Finding a tool that not only works well for you, but helps you to produce your best work is not an easy task. Every professional and DIY enthusiast has their favourite tool, and when it’s time to replace that piece of equipment, nothing seems to work quite as well. So if there is a chance that you can prolong the life of your tools, then you can put off that fateful day when you have to replace your favourite piece of equipment. Sharpening your tools is one known way to increase the lifespan of your tool and is a process that is quick and easy, once you have had a few tries. You may think that an expert is needed as there are always fears of doing it wrong your first time, but with the right information and equipment, sharpening your tools yourself could save you both time, money and tool replacement in the long-run.
Why is it Important to Sharpen Your Tools?
You probably already know that blunt tools make for much harder work and results in a lower quality finish – but this isn’t the only reason you should look to sharpen them. When using your tools, the action of grinding them against another material results in swarfs being transferred to your tool. For example, when you use a chisel, excess material from the surface you are chiselling sticks to your tool; making it look blunt and your life a lot harder. Removing the excess swarf when sharpening your tools makes for healthier tools and an easier DIY experience.
Sharpening your Tools with Stones
This may sound a bit caveman-esque but when it comes to sharpening your tools, stones can be used again and again to provide a cost-effective and productive way to extend the lifespan.
If you are considering using sharpening stones then you will need to choose between oil, water and diamond stones. It’s important to choose the best stone to suit your needs; water stones tend to wear quickly so may not be suitable within certain industries.
For more information on how to sharpen knives with these stones, please see this guide. This applies to both household, industrial and gardening tools and by using the correct stone you will get a sharp edge with minimum fuss.
Sharpening your Tools with Sandpaper
Using sandpaper is another option for sharpening your tools; it’s quick, it’s effective and it doesn’t break the bank. Sandpaper comes in a range of grits so you can choose the best material to meet your needs – it is also extremely accessible, with a range of options available on eBay.
Clean Tools are Effective Tools
Sharpening your tools without cleaning them can make things significantly more difficult for you as it means that your stones have to sift through layers of grime and rust before getting to your tool. This will mean continual and prolonged effort on your part instead of taking a few simple steps to clean them and make the whole process a lot easier. After you have finished the cleaning process it is important to use a good quality oil which will help prevent any rusting. Keeping well maintained tools means that you will be able to use them again and again, while regularly cleaning your tools with reduce the need to sharpen then so often.
So fear not when taking your first steps to sharpening your tools. Perhaps begin with sandpaper as this is easy to source and is relatively cheap, before branching out into other sources once you begin to feel more confident.
Editorial originally features on the Trend Direct UK blog.