Author Topic: One year with the T-8  (Read 377 times)

Offline micha

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One year with the T-8
« on: August 14, 2020, 06:26:25 pm »
A year ago I bought a T-8. That was a great decision, followed by an interesting time of learning, experimenting and improving skills. Of course there’s still room for improvement as always, but that’s the fun part anyway.

I‘ve sharpened a lot of knives, blades and tools. The Tormek allowed for experiments with MDF wheels, felt wheels, diamond wheels, line laser,  etc. Additional Tormek jigs like the DBS-22 were added, too.  And, oh, yes, an FVB, of course…

There also was a significant increase in the amount of peripheral equipment: microscope, BESS tester, diamond compounds, sprays …

Examining and comparing the results was also a big challenge, and added to putting the machine to good use. And I enjoyed reading everything I found related to sharpening, like wootz‘ book, or anything I found on the net.

And I’m still enthusiastic about the manifold experiences and hints so generously shared in this forum. There has been a lot of development over the last year, especially with calculators and ‚Tormek-math‘. Keeping pace is a constant challenge but also adds a lot to gaining deeper insight. 

Meanwhile I get knives, plane blades and other stuff from friends – and I still enjoy sharpening. They enjoy getting back sharp tools 😊
I also took up woodturning together with my son, so there are even more occasions to sharpen.

One thing I learned: You can achieve great results with the standard wheel. While it’s nice to have the SJ or Diamond wheels, these are not indispensable for a close-to-perfect result. There may be advantages in speed or other preferences, but the SG wheel is a great general-purpose tool. (I’m on my second SG-250 now.) It surely is the wheel I use most, despite having other options at hand.

For honing I use a rock-hard felt wheel or MDF wheel. MDF is great for experiments, as it’s cheap and easily available. Cutting my own MDF wheels (and attaching them to the T-8) was one of the first projects, followed by many more, that were inspired by (or shamelessly stolen from) ideas from here: Herman’s platform, KenJigs and its offshoots, like Rick’s and Jan’s HanJigs, to name a few. 

I just wish to thank you all warmly for sharing so many ideas and advice.

Mike

Offline RickKrung

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Re: One year with the T-8
« Reply #1 on: August 15, 2020, 02:07:21 pm »
Mike,

I'm glad things are working so well for you.  It sounds like you are making good use of the community here and all the information/ideas shared and discussed. 

I would be interested in seeing/hearing about your experiences and activities with the drill bit jig.  That subforum is not very active.  It was a prime motivation for me in getting a Tormek, but I have found I hardly use it.  I like to think that is because I treat my drills appropriately, even though the vast majority of their use is in metal. 

I tried dealing with holding small drills with accessory "tubular" devices because I found the stock jig to be a bit squirrelly.  One was a pin vise, but the ones available commercially aren't that suitable so I think I'll have to make one.  But, there is so much on my want-to-do plate, it just hasn't risen high enough to receive attention. 

One question is regarding the types of points you use.  Standard two-facet or have you worked with the four-facet or even the six-facet point geometries? 

I daubled with MDF wheels, up to the point of making one, but with the intent of using them on my "slow" speed Rikon bench grinder.  Never tried using it as I have been uncomfortable with the notion of spinning it that fast.  I have not considered using it on the Tormek.  That may be largely due to my satisfaction with the rock hard felt wheel with 1µ diamond compound as my final step in deburring/honing.  I don't feel the need for other options. 

Rick
Quality is like buying oats.  If you want nice clean, fresh oats, you must pay a fair price. However, if you can be satisfied with oats that have already been through the horse, that comes at a lower price.

Offline micha

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Re: One year with the T-8
« Reply #2 on: August 15, 2020, 05:33:36 pm »
Rick,
I really like that drill bit jig. All drill bits matching the jig got a four-facet grind now. I think that’s a big advantage compared to two facets, because having a defined point vs. a chisel point helps a lot. I don’t see much advantage in a six-facet geometry for my applications, as I’m mostly working with wood, so I I haven’t really examined that further - yet. But I liked the article by Mr. Joseph Mazoff and I understand the advantages.

I agree that holding very small bits is kind of a challenge, but have had success with bits as small as 2.6mm, working very slowly . But that’s out of the specs, anyway. Such are the bigger bits, over 24mm. There are two or three I’d like to sharpen, making a holder for these is on my possibly-to-do-list.

As for the MDF wheels, I probably wouldn’t have cared much about making one if I had started with the felt wheel. There was no European source for such hard felt wheels (meanwhile there is), so I started with MDF. I actually had one on the bench grinder but didn’t use it much (same feeling of danger).
Then I cut some full size 250mm wheels for the Tormek. Worked great. I never felt it should run faster.
The surface of the MDF wheel is quite like that of the rock hard felt wheel. But MDF is a lot cheaper, a good alternative for experimenting with different compounds. And I got 40mm MDF, while the felt wheel has 32mm.
But I’m satisfied with the rock-hard felt wheel, too. My current setup looks like in the picture.
 
On the top right you may notice one of the HanJigs I made according to the drawings of a certain Mr. Krung 😉Thanks again for that. 

Mike

Offline RichColvin

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Re: One year with the T-8
« Reply #3 on: August 16, 2020, 03:06:55 am »
I’ve used a precision pen vice (like the Starrett 166C ) with the Tormek DBS-22 to hold bits as small as #61 (5/128 in. / 1 mm).  Hard to sharpen bits that small, but possible.

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

Offline Ken S

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Re: One year with the T-8
« Reply #4 on: August 16, 2020, 05:11:10 am »
Good suggestion, Rich. I happen to have a set of Starrett pin vises. The next time I need to sharpen a small bit, I will give it a try. Now I wish that I had saved all the small bits I have broken.

Ken

Offline micha

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Re: One year with the T-8
« Reply #5 on: August 19, 2020, 03:08:42 pm »
Rich,

thanks for the great idea with the pin vise. I gathered what I had and found two approaches.

Working with just the collet from one of the vises worked great, clamping didn't change the protrusion geometry at all. It stabilises thin drill bits very much.
(I hope 'collet' is the right term, I'm always confused by 'collet', 'chuck' and 'collet chuck', which for me seem to be quite synonymous.)

Using the whole pin vise and clamping on the knurled part of the shank works too, but seems to need more attention. The octagonal handle of the Starret vise seems to make a real advantage.

Thanks again
Mike

Offline RichColvin

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Re: One year with the T-8
« Reply #6 on: August 20, 2020, 05:09:57 am »
I'm glad it is working for you, but I don't deserve the credit.  I "borrowed" that one from Rick Kruger.

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

Offline micha

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Re: One year with the T-8
« Reply #7 on: August 20, 2020, 09:19:40 am »
I see. So that's to be added to the numerous ideas I already borrowed/stole from Rick Kruger.  ;)

But I take the opportunity to thank you for your SharpeningHandbook, where I also spent a lot of time and have learned a lot. What a great collection of useful information!

Mike

Offline RickKrung

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Re: One year with the T-8
« Reply #8 on: August 20, 2020, 03:07:12 pm »
I just ordered the Starrett pin vise set with octagonal handles so I can do these small bits.  I had tried a couple pin vises with knurled handles and did not like them.  Never confident they aligned correctly.  Thanks for the great idea.  And as for sharing and "borrowing" ideas, I think that is one of the greatest functions/aspects/benefits of this forum.  I may have contributed a few, but I know I've taken and used a few/several as well.  I like to think of it as a "collective ferment".

So, when you guys are sharpening these small bits, are you going with just the basic 2-facet geometry?  Or are you trying to do the 4-facet?  I would think the latter is too difficult to do correctly and not of much benefit.  For me, at least, I cannot think of when I've tried drilling with small bits where I had not already center punched the location.  Those small bits are so flexible, they really tend to wander if there isn't a locating punch for them. 

Rick
Quality is like buying oats.  If you want nice clean, fresh oats, you must pay a fair price. However, if you can be satisfied with oats that have already been through the horse, that comes at a lower price.

Offline micha

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Re: One year with the T-8
« Reply #9 on: August 20, 2020, 06:52:00 pm »
Hi Rick,

just for the fun of it, I decided to take the challenge. :)
I took off the knurling on the cheap pin vise on the metal lathe. Thus there is  some more space for the DBS-22 clamp to grip and it aligns easily and correctly now.
Then I took a cheap and broken 1.3mm (~0.05") drill bit still lying on the bench, installed it in the vise and decided to put on the SJ stone. Even with that, overgrinding the secondary bevels is a matter of split sceconds. The second attempt was not so bad. The actual sharpening was mostly guesswork, interrupted by frequent use of different magnifiers.

Is it worth the effort? Well, that's a question the wife would ask... ;) Probably not. The bit is really sharp now, but I'd sure go with the standard two-facets  And that only with bits which are not easily available or urgently needed. So this was more like one of these "Because I can!" moments. :)

Mike



Offline RichColvin

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Re: One year with the T-8
« Reply #10 on: August 20, 2020, 07:43:30 pm »
Micha,


Great job sharpening such a small bit!


And I’m glad the Sharpening Handbook is useful for you.


Kind regards,
Rich
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Rich Colvin
www.SharpeningHandbook.info - a reference guide for sharpening
www.ColvinTools.com

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