Sharpening....

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TA09

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Hello😁
Just finished restoring my Ml8 lathe, changed bearings, link belt and took it all apart to clean and paint. I am very proud of it and hope it will give me decades of use😁.
With the lathe it came with Myford metal turning tools and Wawood? wood turning tools. Never heard of the brand, but made in Sheffield so it must be good. Anyway I need a way to sharpen them. My late uncle used only oilstones and freehand at the bench grinder. Is it worth to try this or is it better to buy a Tormek, Proedge or a grinder with jigs?
I have noticed all of these systems are quite dearer than a couple of oilstones and a bench grinder. Are they worth it?
Seems alot of money just to keep the tools sharp, but I dont know. What do you use and reccomend? Thanks😁👍
 

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novocaine

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Metal work tools will need a grinder and a slip stone. be like your late uncle, embrace the skills. :)
wood working tools will need a grinder for shaping and a decent stone.
yes you could spend a lot of money on a tomak etc. or you could learn how to do it and get along just fine free hand.

now delete this thread before it goes the usual route of a sharpening thread.
 

TA09

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Is the community so splitted on the sharpening subject🤣?
 

Trainee neophyte

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Is the community so splitted on the sharpening subject🤣?

Sometimes. People have views.

I'm just dipping a toe into these murky waters, so I would like to know what I need, too. I am currently sharpening using a bench grinder (Lidl 's finest) with a belt sander on one end. Using the belt sander (a linisher would be far too posh a name for it) and a homemade jig seems to work quite well. I don't have any way of honing the inside curve of the gouges, so I am using a bit of mdf cut to shape (using the gouge, which is tricky because the first time it will be blunt) and polishing paste. It all seems to work, sort of, but I'm sure I could do better.
 

Tris

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Grab a copy of Keith Rowley's Woodturning- a foundation course, or Mike Darlow's Fundamentals of Woodturning. Both books have good descriptions of sharpening and ways to make your own jigs & platforms for sharpening.
 

Phil Pascoe

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I expect the tools are Mawhood. They'll be fine, they just don't hold an edge for anything like as long as HSS tools do. You can grind them on a bench grinder, but they are difficult to keep to a profile without a jig, and it's very wasteful of steel. You'll need a better wheel than they tend to come fitted with, though.
One beautiful little lathe - you'll need a chuck suitable for wood, though. +1 for the Rowley.

T.N. - it's not usual to hone the insides of gouges, indeed many turners never hone anything. Once in a while I'll hone a skew, but that's it.
 

TA09

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Phil thanks for the info about the woodturning tools😁. On the lathe I have a Axminster Evolution sk114 chuck. I have not bought any jaws yet.
 

CHJ

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Lack of knowledge regarding Members location inhibits the possibility of offers of help somewhat, even with current visiting restrictions someone starting at the bottom of the learning curve could be shown the bare essentials at the budget end of the sharpening needs that would be adequate for the first 1-2 years until skills refinement and understanding of tool use needs develop refined sharpening kit.

This lasted me some time whilst I honed my skills

This is where I started (some links to UKW threads may no longer work due to forum format changes)

Another link is here

That very basic grinder motor and another from the same stable are still going strong, albeit with some wheel upgrades to suit wood and metal turning tools. It's the Wheel quality that's important, the motor just needs adequate power and to run true and smooth.
 

Cabinetman

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Identical lathe to mine, except I never had the metalwork tools or attachment, I’ve had it for 45 years from brand-new and it’s always been a treat to use. It’s got an old washing machine motor underneath, I find I use a 3 jaw chuck on it quite often when I need to turn little bits of nylon etc. Ian
 

A.R

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Hello😁
Just finished restoring my Ml8 lathe, changed bearings, link belt and took it all apart to clean and paint. I am very proud of it and hope it will give me decades of use😁.
With the lathe it came with Myford metal turning tools and Wawood? wood turning tools. Never heard of the brand, but made in Sheffield so it must be good. Anyway I need a way to sharpen them. My late uncle used only oilstones and freehand at the bench grinder. Is it worth to try this or is it better to buy a Tormek, Proedge or a grinder with jigs?
I have noticed all of these systems are quite dearer than a couple of oilstones and a bench grinder. Are they worth it?
Seems alot of money just to keep the tools sharp, but I dont know. What do you use and reccomend? Thanks😁👍

Hi TAO9 I have been experimenting on ways to sharpen normal paring chisels other than using oil stones . I made two 7.875" flat Discs out of 0.75" thick Birch plywood.to use on the right hand side of the Head stock. To each of these I fixed some P400 grit wet and dry paper to the face of one disc P120 on the other disc. To use my system you will need two Right Hand Side face plates too. I use the P120 grit to grind the primary angle on the chisel using a tri-square on the front side of the chisel to make sure I get a nice square end. Then by slightly altering the angle of presentation to the P120 disk I grind this until I can see a fine burr on the edge of the chisel. I then turn the chisel over to grind the flat face until it shines like a mirror. At this stage you can leather strop the end of the chisel with a little paste on it until the burr has been removed. There isn't many woodworkers who have the flat face on a chisel as smooth and as shiney as this. If done properly you will have a chisel that is so sharp you will be able to pare a bit of wood on the end grain and it will be as good as using a plane on face side of a piece of wood.
I think that with a little bit of thought you should be able to grind and sharpen gouges in a similar way, by grinding the angle the same way but, you will have to use a fine slip stone on the other side of the gouge to remove the burr. As a strop you could fix a piece thin new leather to a curved piece of wood using tape wrapped around it to hold it in place until the adhesive has cured, about 24 hours.The adhesive to use for this is Araldite or something similar. By the way to fix the P120 and P400 to the plywood discs I use 50mm wide good quality double sided adhesive tape. To remove the discs when worn out I use an electric paint stripper (a bit like a hair drier) . Start at the edge and using a pair of long nose pliers gently lift the edge of the disc while still heating the rest of the disc. The face plate should just fall off as you heat the abrasive paper.
Just as an aside when I bought my Myford lathe seventy (yes70)years ago I had the foresight to have two taps made for the right hand and left hand side of the spindle so that I could make my own face plates out of any close grained hardwood, at the time I paid £4.50 for the two taps
 

TA09

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Hi TAO9 I have been experimenting on ways to sharpen normal paring chisels other than using oil stones . I made two 7.875" flat Discs out of 0.75" thick Birch plywood.to use on the right hand side of the Head stock. To each of these I fixed some P400 grit wet and dry paper to the face of one disc P120 on the other disc. To use my system you will need two Right Hand Side face plates too. I use the P120 grit to grind the primary angle on the chisel using a tri-square on the front side of the chisel to make sure I get a nice square end. Then by slightly altering the angle of presentation to the P120 disk I grind this until I can see a fine burr on the edge of the chisel. I then turn the chisel over to grind the flat face until it shines like a mirror. At this stage you can leather strop the end of the chisel with a little paste on it until the burr has been removed. There isn't many woodworkers who have the flat face on a chisel as smooth and as shiney as this. If done properly you will have a chisel that is so sharp you will be able to pare a bit of wood on the end grain and it will be as good as using a plane on face side of a piece of wood.
I think that with a little bit of thought you should be able to grind and sharpen gouges in a similar way, by grinding the angle the same way but, you will have to use a fine slip stone on the other side of the gouge to remove the burr. As a strop you could fix a piece thin new leather to a curved piece of wood using tape wrapped around it to hold it in place until the adhesive has cured, about 24 hours.The adhesive to use for this is Araldite or something similar. By the way to fix the P120 and P400 to the plywood discs I use 50mm wide good quality double sided adhesive tape. To remove the discs when worn out I use an electric paint stripper (a bit like a hair drier) . Start at the edge and using a pair of long nose pliers gently lift the edge of the disc while still heating the rest of the disc. The face plate should just fall off as you heat the abrasive paper.
Just as an aside when I bought my Myford lathe seventy (yes70)years ago I had the foresight to have two taps made for the right hand and left hand side of the spindle so that I could make my own face plates out of any close grained hardwood, at the time I paid £4.50 for the two taps

Thank you very much for this reply😁👍
I already love my little lathe and will keep it until something major wears out. I have bought many parts so I have two of each if something should break on the lathe. And I will try yours suggestion about birch plywood and sanding paper!
 

AdrianUK

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Hi TA09,
When I first started turning, many many years ago, retailed jigs were few and far between, so free hand on the grinder and stones was the way to go. Since returning to woodturning few years back, I bought the Oneway system, and whilst pricy, have not regretted it. Yes, freehand is a great skill, but, I find a quick tune up using the Oneway jigs means lathe time is only interrupted for a minute or so when a tool dulls, especially gouges. Not great for all my lathe tools, such as skews etc, so still need to manual sharpen, but for the most used tools, the system such as Oneway is a real benefit and time saver. Hope this helps. Ade
 

Phil Pascoe

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Why use up a tool potentially costing several tens of pounds two or three times faster than is necessary? Even with freehand experience you will take off more steel than you need to, and if you make a mistake probably several times more.
A decent jig saves material (money), time and frustration and gives a much more consistently shaped edge.
 

Lons

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Sharpening threads used to turn into war zones mainly due to a member no longer present on the forum but you will find there are loads of different methods all with their own devotes. My advice would be don't spend a lot of money until you discover what suits you and you might find you actually need to spend very little however if using an existing grinder you really do need a better wheel, preferably wider and larger, slow would be good as well.
BTW I'm one of those who never hones a turning gouge or chisel as imo it's totally unnecessary and I "sharpen" little and often, just a very light touch up depending on the material I'm working, you soon get a feel for it.

I have a bench grinderwith white wheels, a Tormek T7 and a Sorby pro-edge the latter being used almost exclusively for turning tools, I'm not saying it's the best method just that I find it very quick, efficient and easily repeatable angles so suits me perfectly but they are not a cheap item and there are possibilities to adapt a simple belt sander.
I've also used the wood faceplate/abrasive method but unless permanently fitted to an outboard spindle or separate motor it's far too inconvenient to be of use.

Just my twopennerth we're all different and you'll soon find your own preferred methods.

Lovely little Myford BTW. (y)
 

Robbo3

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The hard tools to sharpen are the spindle & bowl gouges (but not the spindle roughing gouge) which need to be pivoted & rolled at the same time. A sharpening jig will maintain consistency & grind away less metal. Skews (flat, round, oval or radiused) & parting tools can be sharpened on a flat platform, or if you feel confident, using your fingers as a platform, bracing them on the tiny rest most grinders come with. Scrapers are just a case of setting the platform rest to grind the same angle already on the tool.
A basic gouge sharpening jig for £34 as used by myself & at least one professional turner on this forum
- Gouge chisel sharpening tool for woodturning,gouge+fingernail=2 jigs 8944717301833 | eBay
He also sells a platform rest & base which make the two jigs capable of being used on either wheel of the grinder.
Gently, gently sharpening carbon steel tools. If you blue the edge you have to grind all the blue away before the tool becomes usable again. As soon as you feel the heat traveling up the tool swill it in some cold water.
 

Democritus

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Given my relative lack of experience in woodturning, I hesitate to tread in what seems to have been a recurrent forum minefield, but I can only describe what has worked for me. When I started turning about four years ago, I sharpened my tools using a normal bench grindstone. I say ‘sharpened’, but it is probably truer to say ‘butchered’. I ended up with tools with multiple bevels, distorted cutting edges, and usually blunt. I tried hard to master the skill, but just couldn’t get it right. I had an old Tormek from my cabinet making days, and started using that with my turning tools. The problems with the Tormek were 1) it was messy, water splashing on the bench, 2) it took forever to reshape a tool, and 3) it wasn’t something that was easy to use as I was working, just to refresh an edge.
The end of my Tormek phase came when I tried to change the stone. I found that the fittings had fused solid with rust and I couldn’t get the old stone off without wrecking the spindle. it may be that was my fault in not maintaining it over the years, but other guys experience related on the web suggests that it is quite a common problem.
I saw a Sorby Proedge being demonstrated at the Northern Woodworking show, and was impressed. The problem with this system is its cost. It ain’t cheap (like much of woodturning kit). Anyway, I eventually took the plunge and bought it. I have to say that I have not looked back since, certainly in terms of having sharp tools to use. I considered buying a diamond belt for it, but having asked the denizens of this forum for advice, decided against it.
When I am working at my lathe, it is a matter of seconds to refresh an edge on my Sorby. I still may not be much of a turner, but it’s not because I have blunt tools.
I suppose if you can sharpen your tools freehand on a grindstone, some may consider you to be more authentic , but I think you have to do what works for you.
Good luck with whatever you do.
 
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