Reader Ted Pietzrak of Auburn, California read the article on “Power Sharpening” in the August 2008 Woodworker’s Journal and agreed with author Bill Hylton’s choice of the Work Sharp power sharpener as the “Best Bet”- and with Bill’s assessment that the Work Sharp needed “some sort of tool holder” to accompany it.
Ted, therefore, made a tool holder. Here’s his description of how he did it.
– WJ Editors
Upon unpacking the Work Sharp, I realized there essentially was no stable “bracing system” on top for accurate grinding. I also noted the port limitation below the “see-through” wheel. Before I ruined a good lathe chisel or plane blade, I set out to make a table “station” to correct the deficiencies. (Also, I noted that if I bolted the Work Sharp down, I would have to “walk around” the device to best orient my tool for sharpening. Very awkward.)
First, I determined that the station itself must be a stable table. Second, the Work Sharp itself must be securely bolted down. Third, I needed “access” all around the Work Sharp for various sharpening. Fourth, I needed a simple and fast way of rigidly anchoring each tool at a precise angle.
1. I bolted the Work Sharp to a plywood base that rotates 360 degrees and remains stable.
2. Then, I built a table that simply “drops over” the Work Sharp, providing me with a “plane” surface at the same level as the sanding disk.
3. I also created a dozen or so “wedges” out of 2×4 stock, one for each specific tool with a required angle.
4. But how do you “stabilize” the wedge so that it is secure on the tabletop? Easy: I simply place carpet tape on the bottom of the wedge and place the wedge at the most efficent orientation to the direction of the disk.
This table allows me many options to place my tool at the optimum angle to the sanding surface. (If I do choose to use the Work Sharp port under the disk, I simply lift off the tabletop with no trouble. The Work Sharp remains securely bolted to its swivel base.)
It really works!
(Now I only have to increase my workshop production to help pay for the divorce attorney after my wife came home early from the mall and found me set up to do woodworking on the kitchen counter — there’s better light there than in the shop. Actually, she simply handed me the alternative of a long list of furniture needed building, and no excuses!)
Adding the tool holder means my Work Sharp works perfectly to accurately sharpen all of my lathe chisels, all of my planes, and even tools like knives and a hatchet.