Sharp­en­ing a scraper

David Parker has a point to make...

Practical Boat Owner - - Practical -

It is hard to beat a de­cent scraper for re­mov­ing old paint, filler, glue or even rust and I’ve col­lected a box full of dif­fer­ent de­signs over the years. I find the most ef­fi­cient to be the Sand­vik/Bahco types with the heavy duty car­bide scraper blades. They come in var­i­ous widths and the ones with the long blades can be sharp­ened with a di­a­mond file with the blade still in situ.

How­ever for pre­ci­sion work, like clean­ing up those edge seams of epoxy, the small scrap­ers with tri­an­gu­lar blades are per­fect. The short edges on the blade, how­ever, make them very fid­dly to sharpen and re­place­ment ones are ex­pen­sive. They’re also not read­ily avail­able and of­ten have to be or­dered on­line which doesn’t help much if you want to crack on and get a job fin­ished quickly.

So here’s a sim­ple homemade sharp­en­ing aid to keep th­ese tri­an­gu­lar blades in good con­di­tion. It ba­si­cally con­sists of an old stick so it’s very cheap to make – I have used it ef­fec­tively count­less times.

Be­cause they are tri­an­gu­lar the blades can be ro­tated as they get blunt but even­tu­ally they need re­plac­ing. This blade is clearly now blunt, but in my lo­cal tool shop it was al­most as cheap for me to buy a whole new tool as just get the blade.

Both sides of the stone are used to sharpen the blade and it can be honed to give a keen edge. If us­ing a di­a­mond sharp­en­ing stone, as shown here, re­mem­ber to use oil or cut­ting fluid for the best re­sults.

The blade can be sharp­ened just like a chisel if you re­move it from the scraper. Here I’ve made a blade holder out of ply­wood with a shal­low an­gled cut from a stan­dard tenon saw in one end – it’s an ideal fit for the blade.

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