Hand Tools Archive

felt at low speed

David Weaver
I have a small drill press that I generally use only when making tools. I also have an arbor for a leather wheel and it fits my 6x1 felt wheel, so I experimented with felt over lunch today.

Felt is abusive at high rpm (unacceptable for any smaller point or line of contact on the high speed buffer), but it's not as bad at the lowest speed on my press (just over 500) and works well for chisels. It's a little bit more tricky to use it with plane irons, and because it's far more solid, it's more sensitive to the angle that you introduce a chisel (and takes a little longer), but it's not that difficult to figure out (not like it has to be introduced to the wheel within one degree or something).

It's an option for people who already have a felt wheel, though - and it has enough give to step up the 5 micron abrasive to still plane a very reflective surface, higher than my washita and black arkansas will generate.

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