Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Acrylic for Diamond Paste Sharpening Surface

On the advice of a more experienced diamond paste sharpener (thanks Peter!), I looked into using plexiglass (acrylic) or copper for a sharpening substrate.  It turns out the plexiglass was much cheaper and more available; I went to a local industrial plastics shop and dug through their scraps bin.  Found some 1/4" plexiglass for $4, and they cut it into three 3 1/4" x 8 1/4" pieces for me for $5.  The $5 for cutting was cheaper than buying a carbide-tipped 80 point blade for my table saw.

Then I cut matching 3/4" MDF pieces and epoxied the MDF to the plexiglass to make substrates for three diamond pastes.  I think I'll end up using a coarse (25-40 micron), then a 6 micron and finally a 1 micron paste.   In the photo below the MDF is getting epoxied to the plexiglass.

And here are the final results in the sharpening station.  Note the holdfast on the left, which is being held in the bench deadman, to hold the station in a fixed position while sharpening.

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