Another sharpening thread with a twist
  Re: RE: Another sharpening thread with a twist by 5thumbs (My Grandfather, who ...)
(05-05-2021, 01:41 PM)5thumbs Wrote: My Grandfather, who served in WW1, spent his entire life as a finish carpenter. He worked in some of the finest houses on the main line in Philadelphia.  When he passed, he had a coarse and a fine stone in a can in his workshop. Both were rounded but he could put an edge on a chisel or plane that would shave hair. (He used to do this to me when I visited him.)

He once told me that the shape of the stone didn't matter, it was the angle of the steel to the stone. The old man didn't spend any more time than necessary sharpening his chisels, he counted that time as wasted, so he evolved an efficient method of sharpening that worked for him.

By the way, he mostly worked with oak, birch, and cherry.  I think he would have laughed at modern sharpening methods.
Yeah and chestnut I’m sure in philly.

I asked Underhill if he ever flattened his oil stones and he looked at me like I was speaking some space alien clicking language and walked away.

Flattening the back of an iron isn’t really necessary or rooted in science. We do it and it works okay, but it probably isn’t something people have ever worried about. I think we have put a tremendous effort into something that gives us very little benefit. The act of working a large area of hardened steel has created the need for exceptionally fast cutting abrasives. Our technique has produced the problem and given rise to an industry.

Last, I’m particularly tickled by “new” techniques like the ruler trick which is just one more nod to the old ways, but now “discovered”. Freehand sharpening isn’t that hard. I encourage folks to do what I did; Try it for some extended period of time. Don’t give up after your first attempt results in a poor quality edge.
  Re: Another sharpening thread with a twist by clovishound (I've been thinking, ...)
Well, my take on back flattening is that it requires some time initially, depending on the issues with the tool in question, but takes very little maintenance after that. I doubt I have ever spent more than a hal3/4 of an hour on a back from an old, abused tool. FWIW, I don't bother flattening the entire back, only the last half inch or so. I may clean up the entire back on the first grit, but then concentrate on the last bit of it. Usually, the back requires less work for me, than getting the initial bevel established.

After flattening I never touch the back with anything other than the finest grade stone or paper I'm using on that tool.
"Mongo only pawn in game of life."        Mongo

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