Hand Tools Archive

Subject:
toughness correlation, etc.

Bill Tindall, E.Tn.
The white steel, in the publication labeled "Kigami", was the toughest steel tested*****edit correction no value for toughness was tabulated for Kigami. Don't know why. It was D2 that was the highest of the tabulated values)****** with M2 a close second. Toughness correlated strongly with the smoothness of the blade edge after use, and hence, surface quality I suppose. Wear resistance correlated strongly with how soon the blade no longer "dug" into the wood to lift a shaving(loss of clearance). There are a bunch of pictures in this paper of edges taken with SEM. Without the translation I don't know what I am looking at.

For the record, it was "grazers", those that settle in and plane surfaces, and "browsers" those that mosey through making a piece of furniture hitting a lick here and there to fit something or remove a machine mark. If you don't know the eating habits of deer and cows this analogy may be bewildering. Think nibble as you spend the day doing something else vs eat and rest.

What you grazers often fail to realize is that browsers don't get continuous feedback of the plane dulling when planing 400 ' in 20 increments over the course of a month. Dull appears as a surprise when the plane suddenly doesn't pick up a shaving that needs to be picked up to move on to the next step that could be fitting a mortise or whatever. Minimizing surprises is important for browsers. Ideally I would like to complete a piece of furniture before sharpening and then sharpen everything I used to be ready for the next project.

I finish with finishes that build on the surface so surface quality off the plane is irrelevant, as it will be to most. A properly sanded surface looks identical to one hand planed, unless I am staining, in which case the planed surface looks terrible.

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