Results 1 to 4 of 4

Thread: Chisel bevel angle question

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Villa Park, CA
    Posts
    1,407

    Chisel bevel angle question

    What's the recommended bevel angle for an English pattern mortise chisel? - also known as a "pigsticker". Since they're mortise chisels, you'd think the bevel angle would be maybe 35* but I have several of these chisels and they came with a wide variety of bevel angles - from maybe 25* to about 35*.

    What seems reasonable to me is to put a primary bevel of about 25* on the chisel to allow it to penetrate deeply and to put a secondary bevel of maybe 30 to 35* as needed to give the edge some strength. For those of you who use these chisels, "What do you do?"

    Mike

    [added note] When I cut a mortise by hand, I usually drill out the majority of the wood first so almost any chisel will serve. But these English pattern chisels are really appealing. The look 'mean', they work great, and most of them are old - probably late 1800's (they have laminated "cast steel" edges). And they're fairly inexpensive, especially if you buy one with a damaged handle. Collectors seem to want chisels with pristine, original handles so the damaged ones go cheap.
    Ancora imparo
    Go into the world and do well. But more importantly, go into the world and do good.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Charlotte, NC
    Posts
    1,487
    Mike, wish I could be of more help, but your thoughts on the 25* with a 30~35* secondary bevel seems to be in line with what I've heard from others. I thought there might be something on OldToolsShop, but I couldn't find it quickly. It seems that Derek Cohen has written something on the subject.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Villa Park, CA
    Posts
    1,407
    Thanks, Ed. I decided to go with about 27.5* for the primary bevel and between 30 and 35* for the secondary bevel. I think that will work well for me.

    Mike
    Ancora imparo
    Go into the world and do well. But more importantly, go into the world and do good.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    535
    Sounds like you got it about right Mike... you could check at Toolsforworkingwood for a definitive answer, they sell new English pattern mortise chisels and tend to have a lot of info too.

    I've got one oldish mortiser that was ground with a rounded bevel, seems to work fine. I think the idea was that this tends to push the chips out easier than a straight bevel, which tends to get stuck in the wood. Never made much of a study of it myself. Only drawback to pounding them out all by hand is it drives the wife crazy -- I did all the mortises on our bedframe that way, and she only put up with it because I'd taken so long to build the bed!

Similar Threads

  1. Help flattening chisel with bevel on back
    By Jim Moore in forum Neander Woodworking Q&A
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: 10-07-2012, 04:35 AM
  2. FS: older Craftsman 1/2" bevel edge chisel
    By ken werner in forum Old Ads
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 05-15-2010, 12:21 PM
  3. Unusual chisel question
    By ken werner in forum Neander Tool Questions and Show & Tell
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 06-19-2007, 05:34 PM
  4. Question what angle
    By Bob Spare in forum General Woodworking Q&A
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 05-25-2007, 03:34 AM
  5. First hello and chisel question
    By Nick Clayton in forum Neander Woodworking Q&A
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 03-07-2007, 11:50 AM

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •