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Thread: Narex Mortise Chisels

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    GTA Ontario Canada

    Narex Mortise Chisels

    Ok Larry this is for you just to show you that i do know what a mortise chisel should look like, its just not my fault that Sorbey call their bench chisels "mortise chisels".

    So i picked up a set of these Narex Chisels from LV last year when they had a deal on a full set. I had read the reviews and they got a very good rating and it gets even better when one considers the price. $60 for 5 good solid mortise chisels with hoops and wooden handles and they come with blade edge guards.

    Well the last thing i was doing this weekend was finishing off sharpening this set. Now i learnt my lesson storing my sharp edge tools just loosely in the draw so i found some odd leather (ugly color) i picked up more than a year ago at Tandy leather store in the "bargain bin". Its nice and soft and good high suede. Gave it and the chisels to LOML and asked her to make me a tool roll. She had already done one for the old sorbeys last week so this time i left it to her with the piece i had.

    Here are the results

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    When they rolled up and tied
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    Now take a look at the sharpening. The steel on these things has an interesting story behind it and its hard. So these edges should last quiet well for mortising.
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    Primary bevel is 25 degree with secondary at 35 degree following my experience on the sorbeys.
    Back was a delight to lap it did not need much as these are wonderfully machined.
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    Here is a shot of the trapezoidal side which is as it comes ground from the factory.
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    So before you go laying out a fortune i think for $60 from LV these make an excellent chisel for the price at around $12 bucks a chisel.

    Its worth reading how the Czechs have developed a steel treatment process which makes it possible for them to manufacture these at this kind of market price. There is quiet some modern technology to the treatment process.

    I am looking forward to using these. I did give them the compulsory tests on oak and cherry and end grain pine while sharpening and they stood up very well to my beating. I am now gonna buy a full set of the bevel edged paring ones given the cost and my experiences with my old ww2 sorbeys.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    RETIRED(!) in Austintown, Ohio
    I've got the set of those, too - but without the roll. I keep mine in a rack on the front of my wall-mounted tool cabinet.

    You're right about the steel quality, and they do hold their edge well - even in hard maple. I put a 30 secondary bevel on mine.
    Jim D.
    Adapt, Improvise, Overcome!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Vancouver Island, Courtenay/Comox Valley, British Columbia
    I got them when they were on sale for $49
    AKA Young Grasshopper Woodworker
    AKA The Rookie

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Reno NV
    Putting the link in my "Shopping Bookmark Folder"....

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Those look great Rob, but I must admit that I'm not a fan of secondary bevels neither on chisels nor on plane blades, although (against my preference)I make them on my A2 steel LN plane blade because those really need it otherwise they got nicks very often, and admitted and recommended by LN themselves.

    However, having said so, I find your secondary bevel too big, the way I understand secondary bevels is that they ease sharpening because you remove less material, so usually they are between o.5 and 1mm. Unless you have been sharpening that blade or chisel many times since you first set up the primary bevel, they shouldn't be so big. The idea is that once they grow too big that you start spending more time sharpening because you need to remove more steel it is time to reset the primary bevel on the grinder.

    As per the cutting efficiency, and I'm referring here to your recent post with a PDF attachment, harder woods require bigger angles an you already get it with a 0.5mm width secondary bevel than needing a 5 or 6mm one.

    Carving gouges that are used both striking with a mallet of pushed by hand like chisels do have different bevels wether you use hard or soft woods, or you risk to break the edge.

    My two cents...
    Best regards,

    __________________________________________________ __________________________________________________ _________________
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    I also dream of a shop with north light where my hands can be busy, my soul rest and my mind wander...

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    ABQ NM
    Quote Originally Posted by Brent Dowell View Post
    Putting the link in my "Shopping Bookmark Folder"....
    Doing the same. Thanks for the review, Rob.

    I agree with Toni though...a secondary bevel that size defeats the purpose of a secondary bevel, as I understand things.

    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
    When the weird get going, they start their own forum. - Vaughn McMillan

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