In early March of 2007, I received an e-mail from Jack Rubinger
concerning a new sharpening system that was being introduced by
Tool Manufacturing, best known for the Drill Doctor drill bit
sharpener and the Darex industrial sharpener. This new system, “The
Work Sharp Wood
Tool Sharpener” was claimed to be good for sharpening a broad array of
woodworking tools including chisels, plane irons, spoke shaves,
carving tools and
Jack asked if I was interested in publishing an announcement on this
new sharpener. I read over his description and looked at the video on
their web site before responding. My comment was that it looks like an
excellent system for sharpening carpenter’s chisels, but I did not
think that it would be suitable for sharpening the majority of
woodturning tools. He assured me that a number of woodturners were
using the new sharpener and found it useful.
I finally agreed to review the new system and received a package a few
days later with a Work Sharp and its many accessories. I gave it a
good check out and published my report in the July 2007 issue of More
Woodturning magazine. My final conclusions follow:
For someone sharpening their turning tools free hand, the Work Sharp
will handle most turning tools once the user becomes familiar with how
it works and modifies their method of sharpening to fit the machine.
For the person who does a lot of cabinet work and a little bit of
woodturning, especially spindle work, the Work Sharp should be a
welcome addition in their shop. It is easy to use and provides a flat
grinding surface, that is always flat.
I have found it useful to take with me when I'm demonstrating away
from home over a weekend. It is small and compact and serves the
What I would recommend for a turner wishing to sharpen their turning
tools in their shop is a Woodcraft Slow Speed Grinder (cost under
$100) and a Wolverine Grinding jig set up to place on it. This will
provide all of the capability you will need to sharpen all woodturning
tools. The grinder also comes with white wheels, which is desireable
for turning tools.
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