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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been using scary sharp on my plane irons and chisels, and first went out and bought a granite slab, sharpening jig, and varieties of wet/dry paper from 220 to some thousand grit.

Using the jig took forever, and I even farmed out some of the first plane irons I had from Grandpa to a local sharpening service, as they were knicked up and I just couldn't cut through fast enough.

Since then, I've switched to freehand with a convex method I saw on some blog, and using WD40 to wet the paper after getting the idea from someone here. Now I can sharpen ebay finds and get knicks out quickly, but I'm mildly confused about why people go so high in grit on scary sharp... I'm finding the WD40 on 220 followed by an uncharged leather strop to be great, stick-to-your-finger-nail sharp.

So I realize that "what works for you is" good enough but I can't help but wonder what I'm missing as the benefit to the higher grits... I could see it maybe being easier to push the plane, but I'm already planing on a piece of countertop clamped in my jawhorse against a planing stop consisting of scrap clamped to the edge with crappy quick clamps... and it works. (some day the pile of SYP on my floor will be a proper bench, but not yet)

Anyhow: you fellows with stones higher than 220 grit or who do the paper higher than that... what benefit do you see in going up higher, apart from a pretty mirror finish?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
That makes sense... I've been using the planes in lieu of a powered jointer or planer so many of them are set for coarse cuts, and I have actually been a little disappointed with my smoother plane's performance... I'll have to take him up the grits and see if that makes the difference.
 
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