Tormek japanese waterstone or hand sharpening kit - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 9 Old 05-19-2018, 06:37 AM Thread Starter
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Tormek japanese waterstone or hand sharpening kit

Hi,

I recently bought a Tormek T4 and a set of jigs for sharpening hand planes and chisels etc. However, I still feel that the standard tormek stone along with the leather honing weel dont provide adeqate sharpening, especially when working with end grain and with harder woods like oak or birch.

After watching a Rob Cosman I was convinced that I need to buy an additional kit (link below) for manually sharpening my steels once I have them set up with my tormek. However, I then stumbled upon the replacement japanese waterstone for my Tormek (SJ 200) which seems like a more affordable alternative.

From this, a few uncertainties arise which I need help answering;
1. Rob cossman finishes his sharpening with a 16 000 grit stone, Tormek claims their replacement stone is 5 000. How big a difference does the extra grit make from 5 000 to 16 000?

2. Sharpening the steel manyally seems like an efficient and easy task as compared to setting the steel up in a tormek jig. However, there will be less accuracy, does anyone have an oppinion of which is best? will "free hand" sharpening on the tormek give accurate enough results when resharpening a blade if i buy the replacement stone?

3. short answer, what would you buy if you were me?

4. If money wasn't an issue, is there a point in buying both a hand sharpening kit as well as a tormek stone?

I hope there are a lot of oppinions about this as I can't seem to make my mind up.

JL

Links;
https://www.tormek.com/uk/en/accesso...se-waterstone/
https://robcosman.com/collections/sh...sharpening-kit
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post #2 of 9 Old 05-19-2018, 08:33 AM
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Leo, I wouldn't buy anything yet. As much as the Tormex cost it should sharpen whatever you have to your satisfaction. I would call Tormex and get some advice from them. If you still don't satisfaction send it back and get your money back. I do think the Tormex will be okay. I use DMT diamond plates.

Don in Murfreesboro, TN.
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post #3 of 9 Old 05-19-2018, 08:47 AM
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I've only sharpened with natural Arkansas stones so I know nothing about the Tormek system. I do know that on harder woods like oak and birch you sharpen the chisels on less of an angle than other woods. It the point is longer like using on soft woods the cutting edge can just fold over when working oak. Also Oak trees tend to grow in sandy places so the wood often contains bits of sand which dull your cutting tools faster than some other woods.

Sharpening an edge on steel is a process of polishing the edge. If you go through the process too fast and don't hone long enough on each step you won't have the edge sharpened correctly. It's only will experience that you can tell when it's the right time to move to a finer stone so you might try again with the stones you have. I normally start with a coarse stone and sharpen until I can run the edge over the end of my fingernail and don't feel any roughness. On the end of your fingernail you can feel every single void there is in the edge.

I think my finest stone is rated at 5000 grit. I can't fathom using a 16000 grit. Perhaps that would take the place of a leather strop I use after sharpening.
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post #4 of 9 Old 05-19-2018, 09:38 AM
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Tormek japanese waterstone or hand sharpening kit

Quote:
Originally Posted by Leoball View Post
Hi,



I recently bought a Tormek T4 and a set of jigs for sharpening hand planes and chisels etc.



From this, a few uncertainties arise which I need help answering;

1. Rob cossman finishes his sharpening with a 16 000 grit stone, Tormek claims their replacement stone is 5 000. How big a difference does the extra grit make from 5 000 to 16 000?



2. Sharpening the steel manyally seems like an efficient and easy task as compared to setting the steel up in a tormek jig. However, there will be less accuracy, does anyone have an oppinion of which is best? will "free hand" sharpening on the tormek give accurate enough results when resharpening a blade if i buy the replacement stone?



3. short answer, what would you buy if you were me?



4. If money wasn't an issue, is there a point in buying both a hand sharpening kit as well as a tormek stone?



I hope there are a lot of oppinions about this as I can't seem to make my mind.

1) grits from different sharpening devices cannot be compared directly. I believe itís Lee Valley who has a comparison chart in their catalog ordering grits from various sharpening devices.

2) I use a Tormek on my hand plane blades and chisels because of its ability to hollow grind the bevel. After hollow grinding the bevels itís far easier and faster using a water stone, or sandpaper, or diamond stone, or oil stone to refresh your edge since when you sharpen, you donít sharpen the entire bevel, only the front and rear edge.

When Iím planing or doing chisel work I need to refresh the edge on a regular basis, itís faster and easier free handing it. I only go back to the Tormek when the hollow ground bevel is almost gone.

3) the Tormek with the leather stropping wheel provides a quality working edge. If you feel the need to make it shine the Tormek Japanese water stone will make the edge shine, but I donít find the extra time spent to be worth it.

The Japanese water stone will not shape or sharpen your edge, only polish it. You need to sharpen on your regular stone, unmount it and mount the Japanese stone for polishing. Because the stones wear at a different rate, you need to adjust the Tormek to meet the curvature of the new stone. Is it worth it? I donít think so.

4) yes




In woodworking there is always more then one way to accomplish something.
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post #5 of 9 Old 05-19-2018, 01:04 PM
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I still use the scary sharp method, fine sandpaper on glass with a sharpening jig. I finish up with 8,000 grit, on my strop, which is tooth paste. My tools look like a mirror and it works for me. Not high dollar either, so that is great for me.

Once you get your tools sharp you don't need to sharpen that tool again, unless it is really really dull or chipped, honing is all you will need to do.

Steve, the oak trees around here don't grow in sand or have sand in the lumber, that is interesting. One thing that will dull any blade is dust, (not saw dust) blow as much off as you can before putting a blade into it.

On your stones, you will need to dress them from time to time as they will deform, especially the Japanese water stones, (if you use them) they are very soft.

http://www.diychatroom.com/
The Other
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If you do what you've always done, you will get what you've always got.

Last edited by BigJim; 05-19-2018 at 01:06 PM.
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post #6 of 9 Old 05-20-2018, 04:24 AM Thread Starter
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Thank's for all the input guys. I guess I should give the tormek a bit more patience and try giving my blades a secondary bevel to more easily refresh the edge.

However it would be nice to be able to refresh the blade without mounting it in a jig. Would you think resharpening freehand on the honing weel should be sufficient?
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post #7 of 9 Old 05-20-2018, 08:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Leoball View Post
Thank's for all the input guys. I guess I should give the tormek a bit more patience and try giving my blades a secondary bevel to more easily refresh the edge.

However it would be nice to be able to refresh the blade without mounting it in a jig. Would you think resharpening freehand on the honing weel should be sufficient?
I've never in my life used a jig to sharpen a blade but I was taught from the beginning to sharpen freehand.
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post #8 of 9 Old 05-20-2018, 01:07 PM
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There are three different grit grading systems. When you figure it out, let us know.
I was taught freehand sharpening. I sharpen from my knees, never from my elbows.

Measure the total included bevel angle of your tool edge and, if it cuts, stick with it.

In the Lee Valley catalog, the 3M listings for fine automotive wet&dry sandpapers actually tells you
what the nominal grit particle sizes actually are.

End grain carving in very soft woods like western red cedar requires "carving sharp" edges.

Study the two pages of scanning electron microscope pictures in Leonard Lee's book.
Nobody has ever produced any Youtube video that can match them.

What I learned, for free hand sharpening, is this:
Damaged edges = begin at 600
Then 800, then 1,000, then 1,500 grit
Then hone on a very hard strop (never leather) with CrOx/AlOx.

There's no need to try to feather out the soft steel edge when it's that thin. They look like Hello.

1. The SEM pictures show that you can't do better than that with any steel.
2. Less than $20.00 sets you up with a satisfactory sharpening system.

If you must buy the big Stubai carving adze, the edge is a 7/75 with 2X sweeps.
The best size of mandrel for sharpening and honing is a tennis ball.
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post #9 of 9 Old 05-20-2018, 02:19 PM
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I free hand sharpen. Have a jig that holds the stones to the bench. Move body not arms. I have both diamond (that I use under water in a shallow pan, and Japanese water stones. I resurface the water stones on a reasonably coarse diamond plate. To tell the truth, if I just bought some finer diamond "stones" I wouldn't use the water stones any more. Old habits hard to break. Regrinding a slight hollow is occasionally necessary. I have metal working capabilities and have made some turning tools from tool steel. I can mill it to any shape I want and then heat treat. There is a very fine line between hard enough and too hard. The thinner (sharper the cutting edge) the more easily damaged. Softer steels will actually blunt by bending over the fine edge, harder steels will chip easily. I know that on our molder steel we have gone to a less hard alloy and gotten longer runs because we avoid the chipping caused by knots, dirt and the like. The harder woods are run at less steep cutting angles (20 degrees VS 12 or 15) than say white pine. How aggressive you cut in both power machinery and hand tools has a big affect on the quality of the finished surface. Too slow or small of a cut will cause more burnishing and result in more spring back resulting in finishing issues.
I have also brazed used carbide inserts (for metal) to a steel tool and sharpened them on my single point tool grinder with good results. The draw back is a very delicate edge. Everything is a trade. I can't see any possible reason to sharpen (polish) to 16,000 grit. That seems more like a mental game that a useful tool strategy. What ever you do, never move the cutting edge sideways over the sharpening surface. If you get a wire edge on your tool, that is a sign that the steel is quite soft or your finish angle is too low. Stropping is used to break that off and slightly round the edge so it doesn't blunt as easily. Super pointy is super weak.
Metal working seems to have considerably more advanced cutting technology. The design of the cutting edges is much more tailored to the desired result than in woodworking. I don't think that production metal working ever sharpens a tool. The inserts are changed out when they dull and have 2 to 8 cutting edges before being replaced. Those cutting edges are (always?) rounded to some extent and intended to do their job as quickly as possible.
Sorry this got so long but there seems to be a lot of illogical information out there in the woodworking community.
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