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Cabinet Scraper Burnisher - Which of the three?

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bp122

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Hi all

I was just wondering if anyone has tried the three types of cabinet scraper burnishers and what their experience has been. If anyone could give a comparison, that would be even better.

1. https://www.axminster.co.uk/lie-nielsen ... her-950933 - standard burnisher that looks like a screwdriver with a blunt end

2. https://www.workshopheaven.com/arno-car ... isher.html - Arno one which is available on workshop heaven

3. https://www.axminster.co.uk/veritas-var ... her-510438 - Veritas Variable burnisher

I understand that they all do the same thing differently, but I am just curious.
 

MikeG.

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You know those round steel thingies that come with a set of carving knives? The ones you see experienced chefs and waiters (and butchers) wielding back and forth at the speed of light over the edges of their knives? Well, they make a great burnisher. I doubt they cost £46.....
 

jeremyduncombe

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I have never come across the Veritas Variable Burnisher before - looks like a solution searching for a non-existent problem. I definitely wouldn’t buy it, and I say that as a satisfied user of a Veritas sharpening jig ( until I realised it was quicker to learn how to do it properly freehand, whereupon the jig went in the back of a drawer ). Any straight, reasonably hard steel rod will do the job including old screwdrivers. Raising a burr on a scraper needs a bit of practice, but it is not inherently difficult. The usual problem is overdoing it, all you need is a tiny burr that you can feel with your thumb, and your scraper will work just fine.
 

kevinlightfoot

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A polished piece of 3/8 hss bar is very good I use an old spindle gouge,a lot cheaper than a purpose made one from a retailer.
 

Inspector

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I clamped a board in the drill press and drilled a hole the size of an dull chainsaw file. I lowered the table and chucked the file so the tang was in the board and then went though the grits to polish it. I have had it for almost 40 years and it still works. Always intended to handle it but haven't yet. Maybe sometime in the next 40. ;) Now I'd just get a carbide or HSS rod from one of the selling sites

Pete
 

jeremyduncombe

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bp122":2o9lhh7p said:
Hi all

I was just wondering if anyone has tried the three types of cabinet scraper burnishers and what their experience has been. If anyone could give a comparison, that would be even better.
Apologies, I realise I haven’t answered the OP’s question. I haven’t tried any of these three burnishers, so can’t give a comparison. Cheap and cheerful works fine for me.
 

bp122

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Thanks all. That is indeed very helpful.

jeremyduncombe":1zz6zsfj said:
Apologies, I realise I haven’t answered the OP’s question. I haven’t tried any of these three burnishers, so can’t give a comparison. Cheap and cheerful works fine for me.
Quite the opposite. It answered the questions I should have asked but didn't. (hammer)

I have got some old screwdrivers about somewhere, which came out of a tool box from the 1800s. See if they can be re purposed. Failing that I shall look for a HSS rod.
 

AndyT

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I'm normally firmly in the cheap and cheerful camp. I used to use the stem of an old HSS router bit, with the cutter buried in a handle.
But somehow I lost the knack of raising a burr on a scraper.
I've since been given one of the Arno carbide burnishers. * It's excellent, quick easy and reliable. Great results every time.
So yes, sometimes a tool made for the job is worth having.


* Thanks again, Secret Santa.
 

fezman

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I’ve tried the bog std type like the axi one. It was a Crown tools one i picked up cheap at the harrogate show a couple of years ago. I thought it worked ok, but i always struggled to get decent shavings.
After watching a Matt Estlea video on the Arno burnisher , i bought one (had some xmas amazon vouchers) from Workshop Heaven.
The difference was astounding. So much so , the crown burnisher is at the back of a drawer somewhere, unlikely to see the light of day again.
Then disaster struck. I was sharpening a scraper when a crack happened and the pointy bit of the burnisher fell out - looked like the glue had cracked.
A quick email to WH and a new one was in the post before i had chance to return the old one.

So the Arno burnisher is excellent just like the WH customer service.
 

Eric The Viking

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I get on fine with my Crown Tools one.

The steel of the scraper must make a difference to how well it works though. My hand scraper is just a steel rectangle from Bristol Design (had it for decades), but the Crown burnisher works well on my Record #80 iron, too. I suspect both are fairly soft steel as they seem to sharpen easily.
 

lurker

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I just use a rod salvaged from a dot matrix printer.

However I seem to remember there was a long thread on here (quite a while ago) where folks were putting a short length of hss bar/ old drill bit into a shaped bit of wood something like your third example.
 

Sideways

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I'm not skilled with the cabinet scraper or forming the burr so take this under advisement, BUT
I bought the veritas tri-burnisher thingy from the off.
http://www.veritastools.com/Products/Page.aspx?p=140
That one is a stick with a handle, but a special rounded semi triangular cross section gives three different radii along the edges. It is super highly polished. The feel of using this along an edge is far far smoother than when I tried using an old screwdriver or a ground piece of carbide. I suspect it is a better tool for the job than. Whether it's worth the cost to more skilled hands, I can't say.
I have been able to form a burr and take some good shavings with my scrapers, I think I just lack technique and practice to reshape the burr quickly and without faff. It's on my to-do list this year.
Cheers
 

ED65

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Again, apologies, but I'm not going to answer your question but instead offer another alternative way to end up with a rod burnisher (and a top-drawer one at that).

Buy a set of carbide burrs from China; a set of 20 will cost around a tenner. Choose one which you don't like the look of (you'll be epoxying this into a handle). You can buy suitable handles such as the lovely walnut Holtzapffel-pattern ones from WH at the posh end (£7.50 before P&P) to a Python no. 0 at the utilitarian end (two quid or less), but this is an ideal opportunity to make your own from a small piece of posh wood you couldn't bear to throw out 'just in case'.

Now sit back and bask in the I-made-it-myself-for-less glow, but not before congratulating yourself on acquiring 19 carbide burrs for nowt 8)
 

bp122

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Thanks guys.

I think I'll start with the DIY option, as I do have some stuff lying around.
But I do need to get a good scraper to begin with. I have seen some folks do it out of old saws etc, but in order to give myself half a chance of it all working, I need to eliminate at lest one variable.

Any suggestions on that first scraper? Clifton ones are recommended I see, but what do you guys use?
 

Phil Pascoe

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MikeG.":1uuihr5w said:
You know those round steel thingies that come with a set of carving knives? The ones you see experienced chefs and waiters (and butchers) wielding back and forth at the speed of light over the edges of their knives? Well, they make a great burnisher. I doubt they cost £46.....
Good - and cheap for drawbore m & t's, as well.
 

ED65

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bp122":3ro2rkgp said:
Any suggestions on that first scraper? Clifton ones are recommended I see, but what do you guys use?
I have the Crown set, one of the few bits of woodworking gear I bought new. They're fine; I wouldn't say I'd recommend them exactly but I wouldn't not recommend them which is perhaps more important.

But I actually have done far more scraping using homemade scrapers of a couple of types than with conventional card scrapers. Mostly these days I use a set of scrapers that use Stanley-knife blades set into small wooden handles, and they have one super advantage in that the sharpening process avoids raising a burr as a separate operation.

I just take off the remnants of the old burr on whatever honing surface I'm using – either side of a Norton combo stone (pretty much the only reason I've kept it) or a 1,000-grit diamond plate – and then do a counted number of strokes on the edge, using the resultant burr. Process from blunt to back to work, every single time, is just about 30 seconds.
 

thetyreman

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the clifton burnisher is very good as well, you can definitely use screwdriver shafts by the way, it's all the technique, I have found about 3-5 strokes is all it needs, when I first started out I did about 30-40 strokes and crushed the burr.

this is the best video I have found on sharpening scrapers https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6KqPFQHqWJg
 

ED65

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Not to take anything away from Chris Tribe's one but if you could do with watching someone explain and demonstrate how to sharpen a scraper there are two vids that I feel are must-watches for demystifying the process, but especially for getting over the idea that the burr has to be fairly pronounced to work.

So anyway, the first one I've linked to once or twice before is a demo being given by William Ng, and it shows brilliantly just how light the burr can actually be:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nz6EpQu2HRo
Watch the whole thing, but the sweet bit is at 10:24.

The second is, I feel, criminally underwatched. It's been up since September of 2018 but has only received 7,649 views to date which is tragic for how good it is. It's from Fine Woodworking and features Peter Galbert. As the title says it's sharpening a curved scraper but the technique is equally applicable to straight scrapers as he explains:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_qY6oMaFAbk

What's great about this one is he shows how the various edges creating during the process are all usable in their ways. This contrasts strongly with conventional teaching which implies, or directly insists, that you can/should only use the burr created at the last stage by burnishing. This always struck me as being silly, you don't sand with just one grit so why should a scraper only be one way?
 
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