Author Topic: T-2 vs. T-8 (Hear me out)  (Read 2025 times)

Offline brianchin10

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 14
    • View Profile
T-2 vs. T-8 (Hear me out)
« on: November 25, 2019, 04:45:14 pm »
Hi all,

Newbie member to forum. Not yet a Tormek owner, but soon to be! On first blush I expect many of the responses to be "T-8 all the way" — but hear my scenario out a bit, and see if you think so at the bottom of this post.

Initial background: I am a pre-dominantly hand-tool woodworker, and I am fairly keen on my tool and knife sharpening skills. I use Japanese water stones for both and when it comes to re-grinding an edge, I use a Baldor 3,600rpm grinder with white Norton stones. I'm pretty content with my sharpening system (and results) in general.

So where this gets interesting is that I began volunteering at the local soup kitchen sharpening their knives. I go weekly or every other week for an hour. It's pretty demoralizing how beat up the knives get each week, and because of the extensive damage, I can only sharpen about 6-8 knives per hour using water stones. They have about 40 knives, and I'd like to be able to sharpen more than what I'm doing in that hour. There are some that I cannot even sharpen with stones — many are bent from being dropped, some have those micro-serrations that I'd need to grind off.

I'm considering getting an electric system for these reasons:
• Sharpen more knives per hour
• Sharpen damaged knives faster without chewing through stones
• Sharpen knives that I cannot sharpen with water stones - grind off micro-serrations
• Waste less time flattening stones in between knives

My thought process on the T-2 vs T-8 is this (please correct if any of my assumptions are wrong here):
• T-2 is lighter to carry, faster to set-up, less messy, and will make me more efficient in the hour that I volunteer
• T-8 is more versatile for other uses — but I'm generally happy with my current sharpening system
• T-4 is lighter than T-8, and more versatile than T-2, but doesn't have the 100% duty cycle
• T-2 might not get the knives as sharp as T-8, but in this scenario, I'm just looking for serviceability in a soup kitchen setting
• Biggest downside to T-2 is it's such a niche product with a pretty high price, but I think I'm basically in that niche right now...

Would love to hear advice from the group. Or if I can provide more clarifying details about my situation, I'm happy to!

Best,
BRIAN

Offline cbwx34

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1567
  • Question Everything
    • View Profile
Re: T-2 vs. T-8 (Hear me out)
« Reply #1 on: November 25, 2019, 05:14:25 pm »
Hi all,

Newbie member to forum. Not yet a Tormek owner, but soon to be! On first blush I expect many of the responses to be "T-8 all the way" — but hear my scenario out a bit, and see if you think so at the bottom of this post.

Initial background: I am a pre-dominantly hand-tool woodworker, and I am fairly keen on my tool and knife sharpening skills. I use Japanese water stones for both and when it comes to re-grinding an edge, I use a Baldor 3,600rpm grinder with white Norton stones. I'm pretty content with my sharpening system (and results) in general.

So where this gets interesting is that I began volunteering at the local soup kitchen sharpening their knives. I go weekly or every other week for an hour. It's pretty demoralizing how beat up the knives get each week, and because of the extensive damage, I can only sharpen about 6-8 knives per hour using water stones. They have about 40 knives, and I'd like to be able to sharpen more than what I'm doing in that hour. There are some that I cannot even sharpen with stones — many are bent from being dropped, some have those micro-serrations that I'd need to grind off.

I'm considering getting an electric system for these reasons:
• Sharpen more knives per hour
• Sharpen damaged knives faster without chewing through stones
• Sharpen knives that I cannot sharpen with water stones - grind off micro-serrations
• Waste less time flattening stones in between knives

My thought process on the T-2 vs T-8 is this (please correct if any of my assumptions are wrong here):
• T-2 is lighter to carry, faster to set-up, less messy, and will make me more efficient in the hour that I volunteer
• T-8 is more versatile for other uses — but I'm generally happy with my current sharpening system
• T-4 is lighter than T-8, and more versatile than T-2, but doesn't have the 100% duty cycle
• T-2 might not get the knives as sharp as T-8, but in this scenario, I'm just looking for serviceability in a soup kitchen setting
• Biggest downside to T-2 is it's such a niche product with a pretty high price, but I think I'm basically in that niche right now...

Would love to hear advice from the group. Or if I can provide more clarifying details about my situation, I'm happy to!

Best,
BRIAN

There are a couple of reviews of the T-2...

https://www.tormek.com/forum/index.php?topic=3369.0

https://www.tormek.com/forum/index.php?topic=3371.msg20626#msg20626

... in the 2nd link, I'll draw your attention (and linked it to) to the post I made on the type/style of knives I tried in the T-2.  I found it rather "limiting", and it may be the very type/style of knives you'll sharpen.

My only other comment is on the T-4... Ken (the forum moderator) says the 30 min. rating (if that's what you're referring to by "duty cycle"), isn't a big issue... it apparently was more so on the T-3.

I know this is the Tormek forum, but there may be better alternatives for your situation... ;)  If you want to use a Tormek... the T-4 can be put back into your consideration IMO... I think it would hold up to the task, and give you a bit more versatility... especially in making repairs, vs. the T-2.

Offline Ken S

  • Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 6674
    • View Profile
Re: T-2 vs. T-8 (Hear me out)
« Reply #2 on: November 25, 2019, 08:36:41 pm »
Welcome to the forum, Brian.

I have used T7, T4, T8, and T2 for several years. They have all become old friends, and I believe I can write fairly about all of them.

The T2 is a specialist machine. It is designed to allow essentially untrained (in sharpening) restaurant staff to sharpen knives. A sharpener would prefer either the T4 or the T8. When my new T2 arrived, within an hour I had the diamond wheel and the rubber honing wheel working fully functionally on my T4. Almost all of the parts of all the Tormek models are the same.

The fifty percent motor myth with the T4 is a holdover from the T3. The T3 had an all plastic housing which held in the motor heat. This could potentially cause the housing to melt, causing misalignment. The redesigned zinc topof the T4 housing served as a radiator, dispersing the heat. The machined zinc also improved the precision of the housing. This machined zinc top technology was later included in the T8 and the T2. I have no concern whatsoever about any 50% duty with my T4. The T4 has a seven year warranty (2 for commercial use). I would not worry about the T4 motor. Incidentally, it is the same motor as the T2. You, as the operator, will need a rest before the T4.

The SG grinding wheel is designed for your needs. If you are interested, Tormek makes the DWF-200 and DWC-200 diamond wheels. They only market them for the zt2, however, they work fine with the T4.

All of the jigs work with either the T8 or the T4. They share the same handbook.

If you prefer a full size V8 truck, you will want a T8. If you prefer a more compact, easier to park truck, you will prefer the T4.

When the T4 was introduced, there were comments recommending the T4 as a "starter Tormek", eventually moving up to the larger model. I have not read that anyone actually did that. You will get many opinions pro and con. Read them all and make your decision thoughtfully.

Ken

Offline brianchin10

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 14
    • View Profile
Re: T-2 vs. T-8 (Hear me out)
« Reply #3 on: November 25, 2019, 10:01:58 pm »
Thanks CB and Ken for those thoughtful replies.

Would either of you consider the T8 to be a "portable" machine? If, at the end of the day, I don't end up using it at the soup kitchen because it's just too awkward to carry it + jigs, then it'll have been moot.

Based on your comments, it seems like the T4 should be seriously considered as well. Thank you for those insights. Do you have any guidance with the "bushcraft" model? It seems to be a less expensive package deal if knife sharpening is your initial game.

Best,
BRIAN

GeoTech

  • Guest
Re: T-2 vs. T-8 (Hear me out)
« Reply #4 on: November 25, 2019, 10:37:19 pm »
Brian,
Advanced Machinery has a Tormek T-4 showroom demo for $385.00 with free delivery.

Offline Ken S

  • Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 6674
    • View Profile
Re: T-2 vs. T-8 (Hear me out)
« Reply #5 on: November 25, 2019, 11:45:35 pm »
Brian,

Regular or Bushcraft? At the risk of seeming trite or oversimplified, do you prefer blue or green? My guess is that the machines are the same, and that "Bushcraft" is Tormek's marketing theme targeting the outdoor types.My T4 happens to be blue. I like blue, however, my thrifty side could go green for the right price.

I have a Brunswick single ball bowling ball. With my T4 sitting on the boxed grinding wheel, My T4, jigs and everything you would need at the soup kitchen easily fits in the bowling ball bag. It is easy to carry, either with the handgrip or the shoulder strap. I am pushing 70 and not a triathalon athlete. I can easily carry my T4. If you are an athlete in top condition, you can probably carry a T8. (I wouldn't know.  :(

Personally, the portability difference between the T4 and T8 is more important than  cost difference (don't forget to factor in the non included TT-50 truing tool and SE-77 square edge jig.).

Keep thinking. Your Tormek is a long term investment.

Ken

Offline brianchin10

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 14
    • View Profile
Re: T-2 vs. T-8 (Hear me out)
« Reply #6 on: November 26, 2019, 02:59:30 pm »
Thanks Ken, I thought as much re: colors.
Thanks Geo for the tip!

I update when I make my decision! Happy holidays, all.

Offline john.jcb

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 359
    • View Profile
Re: T-2 vs. T-8 (Hear me out)
« Reply #7 on: November 26, 2019, 03:10:35 pm »
I also recall that a hunting knife came with the Bushcraft model. This was a fairly short sales promotion if I remember correctly.
Sharpen the knife blade
Hone edge until perfection
Cut with joy and ease

Offline Ken S

  • Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 6674
    • View Profile
Re: T-2 vs. T-8 (Hear me out)
« Reply #8 on: November 26, 2019, 04:15:54 pm »
Promotions come and go. Generally, when Tormek includes a knife, it is a Morakniv. I really like Morakniv, and have a few of them. They are well made and inexpensive, around $20 US. What they really should and don't is the TT-50 Truing Tool. You will need one, if not initially, soon after.
Incidentally, the regular SVM knife jig will handle almost all of your knives. Only knives which are both long and thin need the longer jig.

Ken

Offline brianchin10

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 14
    • View Profile
Re: T-2 vs. T-8 (Hear me out)
« Reply #9 on: November 26, 2019, 11:12:48 pm »
Ken, (or anyone) — have you had any issues with the T4 and honing longer knives on the leather wheel. I read somewhere that the compact form-factor makes it so that some long knives run into the grinding stone during a honing operation (the honing wheel being small diameter). I suspect you could angle the knives not perpendicular to the stropping wheel, but since I'd be primarily doing kitchen knives, I do want to take this into consideration.

Best,
BRIAN
« Last Edit: November 26, 2019, 11:16:21 pm by brianchin10 »

Offline brianchin10

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 14
    • View Profile
Re: T-2 vs. T-8 (Hear me out)
« Reply #10 on: November 27, 2019, 01:19:54 am »
I just ordered the T8. Sharpeningsupplies.com had it shipping with a free knife-jig and tool rest. It won't be super convenient to tote around with me, but I'll manage. It was only $70 more than the T4 with the same jigs, and I know I won't be regretting the choice. Thanks to everyone who weighed in. I'm sure I'll be hanging around here a bit more now that I'm officially an owner. You all are great!

Best,
BRIAN

GeoTech

  • Guest
Re: T-2 vs. T-8 (Hear me out)
« Reply #11 on: November 27, 2019, 02:21:40 am »
Congratulations.

Offline Ken S

  • Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 6674
    • View Profile
Re: T-2 vs. T-8 (Hear me out)
« Reply #12 on: November 27, 2019, 04:54:14 am »
Brian,

I have often said that there are no wrong choices with Tormek, only choices which may more closely fit one's needs. You won't go wrong with the T8. (I would say the same thing about the T4.)

You can carry your T8 much more easily with the grinding wheel removed. Always use the packing spacer to keep the shaft from slipping. The EZYlock makes this easy. Keep a light coating of grease on the side of the spacer washer facing toward the motor and hand snug your EZYlock nut to avoid overtorquing. These two simple steps will keep many gremlins away.

Get a small turkey baster at the grocery store. This will eliminate water spillage while emptying your water trough.

Keep posting and share your observations. Enjoy your new Tormek!

Ken