Category Archives: Sharpen This

What About the Back of the Tool?

  I promise this post is not about sharpening. It is, instead, about what we read vs. what we see. When I learned to sharpen, the entire first day of my lesson was all about flattening the backs of my … Continue reading

Posted in Sharpen This, Uncategorized | 41 Comments

Whetstones for Dull Wits and Liars

If you are a diligent woodworker you have a sharpening station, all your edge tools are clean and sharp and your sharpening stones nice and flat. How about your mind? Sharp, or nice and flat? What about your truthiness? It … Continue reading

Posted in Satire, Sharpen This | 2 Comments

Round the Corners of a Plane Iron

If the corners of a handplane’s cutter are not supposed to cut wood, then I remove them. OK, let me put that a different way. Some handplanes are supposed to cut into corners: rabbet planes, shoulder planes, moulding planes and … Continue reading

Posted in Sharpen This | 13 Comments

Sharp Edges Cut Out Profanity

That’s a pretty good incentive don’t you think? Sharpen your tools and stop swearing. Everybody Does It – A Sharpening World Tour Neolithic polissoirs, characterized by straight grooves and a shallow basin, were used to sharpen axes, arrows and blades. … Continue reading

Posted in Sharpen This | 26 Comments

The ‘Sharpen This’ Speech – Now Available

Highland Woodworking has published my “Sharpen This – the Hand-tool Backlash” speech that I gave at the Lie-Nielsen Open House a couple years ago. You can read the whole thing in Highland’s newsletter here. (Note: You can subscribe to the … Continue reading

Posted in Sharpen This | 28 Comments

Sept. 9 at Our Storefront: ‘Sharpenday’

Next Saturday, Sept. 9, is our regularly scheduled open day for Lost Art Press. We’ll have our complete line of books plus a good number of slightly damaged books at 50 percent of retail (cash only). And T-shirts. Coffee. Stickers. … Continue reading

Posted in Lost Art Press Storefront, Sharpen This, Uncategorized | 22 Comments

Sharpen This, Part 10: Oh, Stewardess! I Speak Jive

Some days I wish there were a Google Translate filter for woodworking forums and podcasts. It would allow people to understand what is really being said. Below are some actual quotes I’ve heard through the years and my rough translation … Continue reading

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Sharpen This, Part 9: Guided by Voices

Read the other installments in the “Sharpen This” series via this link. When it comes to the topic of honing guides, I’d sooner have a double colonoscopy than discuss them. But here goes. Honing guides are jigs. They hold a … Continue reading

Posted in Sharpen This

Sharpen This, Part 8: Polish & Get Back to Work

Read the other installments in the “Sharpen This” series via this link. One of the misguided mantras in sharpening is this: Polish the edge until you remove all the scratches left from the previous grit. Then move to the next … Continue reading

Posted in Sharpen This

Sharpen This, Part 7: The Burr in the Saddle

Read the other installments in the “Sharpen This” series via this link. The burr – how to make it and how to remove it – confuses many beginners. Many underestimate its importance. Others disagree on how to remove it. First, … Continue reading

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