how to sharpen a chisel with a bench grinder

How to Sharpen a Chisel With a Bench Grinder – The Step by Step Guide

When it comes to sharpening chisels, many woodworkers feel that the best way is to use a bench grinder. However, many woodworkers are unsure of how to go about it. This blog will guide you through the sharpening process of chisels with a bench grinder step by step. First, you will need the right tools. Next, you will need to understand the different types of chisels and the purposes they are used for. After that, it is important to learn how to set the grinding angle and grind to a sharp edge. Last but not least, make sure to apply two bevels to a chisel to get the best results. With this guide, you will how to sharpen a chisel with a bench grinder like a professional!

What Are Bench Grinders?

how to sharpen a chisel with a bench grinder

A bench grinder is a tool used for sharpening tools and other metalworking items. It consists of 3 main parts: the grinding wheel, the handle, and the collet nut. The grinding wheel has hundreds of small teeth on it that mesh with the blade or edge of your workpiece to grind it down. To use a bench grinder, you will need to mount your workpiece on the jig that comes with the grinder or buy one separately. There are also many accessories available, such as diamond grits and belt sanders, which can be added to the bench grinder for extra finishing touches on the blade.

Why Sharpen One’s Chisel?

how to sharpen chisel with a bench grinder

Chisels are important woodworking tools, and it’s important to keep them sharp. A bench grinder is a perfect tool for the job, as it has variable speeds and angles. Chisels are used for a variety of tasks, but the most common use is cutting piece of wood. A chisel’s edge is sharp and has a long lifespan if it is properly maintained. When using a chisel, bevel the blade so that the cutting edge rests on the workpiece at an angle. This will ensure that your chisel doesn’t slip and will reduce wear on the blade and your hand.

Tools Required:

The following tools are required to sharpen the dull chisel with a bench grinder:

  • Grinding wheel
  • Sharpening stone
  • wheel dresser
  • Safety glasses
  • Dust mask
  • Leather gloves
  • Rags
  • Bench Grinder Tool rest

Materials Required:

The following Material will be required to sharpen the chisel with a bench grinder:

  • Lubricating oil
  • Plate glass
  • Wet/dry sandpaper

Step by Step Procedure:

Follow these steps to sharpen the chisel with a bench grinder:

Step 1: Glue Sandpaper to Glass

Cut a sheet of 80-grit sandpaper to size your glass so you’ll be ready to sharpen. Press the sandpaper onto the glass using a little amount of glue applied to the sandpaper. Use 150- and 220-grit sheets again. To avoid the glass from moving around, apply sandpaper to both sides of the glass.

Step 2: Lapping

Next, use the wheel dresser to lap the bevel on the chisel blade. To do this, hold your chisel at a 20-degree angle and turn the wheel in a circular motion. This will sharpen the edge of your blade without grinding it down too much.

Step 3: Flatten the Back

After lapping the edge, you’ll need to flatten the back of the blade. Doing this will prevent your chisel from slipping and cutting yourself. To do this, use a sharpening stone on a medium grit to grind down the back of your blade until it’s flat. Make sure not to overdo it or you’ll have an uneven chisel  edge that will be difficult to sharpen later on.

Step 4: Set the Honing Angle

Now you’ll need to set the honing angle. To do this, find a guide that will help you determine the proper honing angle for your blade. Place the chisel on the grinding wheel at the honing angle and use your fingers to guide it onto the sharpening stone. Use 220-grit sandpaper to sharpen both sides of your blade until it’s sharpened down to perfection.

Step 5: Sharpen on Sandpaper

Finally, use the honing stone to sharpen the edge of your blade. To do this, place the chisel on the honing angle and run sandpaper over both sides of your blade until it’s sharpened down to perfection.

Step 6: Feel for a ‘Wire Edge’

If you’re sharpening a chisel for the first time, you’ll likely notice a ‘wire edge.’ This is caused by the bevel angle on the blade being too sharp. To fix this, use 220-grit sandpaper to sharpen the bevel until it’s just sharp enough to cut wood but not too razor sharp.

Step 7: Remove the Wire Edge

After sharpening your blade, you’ll need to remove the wire edge. To do this, use a sharpening stone on a medium grit and use light strokes to grind the sharp edge down until it’s smooth. You can also use a honing rod or diamond bond wheel on a fine grit to polish the edge of your chisel.

Step 8: Polish the Edge

It’s time to sharpen your chisel’s edge now. To smoothen out the sharpening ridges left by the sandpaper, use a honing rod or diamond wire wheel on a fine grit. Make sure not to go overboard, or you’ll wind up with a dull blade that will be difficult to hone again.

Step 9: Fix a Chipped Chisel

If your chisel suffers from a chip in the edge, you’ll need to fix it before sharpening. To do this, use a honing rod or diamond wheel on a medium grit and sharpen the edge of the chisel sharp until it’s smooth. Be sure not to go too deep, or you’ll wind up gouging out the wood instead of fixing the chip.

Step 10: Clean the Wheel

Once you’ve sharpened the edge of your chisel, be sure to clean the coarse wheel. To do this, use a damp cloth to wipe down the grinder and blade. Be sure not to contaminate it with wood dust or another grinder residue.

Step 11: Blunt the End

If you notice that the chisel’s end is sharp, you can blunt it using a grinding soft wheel on a coarse grit. To do this, hold the grinder steady and begin grinding the edge of the blade down until it’s somewhat rounded. Be sure not to go too far or you’ll wind up with a dull blade that will be difficult to sharpen again.

Step 12: Set the Grinding Angle

Before sharpening the edge of your chisel, be sure to set the grinder’s grinding angle. To do this, adjust the bench grinder wheel so that it’s at a 90-degree angle to the blade. This will ensure that you’re freehand sharpening both sides of the blade simultaneously.

Step 13: Grind to a Sharp Edge

Once you’ve set the grinder’s grinding angle and sharpened the edge of your chisel, be sure to grind it down to a sharp point. To do this, use a grinding wheel on a fine grit and slowly bring the blade towards the wheel. Be careful not to go too deep or you’ll wind up with a dull blade that will be difficult to sharpen again.

Step 14: Two Bevels Are Better Than One

Using the grinder’s bevel wheel, standard sharpening tools can be made into two-sided blades. To do this, first set the grinder to a 45-degree angle and then use the grinding wheel on a fine grit to sharpen one edge of the blade. Do the same thing with the other edge of the blade using a grinding wheel on a coarse grit. This will create a sharp edge on both sides of the chisel.

Step 15: Chisel is ready to use:

Your chisel is now sharp and ready to be used! Simply hold the blade steady and use it to cut through wood plates or other materials. If you ever experience difficulty sharpening your chisel, be sure to consult a professional grinder. They can help you set the grinder’s grinding angle and sharpen the edge of your chisel to perfection.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I determine the correct angle for sharpening?

When sharpening a chisel, you need to take into account the angle of the blade relative to the grindstone. This is done by holding the chisel at a fixed angle and grinding it against the type of stone at that angle.

There are several ways to determine this angle:

  • Hold a ruler in one hand and your chisel in the other, and determine how much closer or further away from the stone you need to move your hand for it to feel comfortable. Once you’ve found this distance, use that number as your angle.
  • Use a protractor instead of a ruler. Place it against one edge of the diamond stone and mark out a circle. Now rotate the protractor until it lines up with the other edge of the circle and notes its position. This will be your angle.
  • Get someone else to hold your chisel for you while you grind against the stone at their chosen angle.

How often should I sharpen my chisels?

This depends on the type of wood being used, the sharpening stone, and how often the chisel is used. Some people choose to sharpen their chisels time after time they use them, while others only sharpen them when they notice that the plane blade has become dull. It’s up to you.

Conclusion

After going through the entire grinding process, you are now equipped with all the know-how about how to sharpen a chisel. The only thing left for you is practice and patience. In case you have any doubts or queries regarding this step-by-step procedure, just leave them in the comments section below! We will be happy to assist!

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