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Thread: Hand Files?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Rochester Hills, Michigan

    Hand Files?

    Anyone know where you can buy a nice set of hand files? My dad has a set that is just awful they are like 40-50yrs old or something and poorly taken care of. I can't get rid of them cause he doesn't know where to get more so I'd like to buy a set for me and a set for him as a gift and a "Haha I found them" sort of thing.
    Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.
    Oscar Wilde

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Vancouver Island, Courtenay/Comox Valley, British Columbia
    Kris, it really depends how much you want to spend. Any of the local Borgs probably have them. Harbor Freight has some inexpensive ones, Grizzly has some, and my mecca, Lee Valley has more expensive ones, probably very high quality......

    I hope that helps......
    AKA Young Grasshopper Woodworker
    AKA The Rookie

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    ABQ NM
    Kris, there's a possibility those 40 to 50 year old files are as good or better than what you can get today at Home Depot or Harbor Freight. They may be dirty and look bad, but what really matters is how well they remove material.
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
    When the weird get going, they start their own forum. - Vaughn McMillan

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Syracuse, Nebraska
    Wash the old files in some hot soapy water to get them good and clean, then put them in a citric acid solution to etch for awhile and they'll be as good or better than most of what you can buy now.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Oceanside, So. Calif. 5 mi. to the ocean

    I will second Vaughn. I saw a set of files at CostCo and purchased them. I gave away a lot of my old, kinda grungy looking files. Well after a few months I wished I had my 20 year old files back. The new files did not work well very long.

    I have some Nicholson files that I purchased in 194?. For the most part they work very well. They work better than newer files. I do take much better care of my files now (including the CostCo set) than I did in the past. Each file has its own slot in naugahyde "roll-ups" that my wife sewed for me.

    The "roll-ups" is in quotes because one of them is hanging inside of one of my cabinet doors for easy access...It has never been rolled-up. Two others are laying out flat in the bottom of a drawer for easy access. Some of the unusual, seldom used, files are in the "roll-ups" and are rolled up in a drawer.

    To clean I do card and/or blow with compressed air. I do this prior to putting them away for the day. Files are a fine cutting tool just like chisels and turning tools. They deserve better care than most people give them (I'm referring to people on other forums...Not FWW).

    I find that most File Cards are pretty useless. There are so many little wire fingers that they keep the file card up on the tips of the teeth and don't let any of the little wires down into the grooves where the cleaning is needed.


    Last edited by Jim C Bradley; 03-19-2011 at 08:24 PM. Reason: Add a sentance
    First of all you have to be smarter than the machine.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Rochester Hills, Michigan
    Ah I see, well then i will do that.
    Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.
    Oscar Wilde

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Tacoma, WA
    I use Iwasaki carving files. They work awesome. Of course only for wood. They actually cut the wood as apposed to abrading the wood as some others can. You can find them on the net or at woodcraft. They are a bit more than some other files but they sure do nice work.

    Homers has a nice set that will get you through most anything for just a few bucks.

    That's not even a smile! That's just a bunch of teeth playing with my mind!

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