Q&D jig for sharpening planer blades

Once in a while, I do a bit of woodworking for the trophy shop. On Tuesday, Bert tells me I need to make a custom base, by Friday no less. It’s a block 9.25″ square and 2.25″ high. I’m all out of 10/4 walnut, so I have to laminate. For that, my thicknesser needs new blades or, at the very least, sharp blades. I’ve been looking at the Deulen jig and just haven’t pulled the trigger. So I’ll make something using alum angle. (The picture shows two pieces, but I only used one piece of angle)

IMG_1630

The jig, mocked up with tape.IMG_1636

The rush is on, so the jig will just sit in the slot on the table saw.IMG_1635

Drill a few holes, tap some threads.IMG_1642

Some brass screws and the jig is done.IMG_1665

Well, not quite. Seems the sides of are not exactly equal, making the jig ineffective. Take the blades off, trim the angle and put the blades back on:IMG_1661

Ready to sharpen. I’ve got four grits of diamond here. The black tool is very coarse. The middle plate has medium and fine. The top one is 1000 grit. I used it because I had it.IMG_1662z

A nice even secondary bevel.IMG_1663IMG_1664

Good enough — smooth with just a few ridges from what’s left of the nicks in the blades.IMG_1670

I’m darn’ impressed with myself and this jig. While it is certainly not as beautiful as a chunk of tropical wood with brass inserts, it’s not to shabby for two hours. Oh yeah, the custom base is done and it isn’t even Friday yet.

Wouldn’t it be loverly if pieces came out of this machine surfaced and lacquered?IMG_1673

There is really only one thing that needs fixing. The blades are not supported at the ends. This allowed some flexing. I can fix this with four more screws or come up with some sort of stiffener plate (like the ones in the planer).

PS: working on this post has sparked a couple ideas to make this jig much better. More on that a bit later.

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