I have virtually every accessory for the Tormek. I also have other grinding
wheels with tool rests, 1"x42" belt sander, waterstones to 8000 grit and
diamond stones to 1200 grit (green DMT). I use them all when sharpening
depending on what I am sharpening and what mood I am in. I love to hone
chisels and plane irons on waterstones because of the sound of the metal on
the waterstones and the peacefulness of the work. I use the belt sander for
knives, using a 15 micron silicon carbide belt and leather belt with .5
micron honing compound. I also use it to touch up chisels. I use other
grinding stones for very short chisels. The Tormek, I can use for virtually
everything. I think that where it shines is with carving chisels, such as
gouges. Although I have used it for regular chisels, plane irons, knives,
scissors, etc. If you can afford it, it is a nice tool to have around. If
not, there other far cheaper ways to accomplish the same thing.
Would I buy it again if I lost this one? Probably.
I have the Tormek with most of the jigs. It works very well for
everything that I've sharpened with it; however, I don't use it to
sharpen the blades on my Lie-Nielsen planes. For those two planes, I
use four grades of waterstones and finish with a leather strop. The
Tormek gave a good to great finish on the plane blades, but the
waterstones gave an even better finish. The waterstones produced a
finish that produced a thinner shaving and reduced effort when pushing
the plane. If it were necessary to replace the Tormek, I'd buy another
in a heartbeat.
this is the key the tormek is a grinder above all else. the same with the makita
it will do the bulk of the work but if you want a really sharp edge you need to
finish on a stone or SS or whatever. buffing will not replace final grits.
not all tools need this but planes and chisels do.
Knight-Toolworks & Custom Planes
Custom made wooden planes at reasonable prices
There's a Yahoo Tormek group you might want to look into.
You can read posts without joining.
The unit with the standard jig works well on most bench chisels
and plane irons. Doesn't work with short chisels like butt
chisels or short carving chivels. Most of those can be done
with another jig - at an extra cost of course.
The leather strop wheel I got took a bit of work to get even
close to flat and round - still have a high spot I can't
seem to get rid of.
Tormek says you can flatten the backs of chisels and plane
irons on the sides of the wheel but it's not easy to come
down on the side of the spinning wheel perectly flat. Just
a touch on an edge and you have more work to do. It's also
hard to lift the flat back off the side of the stone with
out tilting it. Again a problem. So, even with the Tormek
you'll still need some stones or scary sharp set up for
flattening the backs of bench chisels and plane irons.
Even when you use their "special grading stone" and go
from coarse to fine mode the wheel still leaves scratches
that the strop, with their special polishing paste, doesn't
take out. The polishing paste is actually abrassive
and will round over a chisel's corners so if you're not
careful you can screw up all the sharpening you've done.
There is a special (available at an additional cost ) leather
strop for craving chisels but it doesn't go down small
enough for detail V chisels etc..
If you want to spend some bigger bucks, there's a flat
plate lap with different plates that is smaller, quieter
doesn't require sloshing water and seems to get things
sharper quicker from an outfit called WoodArt. "Only"
If I've got a lot of sharpening to do I'll get out the
Tormek and do all my edge tools that could use either
a sharpening or some touch up. Otherwise I just use
japanese water stones for just a tool or two. Even
using the Tormek, I'll finish sharpening on the water
stones where things happen at human speed.
Would I buy this unit again? Sure, but 'm a tool freak
and am sans SWMBO.
And one other point that I overlooked - the Tormek WILL NOT burn an edge. It
keeps the tool very cool while grinding. I have toasted my share of tools on
my slow-speed (1725 RPM) grinder and when I sharpen my gouges, it does a
great job without bluing the tool.
I use the Delta sharpening system to sharpen y 12 1/2" and 6" planer and
jointer blades and have for a couple of years when it first come out. Did
need all of the \
accessories that the Tormek offered. Quite pleased with results.
A simple holding jig and a sanding disk is all I use to sharpen my planer and
jointer blades on my Shopsmith. I assume it would work the same on any tablesaw
equiped with a sanding disk. Plans are in Decristoforo's Power Tool Woodworking
For Everyone, although I bought the commercial jig from Shopsmith.
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