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Thread: Quick sharpening question...

  1. #1

    Quick sharpening question...

    First let me state, I'm not a carver. I'm what I consider to be an intermediate level woodworker who has acquired a fairly large number of quality carving tools that are in quite bad condition. I have somewhere in the neighborhood of 15 Henry Taylor, a dozen Sorby, and another dozen Stubai tools that are solid and in good shape physically, but have extremely mistreated cutting edges. I bought these on several different occasions at swap meets, thinking that I'd sharpen them and try my hand at carving. Well... after spending hours sharpening a few of the easier (flatter) profiles, I realized that the gouges and more complicated edges are beyond me at this point. So, my question is... is there an online tutorial on how do sharpen tools that need major restoration, or is there a reasonable service that does such a thing? I'd love to get these up to par and try learning a new skill. Thanks for any help you might provide!

  2. #2
    I don't have links to any specific videos, but if you go to youtube and do a search you will turn up many videos that I have watched. As for a service to sharpen them, try your local yellow pages first, if there are no local places, get back on SMC and there are many of us here that will guide you to an online place.

  3. #3

    Additional question

    Thanks for the reply Richard. I have looked at some videos, and maybe I've just had bad luck, but they have all been directed at sharpening tools that were already in fairly good shape. Mine need reshaping prior to sharpening as someone has done a very good job of screwing up good tools. The profiles are uneven... some of the gouges show sides where one is much further back than the other, and so on.

    Anyway, that brings me to my new focus... I managed to find a few places online... one of which is pretty close to me. Does anyone have any experience with 'Little Shavers' in Seattle? They seem quite reasonable at $3 per tool and that includes reshaping if necessary. I'd love to know if anyone has used their sharpening service and what their opinion is. Thanks!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    North Little Rock, AR
    Rick at Little Shavers is excellent and quite respected for his knives and sharpening business for all types of carving tools. I don't think you will be disappointed in any regards with his work.

  5. #5
    I would look for a local carving club.Aside from knowing where you can get it done, they probably will have someone ther ethat is good at it and may even be willing to teach you.
    VLS 4.60 50 watt w/rotary, Corel X3/X4, Photoshop CS4, Photoshop Elements 7, Windows XP SP3 upgraded from Windows Vista.

    Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, chocolate in one hand, wine in the other, body thoroughly used up, totally worn out screaming "WOO HOO, WHAT A RIDE !!"

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Albuquerque, NM
    Also, take a look at using an Oar Sharpener. It will help you with the gouges and more challenging shaped tools. Tools for Working Wood is one place that carries it. Designed by a carver. Around $30.

    "Uke is always right."
    (Attributed to Ueshiba Morihei)

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Marietta GA
    Jim Kingshott produced a video in VHS format a decade ago. You can find it used. However, it doesn't go into detail on reshaping. It does go into what mediums to use, sharpening techniques, bevel angles and other details re maintenance.

    I would recommend you making your own hones out of ply 8 inch disks. Easy to make and will keep an edge very well. You can make three, bolt and space them together and mount on a wood lathe or a drill press. Other wise a Tormek would be another option albite an expensive one... +$450.

    Enjoy the process !

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    TX, NM or on the road
    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Pounders View Post
    Rick at Little Shavers is excellent and quite respected for his knives and sharpening business for all types of carving tools. I don't think you will be disappointed in any regards with his work.
    I also recommend Rick, he can take junkers and make them sharp. In my opinion the videos will eventually get you there, but carving is a very slow process, in today's world it is better to get a little help whenever you can. A sharp chisel will keep you interested, a dull one will be too discouraging.

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