Moderators: Random Orbital Bob, nev, CHJ, Noel, Charley

Thanks for the positive comments Keith 66. I'm glad you found it useful.

There'll be a follow up on hacksawing (and other metal cutting methods & tools) to come soon.

Re your comments on silver versus lead/pewter, thanks for that. Thinking about it, that makes complete sense, but never having done any jewellery making, I didn't know that before, & didn't even think about it

Q: Do you use the "modern" diamond files for jewellery too? If so any comments you have (pos or neg) would be most welcome, 'cos like jewellery, I've never used them (except V fine ones for just touching up lathe tool tips).


By Keith 66
Im not an expert by any means, i learnt a bit from a technician i worked with who was an acomplished silversmith of awesome skill. I believe the modern diamond files are sometimes used but the rule keeping files for separate materials still applies.
By patrickjchase
heimlaga wrote:Theese days there as far as I know only two decent file makers in the world.
-Pferd in Germany
-Sandvik nowadays in Portugal

Corradi in Italy is very good, and actually makes a lot of the files that Pferd sells. For example the "Pferd Swiss-Pattern Corinox" files are all made in Italy by Corradi ("Corinox" is a Corradi trademark)

Grobet-Vallorbe in Switzerland makes very good files, including ones sold under the labels of other makers. For example, needle files branded as "Nicholson", "Bahco", "Grobet Swiss" and "Vallorbe" are all identically made and appear to come from the same (UVM-Vallorbe) Swiss factory.

Bahco is a conglomerate that includes Sandvik and Oberg and probably others.

Blu-Dan in Austria makes good files under both their own label and for others. For example I have a box of "Ultra Chrome" ski files that I purchased a while back that are rebranded Blu-Dans and quite good (similar Rc72 coating hardness to Valtitan/Corinox).
By patrickjchase
johnnyb wrote:My guess is the sandvik will be made by tome feteira. I guess portugal is first world enough to make good uns but backward enough to be able to pay peanuts to the pool of skilled workers that make these things. Old English/american files in comparison are to soft with a loss of bite. Modern technology old skills. I've Lways found milenicut files to be outstanding with horn and hardwood especially if you sharpen them with a diamond card.

Tome Feteira manufactures tools for Blu-Dan (nominally an Austrian maker) but I'm not aware of them doing the same for Sandvik.

Sandvik and Bahco are part of the US-based Snap-On group, and have pretty heavily globalized supply chains. Most of their files continue to be pretty decent though iMO. I use their mill and saw files quite a lot.
Thanks for the extra info Patrick. I had a brief association with Sandvik in the early '70s and visited their factory in Sweden. Also Bahco, and Oberg. At that time all three were separate companies, in separate towns, but all three Swedish. Sandvik was the biggest, and as well as saws, they made a lot of machine tooling.

But that was then, and as with so many other areas of trade & industry, all sorts of conglomerations, takeovers, and joint ventures have happened in the tools business.

So thanks for the extra info - I'd not heard of the others you mentioned until your post, but as this whole thread is now a sticky, your info is there for others to find. Thanks.

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By Robbo3
Our woodturning club has an American visitor every year from the Los Angeles area.
He tells us that a member of his local club runs a business that sharpens files (he thinks) by blasting them with a water/sand jet.
It's a father & son business & the technique was developed by themselves.
The owner takes files from club members, sharpens them, rejecting any not suitable, then posts them back along with an invoice. The costs are cheaper than buying a replacement file.
A search produced Boggs Tool Sharpening which seems to fit with the information given.
Any one have any further knowledge?
Sorry for delayed response Robbo (& all) but I've been away from my "confuser" for some weeks. Personally I haven't heard of the water jet process (but that only means that I haven't heard of it before). It seems to me that in theory at least this should work as well as the fairly common weak acid dip/strong wire brushing method. But please note that such ideas only work if the file has been damaged by a rust coating, or dead paint and other gunge.

AFAIK, IF the teeth themselves have lost their edge or have chipped badly (please do NOT let your files bang together - sorry, hobby horse!) then at best all you'll get from that process with a worn turnip, etc cut file is new file that may do some duty as a smooth cut tool - WITH the risk of a scratchy surface finish.

BUT, as said, that's only what I've heard.

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By Robbo3
Had a visit from the American turner today & he confirmed that the company is run by the Boggs family -
He has kindly taken two of my old clapped out files to see if they can be restored.
I should get them back in about a year!
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By marcros
AES, or anybody

Could you add to this thread with any comments about the use of files on a lathe? Are the same files used as described above, or are there dedicated lathe files? I am thinking for use on ferrous and non ferrous metals, as well as engineering plastics, acrylics or ebonite.

By TFrench
As far as I'm aware (sure AES or one of the proper engineers will be able to confirm) a lathe file has safe edges on both sides. Arceurotrade sell them.
Agreed, there ARE "proper" lathe files, and they do (usually) have 2 safe edges. In wasn't aware that ArcEurotrade have them (good company IME BTW, usual disclaimers) and I thought lathe files were pretty rare these days. I have just a couple I inherited from my dad.

Within reason, IMO you can use just about any file on the lathe (NOT a Dreadnought for example!) and I believe that jewellers & watchmakers often use Swiss and needle files on the lathe for final dimensioning of small pivots and the like. But as said, using a sensible lathe speed, a suitable file for the job and its material (basically you're fine finishing), you can use just about any file that suits. Or even emery of wet n dry wrapped round a file. And if you must have a 2nd safe edge on a file you can of course grind it away for all (or part) of its length.

BUT, PLEEZ, whatever file you use, DO be careful and ALWAYS use a handle and NEVER just a bare tang - catches can occur sometimes and if they do they WILL happen at a speed which will definitely NOT allow you to react in time. Same applies to using a file in the pillar drill.

"Lecture rant" over.

P.S. @TFrench. Thanks for the "proper engineer" cachet above, but looking at your current thread "you ain't no slouch yerself mate"!
By TFrench
I'm just a YouTube educated bodger! I got this lathe file a couple of weeks ago, it's a beauty. NOS and with an integral handle.

Link to the arc lathe files

Sent from my SM-G973F using Tapatalk
Yup, that's very much what the 2 from my dad look like. Really didn't realise they're still made/available.

Just to "reinforce" the above safety message - this type clearly does not need a handle, but EVERY other type does, including Swiss & needle files (for which little wooden handles are available).
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By Trevanion