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Thread: Teach us about rasps and floats

  1. #16
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    I visited Boggs shop. He uses high pressure steam with a abrasive media to sharpen the the teeth. Thatís as far as I can say. After heís done a Nicholson rasp is far better cutting then new.
    He also sells new rasps that heís sharped.
    Aj

  2. #17
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    I have heard tell of an acid bath + mineral salts dip for reconditioning files. Probably a task to leave to professionals.
    Some files Mr. Boggs won't touch. In my last batch one came back dipped in black paint and labeled "Reject". It is one someone had given me, I think it was a harbor freight.
    Last edited by Maurice Mcmurry; 05-18-2022 at 6:10 PM.
    Best Regards, Maurice

  3. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Richard Wile View Post
    the Auriou 10 and the Liogier 13 leave scratches like 80 grit sandpaper.
    I don't find this to be true at my shop with my Auriou grain 10s. I might be using them wrong, but in Doug For and poplar, taking a diagonal stroke I am finding visibly smooth surfaces more or less equivalent to sanding with 220ish grit. Maybe 150
    grit, but not 80. If I push them straight, yes, near about 80 grit.

    This is exactly where having both a left and right is working for me. If I am coming out of a corner somewhere and need to hold the rasp in my left hand and move the rasp left to right as I push it away from me, the LH rasp leaves a much better finish the the RH rasp would in that situation.

    I bet folding money there is a youtube showing how to use these fool things, but I have bigger problems just now. I did page through everything on youtube in the Auriou channel back a year or two ago, all they had posted then was about how they make the product, I didn't see anything about how to use it at that time.

  4. #19
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    I believe you cannot get a finish ready surface off any rasp. I find it challenging to get a finish surface using a file which is finer than a rasp.

  5. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Rainey View Post
    I believe you cannot get a finish ready surface off any rasp. I find it challenging to get a finish surface using a file which is finer than a rasp.
    Sometimes my surfaces are left unfinished off of a rasp or float:

    100_7368.jpg

    They may get a rub with my saturated oil/wax rag.

    Over time being handled tends to shine them up a bit.

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

  6. #21
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    That is a fine dovetail handle Jim. And your oil/wax finish works nicely. As far as fine furniture, I still believe you cannot get a finish ready surface on any rasp. Files give a finer finish, in most cases still not good enough. In the past when I asked Neanders if they stopped with a hand plane finish, almost all admitted to using sandpaper afterwards.

  7. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Rainey View Post
    That is a fine dovetail handle Jim. And your oil/wax finish works nicely. As far as fine furniture, I still believe you cannot get a finish ready surface on any rasp. Files give a finer finish, in most cases still not good enough. In the past when I asked Neanders if they stopped with a hand plane finish, almost all admitted to using sandpaper afterwards.
    Thanks for the compliment Mark.

    Sandpaper will be used on my projects when necessary, not very often. The other thing being most of my projects are only finished with stain.

    Just went through the link on your query. Sandpaper seems to have its use in some areas and not needed in others. Since learning more about plane use my sandpaper usage is mostly when working on the lathe.

    Sometimes the surface left by a rasp or float isn't a matter for concern when used to help fit a joint.

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

  8. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Rainey View Post
    That is a fine dovetail handle Jim. And your oil/wax finish works nicely. As far as fine furniture, I still believe you cannot get a finish ready surface on any rasp. Files give a finer finish, in most cases still not good enough. In the past when I asked Neanders if they stopped with a hand plane finish, almost all admitted to using sandpaper afterwards.
    +1 to Mark’s comments. LOVE my hand stitched rasps- IMHO well worth cost.Great for quickly getting curved shapes. A half round file is quick way to smooth surfacethat is finish worthy after a little sandpaper. Quality rasps are tools are tools I wish I would have added to my kit much earlier.’
    Best, Mike

  9. #24
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    My coarsest one is an inexpensive import from Grizzly. It is not enjoyable to use on Maple but it will really tear into Mahogany for quick removal of excess bulk. I follow up with the Nicholson Cabinet.

    IMG_0548.jpg
    Best Regards, Maurice

  10. #25
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    I got into a spirited discussion at Homestead Heritage School on the subject of rasps. Contrary to the opinions, here, there are very few tasks suited to a rasp, except for shaping corners, and even with those, they taught us to use chisels, planes, spokeshaves and scrapers and hid the rasps from the students. The notion that a rasp should be used on a dovetail or tenon would send chills down Paul Sellers backside.

    That said, at my home shop I have a couple of the French rasps and still use them, but after weeks of instruction, I somehow feel guilty about doing so. I'm not sure why.
    Regards,

    Tom

  11. #26
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    The notion that a rasp should be used on a dovetail or tenon would send chills down Paul Sellers backside.
    Great, some of his videos have sent shivers down mine.

    Learning the skill to use all of the tools one has available is a building block of being an artist or craftsperson.

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

  12. #27
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    Continuing to learn how to shape the heel of a guitar or mandolin neck with a rasp is an uplifting experience for me. So is the draw knife and the spokeshave.
    Best Regards, Maurice

  13. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Koepke View Post
    Great, some of his videos have sent shivers down mine.

    Learning the skill to use all of the tools one has available is a building block of being an artist or craftsperson.

    jtk
    Great response, Jim. You made me laugh out loud, with the only problem being the two streams of coffee spurting onto my keyboard.

    The bottom line for me in woodworking, like a lot of things, is that there are always more than a couple ways to skin a cat or accomplish a task, in this case, people who use rasps for all manner of things, and those who rarely use them. Its just another tool in a tool box and some people are more comfortable with some tools and not others.

    As a framing carpenter, a rasp and a dull 1" chisel and funky Stanley Block Plane were always in my pouch. As a finish carpenter and furniture builder, I used to use rasps to angle the ends of tenons and trim the cheeks. I will admit into being shamed in not using rasps after several weeks of indoctrination by my instructors. But we always had razor sharp chisels and gorgeous block planes in our pouch and I was taught that both were more accurate. I don't know enough to say one way or another. I'm a mere apprentice in the handtool world.
    Regards,

    Tom

  14. #29
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    But we always had razor sharp chisels and gorgeous block planes in our pouch and I was taught that both were more accurate. I don't know enough to say one way or another. I'm a mere apprentice in the handtool world.
    Compared to the average hardware store rasp a razor sharp chisel or block plane may be more accurate:

    Paring a Tenon.jpg

    Though in a tight dovetail a small file, rasp or float may be an easier fit.

    In other cases:

    Sizing Tenon.jpg

    A rasp or other such tool might be easier to do the job.

    Just a note to those who use a latheÖ A file can take off material much faster than a piece of sandpaper. (DAMHIKT!)

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

  15. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thomas McCurnin View Post
    Great response, Jim. You made me laugh out loud, with the only problem being the two streams of coffee spurting onto my keyboard.

    The bottom line for me in woodworking, like a lot of things, is that there are always more than a couple ways to skin a cat or accomplish a task, in this case, people who use rasps for all manner of things, and those who rarely use them. Its just another tool in a tool box and some people are more comfortable with some tools and not others.

    As a framing carpenter, a rasp and a dull 1" chisel and funky Stanley Block Plane were always in my pouch. As a finish carpenter and furniture builder, I used to use rasps to angle the ends of tenons and trim the cheeks. I will admit into being shamed in not using rasps after several weeks of indoctrination by my instructors. But we always had razor sharp chisels and gorgeous block planes in our pouch and I was taught that both were more accurate. I don't know enough to say one way or another. I'm a mere apprentice in the handtool world.
    I would argue that accurate is a matter of context; I would have had a great deal more trouble with accuracy on the curves of this saw handle using a bench chisel, but perhaps Iím simply lacking in skill. Rasps were highly valuable here; a block plane, not so much.
    5DBAAD8E-D9AB-473C-941D-C9F527AB64B4.jpg

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