- 21 May 2014 at 6:16 pm #57354Ron HarperParticipant
I too had a bunch of stuff before I encountered Paul. i now use 4 stones. Extra coarse diamond, coarse diamond, hard arkansas, and extra fine transcucent arkansas then strop. I use the extra coarse very rarely. Ifind that water stones do not work well with Paul’s honing method. It is my experience that very quickly I outgrew the need for a guide. The use of a guide is just enough hassle to discourage honing.27 March 2015 at 12:34 am #125959Ben FisherParticipant
I’m brand new to tools, hand tools, woodworking… I’m trying to learn to sharpen without a guide at the get go. We’ll see how badly I fail.
- Ben27 March 2015 at 2:18 am #125966Matt McGraneParticipant
@bfisher – Ben (and others), I have been sharpening by hand since getting my diamond plates and learning from Paul. I’ve found that my thin chisels – 1/4″ to 1/2″ – I can’t keep straight on the plates and I need to use a guide. It’s too easy to angle them just a bit and I get something other than a 90° angle across the edge. Just today I used a guide to sharpen a 1/2″ plough plane blade that was really in poor shape and the guide came in handy.
Here’s one thing I discovered today. I have a strop (store-bought leather strip on an oak board) that I charge with the green honing compound. Today I REALLY charged it before honing the 1/2″ blade. Usually I charge it a little and many times I don’t charge it because it still has some from a prior use. But today after charging like Paul does – really rubbing the compound stick on the leather – I got a very nice mirror finish. Better than I’ve ever gotten before.
Matt, Northern California - Started a blog in 2016: http://tinyshopww.blogspot.com/27 March 2015 at 3:06 am #125968Peter GeorgeParticipant
I guess I’m the odd man out here, but I still like my cheap King water stones, honing guide and microbevel. Most times when I’m resharpening it’s a few strokes on the 4000 grit stone to touch up the microbevel, which probably takes me less than a minute. It helps that I’ve set up a sharpening spot on my utility bench with a rubber mat and a stone pond for my water stones. It also makes sense to me that removing less metal would be quicker.
I’m not suggesting that my system is better or worse than hand honing on diamond plates. It works for me and lets me get back to woodworking with out much fuss and bother.
"New York is big, but this is Biggar"27 March 2015 at 4:55 am #125969GaryParticipant
Matt, I have the same problem on thinner chisels and irons. Though it took a lot of practice, I can now hold the 1/2, 3/8, & 1/4 chisels square. The ones that give me problems are my 1/8 chisel and my Record 043 plough plane irons. I haven’t found a jig that looks as if it will hold something that narrow. I do recall seeing in Aldren Watson’s book on tools that he gave the design for a shop-made jig for plough plane irons so I may give that a try. I’ll let everyone know how it does.27 March 2015 at 11:44 am #125980Derek LongParticipant
@gary I have the same problem with my Stanley 45 plane irons. That 1/8″ iron is barely a twig of steel. The 1/4″ and 3/16″ ones aren’t much fun, either. I haven’t found a good and reliable way to sharpen them accurately. Cut the heck out of my fingers on the edges trying, too.
Denver, Colorado27 March 2015 at 6:55 pm #125989rickcorradiniParticipant
I found out that, for me, the best and fastest way of holding small blades to sharpen manually is by using a locking sheet metal pliers. See picture. It works very well.
You must be logged in to access attached files.27 March 2015 at 10:46 pm #126000GaryParticipant
Great idea Ricardo! I’ll give that a try.28 March 2015 at 3:25 pm #126030rickcorradiniParticipant
I use that a lot, specially with spokeshave blades and Stanley #80 scraper ones, that are usually sharpened on both edges, making it quite dangerous to hold.
That type of locking pliers has a good grip, without marring the blade surface (just sand a bit the edges of the plier). And, with everything locked, you have a nice “handle” and a firm hold to use pressure.
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