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Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Chisel Block

This is the first of a few posts that will deal with my quest for sharper chisels. So first, a little explanation of the journey.

I am a guilty man. I am guilty of often working with dull tools, especially chisels.
Getting consistently sharp edges is something that has eluded me since I got into wood working. Most people I talk to or read about with regard to sharpening have suggestions that usually involve spending money on fancy tools and jigs that I just don't have. I have diamond blocks. They aren't the best, but I have a few. I have a complete set of oil stones. I even have a leather strop. However, everything I read on the subject says you need a jig to go along with all this. So I bought a cheap jig. It is cumbersome to set up and maintain a consistent bevel. So some people suggested I buy a Veritas jig. Don't get me wrong, nice jig, but I just can't afford that. So I used chisels that were "good enough" and hit them a little harder, causing chip out and a variety of other problem.
Then I was told to check out Mr. Paul Seller's sharpening method. He teaches a free hand method that doesn't involve fancy jigs or really anything special. As a matter of fact, he states in one of his videos to use what you have available if you can't afford something expensive.
Mr. Sellers is a refreshing voice. He teaches methods that, although they don't require the latest and greatest tools and gadgets, are ones that have been around for ages. I came to realize that he follows something I like to call the KISS method, which I like. For those that don't know what the KISS method is, it stands for "keep it simple, stupid".
So anyway, I'm learning new sharpening methods. Who says you can't teach an old dog new tricks?
Before I get too far into sharpening all my chisels though, I thought of something else that I should be kicking myself for.
This has been my chisel storage. It's a coffee can and a vegetable can. This is not the best storage idea for sharp tools by any means. I have noticed a few times that there were dings all in the bottom of these cans where points of the tools have been hitting them. Although these cans are soft metal, that still isn't good for them.

So it was time for me to make a decent chisel block. I really should have my butt kicked for not doing this before now. It didn't take long to make, and it keeps my chisels safely put away where the points aren't damaged.

1 comment:


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