing on the stones. It is a 7” laminated leather wheel with green rouge running on a half speed motor. I can re-hone several times on the power strop before I have to go back to the stones.


-- “It’s good to have an end to journey toward; but it is the journey that matters, in the end.” Ursula K. LeGuin

View planeBill's profile


506 posts in 2644 days

#4 posted 07-13-2013 03:33 PM

I use, and love these three stones, a 1200 Bester, a 5000 Suehiro Rika and an 8000 Naniwa Jyunpaku ( Snow White ). I want to add a Kitayama(sp) 8000 because it is actually a 12000 stone but labeled as an 8000 and the price is unbeatable, a Suehiro 6000 or maybe any Suehiro in a lower grit because the feel and performance of all of Suehiro’s stones Ive used is phenomenal and maybe a Naniwa 800 or a bester or beston 1000 or 800.
With the three I have though I can get a better than mirror finish on any tool I have in about 15 minutes and they are always razor sharp and that is no stretch of the truth. The Jyunpaku is a magical stone. Those three stones can be had for way less the 200 dollars from

-- I was born at a very young age, as I grew up, I got older.

View Clint Searl's profile

Clint Searl

1533 posts in 2596 days

#5 posted 07-13-2013 04:05 PM

I’m with AKwoodwrkr, except for the rouge and leather wheel. I keep my stones in a kero or diesel bath.

-- Clint Searl....Ya can no more do what ya don't know how than ya can git back from where ya ain't been

View Richard's profile


400 posts in 2927 days

#6 posted 07-13-2013 04:27 PM

I’m a Naniwa Superstone fan, I use a 12000 grit as a finish stone. Probably a bit more than really needed, but I also use that same stone to sharpen my straight razors.

-- "It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so." - Mark Twain

View ScrubPlane's profile


190 posts in 2431 days

#7 posted 07-13-2013 11:30 PM

I utilize a Veritas honing jig and the ‘scary sharp’ method. Relatively cheap and produces an extremely sharp edge. No better or worse than what the others are posting…everyone has a ‘comfort level’ and a preferred method.

View planeBill's profile


506 posts in 2644 days

#8 posted 07-14-2013 07:45 PM

just curious but do you have a lot of freehand sharpening experience? I noticed you said that you have been using a machine to sharpen your tools lately.
Also, I think the chosera stones are much better than the supers.

-- I was born at a very young age, as I grew up, I got older.

View Dave11's profile


33 posts in 2803 days

#9 posted 07-14-2013 08:21 PM

I started with scary sharp, then Naniwa stones, and ended up with diamond stones. Wish I’d have used those first. I gave up on scary sharp because I got tired of shuffling/buying/gluing sandpaper, though I know a lot of people love the method.

I put the Naniwas aside because I got tired of flattening them all the time.

I use the coarse, fine, and extra fine dia-sharps now, which I never need to flatten, and which cut super fast. I have a leather strop glued to a piece of plywood with green honing compound on it. I only need to use the coarse and fine for new or damaged tools, otherwise just the extra fine and the strop to re-hone a working edge. Sharpening is a snap now.

View Manitario's profile


2703 posts in 3118 days

#10 posted 07-14-2013 10:42 PM

There are as many different sharpening preferences as woodworkers; most important is finding something that is quick and convenient for you. I use 3 DMT diasharp diamond stones and then a 4000 and 8000 grit waterstone. Quick, repeatable, and no flattening of the diamond stones…I’ve also used the “scary sharp” method which is great but uses a lot of sandpaper, and a Tormek wet grinder which also is great but takes too long to set up for me to use it regularly. All three methods give me razor sharp edges but I go with what is quick and convenient.

-- Sometimes the creative process requires foul language. -- Charles Neil

View Iggles88's profile


247 posts in 2596 days

#11 posted 07-15-2013 01:48 AM

I have a good amount of freehand sharpening. On e i realized that my worksharp was not giving me the results i expected i bought a set of 3m scary sharp films after reading brent beachs article. Ive been using that for a good a,ount of time but i just ran out and dont want to keep replacing them so often.

View Iggles88's profile


247 posts in 2596 days

#12 posted 07-15-2013 01:53 AM

Also bill im sure the chosera stones are better but the 10000 grit stone is outrageously expensive. Ill just keep buying the 3m films if im going to put out that much money. Ive pretty much realized that if i keep thinking about this extensively ill make myself crazy. If i dont go with the superstones then ill go with shapton stones. Specifically 1000 and 8000 grits. I emailed joel at tools for working wood and he seemed to really recommend the superstones but hes about the only person ive seen say that so i may just get the shaptons. Wish i could make up my mind.

View Cosmicsniper's profile


2202 posts in 3394 days

#13 posted 07-15-2013 02:20 AM

You won’t get best results with the WS3000 without either the wide-blade attachment or the StumpyNubs mod. I’d go that direction first.

-- jay,

View Loren's profile


10477 posts in 3883 days

#14 posted 07-15-2013 03:15 AM

If cost is an issue, 4000 is sharp enough. Really.

Sharpening to extreme levels of polish will not eliminate
tearout of reversing grain when hand planing, only going
to a higher cutting angle will – you can do that a bit by
skewing the plane in use. Beyond that minor technique
to get through trouble spots, you’ll need to go to a plane
with a higher pitch on the blade, a blade with a back bevel
(Burns system accomplishes back beveling), or use scrapers.

I have a Makita wet grinder with a 1000 grit red water stone
on it and it makes plane irons and chisels sharp enough to
shave with. I still hone to a finer grit when I have the
time, but for a lot of work it isn’t necessary and it
certainly doesn’t solve reversing grain problems.

My sense from experience is that edges polished accurately
to the cutting edge at high levels seem to hold up a little
better between honings. This is useful in chisels used for
chopping and in plane irons.

I seldom have to flatten water stones. That’s partially because
when I sharpen freehand with them I use a figure 8 pattern.

The Burns system uses a jig in such a way that wear on the
stones is more even than most sharpening jigs allow.

View Iggles88's profile


247 posts in 2596 days

#15 posted 07-15-2013 04:02 AM

I built the stumpy nubs stand already have had it since day one. Im tired of buying new sandpaper for it anyway so even if i was getting the best edge possible id still get a new system.
And loren money isnt too big of an issue, 200 dollars to me seems like it would be enough to get decent sharpening equipment. If i got shapton stones of 1000 and 8000 grits it would cost me 160 and if i got the superstones of 1000,4000, and 8000 grits it would cost me 130 so i think i have a high enough budget to get what will give me a very good edge.

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