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Hi there Fraternity.

I have never been a couch potato, I always need to be doing something, sorry let me rephrase that last statement. My wife always needs me to be doing something. This week being an example, where being retired I was happily watching some day time TV.

What are you doing came the question? Repairing the TV, I quickly replied. From the couch she asked. Yes, I’m diagnosing the problem. What’s the problem? It’s the Flux Capacitor, it’s out of whack. Is it she said inquiringly. Why don’t you get Dr Emmit or Marty Mcfly to have a look at it? She is such a smart ass, too clever for my own good, I thought but never uttered, which was followed by, diagnose it from the workshop.

Now as I stood here once again. I looked around admiring my recent clean up, and to be honest I didn’t fancy trashing it right away, so looked around for a clean job that needed doing, and my eyes alighted on my chisels. That’ll do nicely and started to rout out all my blades. Ended up with 10 chisels and 2 plane blades. Set up my stones and got to work. Started with a planer blade and decided on 30 degrees. Now I have watched these individuals on U Tube, starting off with crushed rocks super glued to their benches, ending up 50 sheets later with 10 million grade, that gives a polish that puts the Hubble telescope mirror to shame. Not for me.

Half an hour later was stripped to my vest, lashing sweat that froze to my nose. Result was demoralizing. About a millimetre or face polished. I looked at what I had accomplished and at what lay ahead.

Now I know there is a Tormek machine available to the rich, but not to a poor sweat drenched frozen pensioner from Scotland. No Tormek’s are the domain of the Enthusiast who requires perfection I cannot even dream about. So, I had to come up with an alternative to Tormek.

One week later, here it is. I know you’re thinking. He’s had a stroke. Now please remember this is what they call a prototype, where you make all your mistakes in the pursuit of perfection. And boy did I make mistakes and Perfection never reared its ugly head.

What you see before you is 5 days hard labour. On reflection it would have been quicker crouched over my bench sharpening. But once I set up my angle. It can traverse between 25 and 45 degrees. There is a 90-degree slide that moves across and holds the blade at exactly 90 degrees to the stone, and I made slots on my retaining bolts in order to achieve my x and y axis and the whole thing is built around a 3-inch brass butt door hinge.

Problems with this set up is the wheel speed. It’s a 12-inch diameter fed by a 3 phase 415-volt motor. I was therefore very aware of burning the blade. I kept it wet and only gave it a second at a time.

There are times it almost went into the bin; every time I solved a problem it created a domino effect. I must have altered it at least 20 times. Now I feel I can create a really neat jig out of stainless, but I won’t as I’m so peed off. It works and it’s staying and at the end of the day it’s very design is only suitable for my grinder.

Now being quite pleased with my work so far, I took them over to my planes, a number 3 and 4 and as I looked at them I realized they were not in the best of condition and took the decision to go the whole hog and try at least to bring them back to as near a decent state as I was able to. It was that or try to repair the Flux Capacitor.

I originally purchased these planes at the Glamis Extravaganza which is a large fair and I picked them up for £12 each, a bargain I thought but they were severely rusted and looking a little forlorn.

I stripped them all the way down to individual parts and got to work on the handles. Varnish was completely glaze cracked so spend a couple of hours stripping back to bare wood. Didn’t realize the bare wood was white in colour. So, a coating of walnut stain and two coats of car body work clear spray acrylic. And they looked not half bad.

As for the black body paint it was in pretty good condition, so another two coats of acrylic. The bare metal sides were polished with wet/dry and again acrylic, the same with the underside but used silicone dressing and after final assembly tried them out and they now take off about 2 to 3-inch depth of cut with every pass. I may be exaggerating a tad.

Now as I started to take the photos I didn’t realize how bad my workbench looked. I assumed someone has been breaking into my workshop and abusing it, it’s the only explanation I could come up with. They must have had a key and the alarm combination as they seem to have locked everything up when they left.

So, lads that’s the next project. After I change the locks.



One other problem is I used one of my 3-inch brass door hinges. So now looking for a project where you can hang a door on one hinge.



Colin
Scotland
 

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21,703 Posts
Delightfully amusing. Sharpening chisels and irons is, strangely enough, one of my favorite things, certainly more entertaining than obehing directives from the emperor of home.
 

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Theo
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Just be very careful about what your wife wants you to do.
 

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Oliver (Prof. Henry)
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I don't know which I enjoyed more, your jig or your story. Both are great.
 

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The jig seems to work quite effectively and the planes look new.
 
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