Tormek Type Sharpener Modification

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Tn-Steve

Member
Joined
Dec 8, 2008
Messages
271
Location
Clarksville, TN
Hey Gang,

I got the Tormek style grinder from Harbor Freight (Even has a German made grinding wheel), and the actual Tormek jigs at my local WoodCraft. My idea was to get everything set up with Tormek system, so that it would be easy to keep them sharp.

I quickly learned that it takes a LONG time to create an edge with the water grinding wheel, especially when you have a LOT of metal to remove to get it to the spec you want. I figured that there had to be a better way, that didn't involve spending money on another grinder. (or grinding away a lot of the expensive water wheel)

Went to the BORG and picked up an 8 inch x 1 grinding wheel, and couple of metal bushings, since the shaft on the Wet Grinder is 1/2 inch. In a matter of a few minutes I had mounted the dry wheel on the grinder, used a couple of nylon spacers as bushings to move it out toward the end of the shaft. Total expense, about 15 bucks or so.

Fired it up, and it works great. You CAN'T overheat the steel dry at 90 RPM, yes it takes a while (about 15 minutes to turn a rounded over skew with a very short bevel into a beautiful hollow ground radiused tipped tool). The tools come off the wheel very smooth to start with, and I then use the same jig and the leather wheel to polish out the edge.

They work great, generally all that's needed is to pop them into the appropriate jig (since everything is labeled it's quick and easy) and a quick hit on the leather strop is all that's needed. I use the Mothers Mag and ALUM. Polish on the strop, puts a mirror shine on the bevel in seconds.

A regular grinder is in my future, and when I get that, I've already figured out a way to rig up a fixture to use the Tormek jigs and system.

Pics to follow when I get a chance.

Steve
 
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Tn-Steve

Member
Joined
Dec 8, 2008
Messages
271
Location
Clarksville, TN
Cav,

That would be the plan, especially for things like my kitchen knives, where having the wider less aggressive wheel would be of extra benefit. The best part is, now that I've got the parts, it only takes about 30 seconds to switch wheels over. (Hardest part is remembering that the nut that holds the wheel on the shaft is reverse threaded.)

Steve
 

Tn-Steve

Member
Joined
Dec 8, 2008
Messages
271
Location
Clarksville, TN
it seems to hold up fine. The thing that gets me is that it seems to use the same model wheel as the one that I saw at WoodCraft, but they (HF) get less for the whole unit than Tormac charges for just the wheel.

The wheel IS very soft, it's easy to grind into it, if I were to do it again, (and by that I mean build one) I'd probably go with a 10 inch rather than a 8 inch wheel. OTOH, I think Grizzly sells a very reasonably priced replacement.

Steve
 

David350

Member
Joined
Sep 10, 2017
Messages
275
Location
Dallas, TX
I have a Tormek and you are right on your comments. IMHO, it is not the right sharpener if you are looking to change the profile on your tools. However, if you are only touching up / sharpening it does a very nice job. I think the strategy is to have an inexpensive grinder you can use your Tormek jigs on to do the reshaping when you need to, and the Tormek to keep the edge sharp once you have established the profile.
 
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