Turning Archive 2006

Sharpening gauge alignment

john lucas
>Rick brought up an interesting question that I think we all have had problems with. I'll pass on my solution and listen to all the other ways you all do the same thing. This should be useful to new turners.

When I'm setting up the wolverine jig I used to just adjust it until the nose rubbed but I found this to be somewhat inaccurate. Now what I do is touch the nose for close alignment, then I'll shift it around and touch the sides (with the wheel off). I find I can see if the adjustment is off more accurately.

Someone at a show (I think It was Mark St.Leger) showed us to mark the tip with a magic marker. Then rotate the wheel by hand and see where it grinds. This is a really accurate way to set the jig. It's also really good if your sharpening by hand. It shows exactly what's been ground and what hasn't.

I know the best way would be to just use the same grind on all your tools then you never have to change things but I have a lot of tools and like to play with grinds to see what works. I also have tools ground for a certain purpose. To make sure my Wolverine can be reset to exactly the same point each time I adjust it, I drilled a hole through both plates. Then whenever I need to realign the jig I simply put a 1/8" drill bit in the holes and lock it down.

The best way I'm sure is to build a 3 point jig to set oneway V bar. 2 points touch the wheel and one goes in the V jig. This would let you set the jig in exactly the same place each time even if the wheel wears down. I've just never taken the time to do that. This is covered extensively in Woodturning Techniques by Mike Darlow.That one chapter is worth the price of the whole book.

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