Stupid question #1

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sergeant69

Guest
and there will be lots more to come. i like the idea of using a belt to sharpen knives. i own and use, a lot, the EDGEPRO system. but using a belt system is a lot faster. so.............strictly from a totally newbie perspective, am i trying to pee up a rope or down a rope? i have heard that to use a belt system effectively takes tons and tons of practice. as opposed to using a stone/jig method. since i am recovering from back surgery and will be playing w/myself (i mean w/a knife of course) till jan, i will have the time. i am bound and determined to learn to make a knife from start to finish b4 i retire in 2 years. knowing me thats probably not enought time. anyway.....any opinions on sharpening using the belt system are appreiated. thanks.
 

Mike Carter

Well-Known Member
Sharpening with a belt does take practice to hold the correct angle and be steady and even but it's not really that hard. Belts will remove metal faster than other methods so you have to be careful about not over doing it.

I sharpen most of mine on my Bader grinder with 2" belts and running at a slow speed. I use 220 - 600 grit belts for sharpening followed by a leather strop. That's the way I learned to do it from Gil Hibben.



Use the slack part of the belt and work both sides until you see a fine wire edge start to roll over and then strop. This will give you a sharp, slightly convex edge. You have to be very careful not to drag the tip off the edge of the belt or you can cut the belt (not a fun experience). Lift the blade when the tip is in the middle of the belt.

I also sharpen on a 1" Delta belt sander that you can get for under $100. The disadvantage is that is a vertical belt so it's harder to see the edge while sharpening.
 
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sergeant69

Guest
stupid question #2...........do the bader (et al) grinder/sanders ever go on sale or is it strictly pay once cry once. thanks
 

Mike Carter

Well-Known Member
I seldom see them advertised at a sale price. You can sometimes get a deal by buying the grinders that they bring to shows. They would rather give you a deal than haul it back home. I bought Gil's old one we he bought a new one.

Baders are good workhorse machines but there are several options these days like the no-weld grinder kits. Grinders do occasionally show up on auction sites. I once saw a company liquidation auction where they had several of the big floor model bader grinders. I would have loved to get one but the freight from California to Kentucky made it cost more than it was worth.
 
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sergeant69

Guest
i wasn't aware that the NWG came in kits. course, theres lottsa things i'm not aware of. i would love to put together a NWG but the back surgery precludes scrounging parts for a long time. are there kits availble? THANKS
 

Mike Carter

Well-Known Member
i wasn't aware that the NWG came in kits. course, theres lottsa things i'm not aware of. i would love to put together a NWG but the back surgery precludes scrounging parts for a long time. are there kits availble? THANKS
I think they are. I know the plans are available to build your own and I think Tracy sells everything you need. I'm sure somebody will chime in that knows more about them than me.
 
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sergeant69

Guest
well.....i'm sure anxious and grateful to hear any chiming! also, ii'll be 60 in april. by the time i got all the parts found, cut, etc i'd probably be dead of old age.
 
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sergeant69

Guest
btw...ive had a post or 2 not show here. are they being edited or tossed out?
 
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sergeant69

Guest
TEXAS KNIFE MAKERS SUPPLY sells a D-5010 BELT SANDER. anyone had experience w/these? could the platen be removed and the thing used as a belt sharpener? have sent them emails w/no reply so asking here. sems like it could be a good alternative to the more expensive ones. course, i always regret doing it this way. buy once cry once always works better. but damn!
 
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sergeant69

Guest
Not that I'm aware of ~
for instance someone posted that sharpening for him was really enjoyable and relaxing (i'm paraphrasing) and i responded that reloading ammo did the same for me, but now both posts are gone. just made me wonder is all.
 
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sergeant69

Guest
TEXAS KNIFE MAKERS SUPPLY sells a D-5010 BELT SANDER. anyone had experience w/these? could the platen be removed and the thing used as a belt sharpener? have sent them emails w/no reply so asking here. sems like it could be a good alternative to the more expensive ones. course, i always regret doing it this way. buy once cry once always works better. but damn!
for instance someone posted that sharpening for him was really enjoyable and relaxing (i'm paraphrasing) and i responded that reloading ammo did the same for me, but now both posts are gone. just made me wonder is all.
no responses. guess being an ammo loader is offensive to someone here. oh well.
 

BossDog

KnifeDogs.com & USAknifemaker.com Owner
Staff member
i wasn't aware that the NWG came in kits. course, theres lottsa things i'm not aware of. i would love to put together a NWG but the back surgery precludes scrounging parts for a long time. are there kits availble? THANKS
follow this link and on the first line you will see the mostly completed frame kit. There is still some work to do but the cutting and drilling have been done already.
http://www.usaknifemaker.com/grinders-sanders-all-kinds-no-weld-grinder-plans-parts-c-99_59.html
 

Cliff Fendley

Well-Known Member
Just my input.

I've got two of the Bader's like you see Gil using in the photos. One I bought new when I started knifemaking and the other I built from the frame and other parts I found on Ebay. They are good machines but I could build a better one and would build it more like a Tracy's design. My biggest complaint is the little Baders aren't "rigid" enough and have tracking problems. I can push hard and flex the frame and effect the tracking a little.

I don't mean to knock Bader at all, they are great people and very helpful in every way and would recommend them for parts and such but their BIII is just not the best design. Now the Big floor model Bader Spacesaver is a different story, that is the cats meow but they are industrial machines made to be in factories working 24/7. I wish more people used them and more people carried the 132" belts. I think more people would if they realized the difference it makes, a 132 inch belt will outlast a 72 inch one 3 times, especially in the finer grits. I'm guessing and have also been told because it runs cooler traveling the extra distance.

If you want a good grinder would suggest you buy the plans from Tracy and build your own. I don't own one and never even used one but I have looked at them and to me that best deal out there for a good grinder.
 
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sergeant69

Guest
never woulda guessed. to the untrained eye the B111 is an awesome looking machine. thanks for the reply!
 

Cliff Fendley

Well-Known Member
I didn't mean to make it sound that bad, it IS an awesome machine. In fact when I got my first one I thought it was the greatest thing since sliced bread. Now that I have seen and used others I just don't think they are the best even though I own two of them. Of course I also have three Bader Spacesavers and since they are probably THE best belt grinder made anything next to them looks inferior.

If the BIII had a steel frame I wouldn't have any complaints. Any problem I have with them revolves around the Cast Aluminum frame.

If I was starting over I would build my own 2x72 grinder and Tracy's plans are very close to how I would build it. Someday when I get real ambitious about it I still may, right now other things are more priority.

Keep a look on Ebay. I got some good deals on grinders there.
 
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