Scary sharp

vaguely woodworking

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Re: Scary sharp

Postby AlexanderTheLate » Sun Apr 14, 2013 4:04 pm

Just plain MDF works too, without the compound. ... ks-16.html
I fear the day that technology will surpass our human interaction. The world will have a generation of idiots.- Unknown.
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Re: Scary sharp

Postby ToneWood » Wed Apr 24, 2013 1:36 pm

Del Stubbs at Pinewood forge also has some interesting thoughts on keeping carving tools sharp (mainly by stropping, using wooden strops, e.g. lime wood/basswood):
I guess this has been discussed on this forum before too:
When stropping... lay the tool flat on the leather strop, polishing the whole surface with solid pressure. The tool's edge will compress slightly into the softness of the leather - this will sharpen the microscopic bevel at the edge. Using a few strokes, pressing firmly as you strop either side, should be enough to bring a slightly dull tool back to razor sharpness. Years ago I started using wood as a strop; for this a medium hard and even grained wood like basswood works well. It is especially good for hollow ground tools, or any tool not having a micro bevel. When stropping or honing knives - start the stroke with the pressure at the bottom of the blade and slightly raise the handle as the stroke reaches the tip.

...the principle reason people round over the edge ... when stropping is not because they start with the back of the tool raised - but rather because unconsciously they give a twist, a flip up of the handle, like a flourish right at the end of the stroke. Nothing could be worse! He said it has been very difficult to get students to be aware of this problem. All I can say to prevent this is " Watch carefully what you do - or have someone else watch"

There is much more in the article, suggest that you review it at the above link. Although reading the above, it seems like the first paragraph says to lift the tool handle slightly towards the end of the stroke...and the second paragraph seems to contradict that, saying not to raise/twist the handle at the end of the stroke! Perhaps a matter of degree?

Also a little tip on micro-gouge sharpening here :
(Similar to one of Nic's suggestions for curved tools - see links below.)

Waterstones: viewtopic.php?f=2&t=2585&p=21158#p21158
Skew Techniques: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=2800&p=23328&hilit=MDF+strop#p23328
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