Wood Chisels

Old 12-18-99, 11:02 AM
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I haven't used my chisels too much, but, the edges seem to have small nicks in them. What is the best way to remove the nicks and get the chisels sharp again?

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Old 12-19-99, 12:03 AM
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Hello Ted Heissner:

Welcome to my world!
I do like your signature..haha

To answer your question, if you have a belt sander or access to one, tilt the table to match the angle of the chisel, and sharpen the angle to remove all the nicks.

I would suggest starting with a 100 grit belt, sanding with the angle facing upwards. Do this lightly to avoid bluing the edge.

Once all the nicks are removed, now your ready to sharpen to the finished edge. Continue the sharpening being sure to maintain square edges.

Once thats' done, change to a 150 grit belt and lightly hone the edge using that same angle.

Once your satisfied you have a razor sharp edge, using a piece of very fine grit sanding paper, lay that flat side down on a hard flat surface, then debur the chisel with the back side facing down on the sanding paper.

<Maintain the chisel angled upwards as if you where planning wood.> Pushing the chisels cutting edge forward lightly and continue this until all the burs are removed.

Check the sharpened edge. Repeat if needed using only the 150 grit.

Dipping the chisel in cool water
will help to cool the steel and water is also a handy lubricate. Chalk works too.

Practice on an old chisel first.

Checking the flat sharpened edge on the belt sanders work table for trueness.

Any bluing left can be removed using a fine wire wheel.

And there you have it. Of course, this is NOT the exact method nor machine to use. However, for the homeowner, it will work just fine with some practice.

Good Luck &
Happy Holiday

TomBartco Enterprises.
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Old 12-19-99, 04:51 AM
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Hi Tom:

Thanks for the tips. I have one more question. Should the belt be turning toward or away from the tip of the chisel.

I like my signature line too. I "borrowed" it from a good friend of mine.

Happy holidays.
Old 12-19-99, 01:06 PM
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Hello Ted:

Excellent question Ted.
I made an error by assuming...hahaha

The belt should be rotating counter clock- wise on the sander. Truth is, I thought ALL belt sanders rotated counter clock-wise. I may be incorrect here.

The chisel cutting end should then be facing up so the belt sides down towards the handle and into the cutting edge of the chisel.

Other tips:
I mentioned using a 100 grit belt to start with. You may do this with most large chisles, however small ones you may start with a 150.

Another tip is to finish up with as fine a grit belt <maybe a 200 grit> as you can find. It's a pre honing method to reduce the hand honing. <For us pro's and lazy types.>

Good Luck
Old 06-14-08, 05:31 AM
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Look up "Scary Sharp" on Google.
Old 06-14-08, 06:16 AM
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Old 06-14-08, 09:11 AM
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I don't know how much you will be using chisels, but if it is a lot, then a wet chisel hone(electric) may be a good investment. not terribly expensive but very useful. sharpen ONLY the beveled edge. the flat edge needs to stay flat and SQUARE. I have used the belt sander trick and it does work, however I find a really good file works best and you are not as likely to make a mistake. NEVER! NEVER! let the tip get blue. It will take the temper out and will have to be put back in. always finish with a SHARPENING STONE. If the chisel is sharpened correctly, there will be very little need for a hammer unless you are making a deep cut.

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