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any thoughts on Ron Brown’s 40/40 grind jig?

Discussion in 'Woodturning Discussion Forum' started by JeffSmith, Jul 7, 2020.

  1. JeffSmith

    JeffSmith

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    Been hearing of this alternative to hand/platform grinding the 40/40 profile lately. Thought I’d check on whether anyone has actually used it and compared results to the hand ground version. I was hoping Stuart may weigh in on how close it gets to the correct profile...I’ve experimented with hand grinding with mixed results and faceted bevels, was hoping this would provide a little more consistancy - I’ve spoiled myself with the wolverine for far too long.
     
  2. Donna Banfield

    Donna Banfield

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    If you already have the Wolverine system, you might want to look at Johannes Michelsen's device for sharpening. He used to free-hand sharpen his gouges, and in his workshops learning how to turn a Range-Rider Cowboy Hat, taught the free-hand sharpening. I took his workshop in 2007; it took me 3 months of regular, nearly daily, practice in free-hand sharpening to get consistent .

    Sometime around 2010-2011, he came up with the Vector, a sharpening device that fits into the Wolverine base, and gives you a consistent 40 degree bevel at the tip and around both wings. I now use both methods for sharpening - free-hand and the Vector. The Vector is pricey, but it works very well.

    https://hannestool.com/product/vector-grind-fixture/
     
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  3. Kalia Kliban

    Kalia Kliban

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    I've gotten comfortable enough with freehanding the 40/40 that I wouldn't want to invest in yet another jig, but it took a LOT of practice.
     
  4. Lars Hansen

    Lars Hansen

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  5. Dennis J Gooding

    Dennis J Gooding

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    Jeff, geometrically, the Brown system should produce a near perfect 40/40 grind. It will veer a little on the wings. The match would get even closer if the protrusion were still longer, but this would be impractical in most cases. The Hand grinding requires that the gouge be rotated exactly in sync with the sweeping motion across the whole sweep, something that would have to be mastered. One limitation of the Brown system is that the large gouge protrusion required means that end of life comes much earlier than if the gouge were sharpened by hand or to a conventional profile in a wolverine jig.
     
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2020
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  6. Dennis Weiner

    Dennis Weiner

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    I have seen many turners use the varigrind jig and totally mess up the shape. I have come to realize that the varigrind gets you near the profile but it’s still up to the turner to take off more or less metal at the tip or the sides to get the most effective grind. You kind of have to know what shape your after. So imho the varigrind is really not a jig but a grinding guide. The Turner still has to finalize. Keep this in mind as I share my 40 40 jig experience.
    A few years ago, I attempted to made a jig that pivoted right and left stopping at 40 degrees both right and left.
    Whether using the “jig” or freehand the flute had to be parallel to the platform when the gouge wings are about 10-11 o’clock(40 degrees) and when down at 6 o’clock the flute had to be up. My “jig” worked and the grind looked good and produced a wonderful push cut finish. However, like the varigrind, there is still a portion of the grind that was freestyle. ( the swing and rotation to 6 o’clock) I also noticed that the cadence of that swing may vary by flute size and configuration. After a while, I realized that there can never be a jig created to accommodate all this. I gave up the jig idea because sharpening the wings of the 40/40 were easy. I found out that the transition to the tip was always going to be coordinated by eye.
    In woodturning we learn to shape wood. It takes a little practice and you can learn to shape metal turning tools as well. Just practice. Just my thoughts.

    I am open to buying any jig that would 100 percent create the perfect edge.
     
  7. JeffSmith

    JeffSmith

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    Just received the RB jig and tried it out - full disclosure - I'm not associated with Ron in any way - this is the first item I've purchased from his site. I've had mixed success with hand grinding the 40/40, but did like the way it cuts. Not ready to sacrifice too much steel spending months getting comfortable with platform sharpening a new profile. The jig arrived this morning and I tried it out. Used an old Hamlet gouge that has been collecting dust for many years to test it out. Setup was fairly simple, just followed the directions. Inside half an hour (had to re-read instructions a few times) with both the 80 and 180 CBN wheels it was a done deal. Dennis, following the instructions the jig does grind a near perfect 40/40 if I can trust my protractor.
    I had the usual trials of blending the nose to the wings to avoid the dip, but that's just a question of getting used to the new geometry of the wolverine setup, I think. Turned a chunk of pear that's been drying for a while now and was impressed with the surface/finish on both end and face grain. One tool in, but I like it. I think it'll give me a good reference to use while practicing hand grinding old gouges to get some muscle memory established. Seems like a good way to begin transferring over to a new grind.
    The only thing that bothers me is that I now have three setups for the wolverine - my old 45 grind I'm used to, the 40/40 and the setup for spindle gouges.
     
  8. Dennis J Gooding

    Dennis J Gooding

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    No I meant 40/40. A senior moment there; I have corrected it. Thank you Lars.
     
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  9. Lars Hansen

    Lars Hansen

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    Thanks.
     
  10. Mark Jundanian

    Mark Jundanian

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    It would certainly give you the opportunity to try out the 40-40 grind and see if it is something you like. The earlier comment about the 3" protrusion limiting the number of sharpening is valid, but note if you use tools with removable handles this is less of an issue.
     
  11. Lars Hansen

    Lars Hansen

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    And after all, when a gouge gets too short for a 3" protrusion, it can still be reground one final time and serve as a "normal" gouge until it's honorable retreat.
     
  12. Robert Satterfield

    Robert Satterfield

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    Check out Brent's Turner's Edge gouges...The flat top should extend the life significantly. Best in a removable handle.
     
  13. William Rogers

    William Rogers

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    I have not used Ron Brown’s 40/40 fixture. I used the Vari-grind for years and it is a good fixture. However I bought the Hannes Vector grind and like it much better.
    I think it produces a better 40/40 than the Vari-grind. IMO the Hanes Vector grind is quicker and easier to setup. It is pricy, but what good tool for this hobby isn’t?
     
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  14. Christopher Waggener

    Christopher Waggener

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    I have been using the RB 40/40 jig/accessory on my wolverine jig for about a month. I have really enjoyed it. I have used it on a SB gouge and have mostly mimicked the hand-ground 40/40 grind that came with it. I have measured the angle on the nose and it is at 40 degrees if you follow the instructions. I grind the wings and then blend the nose of the gouge into the wings similar to the way you would grind it by hand. There is a 3-inch protrusion on the jig along with the correct angel set from the jig. I have not measured the angle of the wings (because I don't know how and it is cutting well). It wasn't too expensive and has made my 40/40 gouge sharpening easier for the weekend warrior in the garage. hope this helps someone.
     
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  15. Timothy White

    Timothy White

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    I also use the vector grind, as Donna stated, it gives you a continuous bevel at the tip and on the wings. This grind makes the gouge difficult to get a catch on the inside of a bowl.
    I also like and agree with the idea that the sharpening “jigs” are more appropriately fixtures and must be manipulated to get the desired results.
    TheVector grind can be used to put a “continuous bevel“ on any angle bowl or spindle gouge..
    If you have someone in your club that uses the Vector grind ask for a test drive. I think you will be pleasantly surprised.
     
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  16. Mike Adams

    Mike Adams

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    I'm very satisfied with the 40/40 jig. I'm getting a nice looking grind and it's dead-on. It's better than I usually managed free-hand on the table.
    It may be significant, but if you're using a CBN wheel and also honing on occasion, it'll take a long, long time to grind a tool down to that point.
     
  17. john lucas

    john lucas AAW Forum Expert

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    Mike nailed it. If you grind using a jig on a CBN wheel and use a light touch your gouge will last so long that the length of the flute is meaningless. I built a copy of the Vector jig and personally don't think the edge is significantly different than the grind I use to be worth it. I do a standard grind pretty much just like what Doug thompson shows in his instructions. Then I move my Wolverine jig forward in the V arm and grind away all of the bevel but the firs 3mm or so and then free hand grind off the heel of the bevel. Near as I can tell the gouge works the same as the Hannes grind from the Vector jig. I know I took a lot of flak from making this statement before but I stand buy it. As far as the 40/40 grind as long as you get close it really doesn't matter. It's not a magical angle and whether or not the wings are 40 doesnt' really matter because people don't use the wings. It's the nose angle that gives you a cleaner cut. In theory as the nose gets dull you could rotate the tool slightly and use the wings but really, how do you tell when it gets dull. I stop and sharpen enough that it never really gets "dull" just maybe it cut a little less easy. I think it's more about how you use the tool than the angle. A beginner will get worse cut with a 40/40 than a skilled turner will get with a 55 degree edge. It's all about how the wood crosses the cutting edge, the proper feed rate so you cut the wood instead of tear it, and of course how sharp the tool is.
     
  18. Mike Adams

    Mike Adams

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    Even Stuart says 40/40 isn't magic. Anything less than 45 and greater than 35 is basically fine.
     
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  19. William Rogers

    William Rogers

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    John you are a far more experienced turner than myself and have ground more gouges than me. However from my perspective I prefer the using Vector grind much better than the Vari-grind. I had ground a gouge using the Vari-grind and blackened it. I then made a single pass using the Vector grind and it does produce a different grind. But the bottom line for me is I prefer a gouge sharpened with the Vector grind over the Vari-grind. I think it is also simpler to use.
     
  20. robo hippy

    robo hippy

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    Well, as one who is blessed or cursed by having the engineer's syndrome, which is 'if it ain't broke, take it apart and fix it anyway' I am always experimenting. A 35 degree nose angle is too pointy for efficient cutting, though you can still get a good surface. I may have to try a 45 degree angle, but don't remember for sure if I have or have not...

    After 10 or more years of using a platform to sharpen all of my tools, my grinds still are not perfect. I think that this is some thing that some are too obsessed with. One wing tends to be ground back farther than the other. The nose may not be perfectly centered. So what? It really makes no difference in how the tool cuts as long as you have a sharp edge. I am one that turns by feel. I don't have to have my body at exact angles, I don't have to hold the tools in an exact position. I rub the bevel and adjust angles, until it starts to cut and go from there. If my grind is off a bit, I correct for it the next time I go to the grinder. I encountered this exact same situation when I used grinding jigs, though the only one I ever used was the Ellsworth jig.

    I was never aware that the Vector grind did a 40/40 grind. I guess it makes sense to have off set pivot points so the wing can be at the same angle. It does sound a bit more simple than the Brown jig. His more swept back design is interesting, and the way he grinds off almost all of the bevel is also interesting. Christian Burshard learned his grind from Johannes, and he had one more swept back type of grind with no bevel at all on it. What this does is that when you roll the tool over so that you are cutting with the wing, which a number of people do when going down the inside of a bowl, if you roll it over too far and come off that tiny or non existent bevel, you don't get that big nasty catch from losing bevel contact because the cutting edge is not pointing up into the spinning wood, but more sideways like a scraper. I relieve the bevel on all of my tools, scrapers included. I round over all of the edges so there is no sharp bevel corner to mar the wood.

    I do have a Wolverine set up in my shop, which I plan to have operational for students. I haven't set it up yet.... Maybe some day I will.

    robo hippy
     
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  21. john lucas

    john lucas AAW Forum Expert

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    The vector grind system is excellent. I especially like his system.of putting the gouge upside down to lock it in the fixture. That is a very accurate way to do it. If you blackened your gouge using the wolverine that is. Ot the jigs fault younwere just too heavy handed. Any jig system including the vector grind will produce a bad grind if the user doesnt control the.grind.
     
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  22. William Rogers

    William Rogers

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    I may not have been clear. I sharpened my gouge with the Vari-grind and then used a black marker to to color the grind. Then I sharpened it with the Vector grind (one pass) to see if the systems sharpened differently. The Vector grind is different from the Vari-grind. I prefer the Vector grind and it is easier than the Vari-grind to use IMO. My gouges are 45 degree.
     
  23. JeffSmith

    JeffSmith

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    Appreciate all the responses - so far, I think the RB jig does a good job and it's much better than the platform grind I'd been experimenting with. The 3" stickout has only come into play when I sharpened some older, well used D-Way gouges that were just about at the point where the varigrind clamped down at the very beginning of the slope from the flutes. A little wedge saved the day and got through the grind.

    I haven't used the vector jig - and doubt that, until I find a good reason to that I'd spend the 5 or 6 times what the RB jig cost to see where it differs. Even regrinding from my old grind learned from Dave Schweitzer at D-Way I'm not leaving too much steel on the shop floor.

    I'm getting cleaner cuts on the outside of bowls, but don't see a significant difference on the insides, but then my standard bowl is a shallow, very open form without a distinct turn to the bottom. Been playing with 5/8" gouges for the most part, but I'll probably order up a couple of 3/8" and 1/2" gouges to have a full complement of what I use most in both grinds to really get a feel for what works best for me.
     
  24. Ron Hayden

    Ron Hayden

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    Can RB jig be used on a 6” wheel? On his website it says 8” wheel.
     
  25. Dwight R Rutherford

    Dwight R Rutherford

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    No the RB jig cannot be used with a 6” wheel.
     
  26. Roger Wiegand

    Roger Wiegand

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    Based on this discussion I ordered the RB jig to see how it compared to what I had figured out on my own. It makes, what looks to me, to be a very good 40/40 grind (keep in mind I'm no expert) Way better than what I did freehand, marginally better than what I accomplished with a fair amount of fooling around on my own with the Wolverine jig. Having used it once to get the distances set I don't see any need to have it to use a second time, since with a CBN wheel the geometry won't change,

    Worth the $35? Maybe, if you can't puzzle it out on your own. It could certainly save you several hours of experiments (less though if read the hints provided, like using the 3" extension.) Will I keep it? Probably not. I find using a stop block to set the V arm distance easier than something that rests on the wheel. I'm not unhappy about paying him for his development work though.
     
  27. DON FRANK

    DON FRANK

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    I purchased one after seeing this thread and sharpened three gouges last night. I'm very pleased with the results. I had struggled with doing the 40/40 freehand and getting any consistency. I had tried to figure out how to do this grind myself on a varigrind and failed. I feel like RB earned the money I paid to get the jig.
    I have a piece of metal square tubing that slides onto the varigrind arm that sets the depth. I will just make one for this 40/40 grind so that I can quickly switch between this and my fingernail Elsworth. The length is not going to change using CBN wheels.
    IMG_5515.jpg
     
  28. Tom Gall

    Tom Gall

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    Don, does that mean you have to pull out the entire arm to slide on your tube? Why not use a piece of angle iron (or any 90º material) and just set it on top? I've been using pieces of PVC pipe with success for many years. I just set it in the pocket and push in until it hits the square tubing on the jig base. PVC is easier and cleaner to work than metal. :)
     
  29. Lars Hansen

    Lars Hansen

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    After reading the positive feedback, I ordered one, too.
    Knowing the details, I'll probably be using other means of taking care of the settings, but agreeing with the last sentence i Roger's report (#27), I follow suit.
     
  30. DON FRANK

    DON FRANK

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    Tom,
    I will now. Before I was sharpening everything else with this same setback. I like your angle iron idea. Tks,,
     
  31. Mike Adams

    Mike Adams

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    I'm having a really hard time visualizing this. Do you have a pics?
     
  32. Donovan Bailey

    Donovan Bailey

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    These are wise words and I certainly agree. I've said it before...but I think that we turners probably obsess too much on this sharpening business. Sharp tools are key to our business and I'm not downplaying the importance of having a repeatable sharpening setup but, in my lowly opinion, "sharpening frequency" is the important factor. Frankly, I think that an experienced turner could make a good turning with a table spoon with an edge on it...and no jig... if they had a sharpening grinder in handy reach during the turn (M2 HSS of course on the spoon).
     
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2020
  33. Dave Landers

    Dave Landers

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    I want a CPM 10V spoon
     
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  34. john lucas

    john lucas AAW Forum Expert

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    I certainly agree with Reed. Its.all.about how you use a tool.and that it is sharp. Shape is secondary and if it's off a.little doesnt matter.
     
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  35. robo hippy

    robo hippy

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    I don't have pictures of the Johannes grind or the one Christian uses. Some people, to relieve the bevel on the bottom side of a gouge will grind another bevel on the bottom part. To me, that still leaves a sharp edge in contact with the wood. I freehand a rolled bevel relief so there is no sharp edge. I believe that Johannes does the same roll, but leaves maybe 1/8 inch or less of cutting bevel. Christian uses the rolled bevel relief, but rolls it all the way to the cutting edge. Hope that makes more sense. I haven't tried the one Christian uses. Probably should some day....

    robo hippy
     
  36. Mike Adams

    Mike Adams

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    I round off the my bevel the same as you do. Does that extreme round over let them turn out bowl bottoms? That would be pretty nice.
     
  37. john lucas

    john lucas AAW Forum Expert

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    I started rounding over the bottom of the bevel make y years ago to relieve any burnish marks from that sharp corner. It was an AAW president who told me that but I'm having a senior moment on his name. I now grind most of my tools.with a very small main bevel. It makes it easier to "feel" the cut and know when your pushing at the right speed. It also let's you cut inside a bowl.better.
     
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  38. robo hippy

    robo hippy

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    Well, as near as I can tell, any 'extreme' round over still does not let you take a 40/40 through the transition and across the bottom of a deeper bowl. I believe, and again I don't have actual experience with this, that the more relieved the bevel is, the less dramatic the catch is if you use the 'peeling cut with a wing' on the inside wall of a bowl. There are a number of turners who use this cut when going down the inside of a bowl. They have the flutes up and are cutting more with the wing and less or no cutting with the nose. I don't and won't use or teach that cut. While it does work, with a full or small bevel on the wing, if you come off of that bevel, even a tiny bit, you had a sharp unsupported edge pointing up into the spinning wood. This can make for some very dramatic catches. I don't think it cuts any better than the 40/40, and having the flutes rolled to 70 to 90 degrees gives a very clean cut.

    Side note here, and some may disagree, attempting to use a peeling cut on bowls is dangerous. This type of cut is what causes all those nasty catches that turners have when they try using a spindle roughing gouge on bowls. Peeling cuts work on spindles, but not on bowls. Roll the SRG onto it's side, on the outside of a bowl, and it cuts nicely because of a very high shear/slicing presentation of the cutting edge.

    robo hippy
     
  39. Mike Adams

    Mike Adams

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    Thanks, Reed

    .
     
  40. hockenbery

    hockenbery AAW Advisor Staff Member

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    Totally agree - With the 40 degree bevel on the wood the handle will hit the rim on the average bowl about a 1/3 of the way to the bottom.
    A bottom of the bowl gouge with and 80 degree bevel keep s the handle far away from the rim.

    The Ellsworth grind with 60 degree front bevel will do a push cut to bottom center of a hemispherical bowl.

    The flute up cut I use is not peeling with the wing it is slicing with the leading edge of the wing. The bevel contact here is something like 80 degrees. Where people get into trouble is by letting the tool begin to peel because this cut is unsupported and the wood will drive into the tool for a massive cut.
     
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