Daily Archives: February 9, 2006

Diamond Bench Stone

I got a new sharpening stone and am so pleased with it. It’s a DMT DuoSharp stone, an 8″ model, with the coarse grit (325) on one side and extra-fine (1200) on the other.

I had been getting nowhere with my oilstones, a small starter set that I got at Woodcraft for like 8 bucks. Granted there’s a soft and a hard Arkansas stone, along with honing oil, in the set, but the stones are only an inch and a half wide and three inches long. Really too small for a plane iron that’s two inches wide.

So I was trying Scary Sharp as well, which worked just fine on the iron from my antique Stanley Bailey#4 smoother, but it took a long, long time to flatten the back. And I’ve got 11 chisels and — how many planes? Let’s see, the recently manufactured Buck Brothers jack and then the antiques: the #4, #29 transitional fore plane, #9 1/2 block plane, and cute little #75 bullnose rabbet plane — five planes. I was dreading all of that slow sandpaper sharpening.

Plus I’m still working on the grinder. I bought an antique Carborundum Co. grinder, but the wheel was way too coarse. So I bought a good aluminum oxide wheel at Woodcraft, but I can’t get it balanced right on the antique grinder’s arbor with the plastic bushings. So I’m lacking in the grinder department right now too.

Hence the diamond stone. I figured the coarse side would help with flattening the back and establishing the initial bevel and the extra-fine side would finish off the rest. And it’s working pretty well. It’s super fast compared to the oilstones or the sandpaper, although, again, the bevel part really needs a decent grinder.