Woodworking & Furniture Making

Sharpening woodworking and furniture making tools

Time to get your woodworking tools sharp? With a Tormek you can sharpen wood chisels, plane irons, planer blades, drill bits, carving tools and more to a razor-sharp edge. The water cooled way of sharpening is both gentle and highly effective in keeping the edge to an optimal shape. You can smoothly sharpen your specific tool to your desired shape and angel, and replicate your sharpening if needed.

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Sharpening that is gentle on your tools

By taking care of your tools in the best way, you will also get the benefit of enjoying them for a long time. The Tormek method means that you only remove a minimum amount of steel during each sharpening, which will extend the lifetime of your tools. With Tormek’s sharpening system, the edge is continuously cooled with water during the sharpening, which is both gentle on the steel and washes the ground steel particles into the water trough. The grindstone also rotates slowly throughout the sharpening, which means there is no risk that the steel becomes overheated and loses its hardness.

Tormek Sharpening Class
Chisels, plane irons and Tormek Grinding Wheels

Sébastien and Wolfgang from Tormek show the sharpening of chisels and plane blades with the Tormek sharpening system. We also go through Tormek’s different grinding wheels; SG-250 Original Grindstone, SB-250 Blackstone Silicion, SJ-250 Japanese Waterstone and our three Diamond Wheels DC-250, DF-250 and DE-250. In the program we give our recommendations for usage and tools.

Honing will get you the maximum sharpness

To get the highest possible sharpness, it’s important that you finish the sharpening process by honing and polishing your tool on the leather honing wheel. This process will remove the burr that occurs during sharpening and give a razor-sharp and shiny edge for a long time ahead.

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Sharpen wood chisels and plane irons

With Tormek's jig for square edges, SE-77, it is easy to set your wood chisels and plane irons for sharpening to a square corner. The design gives you the best conditions for a successful sharpening with the highest precision over the final result. You can also set the jig for a slightly convex shape. See the full instuctions for using the SE-77 Square Edge Jig here.

Setting the edge angle

The height of the Universal Support determines the edge angle. This can be set in two ways. Either you can exactly replicate the existing angle using the Tormek Marker Method or you set to a new angle according to your choice using the Tormek AngleMaster WM‑200.

The easiest way to re-set the edge angle on tool, like a chisel or a plane iron, is to use the Tormek Marker Method. By following three simple steps you can quickly get the correct angle.

  1. Color the bevel, mount your edge tool in the right jig and place it onto the Universal Support.
  2. Turn the grindstone by hand and check where the coloring is removed.
  3. Raise or lower the Universal Support until the coloring is removed from the tip to the heel. Now, the angle is just right and it’s time to start sharpening!

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Sharpening Japanese Chisels

The Japanese Chisels differ in shape from the Western style chisels. The rough shape from the forging is retained without machining, the sides are usually not parallel and the blades are shorter. This means that you cannot use the alignment shoulder in the jig for an exact 90° alignment. The clamp is designed so tools with a tapered shank can also be firmly mounted. Be cautious when sharpening Japanese chisels! Compared to longer Western style chisels there is a limited amount of available steel, so you should set carefully to minimize the removal of expensive steel. The back has a hollow, which moves closer to the edge at each sharpening. After some sharpenings you might need to flatten the back, so the hollow does not reach the edge. You then use the side of the wheel.

Tormek Scholarship Award

Since 2013, the Tormek Scholarship Award has been given to a senior student, majoring in cabinet making and furniture design. The purpose is to shed light on young talents and to encourage you who aspire to high professional qualifications and want to invest time in your woodwork.
Learn more here about Tormek Scholarship Award!

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