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Old 12-24-2009, 12:37 AM
Hybridfiat Hybridfiat is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Roleystone, Perth, Western Australia
Posts: 131
Default Re: Inexpensive way to give it a try

I dont know if this will help but I make my own hand tools from materials that are sometimes free.
A good example arethe dovetail chisels and hand gravers Ive made from worn out HSS (high speed steel)thicknesser blades.
Ill post pics when I get home to the city.
For now Ill describe the proccess:
First visit a saw doctor or sharpening service and beg damaged or worn out thicknesser/buzzer blades from them. It always helps to carry a couple of bottles of beer in with you.
The blades come in a variety of thicknesses but I usually get the 3mm (1/8") or 4mm (3/16") in 312mm-500mm lengths (12" - 15").
They can be 25mm (1") across so lots of chisels and gravers can be cut from one blade.
To cut to a close size use a thin (one of them 1.5mm ones) cutting disk in the hand held angle grinder and place the blade on a wet cloth to reduce overheating of the HSS.
Yes I know HSS is very tolerant of overheating but why take the risk.
I usually cut onto a concrete slab so my bench doesnt get damaged.
Run the disk down the line youve marked to start a nice accurate cut, it doesnt have to be deep just very straight. The thin disk will want to follow that line now.
Keep the cloth wet and cut away from yourself. Sparks will be kept to a minimum and cutting is slow but the result should be a pretty clean edge. Dont try to cut half way and snap, HSS doesnt like it and will show it's displeasure by breaking where it chooses not where you want. Plus some HSS acts like glass when it breaks.
Diamond stones are the best for sharpening HSS but any good stone will work too.
The bevelled edge is the perfect start to a dovetail chisel all thats needed is a bevel on the other side a handle. (I use 16mm x 65mm titanium bolts but any bolt will do) just drill a hole and Devcon the blade in and Bobs your uncle.
Cut square lengths and all you need to do is clean up, cut to length and use one of Steve's most excellent sharpening jigs to grind the tip.
3 disks and one length of free HSS gives up to 16 graver blanks.
Is that a help?
Attached Images
File Type: jpg thicknesser blades.jpg (47.8 KB, 56 views)
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