Hand Tools

Re: Diamond sharpening plates
Response To:
Diamond sharpening plates ()

Patrick Chase
As one of the (only) advocates/practitioners of diamond sharpening on this forum, I'm curious to know why you're headed that direction, and why plates in particular?

I use compounds and lapping films for speed when doing major work such as back-flattening, and for when I want the sharpest possible edge in a steel with nontrivial carbides. I don't use plates to work steel, because IMO they don't offer a competitive speed-vs-refinement tradeoff for that (in other words you can get either higher speed, a smoother surface, or both from films/compounds). I do use plates quite a bit for flattening waterstones, though.

FWIW I've tried all of the plates you list, and landed solidly on Atoma. They're not perfect, but they're the flattest (at least until stuff gets in between the plate and the Aluminum blank) and most uniform-cutting of all of the metal-bonded plates. They're also as long-lasting as any of the others. The Shapton resin-bonded plates are better in both respects, but don't last very long when confronted with steel. The Shaptons basically built like a super-expensive sheet of lapping film.

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