Author Topic: Dressing cap iron on vintage planes  (Read 564 times)

Offline Ken S

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Re: Dressing cap iron on vintage planes
« Reply #15 on: December 18, 2017, 12:02:02 pm »

I would highly recommend the top topic in the Tormek General part of the forum. You can get the jist of it from the first post. I posted it to encourage new users to begin with a 3/4” bench chisel. A chisel has onlt one large bevel. The 3/4” width is much easier to work with than the smaller widths like 1/4”. I recommend using an Irwin (formerly Marples) Blue Chip chisel. They are inexpensive and well made. The blades are long enough for a lot of sharpening. The backs have proper square corners, not rounded over. I have around a dozen of these. Three or four would serve you very well. Shop around for a goid price. Do not be tempted to purchase a multiwidth set of four or six. These are learning tools for sharpening.

Having several gives you direct visual and tactile comparison. You can see the difference in various stages of sharpening, as can your students. You can try out different bevel angles. The humble bench chisel can be an invaluable learning tool. It is also very safe. The jig holds the tool.

This method, in my opinion, shortens the learning curve of the Tormek considerably. You can learn the sound and feel of grinding; the stone grader and trying tool; the leather honing wheel; water trough procedure. You can learn all of this, as can your students, with a single eight dollar US (probably a bit more now) chisel. And, after the learning exercises, you have a sharp fundamental tool.

Do keep us posted. Teaching young people is so important.

best wushes,


ps I am continually bugging Tormek for more and more in depth training videos. Be sure and register your Tormek online, and the school's T7. It secures your warranty, lets you download the latest edition of the handbook, and, very importantly, gives you access to the well done videos by Alan Holtham.

Also, do not be shy about contacting Tormek support. ( Tormek does a lot of teaching, and may have useful suggestions for you..

Offline cbwx34

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Re: Dressing cap iron on vintage planes
« Reply #16 on: December 18, 2017, 02:45:30 pm »
Recently I have been learning about knife sharpening.  When I tried to use my T1200 a few years ago I was disappointed and went back to the diamond stones.  Again I gave up too soon. After some more reading (including this forum) watching training videos etc  I have identified some of the mistakes I made previously.  Hopefully I will become a proficient knife sharpener!

I would be interested in knowing what you learned in the knife sharpening area... a lot of sharpeners try the Tormek, but find it "doesn't work"... so it would be beneficial for me to learn what areas you identified and corrected.  (There's a Knife Sharpening section if you'd be willing to start a topic and share... or just stick them in this thread). :)

Offline RichColvin

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Re: Dressing cap iron on vintage planes
« Reply #17 on: December 19, 2017, 04:49:53 am »
Why Jeff Farris video's are old, they are pretty much the only ones out there.

I've catalogued a number of resources on my site (  Click on Sharpening Resources at the bottom of the page.

Rich Colvin

You are born weak & frail, and you die weak & frail.  What you do between those is up to you.

Offline EconoMichael

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Re: Dressing cap iron on vintage planes
« Reply #18 on: December 19, 2017, 11:57:00 am »
Thanks Ken - I have re read your Tormek General advice - your right in saying start with a 3/4 chisel.  This is where I started learning the Tormek way.
The lessons I have noted in knife sharpening has been
1/ follow a fairly straight line - not follow the Curve of the knife.
2/ grade the wheel to the finer level.
3 remember to hone the burr off.j