Episode #8: Sharpening – Part 4

OK, I promise, this is the last episode on sharpening. There are just a few different tools left that really weren’t covered by the other episodes so I wanted to touch on them before I move on. This episode covers sharpening tools like drawknives, auger bits and card scrapers. I’m going to be using several of these tools in an upcoming project series starting this fall, so I wanted to make sure I cover sharpening them for anyone who wants to follow along with the project. But this is the last one on sharpening. Honest. I’m moving on. Really. 🙂



8 thoughts on “Episode #8: Sharpening – Part 4

  1. The episodes on sharpening have been great. I have learned about how to sharpen tools that I have, but didn’t know how to sharpen. Looking forward to your project series.

  2. Another great podcast! I’ve gotten as far as the auger bit files and just had to stop to comment. I was delighted that you didn’t tell people to file the underside of the bevel on auger bits. Too many people try this and wreck the bit. That’s a lovely Jennings bit, by the way. If you happen to have a newly acquired bit that stalls in the wood then probably the underside of the bevel has been filed incorrectly by a previous owner. If you suspect this then you need to check to see if you have 10 degrees of relief on the bevel relative to the lead-screw. To check this manufacturers kindly produce their auger-bit files with 10 degree angles at the ends, so if you lay the safe edge of the auger bit file on the underside of the bevel you should be able to sight across the opposite side and see if it lines up with the helix angle of the lead-screw. If it doesn’t, then there’s your problem. You’ll have to file the bottom of the bevel to match it up. Hard to describe without pictures.

    • Mike,
      Thanks again for the thoughtful comments. Once again, you point out an important piece of info. Yes, the auger bit cutting lips are just like plane irons and need to have adequate clearance behind the edge in order to cut or they will just spin and not do much of anything. While one can file the underside of the bevel as long as they maintain the proper angle, it’s probably best to stick to only filing the upper part of the lip to avoid accidental alterations that could be detrimental to the cutting ability of the bit.

  3. Another excellent episode. I have tried sharpening my scrapers both ways and I can’t see much difference in cutting action. I can say that when you draw the edge however it seems the hook lasts longer. Can’t confirm that but food for thought.

    I see that you have a power tool weakness however in the child’s Black and Decker playset in the background. Does your son know you stole his tools???

    • Shannon,
      Thanks for the feedback. So by “both ways” you mean with and without drawing the burr first? I’m glad to hear there isn’t much difference. I thought there probably wouldn’t be, it’s just something I’ve always done since that’s the way I learned. It always worked for me so I never felt the need to experiment. As for my power tool weakness, you got me :). In my defense, my daughters insisted that their bench be in the shop because that is where we work. We wouldn’t want to leave tools all over the family room. Someone could get hurt :).

  4. Hey Bob, these sharpening videos have been very helpful, however I noticed you didn’t go into spokeshaves. Metal ones obviously are the same application for a plane iron, but for those who like the old wooden tanged shaves might need some help I have a way I go about it but I would like to hear your input on them, plus I believe the wooden tangs are the most incremental tool in the shop (without adjustment) and might be one of the more difficult to sharpen such as router plane blades, etc.

  5. This episode really saved my bacon today. I was drilling 3/4″ and 1″ holes in 8/4 hard maple but the lead screw kept gumming up and stripping out. At first I just did my best to sharpen the augers and put all of my weight down in the brace with little success. After reviewing this episode I realized my lead screws, while clean, were not smooth and shiny so I cleaned them up as shown using scrapings from a green honing compound bar from TFWW. I was on the verge of declaring the brace and bit useless for boring in harder woods, but after polishing the lead screw they took off like greased lighting. Thanks Bob!

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