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Messages - Rob

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I'm also a guitarist and I've been using the Tormek for circa 10 years.  I'm sorry to be a party pooper but...…."pilot error" springs to mind.

if you're that ham fisted then actually wearing those thin workshop style rubber gloves that you buy in packs of 6 from Costco would probably help.  Just find another means of thinking through your burr.  in fact, thinking about it, I never "touch" the burr along the length of the edge, only across it.  it sounds like your technique is dangerously off.

General Tormek Questions / Re: a good example of a mediocre video
« on: January 26, 2020, 07:12:24 pm »
I drink mine....they breed 'em tough in Yorkshire :-)

Wood Turning / Re: using the SVD-185 before the TTS-100 Torgny Jansson
« on: January 26, 2020, 06:31:08 pm »
LOL...reminds me of the movie "Spinal tap" where the highest guitar amp volume has to be 11 not 10 but 11 :-)

Wood Turning / Re: using the SVD-185 before the TTS-100 Torgny Jansson
« on: January 26, 2020, 12:13:39 pm »
I like jig setting "6".

Literally off the scale :-)

Knife Sharpening / Re: bevel angle calculating thoughts
« on: January 26, 2020, 12:05:36 pm »
   This seemed like a good topic to make my first post in this forum. I've just recently taken delivery of a new T8 and the SVM-45 knife jig with the intent of keeping my workshop chisels, planes and of course the kitchen knives in a much better state of sharpness then I've managed so far with other methods (mostly hand sharpened on diamond plates). I dutifully trued up the stone as recommended and started with some of the chisels and plane blades. I then moved on to doing the kitchen knives after first practising on a couple of cheap ones I bought from Kmart for a whole $8 each.
Initially (and before I discovered your forum) I did all the sharpening using the traditional Tormek way with the angle setter and freehand honing and I was able to get great results , there is no question in my mind that you can and will get good results with the “out of the box” Tormek kit with a with even just little practise.
One of the best “add-ons” I introduced was a 10x Loupe Magnifier to check the bevel as I was going along, both for grinding and honing. I also used this in conjunction with the "Sharpie" method on the bevel to see what I was actually grinding/honing. This gave me great feedback as to how I was doing and what I needed to correct to get a better result. (My aging eyes betray me a little these days)
After lots of reading on the forum about all the different angle calculator programs and equipment I have started using TormekCalc (thank you jvh) with just the standard USB in vertical and horizontal position.  What this seems to give me is benefits in setup time and accuracy and more consistent results especially for honing. Sharper results? Somewhat yes, but I agree with Ken that without doing at least some practise using basic methods and monitoring my results as I go along I would not fully appreciate what I am gaining using these “extras”.


I'm a little late to the party guys...whats Tormek calc?

It's a peculiarly male trait isn't it?  We go into a "shop".  Doesn't matter if it's fishing kit or a chandlery for boating related stuff, a decent knife shop or indeed woodturning.  The fact is we of the male species seem to have a near primal urge to consume vast quantities of shiny things :-)

We (I know I do) frequently then post rationalise the purchase on some flimsy pretext that we might "grow into it over time" and have genuine need for whatever the esoteric function is :-)

It's usually either money or my wife that bring me back to reality in this flirtation with the "devil of temptation".

I made that mistake with a Harley Davidson heritage Softail Classic in 1999 and I still have her sat in my garage to this day.....with a staggering 2.6K miles on the clock!!!  (I bow my head in shame) :-)


I replaced my SB-250 with another one.  I looked at the diamond wheels, and here’s what I determined:

But, I must add that I’m thinking about moving to the new Turner’s Edge gouges from Robust.  And, if this is indeed the case :

To make Turner’s Edge gouges, we start with premium high-speed steel (M2).  After machining, the tools are heat treated to 64 Rockwell C.  The hardened tools then go through the Nitriding process, increasing cutting edge hardness to 1880 Vickers (75+ Rockwell C).

I may have to move to diamond wheels to sharpen those tools.  That is a pretty hard steel!

Kind regards,

Very interesting.  I didn't actually read that thread before I made my decision but I guess I've pretty much arrived at the same conclusion with a lot less research :-)  My only use of Tungsten category hardness is for very small bits that attach to deep hollowing tools and I sharpen those on a linisher style sharpening system which works really well.  I also haven't explored the Norton wheels at all and my guess is they would be a lot less pricey.  I've upgraded to a CBN wheel on an Oregon compound angle chainsaw sharpener I bought last year because the turning club I'm with often harvest our own wood.  Whats really nice is not having to dress and not having to adjust because wheels dont change shape.  On balance, I also shape with the linisher as I long ago recognised the Tormek's real forte is in sharpening not shaping.  Feeds n speeds springs to mind!  So I guess the reality is I just have no pressing need for diamond on either a shaping level or M2 or carbide level.  But you never know.....I might :-)

Wood Turning / Re: bowl gouges sharpening - "other shapes" graph
« on: January 24, 2020, 09:21:47 pm »
Interesting thread.

There is another perspective on roughing gouges that can "go round corners" which I guess is one of the purposes of grinding the wings back.  There is a health and safety issue because they're never meant to be used on face grain work (ie bowls) but strictly only on spindle, between centre work.  The reason is the metal is tanged into the handle rather than solid stock so is relatively weak.  it's considered highly dangerous to be used against the potentially massive catches you can get from a bowl.  The only reason I even mention this is because I think the moment you grind the wings of any gouge back, it immediately makes it tempting to use it on face grain work.  Now, I appreciate that we're not actually talking about grinding the wings off specifically with this jig setting recipe.  I just thought it worth mentioning that's all.

The positive benefit to having a wide tool like a roughing gouge with smooth wings is of course you can go round corners …….but on spindle blanks.  But if you're putting gentle curves into big stuff like a table lamp or similar, the big gouge is a great tool to go trundling in and out of curves because it removes a lot of stock and is easy to guide.

Wood Turning / Re: bowl gouges sharpening - "other shapes" graph
« on: January 22, 2020, 09:07:56 pm »
Slightly confused.

Roughing gouges are traditionally ground straight across at 45 degrees.  If you use the SVD then you'll get an elliptical grind.  Is it your intention to sweep the wings of the roughing gouge back?  If's not strictly speaking a roughing gouge any more.  Not sure what you'd call it.....a wide spindle gouge maybe??

Those gouges do sound awesome but I simply dont put enough hours in at the lathe to warrant moving away from HSS.  I suspect my current crop of gouges will outlive me so other priorities will doubtless claim my disposable income first :-)

Right....I've gone and bought another SB today.

I guess on balance I wasn't inclined to accept the risk of the diamond stone given it was nearly a hundred bucks more and as we're all agreed, scant detailed information about it's performance and longevity.  it seemed a bit too much of a shot in the dark.

So I've opted for known security and safety over blind innovative optimism :-)

Many thanks Ken.

I might have a gander at Glenn's BLOG actually.  Like you I really rate him so his input will be worth reading especially considering he was an official prototype tester for Tormek.  I might even drop him an e mail as I have an account with him.

But your recommendation of the finest of the three sounds reasonable too.  I appreciate your input, many thanks :-)


Wood Turning / Re: bowl gouges sharpening - "other shapes" graph
« on: January 14, 2020, 04:39:53 pm »
Hi there and welcome to the forum.

The geometry of elliptically ground gouges is moderately complex.  But it boils down to the fact you need to know that 3 adjustments affect the geometry and by that I mean the bevel angle and the degree to which the wings are swept back.

They are:

- the distance the tool is protruding from the jig (P)
- the distance between the pivot point and the grinding media (hole A or B with Tormek's quick set jig) which is the distance the USB is from the grinding media
- the angle at which the bevel is presented ie the angle between the tool axis and the grinding medium axis. (knuckle setting in the elliptical grinding jig).  That's what the manual refers to as JS 2 or 3 or 4 etc

If the chart shows the same angle for any of these variables, then one or both of the other 2 variables must have been altered.

To add to that is also an operator component ie the time spent focusing grinding on different parts of the bevel.  This is classically demonstrated by spending too much time on the nose (goes flat and dips) or not enough (gets pointy and is very frisky during turning).  Or too much wing grinding can wear them out at the backs and not enough means they dont sweep right round and have no cutting edge at the back.  But the angles are managed by adjustment of those 3 variables.  That also holds true for every other jig based grinding system in the market.  one has control of these 3 factors.  Tormek just happens to do it very well because of the precision engineering and good design.

Morning Folks (well it is in England anyway).

Despite the title, this is a serious question.

My trusty black friend, the SB250 has finally run out of diameter and has reached the stage where I have to remove the honing wheel for anything long.  I've just had a frenzy of knife sharpening and that was the final nail in the proverbial coffin.  it's still OK for gouges for turning because they're largely ground from up above in the elliptical jig and dont foul on the honing wheel.  But as for anything else, particularly chefs knives, alas, too small.  I think it was down to about 190 from memory so really has served me well and I think I bought it in 2015 so its pushing 5 years.

So I've done a round robin to see whats new because I have been a little distracted of late and not been on the tools anywhere near as much as I would have liked.  All comes of that pesky distraction - having to work for a living.  Boo.  Hiss.

Whats popped out of my research is of course the advent of the "girls best friend" diamonds!  They weren't really a thing last time I looked, now it seems, they really are.

Now I dont take the replacement of my SB250 lightly because it's been a versatile friend, primarily to my wood turning which has become the dominant form of my woodworking but also to the outlying fray of other edge tools I have need to sharpen.  That includes all the usual suspects ie scissors, kitchen knives, plane irons and chisels and the odd set of secateurs (felco of course).  So the replacement has to be every bit as "game" as it's redundant original.

They're also, a fair sized investment for a consumable so the value must be there.

I could of course simply replace the SB with another but that would be to betray the opportunity that innovation brings and that doesn't sit well with me.

So, I dont have the knowledge to make this decision on my own.  I thought, who/where should I turn to for expert advice and guidance and of course, add to that, warmth, friendship and camaraderie.....and of course......I visited my local tool shop!   No....stop it.....I came here.  Didn't give it a seconds thought.  I knew you guys would know the answer.

What I haven't done is trawl through umpteen posts on here to "mine" the answer and for that I apologise.  But perhaps a good enough starting point to engage your very useful minds is to say that my current thinking is to opt for the 1200 grit very fine diamond wheel.  My understanding is it's never going to need dressing (so that's one in the eye for the more need to worry about gouges furrowing the stone, requiring endless redressing with the truing tool).  Allied to the last, it will never lose it's shape and therefore will remain geometrically accurate to the universal tool rest?

Those seem to me to be the fundamental differences between this medium and a friable one like the grey or black stones.  in short, it never changes shape through the action of grinding.  Is this absolutely 100% true for HSS turning gouges with, swept back wings and quite pointy tips like 3/8" bowl gouges?  I ask this because those suckers really really really do grind quite the trench in the SB over a relatively short space of time.  So not just the diamonds themselves (which I appreciate are about the hardest substance known to man) but the underlying wheel itself would have to phenomenally resistant to avoid this happening in the future.  Are we certain this is the case?  Do we have precedent from any wood turners that use HSS gouges in the elliptical grinding jig?  This is definitely my greatest concern because I guess once, it's dented in any way, it's more or less useless since you cant dress or true it.

The other can be packaged in the general versatility category i.e. I do need this to perform widely once we're beyond high speed steel turning tools.  So my next priority would be the global knives in my kitchen.  I'm a reasonably accomplished chef and not only cook for my family on a daily basis but have wont to throw the odd dinner party where I will prepare more esoteric dishes of the moment.  This is a chore if the knives are blunt and a joy if sharp.  So this application is also really important.  Add to that the usual cornucopia of other assorted tools including scissors and my needs are met.

The grit question is the next big one then.  9 times out of 10 I'll be coming to the Tormek with a known edge and therefore only require sharpening, not shaping.  Is my thinking correct on this...…..the friable stones, when graded with the fine side of the stone grader, end up at 1000 grit right?  The finest diamond stone is 1200 grit?  So by buying the 1200 grit, I'm more or less just polishing the existing bevel?

The fundamental question for me, with respect to grit size is......will the 1200 be just a bit too fine and leave me grinding for ages if I dont set the angle accurately enough?  is it forgiving enough to remove enough metal to still give an edge if I'm out by a degree or three? 

I'm not big on fiddling and messing so I dont want to waste my life having to be uber careful setting the jigs all the time.  On the other hand, I dont want a medium so course that the edge isn't fine enough.  it's this balance between setup time and edge quality that's got me agonising between the 600 and the 1200 grit diamond stone choices.  I'm pretty clear I dont want the course one though as that seems to be more in the "ding removal" camp.

So that's my dilemma folks, that's what I would humbly ask that you bring your excellent minds to bear on and help me make the decision.  it boils down to this I think:

Should I replace the SB 250 with an SB250 or the 600 or the 1200 grit diamond stone?  But more importantly, why?

Your input, as always, is appreciated.

All the best

Wood Turning / Re: Glenn Lucas’ picture on Instagram
« on: January 12, 2020, 11:48:23 pm »
If we BREXIT.....I'm coming to the US :-)

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