Card scrapers... Sharpen 1 edge or all 4???


Recommended Posts

So the card scraper was officially my first hand tool. I got the set from Lee Valley that came with like 6 different thickness, a file and the holder that let's you flatten your edge at a repeatable 90degrees, the variable burnisher, and a stupid holder that doesn't work. I love the variable burnisher because it allows you to dial in on the perfect bur. Now I've seen people flatten the 2 edges and put a bur over all for edges by using a file. I only work with 1bur on a card scrapper at a time and heres why. The first reason is for comfort, I'm really using alot of force in my hands to flex the metal, so if I have a sharp bur on all 4 edges that means my fingers are getting sliced open. You won't really feel it, you'll just see tons of giant paper cut looking things! The second reason I don't is plane and simple... It's a waste of time! Because you flex the scraper while in use that metal will inevitably wear out in the middle of the scraper creating an "arched effect" on a surface that is supposed to be flat. When this happens, the bur that you created on the other side is gone!

Is putting a bur on all 4 edges of the card scraper a waste of time??

This wood worker thinks so!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

For me - I prepared all 4 sides of my scrapers, but I'm still fairly new to it so I only burnish one or two edges. I don't do a lot of scraping so it doesn't really matter to me.

However, if you are doing a lot of scraping, I think sharpening all *8* edges (4 sides, front and back) could actually save time so you could use all the edges before having to touch them all up again. It's probably all a matter of preference and also technique.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Vic, do you feel as if you get the same quality of shavings from all 4 edges or really just one edge of each side? It's take about 30 seconds using the lee valley jigs to flatten and then reburish the edge. So I feel it's just much more efficient for me to go back to flatten and reburish and use a good clean sharp edge instead of fussing with a bur that is no longer there or damaged from hitting the piece on my backstroke. But.... I was also doing some super heavy duty scraping on end grain bubinga and maple butcher block counter top. Need a clean bur to scrape end grain!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Brian, you may want to try honing the scraper on stones, I have found that it makes a huge difference in how long you go between having to re-tune your scraper. Some feel it's not worth the time but you won't know till try.

I only sharpen the long edges, I trie a few times with the short sides but ithe burr never held up like the long edges. I would assume it is because, like wood, metal has a "grain" direction. I have a scraper that I cut pieces off for scratch stock and I grab that when I need a smaller scraper. Just my 2 cents.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ok, so I had I some time to do some more scraping today ( finishing up 5 end grain cutting boards) and Nate, using my stones instead of using the file made such a HUGE difference in how long the bur lasted on my scraper. Something else I noticed in using the stones is how after I rolled the bur I could barely even feel it. So my new technique will be to flatten both long ends with the stones but only roll one bur at a time! I love the card scraper. So simple, yet so versatile!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I do get 4 good edges. I use them as a final step, if possible. I kind of hate sanding. I don't do a very big burr and it seems to not be as fragile. I just go for really sharp.

Vic, do you feel as if you get the same quality of shavings from all 4 edges or really just one edge of each side? It's take about 30 seconds using the lee valley jigs to flatten and then reburish the edge. So I feel it's just much more efficient for me to go back to flatten and reburish and use a good clean sharp edge instead of fussing with a bur that is no longer there or damaged from hitting the piece on my backstroke. But.... I was also doing some super heavy duty scraping on end grain bubinga and maple butcher block counter top. Need a clean bur to scrape end grain!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share