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Could This Be Made to Work?

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  • #29939
    Gary
    Participant
    • Topics: 3
    • Replies: 16

    There are some real genius level guys on here when it comes to mods for the WE. I don’t know if it is possible to make the mod I have in mind, but I wanted to get your ideas.
    One of my favorite hobbies is sharpening axes. I cut and split my own firewood and enjoy it very much. However, sharpening an ax is quite the challenge: with nothing really to act as a guide to create a precise angle bevel on the ax, its pretty much guesswork and “eyeballing” the proper angle. Hit a nail in a piece of wood and create a divot in your ax bit and you have a real problem reprofiling the blade.
    So. I wondered: If I could get longer screws for the Gen 2 WE vise, would it be possible to mount an ax with a 1″ poll (back side of single bit ax) in the vise and sharpen it? I know there would be problems with it being off center since only one side of the vise moves, but is there a way to compensate for that?
    I know there is an adapter for sharpening a chisel, but how could I adapt and sharpen an ax? Anyone ever try it? Is it even possible?
    Right now I’m only in the stage of scratching my head and wondering…is it possible?
    I’d like to hear from some of you creative guys on what you think. Thanks in advance for any ideas.

    #29941
    Josh
    Participant
    • Topics: 89
    • Replies: 1672

    Sure it’s possible from my point of view!! You can adapt to the changing angles simply w/ an angle cube. But better you than me… that’s literally going to take probably 8-10 hours w/ the 100 grit diamonds if you are removing damage or reprofiling – not something I would want to do! I remember when one of the guys tried sharpening a lawn mower blade on his wicked edge. It worked, but yes, it took a LOOONG time hehe.

     

    Keep us posted!

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    #29942
    Mark76
    Participant
    • Topics: 179
    • Replies: 2760

    ūüėÄ

    Molecule Polishing: my blog about sharpening with the Wicked Edge

    2 users thanked author for this post.
    #29944
    tcmeyer
    Participant
    • Topics: 38
    • Replies: 2078

    Actually, setting up for sharpening axes wouldn’t be that big of a deal if you get creative. ¬†I have a brother who probably really is a genius and when he saw my WEPS, he went home and replicated it with parts he had collected from the local Habitat Restore, which carries a lot of industrial stuff. ¬†Try to follow my description.

    • He had some 1/2″ (maybe 3/4″??) linear bearing blocks, to which he clamped¬†his full-size 2X8 Norton stones. ¬†This is the equivalent of a WE block¬†.
    • He had a four foot length of 1/2″ ¬†(or is it 3/4″?) linear bearing shaft – the equivalent of the WE 1/4″ rod. ¬†He added a rod-end ball joint – the equivalent of the WE PP2 ball joint.
    • He also had some extruded aluminum rails with some 90-degree joint fittings.
    • He made a slightly over-sized copy of the WE 2-screw vise out of steel.
    • The aluminum rails comprised the frame. ¬† Imagine a cross laying flat on the floor, with each leg of the cross about 2-feet long. ¬†At the point of intersection, a vertical rail projected up¬†to support the vise. ¬†The rod end coupling was connected to one of the floor-mounted rails perpendicular to the vise with a sliding T-bolt to adjust the angle.
    • This arrangement, although about 10 times as big as the WEPS, works very well. ¬†I don’t sharpen his wife’s good knives anymore. ¬†He probably has less than $30 worth of parts invested. ¬†No, it doesn’t fit on the kitchen table. ¬†He goes out on the deck when he needs to sharpen. ¬†No scratching Mama’s oak flooring.

    More importantly for your ax application, all you need is a vise to hold the ax without much projecting into the path of your sharpening stones. ¬†Maybe you can clamp the ax in your 4″ bench vise, turned sideways to your bench. ¬†Buy a length of 1/4″ rod (maybe 48″?) and an appropriate rod-end ball joint coupling and bolt it to the floor, wherever the angle works out for you. ¬†A short length of extruded aluminum rail couldn’t hoit, but a plank of wood would work too. ¬†Profile your ax’s edge with a file as you would normally, then break out your WE stones and have at it. ¬†Like Josh says, you’ll waste a lot of stone work if you try to profile with your WEPS. ¬†It’s intended to remove microns. ¬†Save the WE stones for the final edge work.

    The simple point that lesser brains (like mine) fail to consider is that the length of the rod doesn’t really matter for this application. ¬†Once you realize that it doesn’t have to look like a WEPS, all things are possible.

    Yes, I have photos, but I don’t have a photo upload account and don’t plan on setting one up. ¬†Gee, maybe Clay could add the feature to his web site…. ¬†And then maybe they’d be searchable for forum members?

    BTW, if I were to need to split wood again (I tossed the old Yukon Husky wood-burner out 20 years ago) I’d get one of those Swedish axes. ¬†The Vipukirves 36″ Leveraxe. Very pricey at $239, but I’m trying to spend it all before the guy in the black hoody and cape comes calling.

     

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    #29945
    tcmeyer
    Participant
    • Topics: 38
    • Replies: 2078

    Mark’s got a very nice solution there, too.

    #29963
    Gary
    Participant
    • Topics: 3
    • Replies: 16

    Excellent ideas there, thank you. Mark, I had thought of doing the very thing you show in your photo. How do you stabilize the ax head when sharpening this way? I’m going to pursue this further.

    #29965
    Mark76
    Participant
    • Topics: 179
    • Replies: 2760

    Excellent ideas there, thank you. Mark, I had thought of doing the very thing you show in your photo. How do you stabilize the ax head when sharpening this way? I’m going to pursue this further.

    To be honest I don’t stabilize the ax at all. It is pretty heavy and if you don’t apply a lot of force with the stones it works fine.

    Molecule Polishing: my blog about sharpening with the Wicked Edge

    #29974
    Josh
    Participant
    • Topics: 89
    • Replies: 1672

    I like the thinking out of the box you guys do ūüėČ It’s inspiring!!

    I’m gonna have to post a new thread in off topic about something…

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