Sharpening Tools

The method below is used for Sharpening or Honing

My DVD video has a very detailed movie on how to sharpen tools.
Order it here

This is a 1000 grit wet stone
Soak the stones in water for 1/2 hour and keep it wet while in use.

When sharpening a tool that has a round bevel such as Maru nomi (U gouge) as being sharpened in this motion clip), a Komasuki (small U gouge) or Aisuke (bull nose), it is important to draw the chisel across the stone, rolling the arm and tool to maintain a smooth rounding of the existing shape.

Pay particular attention to keeping the angle of the tool constant, as you draw it across the wet stone. Before sharpening, or with a new tool, make a little drawing of the angle so you can refer to it and maintain the original shape.

Each time you draw the chisel across the stone, be sure to move to a different section and use the full length so as not to wear or groove the stone in one area.

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When the major sharpening is done on the 1000 grit stone,
it is time to hone it on the 4000 grit stone.
The procedure is exactly as illustrated in the motion clip above

Once the curved bevel of the tool has been sharpened
on the1000 grit stone and honed on the 4000 grit stone
it is now time to remove the burr on the inside of the U gouge.


Lay the tool flat on the curve of the stone and pull it back making sure that the entire edge of the burr is removed.
The stone illustrated is a Traditional Water Slip Stone. You require a 1000 and 4000 grit stone.

You will need to roll it on the curve of the stone as you pull the chisel from one edge to the back edge of the wet stone to ensure the burr is removed.

Sharpening the Komasuki is the same procedure as the large U gouge. As this is a much smaller tool the procedure is done delicately. Very often it is only necessary to hone this chisel with the 4000 grit stone.

Remove the burr using a 4000 grit Miniature Water Slip.

You will require four 4000 grit Water Slips that are sold in 4 different configurations or shapes. I have shaped several of mine to conform to my different chisels.

You shape your stone by rubbing with another of the same or lesser grit.


Sharpening the Hanga To is a similar procedure as shown in the motion clip. The flat angle of the blade is important to maintain. You need to lock your wrists to ensure you do not rock or roll the knife keeping the original flat face and angle.

To strengthen the point it is recommended that the back edge of the knife tip be beveled for about 2mm.
This image has been exaggerated to show the tip configuration better.

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Eventually you will need to flatten and or remove the gouges and unevenness in you wet stones. Do this by rubbing two stones together. Here I am smoothing down a 1000 grit by using a 250 grit with lots of water.
Normally you have two stones to assure you
have the required grits. 250/1000 and 1000/4000
are the available combinations.


My WorkSpace Hori-Dai Caving Bench Get Pasted
Sharpening Tie Baren
Carving Tools Mechanics
Sharpening V gouge Cut a Kento
Inking Brush

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