I have a can of 1000
grit "Clover" brand valve grinding compound that I have been
using for a VERY long time. The finest grit it comes in is 1200. A one pound can costs a little more than $30.
I keep my home made
leather strops loaded with this stuff about once a year, and it
keeps my carving tools as sharp as I want them to be.
There is entirely too much rocket science
involved in our sharpening. None of the ancient masters
had any of the modern mechanical stuff that we keep discussing,
and they seemed to do rather well.
Speaking only for myself, I really do not care
one little bit if a chisel is within .000x" of perfection. I
just want it to cut cleanly.
Keeping it simple is really the way to go. If
you don't want to bother to learn to do it right, then by all
means go spend several hundred dollars on some new device that
will supposedly do it for you. It won't, but you will probably
be happy anyway.
The best money I ever spent on sharpening
equipment was when I bought my hard felt wheel for $18. Life has
been much simpler since then. The other $1000 worth of crap
languishes in boxes somewhere.
James D. Thompson
the Old Millrat in Riverside,