Who said Marples chisels are any good???

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Bay Area Dave wrote:

No what you got was a cross between a bench chisel and a butt chisel. Both have bevel edges, Butt chisels tend to be shorter and are designed for abuse. Bench chisels are more for clean-up type work, glue-lines, stray trash on edges, things like that. In a pinch they can be used as a paring chisel to clean up dadoes or dovetails, but they really aren't as good as the longer and thinner paring chisels. Firmer chisels look like Bench chisels but the sides are square to the faces, Mortise chisels are thicker top to bottom than they are side to side, but are also square to the faces. Does that help? Take a look on the net or in an antique shop for a much better idea. Once you see them and can handle them it'll be satori.
Dave in Fairfax
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perhaps you should read this before you condemn me for using a mallet.
http://www.taunton.com/finewoodworking/pages/w00116.asp
dave
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Bay Area Dave wrote:

You're making me crazy. I NEVER SAID THAT YOU SHOULDN'T USE A MALLET! Paring chisels shouldn't be struck, bench chisels probably shouldn't be but sometimes are butt chisels frequently are and mortising chisels must be. Someone else told you not to strike chisels because of his training, which I tend to agree with BTW but even he wouldn't tell you not to strike a mortising chisel. What you have there is the bastard son of a butt and a bench chisel. Furthermore it isn't a great quality chisel, that's why I said that I consigned them to my crappier jobs. I believe in mallets, read the posts, I don't believe in hammers except for nails. Before you get upset about what I've said, please make sure that I said it. Thenkew, Dave in Fairfax
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sorry to drive you nuts, Dave! :) I THOUGHT you had said that I was using a mallet on a chisel type that shouldn't be struck with one. If I got you wrong, I'm sorry.
There IS the possibility that I got one really crappy sample of a Marples chisel, too, and had I tried another it might have fared better. In any event, it wouldn't work for MY intended purpose so it's just as well that I returned it.
dave
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Bay Area Dave wrote:

Fair enough. I've got a couple sets of the Blue chips and haven't had any problems with them. From the responses it sounds like the quality control is slipping and they turned out a bad batch. I've got an old st of Bucks (mad in USA) that are nice too. Makes me wonder if the slip in quality had to do with the Record or with Rubbermaid. Record's used to metal, hmmm. Dav in Fairfax
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On Fri, 23 Jan 2004 11:39:39 -0800, Bay Area Dave wrote

All that means is that the *handles* are designed to withstand the impact of a mallet and hammer- the handle strength seems to be a big selling point with Marples, which has to make you wonder. Since when is handle strength the most important feature of a chisel?
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I bought a set of the Blue-handled Marples at HD 6 years ago, when I started my first classical guitar. I found them to work just fine on mahogany and rosewood: sharpen them just once before each project. Even used my 1" chisel last summer to install a sliding door in the bedroom. My intent was to "sacrifice: it to the job, and replace it with a new one later. After using it to chop/chisle/pry on spruce, ply, oak and particle board, it had one tiny nick. Recently, I took a stone to it and after 30 minutes I am once again using it on my guitars . . .
Worked for me, and the price was right!
Scott
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Interestingly, Robert, over in the woodturner's group, complained about the Marples not holding an edge, AND he prefers his Sears chisels... :)
dave
Bay Area Dave wrote:

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I was just looking through some old FWW mags and ran across an article on chisels in the Dec/1999, issue 139. They looked at 17 different chisels and tested their hardness and toughness. It might be worth looking at if you have a copy although it's 4 years old now.
FWIW, they ranked the Marples Blue Chip as coming in 16th out of the 17 chisels tested, IOW almost dead last. Craftsman came in 9th. The chisels that tested best for toughness were White Steel ($32 for a 1/2" chisel) first, then Blue Steel ($38 for a 1/2" chisel), and in third was Iyori ($156 for a set of 4 chisels).
Double FWIW, the Craftsman rated better for toughness than Japan Woodworker (10th), Garrett Wade (11th), Robert Sorby Gilt-Edge (12th), Lee Valley (13th), Robert Sorby Octagonal (14th), Stanley 5002 (15th), Marples Blue Chip (16th), and Pfeil (17th).
Again, this test is now 4 years old and they were only testing current models of chisels and they didn't test all models (e.g. Marples Protech), but maybe this helps explain why your Sears holds up better than your Marples.
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Larry C in Auburn, WA

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Larry, THANK YOU for this info! I started my subscription to FWW about a year ago so that one isn't in my library. Nice to see that their test ing bears out my very LIMITED experience with the Pro touch vs the one Sears venerable chisel that has survived from the 70's.
Did they give a rating for "Best Buy"?
dave
Larry C in Auburn, WA wrote:

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Nope.
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Larry C in Auburn, WA

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Interesting that Pfeil would come in last. I have a set, they take an edge and hold up just fine. Anyone else used these and think they're the worst?
Scott Wilson
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