Sharpening woodturning tools - equipment you will need
Woodturning tools work hard - ploughing through hard wood at 30 miles per hour or more - so they need sharpening frequently. Cutting time between sharpenings is measured in minutes even with the finest high speed steel tools. A good grinder setup is essential for every woodturner and it is vital to learn the skill of sharpening before you can enjoy turning wood...
(1) First you need a GrinderA 6" or 8" double ended engineers grinder is fine and will sharpen or re-shape your tools quickly and efficiently.
Page 2- Grinder information page, choosing a suitable grinder You will need to fit the grinder down to a bench or board of some kind. A piece of kitchen worktop is ideal. Then you can mount a suitable jig to replace the small bent metal non-adjustable grinding rests, which come with the grinder, but which are no help in getting the correct bevel angle on your tools.
(2) Fit a jig for getting the bevel angles consistent
Jigs are essential and even an expert will get better results and longer tool life using one
(3) Upgrade at least one wheel to a Woodturner's grindstone
The grey wheels which come with the grinder are made from unrefined hard aluminium oxide grit. They are designed for grinding carbon steel but they are not good enough for your
expensive high speed steel turning tools.
You need to upgrade with a superior white or pink aluminium oxide wheel. Blue ceramic or microcrystalline wheels are even better than pink and CBN (cubic boron nitride) metal plated wheels are the best of all.
(4) Wheel dresserEvery grinding wheel (except CBN wheels) needs dressing periodically and a multi diamond T bar dresser does the best job with the least effort.
Wheel dresser more info