Hand Tools Archive

Re: Strop
Response To:
Strop ()

David Weaver
That's the motivation - a strop can be used (at least I'd guess) to generate the same profile with a lot of effort. Eventually, if it's used heavily after a medium stone, it will get contaminated with edge foil somewhere (if not before just with "shop dirt").

I don't know if anyone would care about that - bill reminds me that there are plenty of folks who aren't finishing with tools, so they won't care about those kinds of things. For finish planing, we actually do look at the shaving while planing (even if a lot of people claim that they don't and it's a waste of time) because it tells us what the plane is doing. If the shavings split, it's an annoyance for something that we'd like to observe.

What sellers does with a strop would be more easily done (with much less effort) first with a fine stone and then with a light stropping. The fine stone doesn't need to be large if it's only used for this, and it doesn't need to be expensive.

All this aside, the buffing wheel just does it so well and so easily, even if it's just a $10 arbor kit and wheel as you've shown. For a long time, I had a peripheral irk that I couldn't quite finish an edge to match a buff, but the counter was that the buff doesn't control geometry well. The key turns out just to use it for its strengths and avoid what it doesn't do well.

The biggest trouble when talking about sharpening with most folks is we all have our investments. I invested in figuring out the benefit of the edge roll without making the entire chisel feel blunt. It seemed like the best compromise. People who take a sellers class (I've gotten messages through the youtube system from people already who have invested a lot of time in working the full bevel of a chisel and they want to know how to adapt the method to a chisel without dealing with the two separate bevels - they don't want to throw away what they've learned or deal with the black box at the edge that the buffer really is without a microscope).

All of the sharpening methods work, just like all of the different types of stones work, thus the buy in rate for something that's demonstrably better is so slow. As much as I've tried to perfect doing all of this without something plugged in or using a battery, the version that is "dumb" and not precise at the edge is better.

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