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Forum topic by Troy Cleckler posted 10-31-2014 01:20 AM 1395 views 0 times favorited 12 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Troy Cleckler

385 posts in 1546 days

10-31-2014 01:20 AM

Probably getting in too deep too fast. Never hand cut dovetails before and never had the correct tools if I wanted too, now I do though. Never sharpened chisels before either, just used them off the shelf, hitting them with a claw hammer harder and harder the more dull they got.
Got a question on sharpening chisels though. I started with 1/2” and flattened the back through 2000, put it in the jig and pulled a few strokes. I noticed that it was sharpening at an angle. Thought I was putting too much pressure on one side so I tried more presure on the low side and it didn’t change. Looked at it closely in the jig and noticed that is in at a slight angle. I think Others have said that the jig needs working on so I guess I’ll see what I can find on it. Just used 320 but just had to push it through some wood and I’ve never used a chisel that sharp before. Man, i can’t imagine what it’ll be like taking it to 2000.

-- Troy. - Measure twice, cut once and fill the gaps....

12 replies so far

View Andre's profile


2139 posts in 1981 days

#1 posted 10-31-2014 01:57 AM

I go 1000 to 8000 water stone, no hair left on the left arm! Been looking at that saw, started with the Veritas but have been using a fine Japanese saw for most small DTs for a while would like to try one of them brass back saws.
I have the Narex chisels but ended up switching to the Stanely Sweetheart and a couple of Small Japanese like the smaller handles and better balance. Good Luck.

-- Lifting one end of the plank.

View Mark's profile


967 posts in 2149 days

#2 posted 10-31-2014 02:37 AM

I use 1000/4000 water stone. Same jig as yours. Works killer. I did the fore arm shaving thing…The wife said I was an idiot… What! Nice score on the tools. :)

-- Mark

View 2Dusty2's profile


44 posts in 1506 days

#3 posted 10-31-2014 02:37 AM

Good luck. Now that you have illuminated tool error… Let us know how it goes.

-- Cheers

View knockknock's profile


454 posts in 2348 days

#4 posted 10-31-2014 02:56 AM

Now you can make a dovetail box to immortalize your first dovetails.

-- 👀 --

View pretzer's profile


21 posts in 1489 days

#5 posted 10-31-2014 03:05 AM

I just bought the same set of chisels. I like them!!!

View ColonelTravis's profile


1917 posts in 2069 days

#6 posted 10-31-2014 04:03 AM

Great saw – I’m convinced at least half the battle of quality dovetails is a quality saw.

I have that jig, and figured out like everyone else it doesn’t hold chisels well at all. At the time I didn’t have chisels and didn’t care. Now I do and I got the MkII guide, which is so much better. I’m able to freehand some stuff but use the jig a lot – even mortise chisels. I know freehand is faster but I’m lazy and the consistency with the guide is nice. I don’t feel like I’m wasting my time sharpening with it. I’m sure it would make someone like Cosman want to punch you (me) in the nose.

Regarding the angle – either you’re putting too much pressure on one side, which I doubt you’re doing with a narrow chisel, or you don’t have it in there as straight as you think and/or it’s slipped slightly, which is probably the case with that jig because it doesn’t hold it firmly enough. The MkII doesn’t budge, although you can still find yourself with an angled bevel. As long as there’s an edge all the way across I don’t care if it’s not perfectly straight. Same with plane blades. But if it’s really off you’ll spend more time trying to getting an edge all the way across, so I try to keep it reasonably straight.
removing metal than if it’s st

View OSU55's profile


1925 posts in 2164 days

#7 posted 10-31-2014 03:12 PM

Since you are already using the scary sharp method, investigate lapping film before jumping into waterstones. Lapping film lasts far longer than sandpaper, and doesn’t have to be flattened like waterstones.

When sharpening check your bevel for alignment after a few strokes. It’s not uncommon to have to make some adjustments to get it straight. Here is one place for info on tuning the side clamp style jig:

Congrats on some nice tools!

View sikrap's profile


1121 posts in 3534 days

#8 posted 11-01-2014 04:53 PM

Congrats on the tools, you’re gonna love, love, love that dovetail saw. The Narex chisels are pretty good too. I’m another fan of the MK II sharpening jig, especially for learning. As was mentioned, the lapping film is a pretty inexpensive way to get familiar with sharpening and if you only have the chisels and a couple of planes, the film should last quite a while.

-- Dave, Colonie, NY

View a1Jim's profile


117276 posts in 3752 days

#9 posted 11-01-2014 05:01 PM


-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View Troy Cleckler 's profile

Troy Cleckler

385 posts in 1546 days

#10 posted 11-01-2014 05:22 PM

I did the filing mods to the jig and it worked good. Sharpened the chisels and a block plane blade and it worked out good. I used the measurement for the 30 degree bevel and I ground it on 80 grit and changed the entire bevel and used sand paper through 2000 grit. It don’t quiet shave but really close and they are a lot sharper than any that I’ve used before.
Only cut a few end cuts with the saw but can tell I’m gonn like it, glad I chose this one. Is it better or worse than any others, don’t know, all I do know is it’s seems to be good quality and I’m sure it far exceeds my ability at the moment and I’m sure it’ll allow me to create good dovetails when I learn how to use it.

-- Troy. - Measure twice, cut once and fill the gaps....

View sikrap's profile


1121 posts in 3534 days

#11 posted 11-02-2014 02:52 PM

FWIW, there’s a video on Lie Nielsen’s Youtube channel that shows how to make a jig for that honing guide.

-- Dave, Colonie, NY

View mramseyISU's profile


553 posts in 1720 days

#12 posted 11-02-2014 06:03 PM

I fell down this same slippery slope this summer. Hand cutting dovetails was the most rewarding/frustrating thing I’ve ever done. Just remember You Tube is your friend. I was traveling a lot for work and watching you tube videos on hand cut dovetails waiting around for flights.

-- Trust me I'm an engineer.

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