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New Chisels....

6450 Views 44 Replies 12 Participants Last post by  Barry747
And I'd viewed more videos than I can take. As I haven't bought or used chisels in a long time, and those were Stanly's used to notch wood like 2x4's and the like, I bought a set of Narex Bench chisels and finally got around to taking them out of the packaging. I had also gotten a set of Narex Mortise chisels. So after seeing these videos and wanting to do the right thing I decided to flatten the back side of the chisels. I have the DMT Diamond Duo plates with Coarse/Fine/X-Fine diamond plate surfaces. I found from trying to flatten a bench plane iron that I needed something a bit more than coarse to start with as the iron had never been flattened. So I ended up with using some Norton wet/dry 220 grit paper which did a decent job of getting the stubborn edges flat all the way across and then proceed with the other three steps polishing it more and more as I went. I finished the iron using the Veritas MKII system and got a really shard iron. So this morning I was excited about taking on the chisels until I wasn't. As the shoulder isn't 100% yet and won't be for at least another 5-7 weeks I just wanted to flatten the widest chisel and check it's flatness. Hoping the coarse plate would be a good starting point I quickly became discouraged. I'm using water as my lubricant and I'm only trying to flatten from the tip back maybe 2-3" and quickly saw that this was far from flat. I had run my HF 3 chisels very quickly and they did well, mostly in about 10 minutes on coarse but the Narex was well into 40-45 minutes and that included the 220 grit sandpaper and coarse diamond stone, possibly longer. I was starting to feel some soreness in my hand and realized I was flattening them as well. As trying to hold the width of the chisel flat and with pressure I was using both hands similar in the same method you would for CPR except I was standing. They don't mention what to do with skin cells in the mesh of the diamond stone but I figured I'd clean that up for good measure and the slurry was stopping any bleeding.....and I have really smooth palms. The chisels in this subject are found here

So back to Google, DMT's website, and Amazon (the website not the jungle). So I ordered the Extra Extra Coarse Diamond Stone and should have that in a few days but I still have the issue with holding the chisels flat on the stones. So I immediately thought of the wisdom of this group and thought I could entertain you with my antics, abrasions, and newly smoothed skin while seeking some wisdom other then "send them to Louie's Sharpening Service and get it done for $50". I can't be the first, and if I am I loose, to have this kind of issue with sharpening, or at the least the flattening process. I was thinking that there must exist somewhere a holder that will allow a strong grip on a small part so it can be help down flat with pressure and allow good clear hand contact. Anything guys and gals? My palms would greatly appreciate it. Some pics included to hopefully see the problem.

Next thing to tackle would be the mortise chisels...........


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I bought my Narex chisels from Lee Valley over 10 years ago and my students are still buying them today. In my opinion, they are by far the best bang for your buck on the market. You can find better but at an outrageous price. I have never had issues with flattening or sharpening. I flattened the backs when they were new and check them when I hone/sharp them and I have not had to re-do the backs so far. I know many people will disagree but, I use a stone with honing oil and I would not change from this, I get excellent results and all by hand, no guides or jigs. This is the method I was tought and it is what I teach my students. Sure you can get a slightly sharper edge from diamond plates and some machines, but for fast and easy I swear by my method that is also inexpensive.

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