In the next issue of Popular Woodworking Magazine I review the Chestnut Tools Universal Sharpener from Lee Valley Tools. I learned about this remarkable and inexpensive little tool from furniture maker Freddy Roman. I was skeptical about it until I got my hands on it.
This thing is … well you’ll have to read my review for that.
One of the best things it does in my shop is to refile the edge of a worn card scraper to perfectly square, clean and wicked sharp – ready for a little stoning and a burnisher. Removing traditional file marks with your stones can be tedious. The surface this tool leaves is remarkable.
I prepared this short video that shows how I file scraper edges with the assistance of my face vise. Note that I’m holding the scraper so it’s about 85° from the edge of the Universal Sharpener. The exact angle isn’t important, but when you feel the carbide edge bite the scraper and remove steel shavings without a lot of effort, that’s the sweet spot.
The shape of the Universal Sharpener isn’t ideal for turning the burr on a scraper (in my experience, at least), so you’ll still need a burnisher to finish the sharpening job.
The Universal Sharpener includes instructions for sharpening all kinds of tools. It’s earned a permanent place in my tool chest – right next to my burnisher.
— Christopher Schwarz
For more on sharpening, and what “sharp” really means, read Ron Hock’s book, “The Perfect Edge.”
Here are some supplies and tools we find essential in our everyday work around the shop. We may receive a commission from sales referred by our links; however, we have carefully selected these products for their usefulness and quality.