Because of the positive reaction to our “Build a Stick Chair” video, we decided to produce a new video on sharpening woodworking tools that delves even further into the topic than our new book “Sharpen This.”
“Sharpen This (the Video)” is a 2-1/2-hour long video companion to our “Sharpen This” book. But because the video medium is so good at showing body motion, we decided to keep expanding the video through 2023. What does that mean?
The video we are releasing today covers all you need to know to sharpen bench tools. Grinding, honing, polishing – the works. But during the next year we will release 20 additional videos that cover the more unusual tools, from scorps to fishtail chisels.
Anyone who purchases the video (from now into the future) will also receive these 20 new videos as they are released (you will be notified of new videos via email).
“Sharpen This (the Video)” has an introductory price of $50 until Oct. 31, 2022. That’s the entire 2-1/2-hour video, plus access to the 20 upcoming sharpening videos. After Oct. 31, the video will be $75.
— Christopher Schwarz
About the Video
Sharpening your tools is simple. And easy. So why do so many woodworkers struggle with it?
One huge reason is the enormous amount of misinformation, needless consumerism and piles of unnecessary (and expensive!) equipment.
The new video “Sharpen This” takes you back to what is important: Getting a good edge that will leave shimmering wooden surfaces with a minimum amount of fuss, sharpening grits or gear.
Most sharpening information these days comes from people who make sharpening equipment. Or from passionate amateurs who have tried to turn it into a science. Host Christopher Schwarz is a furniture maker who sells his work for money. His approach is to create durable edges (in usually 3 minutes or less) that will create perfect surfaces on your work.
The 2-1/2-hour long video explains the entire world of sharpening so you can pick a sharpening system (they all work), sharpen your edges quickly and get back to the good part: woodworking.
In addition to the video, buyers will receive an additional 20 videos throughout 2023 that show you how to sharpen tricky tools (such as marking knives, scorps and fishtail chisels). Plus tips on how to sharpen faster and better while ignoring the immense amount of sharpening BS that clogs the internet.
Contents of Sharpen This (The Video)
What is Sharp? 12:59
What Sharpens Tools? 8:59
My Personal Kit 8:48
Set Up a New Tool 22:58
Hone & Polish 27:21
Flattening Stones 4:24
Hand Sharpening 12:07
Sharpen Scrapers 7:33
Moulding Planes 5:05
Reverse the Operations 13:15
Tools Sharpened in the Video
• Bench planes (jack, jointer, smoother)
• Block planes
• Bench chisels
• Mortise chisels
• Swan-neck chisels
• Router plane
• Card scrapers
• Moulding planes
Future Videos that Will be Included in this Series
Marking Knives and Marking Gauges
Spade & Auger Bits
Shop Knives & Pocket Knives
Gunstock Scrapers & Chair Devils
Dividers, Awls & Planing Stops
The Terrible Flattening Brick
The Edge on Up Sharpness Tester
43 thoughts on “Sharpen This (the Video) Now Available”
This is great. Quick question, now that y’all are doing videos, does LAP have the resources and bandwidth to bring back the Woodwright’s Shop? That would be amazing!
Roy has the technology and skill to do it. Moreso than us. But I don’t think he has the time to do it.
The universe needs more Roy.
Be the Roy that you want to be.
I used to sharpen my own saws. Now we send out our saws for sharpening.
2-1/2 hours of sharpening? I think I could sharpen every tool I own in 2-1/2 hours. I’m hoping much of that time is spent on fart jokes and crude double-entendre.
And please, I’m not being critical at all. I think it’s a great service you are providing. And I do love a fart joke.
“I hear and I forget. I see and I remember. I do and I understand.” — attributed to Confucius.
It certainly makes sense to me that a video might communicate subtleties if a skill better, especially since it might pick up things the author finds so natural that they wouldn’t think to write ’em down. And compared to book prices these days, the cost isn’t unreasonable… Though I hope online video includes the option of our downloading and burning future expansions onto DVD, so we have backups should the server ever go down.
Yes, you can download the videos. No DRM. No locks.
Okay saws again…. maybe not a how to sharpen that 100 yr. old ebay find but rather. The saw that you bought new needs a touch up after a year of use…. hears how to keep a rip and crosscut singing along until you need to send it out. I only try to change your thinking because saw sharpeners are not exactly easy to locate.
Honestly, my eyes are too old to file the teeth of my dovetail saw or carcase saw. So they go to the sharpener (Lie-Nielsen). My tenon saw is easy to sharpen. I do file that regularly (meaning every couple years).
The larger hand saws don’t see much use in my shop thanks to tendinitis.
Anyone who needs their saws sharpened (and doesn’t want to invest in the equipment and time) can send them to Matt Cianci. He does GREAT work:
Matt is the Saw Sharpener to the Stars.
Good saw sharpeners aren’t plentiful, but there are a lot more than there were twenty or so years ago. I can remember when there was pretty much just one guy.
And I miss Tom Law.
We here in the DC area also miss Tom. Great guy.
I received my first saw from Matt earlier this year, and it completely changed my view on handsaws. It was a wildly new reference point for sharp. Rip cuts are never fun, but they’re about half as daunting when using a saw that Matt sharpened. He also struck me as just a nice guy.
But, go ahead and “invest” in a saw file. Not much money or time really, and you’ll be glad you did.
Especially if your filling rip cut teeth. Fairly simple. Watch Paul Sellers on YouTube if you have questions.
Which is what I just said…. Anyone can file a tenons saw reliably.
Thanks fro breaking the videos in small chapters. Also I wanted to mention after seeing how you sharpen the metal reamer in an earlier free video, I used a similar small carbide sharpener to refresh the inner edge of spoon bits and it saved a little bit of time, but if you could show your take on the sharpening of a spoon bit in the expanded series that would be great. Thanks!
Just bought the video(s), but rather than one single (downloadable) vidoe i get the different chapters as saparate vids. Not sure how to download for offline use either…
To download, search your favorite engine for video download software followed by your operating system name (Windoze, Linux, Mac…) There are many free programs for each OS. This assumes a real computer, not a phone. The separate vids are probably a feature, if something hangs during the download you don’t have to start from scratch like you would downloading a 2 1/2 hour video in one fell swoop.
We break up the video into chapters because there are fewer streaming/downloading problems with customers. Sorry if that’s a disappointment. We get complaints either way.
On downloading, it’s easy (if not obvious).
Click on the name of the chapter (top left) or the Vimeo logo (bottom right). This will take you to the chapter’s page on Vimeo.
Below the video’s window you will see this symbol:
Click it and the chapter will begin to download.
If you have difficulty, reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will be happy to help.
Does the video come with the book purchase or is there a discount?
I’m afraid the answer to both questions is no. The margins on a $20 book are razor thin. Any discounting and this book would never make it.
Awesome! Here’s to hoping the GoDrilla is back in stock before the introductory price goes away so I can bundle for free shipping.
I enjoyed the bonus content with Megan after the credits., better than the corny blooper reels. I bought the Sharpen This book mostly for the grinding section although I found the whole book was useful. I’m a pretty good sharpener.but timid about power grinding. I planned to grind some this weekend and then the video came out so I had to get it. The video was very good, the sections on scrapers, moulding planes router planes was useful.. For card scrapers you didn’t use the universal sharpener, I assume you found it rough like a file and it will need stoning anyway? Also for scrapers in ATC you mentioned using the ruler trick but not in video, is that an if needed option or you don’t find you really need it for scrapers?
Over the years I have simplified my methods to try to remove tools and processes that are unnecessary.
The universal sharpener works great. But it is unnecessary with scrapers. And I found that the burnisher can polish the faces of a scraper. No need to stone them (or use a ruler).
Perfect, I will drop those steps, now too!
Any special considerations for bevel-up planes discussed in the book or video?
There is a discussion of angles and how that works. But I don’t know of any sharpening considerations with bevel-up tools, other than you need more of a camber for jack planes.
this looks like it will be excellent… as usual… will there be anything dealing with Japanese blades?
I haven’t used Japanese blades in a long time. So they aren’t covered specifically. My take on them is that you should hone/polish the entire bevel. No secondary bevel. They are designed to be sharpened that way.
But you can put a secondary bevel on them (I’ve done it). And you need to be careful when grinding them. They seem to prefer slow, water-cooled grinding.
My advice is to find an expert in sharpening Japanese blades for some deep knowledge.
I really enjoyed the video, lots of useful information for a visual learner. Thank-you. Looks like, though, the PDF download came in a page or two light compared to what’s in the book.
Still waiting on the Sawmill Creek Woodworking Community to review this but, looks good so far. Will be adding to my basket soon.
Ouch. I am sure they will roast me.
Hey, I (feel I) said good things!
(And told anybody who wanted to nerd out about sharpening to stick with the Leonard Lee or Ron Hock classics.)
Creeker here. Worth it. If you pick up one tip. Worth it.
how does this video compare with the one you did years ago the last word on sharpening.
Made it through the video (background “noise” for CAD time at work). Glad to see (well hear anyway) the bits about arm hair and Elvis-ing your way across a stone.
“when it comes to router planes, it is all about seduction” — maybe more about “subduction” since its main job is to move below the current level of wood.
I am having trouble downloading the video stream. I can’t seem to get any help from lost Art.
Anyone else having problems with a Mac
Hi Gary – sorry to not respond sooner; I’ve been out of town teaching. If you’d send me an email to let me know the problem, I’ll take care of it. email@example.com
I consider myself an experienced sharpener but there are always new things to learn so I went ahead and purchased these videos. I am extremely glad I did. I wish had access to this simple and straight forward content 30 years ago when my woodworking and sharpening journey was just getting started. I would have a lot less sharpening gear and I would have wasted a lot less money. Most importantly, I could have become a proficient sharpener a hell of a lot quicker!
All my planes a re low angle/bevel up with 25° ground blades. Is there any reason not to home these at 35° as well?
Nope. We have bevel up jacks and jointers with this set-up.
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