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Viceroy Sharpedge

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Westwood

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Hallo all. I've been offered one of these, not sure of all the details yet but am told its a TDS 12/16 model.
I gather its a powered rotary grinding wheel using oil to lube the stone for sharpening chisels, plane blades etc. Anybody got one or know much about these please ?
i had hoped for a Tormek one day but this looks like a perfectly acceptable alternative, albeit it will take up half a metre of floor space
 

Phil Pascoe

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I used one at school many years ago, they're a good machine. Whether it is a good buy I would think would much depend upon the condition of the stone - expensive to replace and possibly difficult to find.
 
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Westwood

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Thanks Phil, any tips as to how I can judge the condition of the stone please ? I guess if it feels ridiculously smooth , its well past its best. Rough to touch presumably better. I guess it should be flat and uniform too ?
 

RobinBHM

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Thanks Phil, any tips as to how I can judge the condition of the stone please ? I guess if it feels ridiculously smooth , its well past its best. Rough to touch presumably better. I guess it should be flat and uniform too ?
I had one whilst I had a joinery shop.

far better than a tormek. The tormeks do a job, but IME the grinding wheel goes out of round very easily and they are awfully slow.

the Viceroy sharp edge is also rather slow, but they are easy to use and with an 80 grit stone can regrind a chisel pretty quickly with no risk of overheating.

I bet you will find the machine needs stripping down as they get pretty dirty from the cutting fluid and abrasive.

it doesn’t matter if the stone is glazed, you can use a diamond dressing tool to get it cutting again.

the main problem is if the stone is dished - when grinding you must move the edge bein ground across the whole stone.

New grinding Wheels are available, I believe the machine is still sold (with a £3k price tag). However they are about £350. Funnily enough I have one somewhere in my loft as the machine I had came with a spare.


do make sure your machine comes with the cast iron chisel and plane iron tool rest and that it’s not cracked.

rarely they also came with a gouge jig.
 

Craig22

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Like Phil Pascoe I remember one of these at school. Only our woodwork teacher, Mr Rand, could use it. None of us oiks were allowed near. IIRC it had a wooden lid (probably made by Rand) to keep dust and shavings off it. Late 60's, so it must have been there well before that. I remember Rand setting it up, and making himself a cup of tea while it did its job unattended. I think it probably had to cope with abused and chipped chisels on a regular basis. I seem to recall it has an oil sump and a pump that gives a slow feed of oil. Thinking about it there must be a filter down there somewhere to deal with wear metal.

I toyed with the idea of buying one, but ended up with the inevitable Tormek, and a Creusen bench grinder. I actually find the Tormek to be pretty quick. In most cases you are just re-establishing a primary bevel.

The benefit of the Viceroy is you don't get a concave grind - if the stone is flat, you get a flat grind.

Now there are opinions about that. One of my heroes of wood, James Krenov, ground his tools on a hand cranked grinder with quite a small diameter wheel, so the grind was radically concave. He could then hone it by just putting the blade flat on a fine grade stone. He wasn't entirely a hair shirt worker - he had an exceptionally good and accurate bandsaw, and a surface planer (but no thicknesser).

Rob Cosman uses an 8" grinder to establish a primary bevel - so again slightly concave. The Tormek wheel is 250mm (10 inches), so grinds slightly concave.
 

Westwood

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Thanks all.
I'll make sure to check the stone for flatness as well as wear when I see this net week.
Craig , can you explain what you mean by "grinds slightly concave".
I'm new to mechanised sharpening and have only ever sharpened by hand on traditional oilstones and still have loads to learn
 

Phil Pascoe

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If you grind on a flat stone, hone on a diamond plate etc. the edge you get will be dead flat. If you grind on the rim of a circular wheel the edge will be curved (hollow ground - concave) - an arc of whatever circumference the wheel you're using is. Some turners don't like the ProEdge because because it gives a dead flat grind, some carvers, joiners etc. don't like the hollow grind a 6" or 8" grindstone gives. A matter of choice, mostly.
 

Craig22

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Doing the geometry, suppose you are sharpening a chisel that is 5mm thick, and look at the concavity with a circular wheel as compared with a flat grind:

6" wheel - 40 microns
8" wheel - 31 microns
10" wheel - 25 microns

So even with a fairly thick blade, the concavity is tiny. 25 microns is the thickness of a fag paper.

For a 3mm plane blade and an 8" wheel it comes out at 11 microns.

So for all practical purposes, forget about the concavity, or hollow grind when grinding on a circular wheel.
 

hlvd

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There was one at school and at the technical college when I was an apprentice.
If I remember correctly they're just a grinding tool and far too coarse for sharpening.
 

Old.bodger

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If you do go for it, check with care, it may be 3 phase, mine is, but it is possible to use on single phase with a rewire and some capacitor magic. Take care moving it, the oil tank is open topped, so will dump oil very easily! Don’t tip it on it’s side!!!
There is a correct oil to use. From memory the closest these days is ATF.
I will check if you need, as I did the research and have a can in the cupboard of mine!
 
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