The Crash Course in Sharpening

Toolmaker Ron Hock has a new book coming out soon and a new blog , both deal with sharpening. I had the privilege of reading the draft of the book, “The Perfect Edge” (Popular Woodworking Books), earlier this year. I think Ron has broken some new ground, especially on the topic of abrasives. Until...

Three (Unoriginal) Sharpening Tips

Some things about sharpening everyone knows (it’s two metal surfaces, an abrasive and friction). Other things nobody knows (such as the best system ever). And there is a third category of sharpening facts: Things that everyone should know, but some people don’t. I’ve been doing a lot of sharpening these last few weeks, both...

M.Power Sharpening System

Editor Christopher Schwarz is out of town , so we’ve commandeered his blog for a few days. Don’t worry , the socks on squirrels and monkey references will soon return. When The Schwarz first handed me the M.Power PSS1, I was intrigued because sharpening has always been my woodworking Achilles’ heel , if you’re...

Truth in Sharpening Angles

The little side-clamp honing guide is my favorite bit of sharpening equipment. But it frequently is criticized for two shortcomings: - It is poorly made and sloppily painted. So you have to tune the little sucker up before it will perform reliably, especially with chisels. This is a 100-percent valid critique of this honing...

Three Magnets Make Sharpening Easier

The most miserable aspect of hand work is setting up the tools for the first time. Removing the coarse manufacturing scratches from the unbeveled faces of your edge tools can be grueling, boring and filthy work. (One side note before someone spanks me about David Charlesworth’s “ruler trick.” I really think you need to...

Sharpening: Here's What I See

I’m fairly well convinced that my ears are different than yours. The music I like isn’t going to sound the same to you. It’s almost impossible for me to share with another person what the Heartless Bastards sounds like to me. Language is too imprecise. Same goes with the eyes (and tastebuds). How you...

Highly Recommended: Saw Sharpening from TechnoPrimitives

Without fail, every week readers ask me where to get their saws sharpened. I’ve run into some great saw sharpeners in my day, and I’m always happy to recommend their services. Today I’d like to tell you about Mark Harrell, who has taken saw sharpening service into the digital age. Harrell, a 28-year veteran...

A Knife That Never Needs Sharpening? We’ll See!

When I first opened the package, I assumed that the tool inside was a prototype that had a plastic blade. That happens occasionally here at the magazine when a manufacturer wants our opinion on a tool’s ergonomics before they crank up production. But no, the white chunk of stuff at the end of the...

Resharpening a Scraper Plane

Question: I’ve noted that you’ve recently mentioned that you’ve been looking into scrapers, so I thought that maybe you could answer a question that I have about scraper-plane blades.  Recently I acquired a Stanley #12 scraper plane and the three Lie-Nielsen scraper planes (modern versions of the Stanley #112, #85, and #212).  I am...