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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
wood like to find out from different woodturners on their method of sharpening/grinding of the lathe tools. I am a newbie and heard there are few ways from homemade to about spending $300.00 for machine and accessories. I have a basic 3750rph grinder and a 3" belt sander right now.
 

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i have answered your mail, now you have told me a little more. welcome to the forum.
Most like get others telling you how they work, so just pick out what suits you, try the downloads of my site and go from there. LB..
 

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I've use a lot of different methods over the years. I started with a disc sander. Then I switched to a 3" belt sander mounted on it's back. I've also used a 1" strip sander. Now I use an 8" grinder that runs 1750 rpm. A 3450rpm grinder is just fine as well.
Many people now use a grinding jig such as the Oneway Wolverine grinding jig..
The best advice I can offer is to find someone near you who turns and have them show you how they sharpen. There isn't just one correct way.
I would highly recommend the AAW sharpening video. They show you how to sharpen several different ways. I think the web site is www.woodturners.org
 

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Another good option is finding a good sharpening service in your area. Often you can get lathe tools sharpened for around $3 each. My personal preference is to stick to woodworking and leave the sharpening up to the experts.
 

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Another good option is finding a good sharpening service in your area. Often you can get lathe tools sharpened for around $3 each. My personal preference is to stick to woodworking and leave the sharpening up to the experts.
:eek:, Ken quit putting crazy ideas into these guy heads . Oh hey, I run a sharpening service :laughing:. Good advise.
 

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http://www.woodturner.org/products/videos/
Here is where you can find the video I was talking about. Sharp tools are necessary for turning and I sharpen often. sometimes several times on one project. Sending tools out for sharpening simply won't work.
When I first started turning I didn't know you had to sharpen the tools. I turned a lot of projects without sharpening. they had no fine details and required tremendous amounts of sanding. Sharp tools are a necessity.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks, i'll check out the tape. I'll also check with a local sharpener she if he does volume sharpening
 

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I've been using the Oneway sharpening system for about 5 years now. It is an excellent system and really helps beginners get ahead on the sharpening curve. This also goes for the Sorby and other sharpening systems. They are not perfect. I still see poorly ground tools from my turning friends but if they are using a system like this it's very easy to correct their errors.
I still hand sharpen some tools and think it's a good thing to learn but it takes a pretty good while to learn to sharpen correctly by hand and you use a lot of steel off your tool. I ground away my first bowl gouge fairly quickly over the years. My sharpening skills improved and the next gouge lasted considerably longer. I now have the Oneway system. I sharpen more often because it's so easy and my tools are lasting a long time.
 

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I've talked to the pros and they use everything from 60 to 120. I've been using 100 for the last couple of years but I think that's a little too fine for just one wheel. Ideally I would like to have a 36 for shaping and and an 80 or 100 for general sharpening. The problem with the 100 is when you need to change the grind or if you miss the exact angle it takes a fair amount of time to grind it back to normal.
some of the pros think a 60 or 80 grit grind actually works better for bowl turning.
 

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I think 46 and 80 are the best combinations.
Those are also the grits that Craft Supply USA carries on their better wheels - the Norton SG.

I would say hardness of the bond on a wheel is more important than the grit size. Too soft won't hold up; too hard would glaze and won't cut.

Gordon
 

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Hi,

We just use a bench grinder which is fastened onto a work bench inside the shop. Seems to work really well, as we can flip it on and off as and when needed. You must do what you are most comfortable with until you learn. No sence in paying out big bucks on costly equipment or services. Most of the time I need my things sharpened way after the services has closed for the day anyway, so we taught ourselves how and what to do.
 

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Sharpening tools

Hi Eazis,
I use a Tormek grinder with the various jigs for sharpening my lathe tools. I too may sharpen during a turning session if a tool gets dull at all. Jet makes a copy of the tormek which is less money. The thing I liked about the tormek is once you learn how to use it, (it came with a instructional tape) it is very simple to use and duplicate the exact shape that was on the tool to start with. The other important feature is that if used properly, it doesn't remove much metal at all. If you have some of the more expensive tools, you don't want to grind the heck out of them each time and end up with a stubby. I can sharpen the tools and hone them on the leather wheel and get them sharp enough to shave the hair on my arms. If you have some turners in your area, visit their shops and see what they sharpen with. If you can, try a few of the different systems available before making your choice. Good luck, a dull tool can be a dangerous tool, stay sharp......
Mike Hawkins;)
 

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Sharpening tools

The main thing to be aware of IMHO is heat. The tools are heat treated and you can take the temper out of them by grinding on them too hard. (Why doesn't that work on my wife:laughing:)
A 3750 RPM grinder will work just hold the tool close to the cutting edge with bare hands so you don't over heat it. I don't sharpen mine
to a razor edge cause I don't feel the extra work yields that much better results.
 

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Wolverine / One way Sys. 120 grit. I come off the grinder, right to the lathe. I have 2 -low rpm grinders from Woodcraft. Made in China of course, but these are great. On one of the grinders I use a buffing wheel, and several different compounds (sometimes). Please don't pass up learning how to do this , and send your tools out to be sharpened. When I first bought my lathe , and didn't know anything about anything. I used a high speed grinder and a home made (wood) tool rest from a drawing I found in a book. The tools were carbon steel pieces of crap, but I got the the things sharp , and it was a beginning on the cheap. Also...I love Jerry Glaser lathe tools. Michael
 
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