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Geoff Keyes

Small wheel grinder for integrals

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I was introduced to a dedicated machine for grinding/polishing integrals last week, and now I have a distinct case of tool envy. Is anyone using something like this? I've been trying to come up with a way to mod my HardCore, but it doesn't really lend itself to the task. Uncle Al is selling this, but at the price I would be better off buying a KMG, I'd get more utility out of it.

 

What are others doing? Any help would be appreciated.

 

Geoff

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Geoff,

 

Sorry, I just use the small wheel arm on my KMG.

 

~Bruce~

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That's a nifty idea! I bet you could build your own for the price of the small wheel attachment and the other two wheels. That would be awesome with a VFD on it... :ph34r:

 

I don't have the small wheel thingy for my KMG, but I did replace the steel upper platen roller with a 2" contact wheel, so that's what I use. A tighter radius would be nice, but for those it's files and/or a Dremel followed by lots of hand sanding. LOTS of hand sanding. :wacko:

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bader small wheels all the way!

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I wouldn't get a machine dedicated to grinding small radiuses. I would get a regular grinder that can be fitted with a small wheel attachment. My Coote can be fitted with one. KMG and it's clones can be fitted with a small wheel arm also. That way you can have one machine that will do multiple chores. The only integral that I successfully completed was done with files and my Dremel tool.

 

Doug

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I have a bader small wheel rig on my botched up home made grinder (it looks like a space saver if you squint through shade 5 lenzes) . my grinder cost £32.80 (including the 2hp variable motor) the bader attachment and wheels cost around £500 dollars? (could have been less) .

the small wheels are great I use them daily, couldn't recommend them more . bader wheels have little bearings so you can use them crossways for fullers................

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I built this for a little bit over $300.00 parts came from USA knife makers. Tools required drill press angle grinder small welder. Saved money by getting the motor at the flea market for $25.00. I love it the contact wheel changes to any size wheel or a flat surface.

 

Kip Kaiser

DSCN0657_152.JPG

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Geoff, I'm guessing what you like about that "uncle al's" set up is how the platen is directly adjacent to the small wheel, so you can just lay the blade down on the platen area and grind the blade and bolster at the same time - and have a "seamless" transition. I've seen photos of grinders at least a few of the bladesmiths of Brazil and Argentina use on their integral gaucho style knives - they have modified the small wheel arm (or built a new one) to include a platen right up against the small 1" diameter contact wheel. There are a few photos in "the art of modern custom knifemaking"

J

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That is exactly right. The long flat platen keeps the blade from rocking and lets you walk up into the bolster. I've been looking at my HardCore and I think I see a way, using Beaumont's small wheel fixture. Even on a KMG, you'd have to rig up a platen. I'm also looking at the Coote, it looks like you might be able to build a KMG style receiver that sits on the lower frame.

 

I don't want to go to all of the fuss that building a from scratch machine would take (it's a time issue right now), so if I can adapt an existing machine, that's better for me.

 

Geoff

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Geoff, there used to be a tutorial on a Brazilian bladesmith site showing how to grind the integral bolster, but it seems to be gone. There is a photo of a similar setup on this knifenetwork page:

 

http://www.knifenetwork.com/forum/showthread.php?t=26390&page=4

 

it shows the basic idea - I'd use steel, not wood, and forget the additional micarta piece he's got there - just create a platen for the belt to ride on right behind the contact wheel.

J

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I believe there's a thread by Nick Wheeler on another forum, and I think Steve Culver has a tutorial on his website for that type of small wheel mod. to the KMG. It may be quicker and easier to build from scratch or go the KMG route than to try and adapt a basically two wheel style grinder.

 

Hope you can cure that case of tool envy, Craig

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That is not what I was talking about, but it's a very good idea. The grinder I was working on had the edge of the long platen relieved on the underside so that it can run right up to the small wheel with a knife edge. It lets you contour the front side of the bolster. Both of these look like tools to build, the trick is getting them to work on the machine I have. I need to sell some stuff so I can justify a KMG :lol: .

 

Geoff

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Geoff, another option might be a slightly modified version of the water cooled horizontal platen that Brian Fellhoelter designed for his KMG. I was thinking that since the top piece is removable, maybe you could set it up so that you could flip it around and have your regular small radius for plunge cuts on one end and a bigger radius for integrals on the other end, perhaps with "ears" on both side so that you could clamp a file guide to the tang and hit the same spot every time you ran the blade up onto the platen. IIRC, the one advantage of the Uncle Al machine/fixture is that you can raise and lower the steel platen insert so you can use different size small wheels for different knives.

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I believe Ray Kirk has a pair of those he uses for his integrals, I also remember seeing a home built version that Kyle Royer had made to fit on his grinder for doing the same.

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If you can find an old (small) woodworking jointer you could adapt it to a grinder with a minimum of trouble. Then you'd have a table to support the ground stock and another table to support your ingoing work. And far cheaper than any other way that I can think of.

Brian

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I believe Ray Kirk has a pair of those he uses for his integrals, I also remember seeing a home built version that Kyle Royer had made to fit on his grinder for doing the same.

Kyle has a horizontal platen setup like a number of folks have built. Ray does use the Uncle Al grinder. I saw it in action at Batson's a couple of years back and it works as advertised. To me, the advantage of either of these systems over trying to freehand on the small wheel fork is that you can get your plunges done and flatten the blade at the same time, not to mention "hand sand" them lengthwise. The "Billy roll" attachment for the Burr King would work too, but only if you wanted to grind vertically with the point down. With that said, Burt Foster does his integrals with a regular platen that has a very rolled edge and IIRC from what he told me, some "registration pins" that act as a work rest to keep everything lines up.

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