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Thread: Convex bevel a la P. Sellers

  1. #16
    While the Sellers' method works for me, I find the bevel gets increasingly convex. I have switched to a hybrid method, the side sharpening recommended by Harrelson Stanley with a couple of fingers pressing on the bevel. This is a little harder with steeper angles as there is less bevel to register. If I fail to raise a burr, I use a couple of to and fro strokes. If I notice too much convexity, a minute or so with the coarse Eze Lap diamond stone side to side flattens the bevel. I much prefer freehand to the slight misregistration I get with all jigs I have used.

  2. #17
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    No thanks.

  3. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom M King View Post
    No thanks.
    +1 on that!

    For me it is a variation on the KISS method:

    Keep it simple & sharp.

    If what you are doing gets your blades to make fine shavings on end grain or leaves a flawless surface on face grain, then what you are doing is what works.

    If it isn't working, then it is easier to determine the problem with just a simple bevel on a blade with a flat back.

    jtk
    "A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty."
    - Sir Winston Churchill (1874-1965)

  4. #19
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    Having attended many of Paul's classes 12-14 years ago, I can tell you his chisels and plane irons are dangerously sharp.
    I do use the ruler trick as well.

    I very seldom use a sharpening jig.

  5. I don't deliberately round the bevels. I don't care if they end up rounded, as long as they perform as needed. Generally they end up somewhat rounded, and plenty sharp. If they get too rounded, or I need to work out a chip or something, it's off to the grinder. I dont care if they end up hollow ground, as long as they perform as needed. It's not uncommon to see a bevel that is rounded, with a bit of a hollow ground into it. With very few exceptions I sharpen freehand and strop on hardwood with chrome oxide.

  6. #21
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    Paul Sellers is a pro. anyone who is saying "his bevels look blunt to me, you should learn from someone else" should watch his masterclass videos and learn a thing or two.

    I sharpen only freehand, and it works great for me, there is a learning curve to get very good at it, but for me it's a curve well worth going through. the convex bevel makes more sense for freehand sharpening that a flat bevel, and you can control the bevel shape very well with some practice. I also don't round it just for the sake of rounding it, I start pushing around 30 and drop my hand to give "clearance" so the bevel never gets steeper than I want. I also avoid the temptation to lift my hand so I sharpen most tools at a known "muscle memory" angle which I test and check to insure I'm learning the angles correctly.

    I will often hollow grind thick plane irons and then freehand normally with a convex bevel over that. chisels are not hollow ground except for mortise chisels that have a 20-25 primary and a 35 or so secondary.

    The thing is, if you relay on the method for grinding as well as sharpening, than you must maintain and sharpen the bevel accurately and you will appreciate a coarse fast first stone, like the corse eze-lap diamond plate.
    Last edited by Keith Outten; 02-10-2015 at 10:40 AM.

  7. #22
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    Several weeks ago, after perusing another sharpening thread, I went to the shop to study my chisels, etc., to see where I was with bevel angles. Where I thought I was "around" 25 degrees, turned out more like 30 to 33 degrees. However the chisels work fine for the wood I work and I see no reason to change my techniques.

    So, what is my point? Simply if what you are now using works well, then why do you want to change? Continue learning and refining current methods until you can do them with your eyes closed. For someone starting out, then experiment until you find a method that's your own.
    If the thunder don't get you, the lightning will.

  8. #23
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    I maintain paring chisels at 30, Bench chisels at 32 and mortise chisels at 35.
    Bumbling forward into the unknown.

  9. #24
    I think what Warren said was "you could find someone better to copy." I don't think that is an ignorant statement.

    Have a look at the videos of Doucette and Wolfe building 18th c. furniture (mostly) by hand.

    Check out the marquetry of W. Patrick Edwards.

    Look at Peter Follansbee's carving.

    Check out Jamal Abraham's ouds, and George Wilson's guitars, lutes, other instruments, and tools.

    Then compare all these to Seller's utilitarian furniture. The people I listed above are the real pros. If I were going to copy somemone, I'd rather copy a pro.
    "For me, chairs and chairmaking are a means to an end. My real goal is to spend my days in a quiet, dustless shop doing hand work on an object that is beautiful, useful and fun to make." --Peter Galbert

  10. Sellers is a good teacher for the beginner to intermediate set. Patrick Edwards he aint.

  11. Each chisel or whatever will have somewhat different working characteristics, especially with the mixed vintage chisels I use. My bevel angles are all over the place. I have a few thin paring chisels that I keep ground at *just* over the failure point and treat with kid gloves. I also have some beefy bashers with much steeper bevels, and everything in between.

  12. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Voigt View Post
    I think what Warren said was "you could find someone better to copy." I don't think that is an ignorant statement.

    Have a look at the videos of Doucette and Wolfe building 18th c. furniture (mostly) by hand.

    Check out the marquetry of W. Patrick Edwards.

    Look at Peter Follansbee's carving.

    Check out Jamal Abraham's ouds, and George Wilson's guitars, lutes, other instruments, and tools.

    Then compare all these to Seller's utilitarian furniture. The people I listed above are the real pros. If I were going to copy somemone, I'd rather copy a pro.
    I was and still am talking in the context of sharpening tools freehand. almost all the old tools I have seen, plane iron, chisels, plough plane irons, had a rounded convex bevel, and Paul Seller's knows how to make that work and fast.

    I love watching Doucette and Wolfe on youtube, but this thread isn't about furniture or overall skill levels.

  13. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Matthew N. Masail View Post
    I was and still am talking in the context of sharpening tools freehand. almost all the old tools I have seen, plane iron, chisels, plough plane irons, had a rounded convex bevel, and Paul Seller's knows how to make that work and fast.

    I love watching Doucette and Wolfe on youtube, but this thread isn't about furniture or overall skill levels.
    Somehow my chisel and plane blades get sharpened quickly whether it is on my water stones or oilstones. The convex bevel methods would likely end up gouging water stones all to heck.

    The relationship of being able to make fine furniture or other skill levels in woodworking is almost always closely tied to the ability of the person being able to sharpen their tools.

    jtk
    "A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty."
    - Sir Winston Churchill (1874-1965)

  14. Quote Originally Posted by Jim Koepke View Post
    Somehow my chisel and plane blades get sharpened quickly whether it is on my water stones or oilstones. The convex bevel methods would likely end up gouging water stones all to heck.

    The relationship of being able to make fine furniture or other skill levels in woodworking is almost always closely tied to the ability of the person being able to sharpen their tools.

    jtk
    For certain the tools have to be sharp *before* any first class work can be done with them.

  15. #30
    I can tell you that use Paul sellers method with very much success on everything from knives to plane blades to just about everything. Shaved hair off my arm better than Mach 3 every time. It could be that mostly what I use is bevel up planes and that's why the the bevel being too steep may not affect me too much. The bevel up planes will take a shaving anywhere from 25 degrees to 55 degrees without much effort. The higher the angle the less the tear out.if the angle gets too steep, it's not too much to just re grind the bevel to 25 on the grinder after 100-150 sharpenings if need be. The wood just seems to react well to really really sharp tools and the angle being less important. I'm positive that the craftsman of old didn't have honing guides or really paid much attention to whether their plane blade was 25 or 33 or 35.666789 degrees. Those craftsman seemed to make great works of art. Just saying..

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