Today's challenge is to sharpen two pairs of pinking shears that are a
bit on the blunt side.
Much googling suggested:
Cut some alumnium foil with them.
Cut some sandpaper with them.
Use a Twice as sharp sharpening machine - or a Tormek.
Send them away to a professional sharpener.
Buy new ones!
But I am not convinced by any of them - either that they work, that even
if the foil/sandpaper work it isn't only a temporary improvement, that
they are worth it (haven't got a suitable machine and certainly can't
afford one for this purpose only). And I have a memory that it was
discussed here a while back - not that I can find it.
My grandfather owned a clothing factory, and I saw him sharpening
them a couple of times, but I was too young to pay enough attention.
It involved disassembly and sharpening each jaw on a india oil stone.
We still have one pair somewhere, but I suspect they are a very
expensive professional pair, as they are fully disassemblable,
including removing the separate jaws from the frame. Before the
clothes factory (and long before I was born), he owned a hair
dresser, and I would guess he was well into resharpening the
scissors and razers there too.
He was very much in to very sharp cutting implements. The original
cutting table in the factory used something like a carving knife to
cut the patterns through many layers of fabric all at once, using
knifes which had to be extremely sharp, and frequently resharpened.
By the time I was old enough to remember, this had been replaced by
an electric knife suspended from the ceiling.
His knife sharpening was quite legendary when it came to carving
up a roast. He would sharpen the carving knifes on a steel, but
he would finish them off, or retone them, by sharpening two knive
blades against each other (which I presume is what he did with the
cutting table knives), and I wish I'd paid attention to how he did
that. The only difficulty was if someone else then carved the meat,
as you carved straight through the bone before you realised you'd
[email address is not usable -- followup in the newsgroup]
Have seen a very few butchers do that knife-against-knife sharpening -
if I did it, I'd end up with two blunted knives. :-(
Unfortunately, while these are perfecty decent shears, they are
certainly not at the end of the scale you wrote about! Quite sure they
do not disassemble.
Shame we all managed not to pay sufficient attention to loads of things
where later we wished that we had.
I think even if you can't arrange for a grinding wheel and a mounting, a
diamond studded 'steel' of the sort used to sharpen knives and a steady
hand, should be able to do the job on a blade clamped in a vice.
Essentially the issue is to remove the rounding in the serration tips.
And the tip in the video of using a felt pen to black the surface, and
then honing back to overall fresh metal should work.
(in-ep-toc’-ra-cy) – a system of government where the least capable to
On 16/10/2012 11:42, The Natural Philosopher wrote:
Not everybody has a steady hand. I've never made pinking shears, but was
involved in a factory that made scissors. There, it was very important
to use the right grit abrasive for sharpening. The cutting edge needed
very fine serrations to work best; too fine a finish impaired the
quality of the cut, while too coarse a cut caused them to catch on soft
materials. Unfortunately, decades later, I don't recall what grit we
used. Our test was to make a clean cut vertically up a piece of
free-hanging open weave bandage.
That point was also made on one of the sites I visisted in my quest. I
think they said 800 grit was the finest they use.
I have now tried to do the diamond approach and it made a considerable
difference to one pair, but only slight to the other. In both cases it
has helped reveal beyond doubt that there is a small bit of the blade
that is plain wrong! Nearest the throat is fine. The far end is OK (and
that is what improved very much from my sharpening). But at about two
thirds along there seem to be a couple of teeth that do not mesh
properly and hence do not cut well.
I might try some more, but think that a new pair might be in order.
Anyone know of Ernest Wright?
Unfortunately, Sheffield is not what it used to be. I knew a number of
people in the forceps and scissor trade and, in recent years, they all
suffered the problem that faces many people in skilled engineering.
Their skilled staff are coming up towards retirement age and very few
younger people are interested in getting their hands dirty to learn
HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.