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Thread: Help choosing my first set of rasps

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
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    Perth - Scotland
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    Help choosing my first set of rasps

    Hi folks, I would appreciate some help on choosing my first set of rasps.
    Iím planning on making at least 6 saw handles (open and closed) over the next year, and Iím not sure what rasps to choose. I can usually read numerous threads and find out what I need, not with rasps, I'm going round in circles.
    I know the differences between machine and hand stitched rasps, and Iím planning to go with Liogier Rasps for the finer work.

    I'm not sure what I'll use the rasps for once Iíve made the handles; I generally prefer a modern style of furniture with straight lines, and for fine tuning tenons I use a router plane.
    Iíve got a bandsaw to do the initial shaping, so should I choose 1 or 2 handlemakers rasps in the set or choose more versatile options.
    What would be a sensible set to get, including grain, file length and type?
    Cheers, Iain

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
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    South Coastal Massachusetts
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    Drop Pete Taran and Ron Bontz a line.

    They're actively making things, and could chime in with what works to achieve their high standards.

    FYI - the Iwasaki carving files are versatile and reasonably priced.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    SE Michigan
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    These Gramercy files (Tools for Working Wood) were recommended to me by fellow Creeker Stewie Simpson, who is a very talented saw maker. I havenít made a saw handle, but use them for curved work and they are excellent.

    800ADD65-8A80-43DF-819D-5F5347B71D01.jpeg

  4. #4
    I have a set of the Iwasaki's too and like them. As Phil said, the Grammercy have a good reputation.

    There's are the expensive french rasps (Lioger, etc) that have a fabulous reputation.
    "All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing."
    - Sir Edmund Burke

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Location
    Forest Lake MN
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    316
    I hate my nicholson rasps, I have some harbor freight ones I really like though do wear them out quickly. About a year ago I decided I wanted some of the French ones, problem with that is I cant pull the trigger on ordering them. Likely will sometime this year though.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Lubbock, Tx
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    I have one coarser Auriou and the rest are Liogier. Noel of Liogier is great to work with and has lots of options. Even in straight line furniture it8s good to be able to put in a curve occasionally, see the feet of a six board chest or plinths for various styles including Shaker.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    central tx
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    344
    I have Auriou, they are great. A big coarse one, a smaller fine one, and a fine rat-tail.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
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    My two premium rasps are Auriou cabinet rasps at 13 & 15 grain. They have been used for shaping handsaw handles and plane totes. They have also been used on chisel handles and odd times when some light wood removal was desired without leaving a rough surface. The money spent on these has not been missed. Sometimes my fancy turns to purchasing another one or two. Currently there are a few riffling rasps in my accumulation. A few more of those might be my next purchase if it happens.

    Liogier rasps are surely a worthy competitor to Auriou rasps.

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

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Odessa, Tx
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    117
    I like my narex 8 inch half round. Used it to make plane handles. Seems to be holding up well and works fast.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blake M Williams View Post
    I like my narex 8 inch half round. Used it to make plane handles. Seems to be holding up well and works fast.
    This may be a good rasp, but one of the points of a Liogier or Auriou rasp is the hand stitching. The Narex on Amazon has this in the specifications:

    Blades are CNC stitched which produces a uniform tooth pattern for even stock removal
    > https://www.amazon.com/Narex-Half-Ro...ce-g8593937246 <

    These are good rasps for removing material. The random pattern of the hand stitched rasp makes for a smoother surface.

    Here is an article worth reading on rasps > https://www.canadianwoodworking.com/...-cabinet-rasps < It came up in a search for > liogier half round rasp teeth per centimeter <

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

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Apr 2019
    Location
    Madison, Wisconsin
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    107
    I have a couple of the Iwasaki carving files as well. They leave a surprisingly good surface finish for how quickly they cut. I can't compare them to hand stitched rasps; I don't own any. If you choose to go the Iwasaki route, I would advise using a very light touch until you get a good feel for them, and use them with proper consideration for grain direction as if they were carving gouges. I prefer the "extra fine" for most tasks. The results they give are excellent and the speed is good enough for what I ask them to do.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    State College, PA
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    Lee Valley does offer some less expensive hand-cut rasps.

  13. #13
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    Iain, it might help if your location was listed in your profile. You may live close to a member who has various rasps you could test drive, if that would help.

    There are a few rasps and floats in my accumulation including a Nicolson #50. It is better than your average rasp but not as nice as a hand stitched rasp.

    Here is an old post on rasps with comparisons of different rasps > https://sawmillcreek.org/showthread.php?255103

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

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Perth - Scotland
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    7
    Jim what size are your 2 cabinet rasps, do you think they are a better choice than modellers raps. Do you use a rougher rasp before these 2?

    Cheers, Iain

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Perth - Scotland
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    7
    Thanks for the replies everyone.

    Before starting the thread I spent hours reseaching all the different brands, their benefits and their downsides, and in the end I have definitely settled on the Liogier rasps for the finer work, just not sure what type, size or grain to choose.

    Cheers, Iain

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