Hand Tools

Re: Throwing down the gaunlett

Wiley Horne
Hi Bill and all,

Not taking sides, as I equally like David’s adventures and Paul Hamler’s instructional videos.

Hamler is absolutely fascinating. I was watching his long video (1 hr 36 min) on fixed blade scrapers. As Bill said, Paul’s preparation of fixed scrapers (as in scraper planes) involves a single-cut file, a stone, and a burnisher. For his own production methods, he makes some fancy gizmos but they are for when he is prepping a large number of edges.

He showed something I had not seen or heard tell of before—double-working the burr to work-harden and extra-sharpen it. He also uses one heavy burnishing stroke—one pass only, his reasoning being that not many can maintain the same angle thru multiple passes.

At about 1hr 06min, he describes how to make a very fine veneer saw by impressing the tooth pattern of a jeweler’s file onto an exacto knife blade—lightly hammer the file down onto the edge of the knife. Said this technique was done by some watchmakers to make an anchor point for the mainspring. He goes on to describe file cleaning—shows converting a brass cartridge to do the job, but then immediately goes on to show his ultimate file cleaner, a bamboo chopstick. The bamboo is both tenacious enough but also will take the tooth pattern of the file, so it really gets down into the grooves.

David’s experiments I find equally stimulating.


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