I give up... Card Scrapers

... I just cannot get any curls. Nothing but sawdust. I tried, for the first time, putting my own burr on there.
Maybe I horked it up worse... I have *zero* experience sharpening hand tools, but a scraper looked pretty straight-forward:
1) removed old burr and flattened sides with 800 grit 2) Light Mill file on the top edge, perpendicular to the sides 3) Roll a 5-10 degree burr. (Geez it seems like I really had to push down!)
Scrape - sawdust... Grrr...
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Same experience here. Already a while ago i gave a scraper a go. Read in L. Lee`s book how to sharpen them. I was not really succesfull. In the September/October issue of FWW there was an article on how to tune up a card scraper. I decided to give it another go. This time it went rather well. There is an online VideoTip available at: http://www.taunton.com/finewoodworking/pages/wvt088.asp

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On Mon, 13 Dec 2004 19:22:47 +0100, "Wouter Overmeire"

TWS
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I took my scraping to the next level with burnishing rod made from a engine push rod. I bought 2 at Auto Zone for like $3. Get one and buff it to a mirror polish. Have a chrome/metal shop do this if you can't. To me a buffing the rod with white compound was the key to success.
Prep scraper as usual and then with a lightly oiled rod roll a 10-15 deg burr 1st on the edge with the scraper on its side then 2nd burnish the typical way with it standing up in a vise. I have to apply a lot of pressure to get a decent edge. I wear gloves to ensure I will be able to play guitar in the future. Now enjoy yet another set razor sharp edges in your shop...
SS
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Lots of hard metal in an engine. Some people use the valve stem. A wrist pin works well. I have a little piece of carbide in an aluminum handle called a Neivert Whittler. The back surface is rounded and makes a good burnisher.
bob g.
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On Mon, 13 Dec 2004 19:22:47 +0100, "Wouter Overmeire"

a Woodsmith that cost me less than $30. Follow the directions. It's easy and the results are worth it, trust me.
There is nothing like scraping with a properly sharpened scraper.
--RC
Projects expand to fill the clamps available -- plus 20 percent
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I use the burnisher that lee valley tools sells. I put a little bit of sharpening oil on the blade being burnished. Push hard and make several strokes. It takes quite a bit of effort. When using a scraper the angle of the scraper is very important as well as putting a little bow on the scraper. The convex side of the bow moves in the direction of your stroke whether you decide to pull or push the scraper. They do an incredible job so don't give up. You won't be able to sand as well as a scraper. Just remember scrapers don't work on soft woods and I haven't had much luck with woods like oak. They do take a lot of work to use. If your scraper isn't heating up, then your not working hard enough.
Don patrick conroy wrote:

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I second the push rod burnisher. Got a bunch of 'em laying around from some old chevy 350's, and they work great! Ford pushrods should work in a pinch, but I have doubts about Mopar ;). Some other engine uses: The heads also make a great weight if you need to flatten something. The pistons are perfect 4" circles (chevy 350) . The 4" plastic hose that ran from the air cleaner to the fire wall on my mud racin' truck now is mounted to my delta planer dust attachment and directs all the dust into a trash can. (poorman's dust collector) Now if i could only find a ww use for all those busted rods, pistons and cranks laying around! --dave

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Bbbbbbbbbbut.... wouldn't you want a straight burnishing tool?

I likes the way you think.

And placed upside down they make a rather nifty pen holder for the workbench or the kitchen counter.

Busted pistons will work as ashtrays. Rods make nice cradles for large diameter dowels when the end caps are removed. Cranks make excellent workshop workout devices when a set of foot straps is welded on two rod journals.
--

-Mike-
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hhhmmmm.. good ideas!

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I have a cheap Stanley scraper. I am lazy so the sharpen it I use a fine belt with my belt sander, holding the scaper the long way, with the belt. I don't even bother to "roll" an edge on it and usually can get curls from it! You must be trying to hard! Greg

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Last sentence tells me why you can't scrape a shaving. Your'e rolling the burr with too much pressure.You need about as much pressure as buttering a roll, when the butter is cold. Hard to explain, but when done correctly you can't see the burr. You can feel it though.Here is how I do it from scratch.Draw file first, make sure edge is filed square to the scraper face. Hone with diamond stone ( any decent stone ) square to the face. Lay card down flat on edge of bench.Put one or two drops of 3 in 1 oil on burnisher and smear it along burnisher.lay burnisher flat on top of card, pull burnisher towards you, do this four times.REMEMBER, lightly like described above. Turn over and repeat. Now ,hold burnisher at about 5 degree angle vertically. The handle will be under the bench edge , the steel will tilt slightly towards the card scraper. Pull four or five times, lightly.Turn card upside down and repeat. You are done, commence scraping. mike
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I agree. The tip that taught me was to use a scale, 2-3 pounds of pressure is all it takes.
--
Ross
www.myoldtools.com
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Yeah, I did that for a long time, too. It took a long time to get it right.
What I do (YMMV -- it's probably not perfect but it works for me)
1. Mount the scraper in a face vise between two scraps and file off the old surface. By keeping the scraper edge just about flush with the scraps, the edge is insured to be pretty close to perpindicular.
2. Repeat the same with a fine diamond Duostone.
3. Take the burnisher, and put a small amount of oil on it (even oil from your skin is enough).
4. Lay the scraper flat on the workbench, and run the burnisher over the side surface near the cutting edge, holding the burnisher nearly flat to the scraper side. There's a lot of area being contacted here so you want to bear down pretty hard. The purpose is to bend the first part of the hook.
5. Place the scraper flat on the workbench so that the edge of the scraper just overhangs the edge of the workbench, by around maybe 1/8 of an inch. Doing so helps you set a consistent and nearly perpindicular angle for the next step.
6. Brace the burnisher against the front edge of the workbench, and using only light pressure draw the burnisher across and down the scraper edge. This rolls over the fine hook. It doesn't take much pressure because the contact area between the burnisher and scraper is so small. If you bear too hard or if your angle is too great, you run the chance of bending off the hook (if yo do that, you'll see a very fine wire fall off the edge of the scraper).
Good luck, Nate
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You've gotten some good answers on this question, but one thing I haven't seen mention of is consolidating the metal and drawing the hook before turning it. To do this, place the scraper flat on your bench, take your burnisher and roll it along the face of the scraper right near the edge, while keeping the burnisher flat against the face. Make a few strokes the length of the face, gradually moving just barely past horizontal. Turn the scraper over and repeat on the other face.
I won't attempt to do the ASCII art here, put this produces an edge that is shaped somewhat like a flat-bottomed "U" turned on its side. (I.e., the metal at the arris has been drawn out past the edge.)
At that point, you can turn the burr the usual way. By drawing it first, it should only take a few firm strokes to turn the hook. (You shouldn't have to strain and sweat to turn the hook.)
BTW, the biggest mistake I used to make when turning the hook was to make a hook that was much too big. A big hook makes it too aggressive (good for scraping paint, maybe), and also forces you to tilt the scraper too far forward to get it to engage. If you get it right, you'll just barely be able to feel the hook.
Chuck Vance
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Thanks *all* for the suggestions... I'll give it another go.
I'm convinced I need to master this thing. Guess this is where it's nice to have someone else around.
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