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[How do I?] Sharpen carbide lathe tools

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redvan22

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#1
Hi,
I have a set of carbide tools for my mini lathe that need some tuning. A question to a aged "go-to" worker at Home Depot said I need a special machine to grind carbide and so, would need to send them out rather than purchase the equipment. A friend said all i need is a special wheel for the grinder, any bench mounted grinder.

What's the truth?
Mike
 

benmychree

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#2
Carbide tools can be sharpened on an ordinary bench grinder, but it does not do the best job in terms of finish. It takes a special grinding wheel made of silicon carbide abrasive, When I was an apprentice, that is all the shop had, and we used a lot of brazed on tools in the shop; they had several grinders for carbide tools, some with face type wheels and one like an ordinary bench grinder with 7" wheels. A dedicated carbide grinder is altogether better, and can be equipped with a silicon carbide face wheel for rough grinding, and a diamond wheel for finishing,
 
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redvan22

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#3
benmychree,
Can I get a silicon carbide and diamond wheel at the local Home Depot?
AND is it costly?

Mike
 

JimDawson

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#4
The truth is that the H-D worker is mistaken. No special equipment needed unless you are production sharpening.

A green wheel (Silicon carbide) is normally used for sharpening carbide on a bench grinder. The best is a diamond wheel, but that's expensive. Having said that, Harbor Freight sells little diamond wheels that fit any 1/8 inch chuck tool (Dremel or similar). I use those for quick touch up and shaping. https://www.harborfreight.com/diamond-rotary-cutting-discs-5-pc-69657.html (about $7.00 for 5) , Home Depot sells the same thing in the Dremel brand for about $19 each.

They also sell a 4 inch diamond wheel for their saw blade sharpener https://www.harborfreight.com/repla...-volt-circular-saw-blade-sharpener-98862.html Pretty sure you could adapt that to something.

But normally I just walk over to the bench grinder and sharpen the bits on the standard aluminum oxide wheel, you just have to push a bit harder. :)
 

benmychree

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#5
The silicon carbide wheels that I am familiar with for bench grinders were dark grey, nearly black, and were made by the A.P. DeSanno company, the brand name was Radiac, the spec was C100-H02-YDZ 7 X 1 X 5/8. To my experience, the worked better than the green grit wheels.
You would have to get them through an industrial distributor. You might also look to E Bay for face type diamond wheels that could be adapted to a bench grinder with a fabricated tilting table.
 

BaronJ

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#6
Hi Guys,

Those very cheap 100 mm diameter diamond edged, ceramic tile cutting wheels works just fine. Do not use the ones with gaps in the rim.

I have a cheap tile saw that I bought in Aldi that I use. I just made a couple of jigs to get the angles I wanted since the machine doesn't have any mechanism to tilt the blade. The saw I got has a very convenient water container that sits under the wheel and can be used to provide cooling for the wheel.
 

BaronJ

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#8
Hi Guys,

Just take care with these disks ! They are quite thin and the diamond layer will disintegrate and peel off if the tool that you are sharpening digs in at all. The diamonds are embedded in what is just a thin layer of solder. However if you take care they will work just fine. They need to be supported by a backing plate of some kind. I put one against the side of the grinding wheel on my 6" inch grinder to provide support. That worked well, until...
 

Jimsehr

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#9
Amazon has lots of wheels for grinding carbide.
 

GrayTech

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#10
Carbide dust is dangerous. Wear a mask!!!!!
Silicon carbide is the way to go for good finish. Diamond wheels I prefer these... (332443463963 drop this item number in eBay search).

Sent from my H3123 using Tapatalk
 

Richard King 2

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#11
Keep an eye open for a Baldor double tilt table grinder, that way you and keep the angles constant. I see them at auctions going for a hundred bucks or less. I would put on a green wheel on one side and a 250 to 500 grit diamond wheel on the other. I also like the Glendo Accufinish lapping machines. Many make them using tread mill motors and use Diamond engraving wheels you can buy on Ebay for $50.00.
Google Glendo Accu-Finish alternatives
 

stupoty

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#12
If they just need a little bit of a sharpen I find diamond tool sharpening plastic "stones" quite good.
 

ericc

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#13
All good suggestions. If I was in a jam and I really needed to buy something at Home Depot, I would get one of those Dremel green disk wheels. They grind carbide just fine, but bang for the buck is pretty poor. This old guy in my neighborhood tried to sell me one of those specialized carbide grinders for $50. It was large, heavy, and had too many knobs and handwheels. Also, would have taken too much space in the garage. I'd have had to rent a trailer, but I suspect that it was the better tool for the job.
 

GrayTech

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#14
All good suggestions. If I was in a jam and I really needed to buy something at Home Depot, I would get one of those Dremel green disk wheels. They grind carbide just fine, but bang for the buck is pretty poor. This old guy in my neighborhood tried to sell me one of those specialized carbide grinders for $50. It was large, heavy, and had too many knobs and handwheels. Also, would have taken too much space in the garage. I'd have had to rent a trailer, but I suspect that it was the better tool for the job.
Wow, $50! My car would have to sleep outside!

Sent from my H3123 using Tapatalk
 
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