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By Jacob
#677798
Paul Chapman wrote:
Jacob wrote:
Paul Chapman wrote:...
But it's not just about sharpness. Very often it's about matching your tools and techniques to the wood. I was planing lots of Sapele today. It was horrible stuff with all the usual reversing grain. No matter what I did I couldn't get a decent finish with my normal planes - just lots of tearout and general roughness. So I got out my scraper planes (the large Veritas and small LN #212) and had a silky smooth finish in no time :D

Cheers :wink:

Paul

It's sapele which set me off on the perfect planing hunt. It's not hard all over, quite the opposite in parts, and very crossed reversing grain. Some parts impossible to plane even with my LV la smoother. OK it might have been possible if I'd spent several hours crazy sharpening and then repeating between strokes, but I gave up and bought a Bosch ROS.


You should have tried a scraper plane, Jacob. No need for any crazy sharpening :wink: I've yet to find a piece of wood with difficult grain that can't be tamed with a scraper.

Cheers :wink:

Paul
I might try it one day. Stanley 80 is pretty good but slow if there's a lot to do.
NB I'm not religiously committed to hand processes, I just like the idea and the results, but in the end it's getting it done wot counts.
User avatar
By Jacob
#677815
Derek Cohen (Perth, Oz) wrote:.....The danger of crushing timber fibres rather than severing them cleanly is an ever-present risk. Why would you wish to put yourself in this situation?
I don't put myself in that situation; I'm not insane. :roll:
If the tool is "crushing timber fibres rather than severing them cleanly" I hone it a bit more until it cuts! Is this the wrong thing to do?
In fact "crushing timber fibres rather than severing them cleanly" defines a blunt blade, which answers your other question.

If an edge "crushing timber fibres rather than severing them cleanly" it needs "sharpening". Just thought I would repeat that for those who don't get it. :roll:
Do you really not get it? is it a wind up or are you all in a trance of some sort? :lol:
User avatar
By Jacob
#677930
St.J wrote:........
In short - stropping makes my paring tools seem sharper because they're polished......
St.John
Candle wax has a similar effect, particularly on a plane. It can transform it as though freshly sharpened and set, for just a quick squiggle.
"Seems" sharper is the same as "is" sharper. In other words there's more to sharpening than meets the eye :shock:
By David C
#678001
I have a black "surgical" Arkansas stone. It's too fine for woodwork purposes. Probably why it's termed "surgical".


Jacob,

I think these conversations would go better if you did not express your opinions as facts.

Arkansas stones were highly prized by cabinetmakers for more than a hundred years.

David
User avatar
By bugbear
#678002
Cheshirechappie wrote:
In the 18th and 19th centuries, when the only sharpening stones readily available were the likes of Turkey, Charnley Forest and Welsh Slate, stropping on dressed leather (which was fairly cheaply and easily available) was a realistic way of quickly refining an edge. (I've never tried this, but I think you can strop an edge on the palm of your hand; seem to remember this written in one of Charles Hayward's many books.) Now that the technology of sharpening has developed, it would be surprising if no better method of achieving a very fine edge than stropping had been developed. However, that doesn't mean that stropping is dead - it quite plainly worked very well for many craftsmen over several generations, and much fine work was done by them to prove the point; so it will still work just as well.


Absolutely - the historical use of stropping exists in a context where Arkansas, let alone waterstones hadn't been introduced. Even when Ark stones were available they were hugely more expensive than a strop.

And for carvers, a slightly yielding strop is ideal for the many curved gouge edges involved.

BugBear
User avatar
By Jacob
#678006
David C wrote:
I have a black "surgical" Arkansas stone. It's too fine for woodwork purposes. Probably why it's termed "surgical".
........
Arkansas stones were highly prized by cabinetmakers for more than a hundred years.

David
As were/are many others.
What I'm saying, and having to repeat over and over again, is that the "surgical' sharpness possible with the right kit, is not necessarily desirable ALL the time for ALL woodworkers, and in fact could be counter productive for those wasting their time on creating and maintaining insanely sharp edges, sharper than required for the job in hand.
To which one of the (very stupid) replies tends to be to imply that woodwork which does not require insanely sharp edges is somehow inferior.
Crazy sharpening is particularly unhelpful to beginners IMHO as it sets the fence too high, whereas a simple trad routine with double sided oil stone is good enough for starters, in fact with only a few add-ons is good enough for life!
By Philipp
#678007
Hi Folks,

Haven't read all the posts in this thread, so I hope the following has not been written in this thread before.

When grain sizes are being compared to each other it is essential to know how they were determined. Grain size determination can be done by different analytical methods, each giving different results. Even one and the same analytical method, using the same equipment but in different laboratories can give different results.
Also the material itself (i.e. the geometry of its particles/crystals) has a strong influence on the measured grain size.

Certainly, a "10-micron-powder" (whatever that may mean: D100 (haha)? D90? D50?) is very most likely coarser than a "1-micron-powder" (again: whatever that may mean: D100 (haha)? D90? D50?).

But assuming that a powder with a median grain size of, say, 0.5 µm is considerably finer("better") than a powder (perhaps with another chemistry or from another supplier) with, say, 0.8 µm is complete nonsense.

Regards, Philipp (not caring about the digit behind the decimal point)
User avatar
By Jacob
#678009
bugbear wrote:
Cheshirechappie wrote:
In the 18th and 19th centuries, when the only sharpening stones readily available were the likes of Turkey, Charnley Forest and Welsh Slate, stropping on dressed leather (which was fairly cheaply and easily available) was a realistic way of quickly refining an edge. (I've never tried this, but I think you can strop an edge on the palm of your hand; seem to remember this written in one of Charles Hayward's many books.) Now that the technology of sharpening has developed, it would be surprising if no better method of achieving a very fine edge than stropping had been developed. However, that doesn't mean that stropping is dead - it quite plainly worked very well for many craftsmen over several generations, and much fine work was done by them to prove the point; so it will still work just as well.


Absolutely - the historical use of stropping exists in a context where Arkansas, let alone waterstones hadn't been introduced. Even when Ark stones were available they were hugely more expensive than a strop.

And for carvers, a slightly yielding strop is ideal for the many curved gouge edges involved.

BugBear
Reality check - Arkansas stone was introduced in the paleozoic era, stropping (and sharpening) has been going on since the paleolithic.
User avatar
By Paul Chapman
#678014
Jacob wrote:Reality check - Arkansas stone was introduced in the paleozoic era, stropping (and sharpening) has been going on since the paleolithic.


Blimey, Jacob, you must be older than we thought :shock: :lol:

Cheers :wink:

Paul
User avatar
By Kalimna
#678018
Jacob - sorry to be the geological era pedant here, but it is highly unlikely that stropping was around in the paleolithic. Twas only stone tools then - not sure how you would go about stropping a flint axe.
On another point, your arkansas stone may be 'surgical' grade, but it will produce an edge not nearly fine enough for a surgical tool in the modern era. What may have been appropriate and acceptable in antiquity (surgical or woodwork - the line blurs somewhat!) has now been superseded by modern techniques (laser cut for scalpel blades, I think), if it was good enough a couple of hundred years ago, that is only because there was nothing better at the time.
I do appreciate your experience, and pragmatic approach to woodworking, but it really would be nice and make a pleasant change if you appreciated that yours isnt the only acceptable way of doing things, and some folk have different reasons for doing woodwork the way they do.

A maxim (or is that axiom?) I use at work - 'If there truly was only one good way of doing things, then everyone would be doing it without exception'.

Cheers,
Adam
User avatar
By Jacob
#678024
Kalimna wrote:Jacob - sorry to be the geological era pedant here, but it is highly unlikely that stropping was around in the paleolithic. Twas only stone tools then - not sure how you would go about stropping a flint axe.
Polished stone axes would most likely have been done with abrasives on leather as both were available and it wouldn't have taken much to work out the technique
...
I do appreciate your experience, and pragmatic approach to woodworking, but it really would be nice and make a pleasant change if you appreciated that yours isnt the only acceptable way of doing things, and some folk have different reasons for doing woodwork the way they do......
The thing is it took me some time to get to rounded bevel and very quick honing/sharpening and I thought it would be churlish to keep it to myself. I would say the same to you; "it really would be nice and make a pleasant change if you appreciated that yours isnt the only acceptable way of doing things".
Also I am intrigued by the rounded bevel thing and the fact that so many people don't get it - there's a bit of a sociological phenomenon going on here - could be somebody's thesis?
Also my name was mentioned in this thread, having kept out of it at first. If people comment on what I do, I may well return the compliment!
User avatar
By Paul Chapman
#678026
Jacob wrote:
Kalimna wrote:Jacob - sorry to be the geological era pedant here, but it is highly unlikely that stropping was around in the paleolithic. Twas only stone tools then - not sure how you would go about stropping a flint axe.
Polished stone axes would most likely have been done with abrasives on leather as both were available and it wouldn't have taken much to work out the technique


And then some bloke invented the wheel and they thought: 'Ah, now we can build a honing guide' :idea: :lol:

Cheers :wink:

Paul
User avatar
By bugbear
#678027
Jacob wrote:
bugbear wrote:
Cheshirechappie wrote:
In the 18th and 19th centuries, when the only sharpening stones readily available were the likes of Turkey, Charnley Forest and Welsh Slate, stropping on dressed leather (which was fairly cheaply and easily available) was a realistic way of quickly refining an edge. (I've never tried this, but I think you can strop an edge on the palm of your hand; seem to remember this written in one of Charles Hayward's many books.) Now that the technology of sharpening has developed, it would be surprising if no better method of achieving a very fine edge than stropping had been developed. However, that doesn't mean that stropping is dead - it quite plainly worked very well for many craftsmen over several generations, and much fine work was done by them to prove the point; so it will still work just as well.


Absolutely - the historical use of stropping exists in a context where Arkansas, let alone waterstones hadn't been introduced. Even when Ark stones were available they were hugely more expensive than a strop.

And for carvers, a slightly yielding strop is ideal for the many curved gouge edges involved.

BugBear
Reality check - Arkansas stone was introduced in the paleozoic era, stropping (and sharpening) has been going on since the paleolithic.


I was talking about its introduction into the UK, imported from the USA, starting in the 1880s. I assume you knew this, and missed the point deliberately for reasons of your own. Please do TRY and be more constructive in discussions; at the moment your presence in a thread almost inevitably turns it into a cr*p fest.

BugBear

(I wonder what they were using "useless" surgically sharp edges for in the paleozoic - were they crazy sharpening even then?)
User avatar
By Kalimna
#678054
Jacob - i not a paleohistorian, but Im pretty sure stone axes were chipped (like flint), not honed. And your reflection of my comment back upon myself is poor - I do appreciate your way of working (as stated in my post), but I happen to prefer honing guides etc. So, whilst you have a vastly greater amount of experience than I do (in life as well as woodworking no doubt), you dont appear to have mastered the art of checking your facts regarding anothers opinion before commenting upon them.

Cheers,
Adam