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JET Carving Tool Jig
Cheap, versatile and easy to use
Text & photos by Tom Hintz
Posted – 10-23-2006
The JET Carving Tool Jig (CTJ-1) is far more useful than the name suggests. While it does handle sharpening many carving tools very well, it does the same for a wide range of round and curved-edge tools including those used at the lathe. Anything from small carving tools up to 1 1/8”-wide roughing gouges fit into the triangle-shaped opening. The simplicity of the JET Carving Tool Jig design, setup and use belies its accuracy and consistency.
Made from a thick, one-piece casting, the JET Carving Tool Jig uses a simple knob-operated threaded rod to lock the tool being sharpened in place. The V-shaped opening helps center the tool while enhancing the power of the locking knob. For the user, this simplicity means there is little to go wrong. The heft of the JET Carving Tool Jig means that barring a major accident or miss-use, it will last a lifetime.
Note: The JET Carving Tool Jig is most often used with the JET Wet Sharpener support arm in the horizontal mounts so the stone is turning away from the edge being sharpened.
Because the JET Carving Tool Jig does not fit over or “key” off the support arm, setting it up for use is very easy. Insert the tool through the opening with 2” to 3” protruding through the jig. With longer carving chisels it may be helpful to have more of the tool protruding beyond the jig, especially when the angle being ground is below 20-degrees. Adjust the tool so it is reasonably level in the jig and secure it by tightening the locking knob. The main reason for leveling the tool in the JET Carving Tool Jig is to prevent the locking knob from getting in the way as the tool is rolled during sharpening.
When duplicating an existing angle, color the bevel with a marker, hold the face of the JET Carving Tool Jig against the support arm and adjust the support arm to grinding stone distance until the bevel is flat on the stone. When eyeballing the setup looks right, hold the bevel against the stone and give the stone a turn by hand to create a scratch pattern on the bevel. If the coloring is scratched away across the entire bevel, you are ready to sharpen.
If the scratch pattern is concentrated at the heel of the bevel, the support arm has to be moved away from the stone slightly. If the pattern is only at the cutting edge, the support arm must be moved closer to the grinding wheel. In either case, the amount of adjustment will be small. Repeat the scratch test to confirm that the bevel is flat on the grinding stone.
When changing the angle on a tool, use the JET Angle Setting Device to set the support arm correctly. That’s all there is to it. If a considerable amount of metal must be removed to re-shape a tool, checking the set up with the Angle Setting Device a time or two during that process will insure ending up with the exact angle wanted.
Sharpening tools with the JET Carving Tool Jig couldn’t be easier. Simply hold the face of the JET Carving Tool Jig against the outside edge of the support arm, press the bevel against the grinding wheel and slowly roll the cutting edge back and forth. Be consistent in the speed at which the tool is rolled and the amount of pressure applied and the edge will come out perfect and remain square to the tool. Remember that the JET Wet Sharpener does not require heavy pressure to sharpen or re-shape a tool. Use the stone grader to create the cutting property of the grinding wheel needed and let it do the work.
The same JET Carving Tool Jig setup will work at the honing wheel but the support arm will have to be both reversed and adjusted to get the bevel flat on the leather surface. After that, use the JET Carving Tool Jig exactly as on the grinding stone.
The JET Carving Tool Jig is as versatile as it is easy to use. The wide range of tools it can sharpen accurately combined with an $18.99 (10-21-2006) price tag make it an exceptional value. Being able to sharpen your tools very accurately and when you need them sharpened is worth the price alone.
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