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Thread: how coarse a stone do I really need?

  1. #16
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
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    East Brunswick, NJ
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    1,471
    Quote Originally Posted by Sean Hughto View Post
    I have only the coarse/extra coarse Duo sharp for prelimianry shaping and back flattening. I've never even checked its flatness in any way, though unless it was grossly out of flat, I think it would still do okay on the coarse work I ask of it to get the steel ready for the finer stones.
    If anything, I've found that having a flat reference on the coarser grits is more important than having a flat reference on the finer grits. Using coarser sharpening media of any type is going to remove more metal, and if it's not flat, that will leave a non-flat surface on your tool.

    If I try to correct the non-flatness at the next sharpening step, by moving to a finer sharpening medium I'm slowing down my metal removal rate, which means that it takes longer to correct the non-flatness than it did to cause the non-flatness in the first place.

    By making sure that you have a flat reference at the first steps of sharpening, you'll speed up the sharpening process overall by a lot. I've found that ideally, the majority of sharpening happens on the lowest grit that I'm using, and the following honing stages go by pretty quickly.

  2. #17
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Chevy Chase, Maryland
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    2,176
    Well, that makes sense, but I think we'd need to specify exactly how a sharpening surface is out of flat (what shape is it?) and what operation you are trying to do on the surface (flattening the back of a 2" blade, for example, is rather differnt thatn establishing a bevel on a 1/8th inch one, etc.). Anyway, I've never checked my Duosharp with a straight edge and feeler gauge, and I've never had any issues where the 1000 grit took forever because it was correcting some issue introduced by the coarse plate. I guess mine must be relatively flat, or out of flat in benign ways.

  3. I use a DMT to flatten my stones, and occasionally as a lower grit stone for blades. Mine is flat enough for flattening my waterstones - but I had to return one that was not flat before I got this one. I also find that there is an almost immediate decrease in the aggressiveness of the DMTs as the coarsest level of diamonds are worn away. I'll buy an Atoma diamond on steel plate when the DMT gives up the ghost - by all accounts, they're much flatter.

    For remaking a bevel, depending on the application I use any/all of the following: bench grinder, Disc sander, and 80 grit on a surface plate for sensitive steels (japanese blades) or if I need flat.

  4. #19
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Williamsburg,Va.
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    10,067
    Do you guys know that #1 grit sandpaper is one large rock glued in the middle of a sheet of paper?

  5. #20
    I think some background info is in order...

    As some have probably figured out by now, I'm a newbie When it comes to neandering. I own 2 block planes, 2 bench planes, and 4 bench chisels all acquired within the last 4 months. I've been using the ss method (had everything needed on hand), and I can easily get a plane blade sharp enough to shave hairs. The progression of grits I've been using is as follows:

    1. 120 grit to establish the primary bevel
    2. 320 or 400 grit to refine the primary bevel
    3. 600 grit to rough out the secondary bevel
    4. 1000 grit to refine the secondary bevel
    5. 2000 grit to finish of the secondary bevel
    6. HF green polishing compound

    I have two issues with ss. First, over time it will cost more than the other methods, and I hate spending more money than I need to, even if that means I have to spend more up front. Secondly, it seems slow if you have a lot of rough work to do. Of course this is because the grit breaks down and becomes finer. Now I can switch out the old paper for a new sheet, but that starts driving up the cost.

    Thus I've spend the last week or so learning about the pros and cons of the various sharpening methods, and decided upon Naniwa super stones for intermediate and fine work. I'm still up in the air on what to use for course work, as it seems everything except the bench grinders has drawbacks. My bench grinder is set up for high cobalt hss (metalworking tool bits), thus I would need fit another grinder into my already cramped shop.


    Does anyone have experience with Naniwa diamond stones? it sounds like they are made like a Shapton glass stone only with diamond abrasive instead of ceramic.
    Our Naniwa #600 Grit Diamond Water Stone allows you to rapidly sharpen any kind of blade. It is particularly effective on those made of high speed steel, titanium and ceramic. State of the art techniques makes it possible to sinter the 1mm thick diamond layer onto a flat aluminum base in a single step. The closely graded diamond abrasive gives a fast cutting action, yet leaves a consistent scratch pattern on the surface of your tools.
    -Dan

  6. #21
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Longview WA
    Posts
    10,175
    Quote Originally Posted by dan sherman View Post
    I think some background info is in order...

    As some have probably figured out by now, I'm a newbie When it comes to neandering. I own 2 block planes, 2 bench planes, and 4 bench chisels all acquired within the last 4 months. I've been using the ss method (had everything needed on hand), and I can easily get a plane blade sharp enough to shave hairs. The progression of grits I've been using is as follows:

    1. 120 grit to establish the primary bevel
    2. 320 or 400 grit to refine the primary bevel
    3. 600 grit to rough out the secondary bevel
    4. 1000 grit to refine the secondary bevel
    5. 2000 grit to finish of the secondary bevel
    6. HF green polishing compound

    I have two issues with ss. First, over time it will cost more than the other methods, and I hate spending more money than I need to, even if that means I have to spend more up front. Secondly, it seems slow if you have a lot of rough work to do. Of course this is because the grit breaks down and becomes finer. Now I can switch out the old paper for a new sheet, but that starts driving up the cost.

    Thus I've spend the last week or so learning about the pros and cons of the various sharpening methods, and decided upon Naniwa super stones for intermediate and fine work. I'm still up in the air on what to use for course work, as it seems everything except the bench grinders has drawbacks. My bench grinder is set up for high cobalt hss (metalworking tool bits), thus I would need fit another grinder into my already cramped shop.


    Does anyone have experience with Naniwa diamond stones? it sounds like they are made like a Shapton glass stone only with diamond abrasive instead of ceramic.
    For most of my sharpening, it is just a few minutes on the 4000 and 8000 stones. If a blade has gone too long without sharpening, then maybe down to the 800 or 1000. If there is a bad nick or a blade that needs a lot of sharpening, then I will switch to a long strip of abrasive or a powered abrasive.

    Because of the extra work involved with getting to the lower grits, my habit is to sharpen a little often.

    jim
    "A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty."
    - Sir Winston Churchill (1874-1965)

  7. #22
    The progression of grits I've been using is as follows:

    120 grit to establish the primary bevel
    320 or 400 grit to refine the primary bevel
    600 grit to rough out the secondary bevel
    1000 grit to refine the secondary bevel
    2000 grit to finish of the secondary bevel
    HF green polishing compound


    Hi Dan

    Jim's comments are very pertinent. I would go even one step further - my most used stones are Shaptons 1000 and 12000. I frquently do not use anything between. The reason is that I am honing microbevels. There is no need to do the amount of extra refining that you do. Too much wasted time and energy from my perspective. With a microbevel you can remove scratches of a 1000 very quickly with a 12000. No need for more. I do have 5000 and 8000 Shaptons as well. The 5000 comes out when the "micro" is no longer micro, and the 8000 rarely comes out as the 12000 works as fast.

    I've found that having a flat reference on the coarser grits is more important than having a flat reference on the finer grits

    Wilbur ... absolutely spot on.

    A coarse stone will shape the steel far, far faster than a polishing stone will do. So, get the 1000 flat and work the steel flat ... and then there is less work to do with the polishing end of the spectrum.

    I do have the Shapton diamond plate. I had tried it out when demonstrating sharpening on the LN stand at a woodshow in Perth about 15 months ago. I had my 10" DMT Duostone (using the extra coarse side) for comparison, and the Shapton blew it away. A couple of months later I was offered a brand new diamond plate at an estate sale, so acquired it at a healthy discount. If I had not I would have still been happy with the DMT. Mine is flat. The Shapton diamond plate's extra flatness is probably not really that significant, and time will be the only way I will tell if the diamonds wear. It is just nicer to use.

    Regards from Perth

    Derek

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