I can grind and sharpen plane blade bevels.

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Forum topic by comboprof posted 09-11-2014 04:37 PM 1290 views 1 time favorited 12 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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277 posts in 1756 days

09-11-2014 04:37 PM

Topic tags/keywords: sharpening refurbishing apreciation

This I suppose is the conclusion of a three part frustration series I have had with grinders and stones. The first two parts are:

  1. Help! Shaping the bevel with a grinder question.
  2. Bevel grinding frustration.

This morning in short order I successfully, set the bevel and sharpened blades for a number 8, 7 and 4 1/2 (Stanley-Bailey). Then with a scrub, jack, jointer and smoother I managed to flatten and smooth a very ruff sawn 2 by 8 by 24” Hemlock board. From sharpening the three blades to smoothing the board it all took less then an hour. Not perfect mind you, but I am happy I can do it. I now need to make a bench that doesn’t rock a foot with each stroke. Anyway it was quite fun and relaxing making the shavings.

I grind the bevel with a 6” white norton 150 grit wheel, using the Veritas tool rest and jig. Then freehand I further sharpen on a soft Arkansas stone, then a hard Arkansas stone and finish stoping with green compound on leather (rough side up). I presume with normal use the grinding will be less frequent.

Although I am a fast learner I think I am trying to learn to much to fast. I still have a few more planes to cleanup identify and sharpen. Then it will be on to saws and chisels (where I have more questions).

I thank:

Don W, Upchuck,Tim Anderson, BLarge, 7Footer, lwllms, Tim, Grandpa, Sikrap, handsawgeek, Alanws

for your help, support and encouragement particularly when I almost gave up. You are all deeply appreciated and have my most sincere gratitude. I thank you so much.

-- -- Cheers, Don K. (Michgan's Kewenaw peninsula)

12 replies so far

View HorizontalMike's profile


7758 posts in 2936 days

#1 posted 09-11-2014 04:43 PM

Way to go Don! If you ever want to put “straight” bevels on your plane blades, you might want to consider building your own converted Belt Sander—Belt Sharpening System.

Harbor Freight 4x36 Belt Sander DIY CONVERSION To Belt Sharpening System

-- HorizontalMike -- "Woodpeckers understand..."

View Grandpa's profile


3259 posts in 2697 days

#2 posted 09-11-2014 04:52 PM

Don, I am glad you stuck it out and made it through the learning curve. There is just so much to learn and the easier it looks the more there is to learn. At least that has been my experience. Great job and thanks for posting. I think you could really be good after another hundred plane irons…..LOL Keep up the good work.

View comboprof's profile


277 posts in 1756 days

#3 posted 09-11-2014 06:08 PM

Well HorezontalMike that sure looks like an interesting use of the HF Belt sander. To get an initial bevel I have used free hand a HF 1” belt sander and have also set my Veritas Honing jig on the edge of a 3” bench belt sander but it was not so accurate and the sharpening was corse. So I moved on to the grinding wheel and oil stone method. Still I will think over your system.

The grinding wheel and oil stones just feels more true to “traditional” historical sharpening methods…. and I like it.

I may replace the electric powered grinder with a hand crank grinder some day.

-- -- Cheers, Don K. (Michgan's Kewenaw peninsula)

View Tim Anderson's profile

Tim Anderson

152 posts in 1752 days

#4 posted 09-11-2014 06:14 PM

Good job, Don. I am glad everything worked out for you in the end.

-- -Tim, Salt Lake City, UT, USA

View HorizontalMike's profile


7758 posts in 2936 days

#5 posted 09-11-2014 11:12 PM

Great! What ever makes you feel comfortable Don. In my own experience, I have been able to go directly from the belt sharpener back to the lathe when turning. Sure, sometimes I pend more time on plane blades/cutters, but not really that much more time. Especially with the honing wheel! That does make a difference!

-- HorizontalMike -- "Woodpeckers understand..."

View waho6o9's profile


8204 posts in 2599 days

#6 posted 09-11-2014 11:38 PM

Fantastic news Don, keep doing the good work!

View Don W's profile

Don W

18754 posts in 2589 days

#7 posted 09-11-2014 11:39 PM

great progress!!

-- - Collecting is an investment in the past, and the future.

View sikrap's profile


1121 posts in 3381 days

#8 posted 09-12-2014 07:22 PM

Great job!! You are correct in that you shouldn’t need to use the grinder very much after the initial bevel is established. Just don’t drop it!! :) On a related note, what is your method for flattening/polishing the back?

-- Dave, Colonie, NY

View OSU55's profile


1693 posts in 2011 days

#9 posted 09-12-2014 07:36 PM

Here is a source for an alternative to free hand honing, just so you are aware of other methods. Glad you are able to make shavings!

View comboprof's profile


277 posts in 1756 days

#10 posted 09-12-2014 08:27 PM

sikrap I flatten/polish the back on the hard Arkansas stone (or first the soft Arkansas and the hard and in extreme cases using a belt sander) I follow with green compound on leather. I put in a insulated wood floor over the garage concrete. So if I drop a blade or chisel at least it will hit wood.

OSU55 That was an interesting read. I do have the Veritas MK II honing guide. I’m just liking freehand better.


I think we can all agree on what ever works to get the job done …. gets the job done.

  • I am very happy now. Maybe later I’ll become more sophisticated and want an even sharper edge.
  • Its a long hill to climb.
  • So many tools to restore, sharpen and learn to use.
  • I’ll sacrifice and make the climb just to see you at the top.

-- -- Cheers, Don K. (Michgan's Kewenaw peninsula)

View Tim's profile


3812 posts in 1983 days

#11 posted 09-12-2014 11:31 PM

Don, very glad to hear you got something working for you. Sharp tools are really helpful and not having a good way to get there is frustrating.

View comboprof's profile


277 posts in 1756 days

#12 posted 09-12-2014 11:34 PM

Thanks, Tim.

-- -- Cheers, Don K. (Michgan's Kewenaw peninsula)

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