Sharpening Systems

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Forum topic by alm265 posted 01-02-2009 06:22 PM 1683 views 2 times favorited 17 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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2 posts in 3698 days

01-02-2009 06:22 PM

Topic tags/keywords: sharpen tools gouges irons system

I was wondering if anyone had recommendations on the best setup to use for all around sharpening of most things in my shop (eg. chisels, turning tools, plane irons, etc.)? I’ve used different stones with a variety of lubricants but am trying to figure out the best have trouble with getting bevels consistent and it can be very time consuming. Any suggestions?

17 replies so far

View trimmer's profile


90 posts in 3470 days

#1 posted 01-02-2009 06:58 PM

I use the worksharp 3000, best tool i think i ever bought. It’s fun now to sharpen chesels and plane irons.
Not the fastest on dull chesels but to tough up wow!!!!

View pitchnsplinters's profile


262 posts in 3467 days

#2 posted 01-02-2009 08:06 PM

I’m in the midst of making the same decision. I have studied many options. Tormek is certainly the best, but with a steep price tag. Please post when you make your decision.

Go State!!

-- Just 'cause a cat has kittens in the oven, it don't make 'em biscuits.

View trimmer's profile


90 posts in 3470 days

#3 posted 01-02-2009 08:23 PM

I no u will like the wooksharp3000
It made a believer out of me.

View FlWoodRat's profile


732 posts in 3938 days

#4 posted 01-02-2009 08:30 PM

ALM, I went the “frugal” route this morning. I have an old set of Craftsman chisels that have been used for everything but fine wood working for at least 10 yrs. I had a piece of 2.5” x 3” by 15 inch pine and made my own sharpening guide. I beveled one face to 25 Degrees, then dado’d out a 4” wide x 1/8” deep slot , centered on the bottom. I spray adhesived some 3” wide stips of 400, 800 and 1000 grit 3M wet/dry to a piece of granite and started sharpening the chisel I needed to use. In 10 minutes the damn thing was sliciing like crazy on the mortises I drilled out yesterday. Good luck with whatever system you buy

-- I love the smell of sawdust in the morning....

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27250 posts in 3851 days

#5 posted 01-02-2009 08:59 PM

I have to add another vote for the Worksharp 3000. Before getting mine I tried stones and sand paper but could not get satisfactory results even with a honing guide. But now I can put a razor edge on the chisels and plane irons.

The biggest drawback to the Worksharp system was that it could only handle irons and chisels up to 2” in width. Anything larger had to be done by hand. But Worksharp has now introduced an upgrade to allow wider irons to be sharpened.

-- Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful- Joshua Marine

View AjayO's profile


27 posts in 3500 days

#6 posted 01-04-2009 06:26 AM

I use dry and wet/dry sandpapers on a 12”x12” Granite tile. I get satisfactory results, but have been looking at Ceramic/Waterstones as sandpapers wear out fairly quickly. I use diamond hone sharpening set to touch up on router bits.

-- - Ajay

View DrDirt's profile


4424 posts in 3771 days

#7 posted 01-04-2009 06:53 AM

Though controversial – I have gone the Tage Frid/Marc Adams route and have a 400 grit paper on my 3X21 belt sander then go to a buffing wheel charged with polishing compound.
I have scary sharp in just a few minutes and easy to touch up on the wheel.

For plane irons though I use the wet or dry paper and plate glass route with a veritas honing guide.

By the way love the avatar – PSU 1996 grad Ph.D Chemistry

-- “The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why.” Mark Twain

View Padre's profile


930 posts in 3518 days

#8 posted 01-04-2009 07:11 AM

I have the Tormek and love it.

-- Chip ----------- 6:8

View John Gray's profile

John Gray

2370 posts in 3914 days

#9 posted 01-04-2009 07:43 AM

Worksharp 3000 and Scary Sharp for the wider plane blades, it work’s great.

-- Only the Shadow knows....................

View marcb's profile


768 posts in 3702 days

#10 posted 01-04-2009 07:52 AM

I just picked up a set of 3 oil stones. Previously I used scary sharp, but that could be a pain to keep enough supplies laying around.

I highly recommend trying scary sharp and a basic honing guide before going hole hawg into anything. The guide will serve you well in the future no matter what.

View Topapilot's profile


172 posts in 3869 days

#11 posted 01-04-2009 09:14 AM

There is a sharpening method for every woodworker. Unfortunatly, you have to go through all of them until you find yours…

I suggest you save yourself time, money, and frustration, and get a Worksharp 3000. Once your chisels and plane irons are sharp, you can try out all the other methods unitl you find the one that you like better.

Then sell your worksharp for the price you paid, and one week later go buy a new one!

View jeffthewoodwacker's profile


603 posts in 3833 days

#12 posted 01-04-2009 05:06 PM

If you do any turning get a grinder with a slow speed setting (eight inch wheels) and upgrade to Norton white wheels. Add a sharpening jig and you have a good system. In addition to picking a sharpening system find someone who knows how to sharpen and learn how to sharpen properly.

-- Those that say it can't be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

View 8iowa's profile


1580 posts in 3790 days

#13 posted 01-04-2009 05:26 PM

Last year I took Jim Dillon’s class on sharpening at Highland Woodworking in Atlanta. Jim explained that the wet/dry paper on a flat surface was the most economical method to get into sharpening – but more expensive than wet stones in the long run. I tried the Tormek on plane irons but didn’t care for the “hollow ground” surface. I now have a set of water stones up to #8000 and a Veritas MKII honing guide. The results: I can shave hair and slice paper.

-- "Heaven is North of the Bridge"

View hokieman's profile


186 posts in 3783 days

#14 posted 01-04-2009 05:30 PM

Started out with waterstones and they do an ok job but I feel like I spend as much time flattening the stones as I do sharpening. I also have a granite countertop piece that I do scary sharp on and get good results. I am eyeing the Worksharp as I hear nothing but good about it.

View alm265's profile


2 posts in 3698 days

#15 posted 01-05-2009 03:59 AM

I appreciate all the feedback. I’ve been doing a lot of reading and I think I’m going with a worksharp for my chisels and plane irons and some new wheels for my grinder with a jig for turning tools. I’ll let everyone know how it works out. Thanks.

Dave Nesting – always nice to meet fellow grads. 1999 MBA.

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