Card Scraper Sharpening

Canuck

Wayne
Corporate Member
Can anyone recommend "how to" documentation or a video as to the best/easiest way to sharpen card scrapers?. Went to use every card scraper I have in my possession and every one is so dull that I barely get a shaving. Tried a bastard file and a good Veritas burnisher and just can't seem to get decent results! Frustratjng!!!!

Thanks,

Wayne
 

Melinapex

Mark
User
Paul Sellers has a good video as well. Card scraper sharpening was kind of like learning to water ski - it took me a long time and a lot of tries to "get it" and I still am inconsistent (at both !)
It seems like such a simple thing but I have gotten better with practice.... but the hardest thing is to have to sharpen it again- or maybe a third time, cause it just won't work... .......
 

Mike Davis

Mike
Corporate Member
This is covered very well in my work shops/classes. The biggest error I see is not getting the edge square and smooth. Then applying too much pressure which makes the burr long and fragile. It breaks as soon as you start to use it.
 
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Hmerkle

Hank
Corporate Member
annnd.... one more - Paul Sellers:
But this goes back to something I lament with @Mike Davis and @Graywolf often, if I am alone in the shop and I think I am doing it correctly, I cannot get "out of my head" to figure out what is wrong, this is when you need a teacher by your side!
 

Tarhead

Mark
Corporate Member
Another option...but not for thin card scrapers is this with a piece of 1/4" tool steel:
 

Yelverton

Mitch
Corporate Member
This is covered very well in my work shops/classes. The biggest error I see is not getting the edge square and smooth. Then applying too much pressure which makes the burr long and fragile. It breaks as soon as you start to use it.
I'm no expert, but I've noticed differences in the pressure required for different kinds of card scrapers. My DFM brand scrapers from Amazon are really hard and require pretty significant pressure to get a burr, but my LN scrapers seem to be softer.
 

Canuck

Wayne
Corporate Member
Thanks for the input. Looks like the common theme seems to be refining the edge with sharpening stones. Something that I have never pursued!

Wayne
 

Jeff

Jeff
Corporate Member
Thanks for the input. Looks like the common theme seems to be refining the edge with sharpening stones. Something that I have never pursued!

Wayne
I struggled a lot when I first began. A "jointer/edger" holder with a mill bastard file and the variable burnisher from Veritas were big improvements for me. Use the Boggs holder and a diamond stone to polish that edge after filing it. BTW, the edges don't have to be filed with the bastard file every time; remove the burr, polish, and turn new burrs.


 
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robliles

Rob
Corporate Member
There is an excellent article on sharpening a card scraper in the July/August 2012 issue of Fine Woodworking. I use his technique and jigs and get excellent results every time.
 

Gofor

Mark
Corporate Member
Several comments based on my experience:

First: The burnisher needs to be harder than the scraper. The side of a screw driver or socket extension did not work for me. I made mine by cutting the stem off a diesel engine valve, and setting it in a wood handle. Very smooth and very hard. A good burnisher that doesn't drag on the edge is a must. It does not have to be very long, as it needs to be pushed straight down the length of the scraper, not across it an an angle.

Second: A little light lubrication on the burnisher makes it much easier. I usually just drag the burnisher behind my ear, or alongside a nostril on my face, although any light oil or WD-40 will work.

Third: It doesn't require a lot of pressure. One flat stroke, a couple at a slight angle, and a couple more at a little more angle will establish a bur you can feel with a fingernail. However, more smooth strokes are better than a few hard-pressured ones.

Fourth: For hogging off wood around a knot, I go straight to burnisher from the mill file. For smoothing out and finishing a surface, I hone the edge. I just lay the scraper against a squared block of wood to keep it vertical.

I struggled when first starting out. Getting a good burnisher was the main thing that turned things around for me.
 

Pop Golden

Pop
Corporate Member
I fixed my scraper sharpening & use with the complete Veritas system. The jointer, burnisher & holder. This stuff works very well. Before I got this system I could not get a proper burr.

Pop
 

Hmerkle

Hank
Corporate Member
That guy made that scraper do everything but sing and dance!
I think it is interesting that Brian uses the scraper "backwards" seemingly "against" the burr (~16:20 in the video)
This suggests that he doesn't really pull a burr, since there is some "edge" cutting or scraping the wood in the reversed direction...
 

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