Sharpening Thread

What tool would you people recommend for sharpening chisels, knives, plane blades etc.

If you are trying a pisstake, get fucked

If not, Tormek is pretty damn good


No, actually interested. Planning my Christmas present.

Just do them on the concrete step. If necessary, touch them up with a bastard cut file.

I have a Tormek, faq’n slow as, does a good job but you need a metric shitload of time.

last edited by Cliff Rogers

@Shy-Ted said in Sharpening Thread:

Just do them on the concrete step. If necessary, touch them up with a bastard cut file.

Thanks, the advice I expect.

I bought a worksharp for my current school and my first school. A bit like a motorised “scary sharp” system. Faster than a tormek, it’s so simple I teach the kids how to use it so they can sharpen their own chisels. Once you have all the blades at the right angle it’s very fast. New blades take maybe ten minutes to get cleaned up and to the right angle. When you do the initial shaping/sharpening it does go through a fair bit of abrasive paper and the replacements aren’t cheap, but I’m going to experiment with buying plain paper and using spray adhesive.

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@dog said in Sharpening Thread:

What tool would you people recommend for sharpening chisels, knives, plane blades etc.

Its not the sharpening , it’s getting the 0.563 deg micro bevel

Didn’t jack buy a similar machine to the one mick posted a while back

or have a look here,

@tolovar said in Sharpening Thread:

Its not the sharpening , it’s getting the 0.563 deg micro bevel

Nah, it’s .565, and don’t forget to strop it with baby powder.

Take it to the tool who has a sharpening business :)

The best bloke I’ve ever seen at sharpening, until I went to Japan (and the blokes there barely equal him) is Mathew A or Toolin’ Around from a few other forums.

Matty’s done a lot of stuff round my place, he prefers to use a grinding wheel moving at less than 300rpm - I just whack it on my little lathe actually, and polish (microbevel if you must) with a bit of MDF with some green stuff on it running at the same speed.

I think I’ve got one of those blue wheels, or it might be white. Mat sharpens often, and as do the Japanese knife guys, checks for sharp by dragging the blade across the flat of his thumbnail - if it sticks it’s sharp enough.

Sorry - no fancy gadgets needed.

He did give a demo at someone’s place in the WWF hay days, but I don’t think anyone could see beyond the fact that there weren’t any fancy machines involved!

I can get razor sharp the old way with a grinder (sometimes even use an angle grinder on the flat) and a couple of oil stones and it’s actually faster than the worksharp doohickey. The worksharp allows a complete novice (ie a school student) to get a razor edge with no chance of overheating or wrecking the angle.


I simply use a bench grinder, one wheel is white the other felt with a bit of green paste, a cheap set up but good enough. My skill set means I can usually get the bevel to about 20 degrees of what I am chasing. Seriously I do sometimes get the stones out but not often, the felt wheel keeps chisels and plane blades sharp, once the micro bevel is seriously out of whack I do get a course stone out and reset the main bevel using one of those Veritas guides.

I have a Tormek only because it can sharpen my jointer and thicknesser blades. For everything else I reckon a couple of DMT diamond plates will be good enough.

I have the Worksharp that Mick mentioned.

It’s good once you have all your tools sorted with regards to angles and polished backs.

Any narrower tools such as chisels and block plane blades which fit in the built in guide under the machine are a breeze to maintain.

It’s not great for wide plane blades which you have to sharpen on top with a roller guide, although I mostly do this freehand and achieve reasonable results.

Great for quick touch ups.
Sharpen more often and it is quicker and easier.
With a Worksharp it is so simple that sharpening often is not a chore.

New tools can take a bit to get the angles right and old tools can take even longer.

The new Tormek is on my list because I have a pile of old tools which need a fair bit of work, I’ll probably start on a grinder which I have good sharpening wheels on and then progress to the tormek.

Mick, I buy sand paper in discs, use a wad punch to cut the centre hole (using a used disc as a template) and then stick with spray on contact cement.
When you remove a disc just use a spray of contact cleaner to remove any glue residue.

Actually, I seem to remember getting sticky back sandpaper discs when I was working on the boats. Most machines tend to take velcro discs now, but I’m sure someone must still sell the sticky back stuff. Will try to get some to replenish my supply.


Sold my Tormek about 6 months ago. Just wasnt using it enough. Got a Karcher K5 with the coin which I use a lot more and had enough left over for some other stuff. Gunna buy some Arkansas stones for when I need to sharpen the good kitchen knives

@JMick In the boatbuilding world many years ago we used to use normal sandpaper with “disc cement” a kind of gum that you could reuse a few times (can’t remember how many), before recoating was needed.

@bitingmidge Yeah, I know the disc cement, it’s like less sticky contact adhesive. No one uses it anymore as most new stationary machines come with velcro attached and it’s easy enough to convert older ones to take velcro. Sticky back paper discs are cheap as chips, unlike my time.



Thanks , I’ll have a look at a WorkSharp

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