Show Posts

This section allows you to view all posts made by this member. Note that you can only see posts made in areas you currently have access to.

Topics - Ken S

Pages: [1] 2 3 ... 31
Knife Sharpening / an easy alternative for odd thickness knives
« on: July 13, 2019, 10:24:50 am »
This struck me as a good backup technique to have in your pocket for knives which don't match the regular thickness of the Tormek jig.


Knife Sharpening / laser protractor
« on: July 06, 2019, 05:59:54 pm »
Where would a purchase a laser protractor in the US?

General Tormek Questions / T8 water trough
« on: June 28, 2019, 04:19:48 am »
Recently I have been using mostly my diamond wheels. There is no abrasive deposit from diamond wheels as there is from Original grinding wheels. Plus, the magnet catches the steel particles, leaving the water trough quite clean. Just a wipe with a paper towel over the magnet area and a quick rinse makes everything fine.

Tonight I used my TT-50 on a new SB-250. Truing any new Original grinding wheel is standard good grinding practice. My SB-250 needed just a bit of truing.

I then performed my standard cutting test. I place a new metal lathe tool bit in my sauare edge jig, set the bevel angle for 25° with the Anglemaster, and grind for five minutes. I stopped once to refresh the stone with the coarse side of the stone grader.

Out of time, I cleaned up my work area. I dumped the dirty water into a bucket. I started to wipe out the grinding debris with a paper towel. I was surprised by the amount of debris. In a flash of brilliance, I removed the scraper from the T8 water trough. The scraper made quick work of all the debris. Nice design touch.

I did not measure the amount of water. Even working somewhat haphazardly, my water spillage was quite minimal, perhaps two or three drops. Over the years I have had a few clumsy sessions where I had excessive spillage. (The lip of the rubber work mat caught that.) However, a few drops at most is more typical.


Most of us choose not to get past the sticker shock of the $60US price of the Tormek Rubber Work Mat. This is unfortunate and undeserved. The Rubber Work Mat is definitely not an overpriced cafeteria tray. When I first examined mine, my first impression was that it is a well designed high quality product. I recently learned that it is made for Tormek by the company which makes the tires for
Range Rover. It is a solid, heavy duty product. It is also well sized for Tormek work. Here is a link:

Looking at it objectively, it is a product which is used every time a Tormek user sharpens anything. It is actually one of the least expensive Tormek jigs or accessories. How many of us, myself included, have paid more for a jig or accessory we have never used, or use very rarely? I have seen several substitutes posted on the forum, which seem to work well. However, I would not say that they work just as well. The Rubber Work Mat does not slide. Its heavy duty side lips have contained all the water I have ever spilled, even on my clumsiest days.

My suggested homemade stand for a Tormek would have a table top sized to fit with the Rubber Work Mat. I think having a pair of same sized tables with different work heights and two Rubber Work Mats would be both quite efficient and luxurious.

The Tormek Rubber Work Mat is definitely worth a serious look.


Hand Tool Woodworking / Stumpy Nubs revolving knife block
« on: June 26, 2019, 12:40:14 pm »
I enjoy the Stumpy Nubs you tubes. His conversation with Stig Reitan is by far the most imformative video I have ever found about the Tormek. I have watched it several times and recommend the same for you. Here is the link:

Back to topic...... My thirty year old Henckel wooden knife block can hold all the kitchen knives I really need, almost. (My Chinese cleaver does not fit in it.) It has eight knife slots and slots for scissors and a steel. This is certainly plenty for most home cooks. As my kitchen is also my Tormek knife sharpening field laboratory, a few more slots would be nice, if I had enough counter space, which I don't.

I found this Stumpy Nubs video:

This revolving knife block is tucked up against the bottom of the top cabinet above my cutting board. When in the shut position, no knife handles protrude. Best of all, I can customize it to hold my Chinese cleaver, some experimental knives (My chef's knife ground for left handers like me comes to mind.), and my smooth butcher's steel.


General Tormek Questions / TT-50 (2019 version)
« on: June 24, 2019, 11:41:52 am »
I contacted support ( regarding how to determine if a new T8 included the 2019 version of the TT-50. Here is their reply:

“No code or marking on the boxes.
If someone get the old version and really want the new one. Tell them to contact us at the support and we will help them.
There should not be that many old TT-50 left. We started shipping the new style in okt 2018.
From serial no 656001 the new model is included in the T-8.”

This is another example of the excellent customer support I have come to expect from Tormek. I believe "new old stock" problems will mostly occur with online auction purchases. For the record, chatter problems with the older TT-50 are rare, and easily remedied with a couple inexpensive electrical plastic ties.


Hand Tool Woodworking / PM-V11
« on: June 08, 2019, 02:19:18 pm »
PM-V11 is a premium blade steel developed by Lee Valley. It has remarkable edge holding ability, and is easily sharpened by conventional sharpening materials.

I recently learned from a very reliable source that PM-V11 is very compatible with the Tormek SG grinding wheels. In our rush for new technology, we sometimes overlook how versatile and effective our Original SG wheels are.


Here is a very simple step you should do before even mounting the grinding wheel on your new Tormek: Make a label saying "Tormek Spacer
                                           Important SAVE"

Stick this on the transportation spacer which comes with your new Tormek. This is an important part of your Tormek; do not discard it. With the spacer in place you can safely transport your Tormek in a car or truck. Also, carrying your Tormek is easier with the grinding wheel removed. Having the spacer in place prevents the shaft from sliding off of the bushings (and possibly onto the floor).

Save your transport spacer.


General Tormek Questions / Alan Holtham video a definite bookmark.
« on: June 04, 2019, 10:02:26 am »
I received a PM from a new member whose shaft had accidentally shifted. This can be unsettling the first time it occurs. With experience, changing the shaft for annual maintenance is no big deal. Keep this Alan Holtham you tube handy for reference:

I suggest marking Alan's you tube channel. His Tormek videos are first-rate.


Quite a while back, someone (Elden, I think) brought up the possibility of flat grinding with the Tormek.This is actually how the Tormek molding cutter jig works. Ever since then, I have been fascinated with the possibility of doing this. I think I have finally discovered a workable method. Unlike using the side of the diamond wheels, this should work with any grinding wheel using the edge of any grinding wheel.

Referring to the SG, the handbook states that the out of true tolerances for the edge of the wheel are tighter than the out of true tolerances for the side faces of the wheel. (The side tolerances for the diamond wheels are presumably tighter.) However, the handbook also states that  the trueness of the SG can be improved by using the truing tool. The initial tighter tolerances of the edge of the wheel, plus the ability of using the TT-50 truing tool with the SG led me to seek a flat grinding solution with the edge of the SG.

Here is my solution:

First we start with a freshly and carefully trued SG.

Next, a Knife Grinders VFB (vertical front base) is placed in the vertical sleeves.

A Tormek MB-100 Multi Base is placed in the Knife Grinders VFB from the front side.

I placed my Extended Support Bar from Robin Bailey into the MB-100. The support bar should be oriented to be level and slightly above and to the outside of the grinding wheel. I set this up using the Torlock platform to sharpen the large Alan Lacer skew. It should work with other jigs as well.

I started out using the standard US-105 support bar. This may work fine. I switched to the larger support bar to have plenty of working room. The newly redesigned Tormek US-400 will also provide this extra working room, as well as a microadjust.

This method should provide accurate flat grind to the Tormek with any grinding wheel. I will post as I progress with it.


General Tormek Questions / Grit thoughts
« on: April 23, 2019, 03:28:19 am »

I find Tormek's grit designations puzzling. I have found that both 360 grit diamond wheels cut more aggressively than the 220 grit SuperGrind (SG) wheels. I suspect this is due to other factors than just grit size. Tormek recommends much lighter grinding pressure when using the diamond wheels. I think the diamond grains are sharper than the aluminum oxide of the SG.

Ionut, one of our most outstanding now inactive members, noted several years ago that the Tormek SG wheel has three grits (not two). In addition to stone grader coarse, supposedly 220, and stone grader fine, supposedly 1000, Ionut noted a third, coarser grit, the surface just after using the TT-50 truing tool.

Related to this, I have found that the stone grader is not limited to just two grits, full coarse and full fine. It has not entered into the handbook, however, there is a middle grit, often called "600". This name coincides with the 600 grit diamond wheel of the T2. With the SG, I find 600 grit an approximate number. I also find the two grit numbers assigned to the stone grader (220 and 1000) both approximate numbers. The TT-50 produces a coarser grit than the coarse side of the stone grader.

I did a simple test tonight. I have no way to accurately determine grit size. My not very scientific measuring system was to feel the surface of my SG wheels prepared in different ways. The freshly ground TT-50 surface was noticeably the most coarse. I divided my second SG in half with a black Sharpie. I used the coarse side of the stone grader on one half and a 325 grit diamond card file glued on a flat piece of steel on the second half. I found these two surfaces very close, with the diamond card file perhaps the tiniest bit more coarse. Even used very slowly for a smoother surface, the TT-50 was clearly the most coarse.

The file card may help keep the grinding wheel more true than the stone grader.

I place very little importance on exacting grit numbers. The SG wheel is quite versatile with the TT-50 and stone grader. I just think in terms of more coarse and less coarse.


« on: April 18, 2019, 04:14:44 pm »
I just noticed four new listings from China with no reviews and unbelievable prices, like $69.95 for a new T4. Buyer beware!


General Tormek Questions / Attn. T4 owners:
« on: April 06, 2019, 05:30:51 pm »

Attention T4 owners:

For many years, adding a magnet to the water trough was a common forum topic. Lots of Tormek users modified their water troughs to include a magnet, using various methods. I was one of the many who added a magnet to my water trough. I used black electrical tape, which never failed me.

In January of 2010, Tormek introduced the AWT-250, an advanced water trough for the T7. It could be substituted for the regular water trough of any 250mm Tormek. Gradually posts about using magnets died down. Since 2010, all new T7 and T8 Tormeks have had the AWT-250, which is larger, and includes both the built in magnet and the detachable long platform. This was great for the larger Tormeks, but did nothing for the T4.

The traditional homemade trough magnet remains an effective and low cost fix for the T4. I like the round flat magnets. I suggest holding the magnet to  the water trough with tape. A good grade of electrical tape will hold for years. Scotch tape and masking tape work well for "beta" testing for positioning. Be sure to make things permanent with electrical tape. (Electrical tape can be easily removed without damage.)

A small towel can be a workable stand in for the platform.

Don't forget a turkey baster to remove the majority of the water from the trough with minimal, if any, spillage.

I think the T4 is a terrific machine. Enjoy.


General Tormek Questions / EZYlock not jamming
« on: April 03, 2019, 10:53:01 pm »
Over the years, we have had a trickle of posts concerning the EZYlock jamming. Not a flood, however, enough to indicate an occasional problem. I have experienced this on a couple of occasions. We have had several suggestions, good possible solutions, however, nothing definitive. I have corresponded with support about this. Again nothing definitive, however, support did suggest galling, which seems like a good lead.

I do not recall reading any jamming reports from T4 (or T2) users. Why not? The reason may be that the T4 and T2 use plastic EZYlock locking nuts instead of stainless steel. At this point, I cannot make any definitive statements. Early on, I ordered a stainless steel EZYlock and a quick connect (the plastic locking knob for the leather honing wheel) as upgrades for my T4.

I just placed the original plastic EZYlock on my T8. I don't know if this will prevent any future jamming or not. It seems worth a try. Comments?


ps Here is a link to the part. I may include another one in my next parts order. (I always try to combine shipping.)

Knife Sharpening / elastoplast (now tensoplast)
« on: March 23, 2019, 01:38:37 am »
After watching one of Wootz' knife sharpening videos, I ordered a roll of the Elastoplast heavy tape he uses to protect his knife blades from scratches. It finally arrived from the UK. Very nice stuff; worth the wait.

I have no problems with the product itself, although shipping first aid tape from the UK to the US doesn't seem logistically inefficient. The tape is made in South Africa. The name has been changed from Elastoplast to Tensoplast. I look forward to scratch free knives. Thanks, Wootz!


Pages: [1] 2 3 ... 31