Tormek Community

In the Shop => Hand Tool Woodworking => Topic started by: 90066 on January 13, 2021, 05:57:41 pm

Title: hand plane blade: getting to the 90
Post by: 90066 on January 13, 2021, 05:57:41 pm

I read a bunch of threads on here, and just wanted to check my understanding.

Trying to sharpen my hand plane. side to bevel isn't 90; there is probably a 1/16+ skew
I trued the stone (using tormek jig)
i pushed the plane blade towards the "notch" in the se-77
I pushed the clamping knob over
I set the angle with a marker.

And it's off.

Now, I saw discussion of the knobs used for setting the camber. It sounds like the procedure/concern is that universal support + se-77 are somehow not square to the wheel. Is that right?

And if so, the advice is to:
- clamp something with a known 90 properly (ruler)
- draw a line on the wheel using universal support as guide, as this will ensure that the line is parallel to the support
- draw a 90 on the plane blade
- use fine-tuning knobs to make sure that my line on the wheel is parallel to the line on the plane blade (alternatively, hand-grind the plane to 90 by checking with try-square frequently and then use that to align with that line on the wheel)

Sources of potential issues:
- clamping (i *think* i am doing it right)
- truing (I *think* i did this right)
- finger pressure when grinding (unclear if doing this right)
- length of time spent on grinding middle vs corners (unclear if doing this right)

Does this seem about right as far as the path to repeatable 90 degrees is?

Thank you very much!
Title: Re: hand plane blade: getting to the 90
Post by: 90066 on January 14, 2021, 08:31:09 am
Hrm. That's annoying. So, I re-trued the wheel. I then drew a line (using universal support as guide). Clamped a ruler in the se-77; it seemed to align nicely with the line on the wheel. Sides seem straight enough.

Re-clamped everything, making sure both knobs on se-77 are roughly similarly engaged.

Grinding - that plane iron still seems to be a good 1/16 non-square.

Is it that once bevel isn't square to the side it's not just a matter of clamping and grinding and expecting the unevenness to go away?

Title: Re: hand plane blade: getting to the 90
Post by: Ken S on January 14, 2021, 01:21:50 pm
Have you studied Tormek's online class on chisels and plane blades? Here is a link:

When a ground edge is that much out of square, the problem is usually grinding too much before checking with a small square.

Mark your bevel with the black marker. Set up the plane blade in the SE-77. Make one light pass. The black mark should only be removed on the high side of the blade. If not, adjust the two knobs as explained in the online class.
If you have the knobs adjusted properly, the grind line should gradually lengthen until it runs side to side. Double check to make sure it is square. Once it is square, sharpen the blade.

This may seem like a lot of work; however, as you get the hang of it, it will become easier.

Keep us posted.

Title: Re: hand plane blade: getting to the 90
Post by: 90066 on January 15, 2021, 03:15:56 am
Thank you! I've seen the class - it's informative as usual, but that just put the blade in, and it just works :)

I will triple check if my side is straight, and I like your suggestion about using a marker to check this way (I've only used it to say an angle)

Will report back!
Title: Re: hand plane blade: getting to the 90
Post by: Ken S on January 15, 2021, 12:21:09 pm
The Tormek is an amazingly versatile tool, when used in skilled hands. However, this versatility comes with a learning price. Unlike a pencil sharpener, it is not plug and play. The SE-77 is an example of this. For a cabinetmaker, having the ability to create controlled camber on a plane blade is a major advance. As you are finding out, the road to mastery can be frustrating at times.

Almost forty years ago, a very generous aunt gave me a large view camera. In skilled hands, they are the artist's camera and will spoil you for any other camera. I was very frustrated. I had wanted this camera for years, and I could not see the focusing screen properly. I stubbornly persevered and eventually it became my favorite camera.

Do not get discouraged. You will soon master sharpening your plane blades.

Title: Re: hand plane blade: getting to the 90
Post by: 90066 on January 16, 2021, 01:52:23 am
Thanks for the encouragement!

So, I think I made progress. I think that it's a combination of things over time that all need to come together to produce the nice angle of 90.
1. I learned that after grading the stone cuts very fast (it makes sense, there is a video about it. just have to remember). I learned that, in general, the thing seems to cut faster than i thought it should which would keep changing my angle. So now I check more often as I am figuring things out.
2. I learned about grading :)
3. I learned about plane iron sides (they may not be straight. at the tip mine wasn't)

And so my last discovery, which I think moved everything in the right direction: people do say to push on universal support when tightening. I did do it, but somewhere in the middle of my journey I think I saw something that said to push in the middle (between two vertical tubes) which is a mistake. Pushing on the one with the micro-adjust made a pretty significant difference.

Now I have a not-quite-90 blade. In fact, I have an iron that's kind of "wavy". The encouraging part here is that it's not a consistent skew.

My current thought is that what I need to figure out is uniform grinding - since you tend to grind the middle more than the edges, there is some dialing in of how you move the bevel over the stone. I think this, too, is mentioned either in printed manual, in the video, or both.

So far I think I've eliminated 

 and what was throwing me off at last: when tightening universal support