Tuesday, November 10, 2015


I'm in the second day of three days off in a row. When I first started the current job that was considered a short weekend. Over the last couple of years, as I've posted before, that has slowly changed to three days being a long weekend. Hell two in a row is now a long weekend.

I don't know if my raising hell about lack of time off has helped or they just wanted to shut the old fart up but whatever it has been great. What is even better, while MsBubba is a sweetheart and every thing is better when she is around, she is also a slave driver or at least she has an agenda that seldom matches mine for my days off, she is off playing Granny for the next week or so.

If this is a preview of retirement, I may have to think it through. The good has been I have just left the shop to eat, sleep, play with the critters, and for short periods of geeking. That is also the bad with a few additions. I actually thought for a couple of seconds before rejecting it about just leaving my "fly" unzipped because "why waste the time unzipping and zipping up".

Can you tell that even though I've brushed my teeth and bathed each day personal hygiene hasn't been high on the list of thing to do.  BTW, I've been practicing shaking my fist and yelling "Hey, you kids git off my rocks" while standing in front of the mirror...  I'm getting pretty good at it.

On to other thoughts:

I received a new fairly soft Jnat from JNS the other day. It is a medium grit stone from Niigata, Sanjo. Last night I got around to flattening the bottom so it will set without rocking and this AM I made a quick and dirty Cherry holder and lid for it. BTW, it is a brick.

The holder with lid:

It is a pretty stone, light blue/green in color. I will try it on a couple of chisels before the day is over:

It is very easy to bring up a nice thick slurry with the Nagura. 

The stone is very fast cutting, I prepped a 24mm Kikuhiromaru #1 White Steel chisel on a Atoma 1200 and in just a few strokes on the Ikarash the chisel was polished and there is good definition between the steel and the soft iron. To the eye the edge looks polished, under a 10X lope all the 1200 scratches are gone and there is a nice matt finish to the polished edge. The stone is very thirsty, as you can see the slurry will dry if you do not keep adding water. 

I usually do not test irons, I just look, feel and if it looks right and feels right I put it away. The chisel looks and feels like it is ready to use. 

I couldn't resist, I had to try this one out :-). A nice clean shavings of Pine end grain:

As always...click 'em to big 'em.

This will be a set up stone, I've a harder finish stone on the way, it should be here next week. Now the question is.....Why did it take so long to finally breakdown and buy a couple of Jnats? I've known for a long time that natural stones will give a better edge than synthetic stones. And I've known that Jnats are the best of the available natural stones. Some of it may be because as slow and coarse as Arkansas stones are you will get as good an edge when using them along with a strop as you would with almost any synthetic stone. And of course lack of knowledge because there are so many different stones, each unique and finally the price of some of 'em will make you gulp and want to sit down.

Bottom line I'm afraid I may slide down a very slippery slope.



  1. Ken what is the chisel on the bench in the last pic? It looks like an Ashley Iles with a bent up handle?

  2. Ralph,

    It's an El Cheapo Woodriver crank neck. If I had known before hand how much I would use it I would have looked for a better one. It is one of the most used chisels in the rack. Not quite to the level of opening paint cans but on the dirty end it gets close. Yet at the same time with a little sharpening I use it to trim pegs. It's good from glue clean up to trimming and many things in between.