Tagged: , ,

Any experience with Narex chisels?

  • Creator
    Topic
  • #540476
    Curtis Enlow
    Participant

    I have been using my first set of chisels (a Harbor Freight set) for a while, but think I am ready to move up. The HF ones have been…okay (at least in the Doug fir construction woods I have been using), they’ve never chipped or bent, but they seem to be very soft as they don’t hold an edge long. Also they have very short handles, so precise control is more difficult than ones that might have a longer handle/blade combination.

    Sure, I’d love a set of expensive chisels, but budget is a major consideration. Looking for the popular ‘Aldi’ chisels in the US has been fruitless, but I did notice the Czech Narex set which – for a moderate priced chisel – seems to have consistently good reviews (though I am open to suggestions for moderately priced $40-$50-or-under set in the US).

    Any suggestions or helpful experience with moderate-priced sets? Thanks!

    Curtis

Viewing 15 replies - 16 through 30 (of 31 total)
  • Author
    Replies
  • #540793
    Curtis Enlow
    Participant

    @orcasea

    I want to thank everyone for your highly regarded input & information. It’s been invaluable in helping me make a decision.

    It’s so nice to post in a forum and not have it devolve into the usual “If your not buying a $30 chisel your using crap and shouldn’t be here” trollery & snobbishness within five responses…

    I decided to go with the full 8-piece, 1/8″ increment, Premium Imperial Narex Beveled Edge set from toolsforworkingwood dot com. The full set is the same as from Amazon (but with faster shipping) and I prefer to help a small outlet rather than make Bezos richer than he already is 😉

    It’s more than I had budgeted myself (dang it, it always is!) but they sound like great tools, and I will have everything I could possibly need and they should last me a long time. I can keep my HF chisels for less demanding or riskier work. Sounds like good reasoning to me 🙂

    Thanks, again!

    Curtis

    • This reply was modified 1 year, 1 month ago by Curtis Enlow.
    Attachments:
    #547869
    norm lafond
    Participant

    @cistern

    I am so glad you gave Joel (the owner of toolsforworkingwood.com) your business. He never sells junk and he is always looking for new quality products. I am sure you will be very happy with the chisels.

    • This reply was modified 1 year, 1 month ago by norm lafond.
    #547874
    Curtis Enlow
    Participant

    @orcasea

    I am very impressed with them so far. The back were very nearly flat to begin with, just a few swipes with some 600 wet/dry brought the edges up. It’s been a busy week for me, so I hope to put a final edge on them in the next day, or two. I personally like the handles because I – unlike the President – have very large hands, and they fit fine 🙂 The battery is dead on my calipers, so I can’t say if they are ‘true’ Imperial, or not, but given the rest of the over-all quality my bets are that they are.

    I always like to give my business to smaller outlets. Bezos is rich enough!

    #547878
    Doug Finch
    Member

    @dfsixstring1968

    @orcasea, Like you, I was ready to upgrade to a better chisel. I opted for the Narex but I bought mine from Highlandwoodworking.com. They had a set that came with a magnetic holder and 6 chisels for $49 (when I bought them). I couldn’t pass that up. I also bought 4 other sizes to go all the way from 1/8″ to 1 1/4″. All in all I spent, maybe, $125 on chisels for a set of 10. I have not used them yet but have flattened and sharpened all of them. I was pleased that they were relatively flat on the backs to begin with. I sharpened all 10 in about an hour.

    As for the imperial versus metric. I was a little weary of metric since everything we do in the US is imperial. The more I looked around, the more I saw where things were metric. Also, I know wood sizes here don’t really follow any sort of rigid standards, and I measure everything anyway – so I went ahead and got metric. The bottom line was, do I really care if it is 10mm instead of 3/8″? I don’t think the wood will know the difference.

    #547954
    Thomas Bittner
    Participant

    @bittntj

    So I own about 30 different makes of chisels, one set was very expensive (Lie Nielsen). I own craftsman (sears) which were very inexpensive. All of them work well for me. I also bought a set of Narex chisels, the steel is excellent you can’t go wrong.
    I used to sell metal cutting tools so I know a little bit about metallurgy. When Lie Nielsen decided not to make long paring chisels because of the difficulties of manufacturing a consistent hardness throughout a long length of steel I bought the Narex paring chisels.
    The handles are terrible for me, but that is a matter of personal preference. They are a steal (pun intended) the fit of the handles and finish are not ideal for me. Make new handles if you need to, polish the backs and the mill marks out on the faces if that’s what you like but the chisels are the real deal at very reasonable prices.
    As far as sizes go I have found that metric sizes can be handy to have around. Sometimes you need that size difference, a 1/2” chisel doesn’t make a 1/2” mortise, it’s going to be bigger. A slightly smaller size can be a handy thing.
    Bottom line, in my opinion you can’t go wrong with the Narex as manufactured today.

    #547957
    Curtis Enlow
    Participant

    @orcasea

    I agree about the sizes and can see how a mix of Imperial and Metric can be a good thing; my 1/2″ mortises always seemed a little sloppy, but I’m not such a purist that I am not above using a Forstner bit to hog out most of the waste. I’m going to build a big shelf rack for the garage with 32 tenons & mortises, and…yeah, we’ll see how the Narexes do with paring the remainder out 🙂 But I’m very happy with them thus far. I have rally large hands so I am looking forward to using them. Smaller handles make my hands cramp up eventually, so – for me, they are going to be nice!

    The one thing I have noticed is the finish on the handles, they seem a bit rough and the finish (I assume there is some finish on them) is very minimal. Maybe I’ll give them a light sand and some BLO or Danish Oil…

    • This reply was modified 1 year, 1 month ago by Curtis Enlow.
    • This reply was modified 1 year, 1 month ago by Curtis Enlow.
    #547961
    Ecky H
    Participant

    @eckyh

    Hello,

    I’ve got a set of standard chisels from the Narex Wood Line Profi and a set of butt chisels from the Narex Wood Line Plus.
    The Wood Line Profi are the replacement for the cheap Aldi-like chisels I tried before. They come with a nicely shaped handle, the varnishing is well made. One chisel got a very slight belly on the back side of the iron, the other ones are flat or very, very slightly hollow – nothing to complain about, imho. The steel shows much better edge retention than the cheap chisels I used before. Overall: very good performance for the money.

    The Wood Line Plus chisels come with a flat back on the handle to prevent rolling around. Nice idea, but may feel a bit uncomfortable in the palm of the hand when working bevel down. The standard size Wood Line Plus chisels apparently come with round handles. All irons are flat (enough) on the back side. Until now I didn’t use the butt chisels for mortising, so I can’t say more than “the edge retention isn’t bad”.

    Las year I visited the “Fine Tools” shop in Berlin and they sold me a dropped down 20mm wide chisel from the MHG Premium line for a reduced price. In comparision with the Narex chisels, the MHG is definitely a step up in material, workmanship and edge retention – at a higher price.
    MHG also offers a “standard line” with a price tag slightly above the Narex Wood Line Profi chisels, but I’ve got no experiences yet.

    On tight budget the Narex Wood Line Profi chisels are a good choice, imho.

    For the future I’ll go for the MHG premium chisels: reasonable price, very good quality and made in Europe (Thuringia/Germany, to be exact 😉 ).

    Ymmv,

    E.

    Veni, vidi, serravi.

    Münster, Germany

    #547989
    Peter Germenis
    Participant

    @pgermenis

    I bought a set of Narex mortising chisels a few months ago and I’m happy I did. They have a good feel especially when pairing down on the end grain. They hold their edge rather well. My only issue is with removing the anti-rust coating. Both denatured alcohol and mineral sprits required quite a bit of effort. Well worth the investment!

    Peter

    #547995
    Dave Ring
    Participant

    @davering

    I don’t have any experience with Narex chisels but Harry Epstein is offering a set of four Narex chisels (with plastic and “rubber” handles) for $25.00 US. These are “in-between” sizes–8, 10, 16 and 32 mm (approximately 5/16″-1 1/4″).

    https://www.harryepstein.com/index.php/narex-professional-wood-working-chisel-set-8606-01.html.

    If the link doesn’t work, you can go to harryepstein dot com and search for “Narex”.

    He also has some good prices on Arkansas oilstones and PEC measuring tools.

    Dave

    #540492
    Ecky H
    Participant

    @eckyh

    Hello Curtis,

    I’ve got a set of standard chisels from the Wood Line Profi and a set of butt chisels from the Wood Line Plus.
    The Wood Line Profi are the replacement for the cheap Aldi-like chisels I tried before. They come with a nicely shaped handle, the varnishing is well made. One chisel got a very slight belly on the back side of the iron, the other ones are flat or very, very slightly hollow – nothing to complain about, imho. The steel shows much better edge retention than the cheap chisels I used before. Overall: very good performance for the money.

    The Wood Line Plus chisels come with a flat back on the handle to prevent rolling around. Nice idea, but may feel a bit uncomfortable in the palm of the hand when working bevel down. The standard size Wood Line Plus chisels apparently come with round handles. All irons are flat (enough) on the back side. Until now I didn’t use the butt chisels for mortising, so I can’t say more than “the edge retention isn’t bad”.

    Las year I visited the “Fine Tools” shop in Berlin and they sold me a dropped down 20mm wide chisel from the MHG Premium line for a reduced price. In comparision with the Narex chisels, the MHG is definitely a step up in material, workmanship and edge retention – at a higher price.
    MHG also offers a “standard line with a price tag slightly above the Narex Wood Line Profi chisels, but I’ve got no experiences yet.

    On tight budget the Narex Wood Line Profi chisels are a good choice, imho.

    For the future I’ll go for the MHG premium chisels: reasonable price, very good quality and made in Europe (Thuringia/Germany, to be exact 😉 ).

    Ymmv,

    E.

    Veni, vidi, serravi.

    Münster, Germany

    #552630
    Uli Heigl
    Participant

    @cellobello

    Hi Curtis,

    I used traditional the two cherries chisels but needed a 50mm. Narex was my choice and will still be. They are available in three different categories (least in Germany)with different prices. I decided for the “low” price called “Woodline Profi” and the 50mm was € 17!. Good quality, sharp and easy to resharpen. I use now only Narex but still have the cherries

    #553034
    eric towns
    Participant

    @humboldt-e

    Narex are good but I would suggest getting a set of older ones there inexpensive and are good chisels just might need to clean then up a bit

    #553044
    Keith Walton
    Participant

    @keithmw

    Ive been grabbing my new aldi chisels over anything else recently. I dont know if it has to do more with the quality or just the general appeal of getting fine results from a $2 chisel and how that puts a little smile on my face.

    I have some narex chisels and I really like them, but did receive one with an issue, thought I sensed some movement in the handle and after a few blows I was sure of it, First customer service rep at highland told me they dont understand how a chisel could even “come apart”

    I pulled the tang loose and posted a photo on their social media page and highland contacted me instantly -refunded me and told me to keep the chisel. No issues with any of the others after a year of use. I like them

    I have sorby kangaroo brand chisels and the steel is amazing and the profile of the bevel edges is lovely.

    My favorites overall i think are sorby and marples – I love the easy online access to brand new narex chisels in every size – but all in all, right now im mostly reaching for one of the aldi chisels without really thinking about it.

    #553442
    Dionysios P
    Participant

    @dionysios

    My experience with Narex chisels is mixed.

    In regards of the steel, the quality of the material and the machining was very good on every chisel I had or still have. It takes and holds a very good edge and the sides on the 8116 series chisels are very thin and they can reach in tight spaces with ease.

    My only concern about these chisels are the handles.

    On the 8105 series are dead ugly but they can be reshaped and you may fit a proper brass ferrule easily.

    The 8116 hadles are a different story. Their main drawback is the conical brass plated ferrule.

    It’s made of very thin metal and in my case it cracked within a few weeks of purchase, on two out of three tools with that type of handle, due to handle swelling in my unheated garage workshop.

    I wouldn’t mind that much if I could get a replacement brass ferrule, but unfortunately this is impossible because of the conical shape.

    Attachments:
    #553806
    Eric Chatham
    Participant

    @evn21007

    I have a metric set of narex chisels, and metric never bothered me until i got to chopping “1/4″” mortises inside 1/4″ grooves for the tool cabinet. Its undersized enough to be a pain in the neck. I get alot of chipping in the cutting edge when doing chopping, and i need to sharpen up after about two mortises. I don’t have any other chisels to compare that to, these are my first chisels. I can tell you that these rust in a bad way. I was away from home for almost a year, during which a slow water leak in my basement workshop led to high humidity and surface rust on everything, and swelling wood and mold… a nightmare. But these chisels, in their closed box, rusted worse than anything in the shop. Deep rust too. I managed to save them, but took some heavy grinding and hours of reflattening.

Viewing 15 replies - 16 through 30 (of 31 total)

You must be logged in to reply to this topic.