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Old 07-12-2017, 02:21 PM   #1 (permalink)
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Martinsville, IL
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Default Opinions on Work Sharp tool system

I have tried hand sharpening on grinding wheels and belt sanders. Made jigs
to copy expensive jigs and holders. Have saved money to buy ONE sharpening system. From all posts here and other places it seems like for the money the Work Sharp system has the most benefits. The 3000 and attachments would total about $250.00. Looking for advise from anyone especially someone who has the 3000 system. Small shop so I need compact.
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Old 07-12-2017, 03:07 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Juneau, Alaska.
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Hi Ron,

I have a worksharp 3000 with the add on tool bar and a tormek jig for gouges. Have had it foe several years. Origionally got it for high carbon chisels and carving tools and later added the jig for short bladed turning tools that do not fit onto the regular grinder with cbn wheels

Small tools, it works pretty well with a lot of care and a light touch. The add on long tool bar is not a robust, rock solid mount, but by being careful I get reasonable consistency and it produces sharp edges. This is not the tool for a half inch bowl gouge with attached 16 inch handle.

It does better with tools removable from the handle and shorter pieces of steel. 1/4 inch US gouges w/o handles attached work well. Skew, especially short blade skews are pretty easy.

Learn to let the abrasive do the cutting. Putting pressure on the tool bar to force the grind will cause the tool bar to move.

Pens, and small items with small tools, not a problem. Bigger tools not so much.
Ken Vaughan
Old Apprentice Machinist - learning a new knee in Tucson
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Old 07-12-2017, 04:45 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Location: Tunica, MS,
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I agree with Ken. I have one and it does a good job, but to me it is not the "do all and end all" sharpening tool. It does require a lighter touch. For pen gouges, it is OK but I have larger tools that it doesn't handle well.

I have a couple of 1" belt sanders that do OK. I have had two slow grinders (left one in Japan when I left there) and bought a new one here. I prefer wet slow grinders and then honing. With a good sharp edge, I find that I can hone a dozen times or so before going back to the grinder. I haven't used a CBN wheel yet.

It comes down to learning to use one well and then if it doesn't work, getting one that works best to your needs. That is not always easy to figure out.

The key is grinding to shape and then honing for the real sharp edge. CBN wheels are expensive but they last and they can be had in very fine grits which look like they will almost hone an edge.

For me, I have been sharpening my own chisels for years and I can tell when they are sharp vs need honing again. I also have carbide, 3 carbide tools in fact. They are sharp and will hold an edge a lot longer than non carbide tools. Most users will swear by them. But as sharp as they are, they are not as sharp as a fresh sharpened steel chisel.
Hank Lee

Experience is what you get when you don't get what you wanted!

Last edited by leehljp; 07-12-2017 at 04:47 PM.
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Old 07-12-2017, 08:31 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Location: webberville, mi
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+2 on the above posts. I have the 3000. Love it for plane irons, etc. FAR better than the alternatives when doing irons, IMHO.
I give it a "C" or "C+" for turning tools. My main issue is that I seem to need to replace the paper far too often - and that procedure takes too much time and work. Plus, I could never seem to get the bowl and spindle gouge profiles I wanted (prob my technique more than the 3000, but...).
I built a couple jigs and still use one of those jigs for a flat 1/2" skew that I use a lot.
Ted in Michigan
Go Buckeyes!
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Old 07-16-2017, 08:08 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Location: Claremont NH
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I use a oneway for all my sharpening of my turning tools. I have tried the 3000 and have one but the oneway is fast and easy. Set it and forget it! I use a skew most of the time but it is not the small pen skew it is a real skew with heft and size! It gets used on all the pens that I make!
Mike S.
Claremont, NH
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Old 07-16-2017, 05:45 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I have been turning wood since 1964, I was taught to freehand using wet stones decades before the "gadgets" came into existence. I am also a tool junkie, I have either bought or made most of the sharpening "systems" on the today's market. Until you understand the angles and the bevels etc., the sharpening jigs will be expensive "crutches".

Today for my lathe chisels I use either 4x36 belt sander with different grits, sheets sandpaper mounted on 12x12 pieces of Corian, 1x42 belt sander, a set of 6" sanding discs plates that mount on my lathe and or a handful of 2x6 diamond grit cards. I also have a leather hone set, overkill, but I use it when I am thinking, so I call it my therapy strop, but I got it for woodcarving chisels where razor sharp is really needed.

My recommendation, skip the Work Sharp, yes I also have one of them, it collects dust. Go watch the 100's of videos of the You Tube "experts". Then watch Captain Eddie's You Tube videos about sharpening. There are a lot of options available, with an investment of time watching videos you will find what works for you.

Back to the Work Sharp, it is no better than the set of sanding discs face plates that I made for my lathe. I used scraps of wood that I glued up and then drilled and tapped to fit my lathe spindle. My cost was the 6 sheets of sandpaper, the glue I used and my time. My discs are vertical, while the WS is horizontal.
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Old 07-19-2017, 02:31 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Manhattan, IL
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I'm a self torturing sharpening victim. I'm self taught with everything and sharpening has been the bane of my existence. I've purchased darn near every gizmo, gadget, whatsit, and whosit that claims to be idiot proof. I'd love to be able to hand sharpen but it's a concept I struggle to concur thru watching videos and reading how-tos.

IMHO the worksharp is fantastic for planes and chisels. You can get a mirror finish and it's almost impossible to get it wrong.

I originally tried to use it for skews and gouges. I have the bar and every other jig possible, and the results were never repeatable. There are too many things that can move a bit here and there so the next go round is off and requires a lot of steel removal.

The oneway wolverine type bench grinder system was really good for awhile until I wanted to get better at it.

I'm now using a small Tormek and have been able to get consistent results and it's made turning so much more enjoyable.

I'm not proud of all the junk I've bought, so this isn't bragging. I just wanted to let the pain in my wallet help someone looking for input. Of course I told my wife all of those purchases were about 50 bucks...
Manhattan, IL
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