Saw Shop Tech, questions and answers: bent blades, retempering knives, chisel handles.

Vern Burke, SwiftWater Edge Tool Works

Skowhegan, ME

It’s time to dip in to some of the questions asked via the blog and the service website and answer them!

1. (question about sharpening a bent blade)

Simply put, it all depends. Saws can reasonably be sharpened with bent blades, straight blade items such as knives can NOT be properly sharpened with any bend that involves the edge.

2. (question about straightening and retempering knives)

Simple answer, don’t even think of it unless you’re an accomplished smith with access to a forge. In most cases, bent knives don’t need to be untempered before straightening. The best quality knives are likely to break before they bend significantly in the first place so any bent knife is likely to be fairly soft and can be straightened cold with reasonable care.

3. (question about fitting handles to socket handle chisels)

Fitting a handle to a vintage socket handle chisel is a matter of lots of trial and error. I use sandpaper to shape the handle to the chisel’s socket, then I treat the handle with my boiled linseed oil formula, as well as putting a good slug of it in the socket before seating the handle. The linseed oil will swell the end of the handle, insuring a tight and long lasting fit.

Visit me at any of the following locations:

Depot St, Norridgewock, ME (Mondays)

Tractor Supply, Skowhegan, ME (Tuesday)

Somerset Woods turnout, Canaan Rd (Rt 2), Skowhegan,ME (Wednesday)

Arundel Flea Market, Rt 1 & Log Cabin Rd, Arundel, ME (Fridays)

Fryeburg Flea Market (Fryeburg Fairgrounds), Fryeburg, ME
(Sundays, Memorial Day thru end of September)

298 W Front St, Skowhegan, ME (all other days)

If you’re looking for a special tool, please drop me an
email and let me know and I’ll restore one just for you!

SwiftWater Edge Tool Works provides mobile sharpening services across Maine and mail in services around the world for handsaws, carbide blades, planer knives, hand planes, chain saws, knives, scissors, hair clippers, router bits, and almost any blade!


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