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Alan Longmire

This is why I'm always recommending files to people

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One of my first classes was making a pipe hawk, and if you want some filing experience, it's a prefect project to get some. 

About 10% of the class was forging, the rest was all file working.

To me, there is no better way to get a true flat surface other than to draw file it.  Angle grinders cup the surface, so just like Alan I was taught to just use them for your initial removal, then trust your files.  I've actually come to enjoy draw filing vs grinding as #1 there isn't a ton of dust in the air, and #2 if you make a mistake with a file, its a little more forgiving. 

I've make my pipe hawks from actual pipes, but you also don't need a lathe to get nice rounded surfaces.  I normally lay out all my lines with a 3 corner file.  Once I get a line on a round surface, I found that if you do your cutting stroke (push stroke) with an extreme arch rocking away from to the work, it creates a pretty evenly round surface. Your in a way minimizing the contact surface that the file meets the rounded surface in the way it would in a lathe. 


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