Japanese Chisels - Why?
#41
  Re: RE: Japanese Chisels - Why? by hbmcc (I don't know the dif...)
(06-19-2018, 11:59 AM)hbmcc Wrote: I don't know the difference between 'blue' or 'white' paper steels. Even 'yellow' shows up in the sales blurbs. I don't know the status of Japan Woodworker after the Woodcraft group bought that company. There are several shops in Japan producing these tools. Matsumura is one. The refined faces (ground) you see in the first group is cosmetic. I would be leary of the large area of unprotected hard steel. You can snap the hard steel in normal use. I did going into one of the firs. 

For a first, price is always a good determinant. And unless they assure perfect preparation, you will wonder why all that money for the $150 tool didn't give you a ready-to-use chisel. User final tuning is synonymous with Japanese chisels. That preparation can be a lot of work. Look to set the hoop and flatten-hone the blade bevel yourself. The face may need to be flattened, too. A hardness of 64 almost demands diamonds to abrade the steel. 

Stu at Tools from Japan has a good amount of information on that region's chisels. It has been problematic to get service because this is a hobby for him. His knowledge is direct.  Here is a link: http://www.toolsfromjapan.com/store/inde...fd6e5070a2

Oh, don't forget, Japanese tools are sized in metric, and even their own dimensions. It's one of the things that had me worried about mixing and matching several standards.

Ps. Tony, a Narex imitation is not the real thing. I have a Chinese knockoff with the hard lamina at about 1/32nd thickness, if that much; probably 1/64th. It looked real. It chipped in minor use. Go the full monty, John. It cost me a chunk of change getting real tools from Stu to overcome a bias that the burn of a $14 Grizzly knockoff caused.

Yeah, I didn't expect much, but I was curious! Was almost comically large in compariso to the couple of true Japanese chisels I have,
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#42
  Re: Japanese Chisels - Why? by Belle City Woodworking (I look at a lot of s...)
(06-19-2018, 04:46 PM)Tony Z Wrote: Yeah, I didn't expect much, but I was curious!  Was almost comically large in compariso to the couple of true Japanese chisels I have,

Tony, I have a reply somewhere.... 

Can't agree with you more. Narex were my first chisels, and ended up with an Imperial set (duplication) as well as mortise set. Their label on the steel is printed ink.
Bruce
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#43
  Re: RE: Japanese Chisels - Why? by Bibliophile 13 (There's some history...)
(06-14-2018, 10:33 AM)Bibliophile 13 Wrote: There's some history behind this, too.

Back in the early days of the Hand Tool Renaissance (sometime around the 1980s) it was impossible to find well-made, Western-style chisels new.  But there were some Japanese makers that still made a high-quality chisel.  Add that to the fact that some of the early proponents of hand tools were influenced by Eastern styles and craftsmen, and some of them used Japanese-style chisels in their work, either because that's what their mentors used or because they were the best high-quality chisels they could get.  So naturally a lot of people who started getting interested in hand tools picked up Japanese chisels, either in imitation or on the recommendation of woodworkers they admired.
Right.

I realize this is sort of a what-to-buy thread (nothing wrong with that), but my take is that technique, and sharpening technique go a long way to making any chisel enjoyable to use. Maybe we have said too much about metallurgy and metal working processes? Maybe not enough about technique and reasonable expectations?  We stick that sharp edge into wood and push or mallet it.  That screws up every chisels edge. I used to say I wanted to cut a full set of dovetails before I sharpened.  I now realize that's a stupid goal. Sharpening became an integral part of my woodwork. Not a separate tool maintenance procedure done in a separate room at periodic intervals (read: like your chisels are milling machines).

I've been recently using Stanley #60 (with the translucent yellow handles) sharpened on diamond stones. I'm enjoying them.  I would not want to build furniture with them, but they are ok for general purpose work.  I think a lot of folks regard these as the worst chisels ever made??? I think they are ok, but I sharpen constantly as I work. And I'm careful with my chisels I guess because I sharpened for so long without a grinder.

Oh, and I asked Roy once if he ever flattened his oilstones (I wanted to know how he did it) and he looked at me funny (like he does) and walked away. So...you can do good work with not much. My advice is not to sweat the choice.  Pick one and make it work.
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#44
  Re: Japanese Chisels - Why? by Belle City Woodworking (I look at a lot of s...)
Hi Adam ... it's been a long time! Great to see you around.

I cannot see you pushing the yellow handles with a shoulder - they may be a little short for that. Not bad chisels. I've had a bunch for about 25 years. They live in a drawer. Every now-and-then they come out for rough work, and they surprise all over again me with the edge they take.

Regards from Perth

Derek
Articles on furniture building, shop made tools and tool reviews at http://www.inthewoodshop.com
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#45
  Re: RE: Japanese Chisels - Why? by adamcherubini ([quote='Bibliophile ...)
(06-20-2018, 12:25 PM)adamcherubini Wrote: Right.

I realize this is sort of a what-to-buy thread (nothing wrong with that), but my take is that technique, and sharpening technique go a long way to making any chisel enjoyable to use. Maybe we have said too much about metallurgy and metal working processes? Maybe not enough about technique and reasonable expectations?  We stick that sharp edge into wood and push or mallet it.  That screws up every chisels edge. I used to say I wanted to cut a full set of dovetails before I sharpened.  I now realize that's a stupid goal. Sharpening became an integral part of my woodwork. Not a separate tool maintenance procedure done in a separate room at periodic intervals (read: like your chisels are milling machines).

I've been recently using Stanley #60 (with the translucent yellow handles) sharpened on diamond stones. I'm enjoying them.  I would not want to build furniture with them, but they are ok for general purpose work.  I think a lot of folks regard these as the worst chisels ever made??? I think they are ok, but I sharpen constantly as I work. And I'm careful with my chisels I guess because I sharpened for so long without a grinder.

Oh, and I asked Roy once if he ever flattened his oilstones (I wanted to know how he did it) and he looked at me funny (like he does) and walked away. So...you can do good work with not much. My advice is not to sweat the choice.  Pick one and make it work.

Adam (or should we call you Mr. Puffy Shirt?), I recall one of Roy's books and a very early show of his, showing him picking up stones at an abandoned quarry and flattening. Granted, the degree of flattening achieved may have left a space under a straight edge, big enough for a large size tomcat to crawl through, but he did do "some" flattening.

Through the years, I've "accumulated" many dozens of old oil stones, mainly washitas and hard Arkansas. I doubt if any one of them was flat by today's internet standards, or even the 300 baud standards of the late 70's.

Now since you've returned to the web, are you also going to return to saw building?

T.Z.
Waiting to grow up beyond being just a member
http://www.metaltech-pm.com
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#46
  Re: RE: Japanese Chisels - Why? by adamcherubini ([quote='Bibliophile ...)
(06-20-2018, 12:25 PM)adamcherubini Wrote: I've been recently using Stanley #60 (with the translucent yellow handles) sharpened on diamond stones. I'm enjoying them.  I would not want to build furniture with them, but they are ok for general purpose work.  I think a lot of folks regard these as the worst chisels ever made??? I think they are ok, but I sharpen constantly as I work. And I'm careful with my chisels I guess because I sharpened for so long without a grinder.

Hah! My version of that chisel is a Coast to Coast brand of one I bought in high school while building a kayak--at the time, plans came from Stratford upon Avon, and all I could find. The chisel is still in my one tool box (with battery post brush) and comes out to play when doing house walls and heavy construction. The edge dulls to a point and stops wearing. I use it to shear nails and make sort of refined notches in 2x4s. If you see one with cracked plastic, you know the owner really abused the thing.
Bruce
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#47
  Re: Japanese Chisels - Why? by Belle City Woodworking (I look at a lot of s...)
Since this is a thread about Japanese chisels, I need to post about one of the first chisels I acquired-maybe in the mid 70's and marked "made in Japan". It is about 1-1/4" wide, red plastic handle and not much left of the blade. Don't know the vintage of the steel and I doubt if the maker knew anything about the vintage either. Took an edge very, very easily and kept it better than most carpenter chisels. I bought it, in one of those dollar bins at a grocery store, with assorted other junk.
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#48
  Re: RE: Japanese Chisels - Why? by Tony Z (Since this is a thre...)
(06-20-2018, 02:33 PM)Tony Z Wrote: Since this is a thread about Japanese chisels, I need to post about one of the first chisels I acquired-maybe in the mid 70's and marked "made in Japan".  It is about 1-1/4" wide, red plastic handle and not much left of the blade.  Don't know the vintage of the steel and I doubt if the maker knew anything about the vintage either.  Took an edge very, very easily and kept it better than most carpenter chisels.  I bought it, in one of those dollar bins at a grocery store, with assorted other junk.

Laugh Laugh Laugh Laugh Laugh
Formerly known as John's Woodshop
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#49
  Re: Japanese Chisels - Why? by Belle City Woodworking (I look at a lot of s...)
Don't laugh.... I find some real bargains in those bins--usually parts of table settings in a grocery store; maybe what Tony thought was really wasn't. Big Grin  But I have hundreds of feet of parachute cord for camping. You never have enough for hanging stuff between trees . . . even people going for a leak in the middle of the night. 

If you have a Woodcraft near, check their stock of "Maybe Japan" chisels. I was at one yesterday and they had a stack of sets and singles for a current June mailer ad.
Bruce
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#50
  Re: RE: Japanese Chisels - Why? by hbmcc (Don't laugh.... I fi...)
(06-22-2018, 12:06 AM)hbmcc Wrote: Don't laugh.... I find some real bargains in those bins--usually parts of table settings in a grocery store; maybe what Tony thought was really wasn't. Big Grin  But I have hundreds of feet of parachute cord for camping. You never have enough for hanging stuff between trees . . . even people going for a leak in the middle of the night. 

If you have a Woodcraft near, check their stock of "Maybe Japan" chisels. I was at one yesterday and they had a stack of sets and singles for a current June mailer ad.

That plastic (red) handled chisel was one of my most used, and resides in a drawer of honor (past favorite tools, toused up to use anymore). It had no steel cap, but I struck it often with a hammer, doing on very minimal damage, easily cleaned up with a file.

What I remember most of that time was dressing the bevel on a belt sander, with a convex bevel (what Paul Sellers touts today), and then honing on a two side carborundum oil stone.

Ah, the good old days of non-internet wisdom! Many things worked and there were no nay-sayers telling us otherwise!
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http://www.metaltech-pm.com
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