Guidelines shown below are for Included Angles (⍺).
Notes about Secondary Bevels are at the bottom of this page.
Sharpening axes on the Tormek uses the Tormek SVA-170 Ax Jig. Alternatively, an angle grinder can be used with a 120 grit flap disc.
There are some who recommend that the overall grind be convex (see also, An Ax to Grind: A Practical Ax Manual from the U.S. Forest Service). I have found that using a secondary bevel removes that need.
| General Guidelines |
|Ax Type ||α ||Secondary Bevel ||Notes |
|Soft Wood ||Hard Wood |
|General ||20º ||25º ||2º - 5º ||This is a guideline. Exact angles are not required. |
|Carpenter ||20º ||25º ||Grind the edge so there is a longer side facing the wood. |
|Felling ||30º ||35º || |
|Hunting ||30º ||35º || |
Notes & Comments
- Secondary Bevel Notes :
- Some recommend a secondary bevel angle of +5º, even up to +10º. That is a decision the user should take over time.
- +2 to 5º is recommend as this allows for repeated resharpening by touching up the secondary bevel only.
- Once this becomes too time consuming (i.e., the secondary bevel becomes too large), then you will have to regrind the primary bevel.
- High speed bench grinders are NOT recommended. It is too easy to take the temper out of the blade, and the user will get very poor service from the ax. If the sharpener does not have access to a wet grinding system, then a file or stone approach should be used (as outlined in the manual noted below). Angle grinders with flap discs don't cause such a build-up of heat if used in a limited fashion (e.g., for sharpening and not shaping the angle).
- An Ax to Grind : A Practical Ax Manual is a very good good reference that was published by the United States Forest Service (yes, the Smokey Bear people !).
Good videos showing the use of the Tormek SVA-170 Axe Jig:
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About this site Remember : The goal of sharpening is to produce sharp tools, and these tools can injure you if mishandled. Safety measures should be followed to protect yourself and those in your shop. Be sure to read and follow all instructions from the manufacturer, and and utilize proper safety equipment. Never consume alcohol or anything that could impair your judgement before sharpening tools, or using sharp tools. Comments can be sent via eMail to me at SharpeningHandbook@Gmail.com.