Sharpening Turning Tools??

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leftoflefty

New User
Ricky
So my FIL loaned me his lathe because he doesn't really like turning all that much. He also threw in his turning tools. I was in the shop the other day just experimenting with turning and I'm pretty sure the tools need to be sharpened. I keep seeing videos of turners sharpening their tools with the white wheels on their grinders.

Where would a guy pick one of those up? I have a Klingspor's right up the road. Could I find one there? And how hard is it to put on the grinder? I have a grinder handed down to me by my step dad, but have never really used it/changed the wheels.

I'd really like to get these tools sharpened so I can make some good cuts and try turning some things. Any advice would be greatly appreciated, as I know not a whole lot on the subject.
 

JRD

New User
Jim
Klingspors will have the proper stone for your grinder, however a slow speed grinder is preferred.
Changing the stone isn't much of a job, but sharpening by hand is!

I suggest you do a Google search for sharpening jigs. That's what I did, made up the jigs, and now every sharpening session is just like the one before. The bevels stay the same and a lot less steel is removed because you're just touching them up.

All that said, for the first year of my turning I sharpened my tools on a belt sander with 100 grit paper as the abrasive. Not easy to keep a uniform grind and edge, but it worked.

Jim
 

leftoflefty

New User
Ricky
Thanks Jim. What kind of grinder would you suggest? I think the one I have is an old B&D or Craftsman. And what kind of jigs? Are there some that you can buy or are you talking about ones that you have made?
 

crokett

New User
David
For jigs, look into the Wolverine sharpening jig. there are various shop-made versions of it.
 

CarvedTones

Board of Directors, Vice President
Andy
As long as they are HSS tools, I think the jig or technique is more important than the composition of the stone or even the speed of the grinder. I have seen people make a pretty good case for the factory stones for HSS turning tools.

EDIT - I wanted to clarify this. I think it is a good idea to use a better stone, but I have seen videos of some really good turners sharpening on standard grinders and commenting that they are less forgiving but will put just as good an edge on if the tool is presented properly.
 

Bill Clemmons

Bill
Corporate Member
We had a sharpening seminar in Feb. and ScottM brought his slow speed grinder and Wolverine Grinding Jig. Here are the pics from that session. Scroll through and find the pics of someone using a grinder. They are sharpening turning tools. The Wolverine is made by OneWay. As someone else pointed out, there are other versions available from different sources.

For grinding wheels, I just ordered two from these folks (Sharpening Supplies.com) and was very satisfied w/ both the service and the price. Delivery in 48 hours.

HTH

Bill
 

aplpickr

New User
Bill
Your FIL probably did not like turning because turning with dull tools is not FUN! To keep from wasting the expensive tool steel the bevel needs to be repeatable. If the bevel is maintained, proper sharpening can be accompolished by only one or two quick passes over the stone. Multiple bevels can cause bumps and/or divits in your cut. Finishing can be tough! All the expenses in proper sharpening are returned by not having to replace worn tools. JOIN A TURNING CLUB. The closest AAW club is www.ncwoodturners.com in Hickory. The www.carolinamountainwoodturners.org is in Asheville and will meet this Saturday with a FREE six hour demo. Have fun!
 

Henry W

HenryW
Senior User
Disclaimer - I am novice turner and have not necessarily followed all the advice I am about to give!

Find someone to help. A local turner can save you months of frustration in about an hour of help/instruction. Paying for that is worth it. Take a class on turning and you will likely cover the basic of sharpening there.

There is no 'rocket science' to sharpening - and that holds for turning tools as well as regular chisels and blade irons. Pick a method and get good at it (practice, practice, practice); jigs can help ensure consistency. A shop made jig can work and there are many commercially available jigs as well.

It is my firm belief that there are many ways to "skin this cat" and if you were to do a poll here you would hear that quite clearly (Wolverine, WorkSharp, grinders slow and fast, belt sanders, disc sanders, diamond stones ....). Pick a method that makes sense for you and do it enough to get good at it.

Personally I cobbled together a Wolverine like jig that is too ugly to take a picture of - scrap wood, a wooden block to hold the gouge, and an old kitchen utensil for a post. I mount that and use my 9" disc sander - cheap and effective. It was what I had on hand and while I need more practice to get good at it, I can turn with the edges I am getting.

Read, read, read - the internet has a lot of resources. Once you read enough, here on NCWW or elsewhere, you will figure out what make the most sense for your tool set and situation:
- Cash to buy a well made jig? go for it
- More time than money? make one out of sticks, screws, and kitchen utensils :gar-Bi like I did.

Again, less than a hour with a more experienced turner in your area will yield:
- a new WW friend and
- save you months of aggravation.
I expect if you here ask you will get more than a few NCWW volunteers.

Henry W
 

NCTurner

Gary
Corporate Member
My personal preference is for the Norton Blue SG wheels. I grabbed mine on a sale. Grits are 80 & 120. On a slow speed grinder with steel drill bushings to replace the cheap plastic ones.
 

Leviblue

New User
Kevin
I tried the "make your own" Wolverine jig. It looked good out of scrap wood but not very practical for me. I couldn't get the hang of it. So I purchased a Worksharp 3000. I use the see through top surface when sharpening my turning tools. I take a sharpie and color the bevel in and place the tool under the sharpening disk. I can see and keep the bevel at the correct angle as the sharpie is taken away evenly across the bevel.
It may not sound very impressive, but it can place a sharp edge on the tool quickly with little heat build up and not have an issue turning. I have the HSS tools and am glad I purchased the sharpener. Now I'm thinking maybe I need to sell the grinder....:wconfused:
 
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