Sanding Block, the dimes for abrasive paper.
The dimes for abrasive paper or sending block or grit lock are very used in cutlery to perform the surface finishes of the knife and in particular to do the satin or for those who want to go further and get to do mirror polishing it is important to use dimes for abrasive paper.
Abrasive paper dimes are basically supports to have a good grip and proper geometry that fits the knife you are working to achieve the desired surface effect.
As you can imagine the abrasive paper support is a way to retain paper comfortably during sanding operations but in cutlery the function of the support but I prefer to call it dima for abrasive paper becomes even more specific and important.
Clearly abrasive paper must be of quality!
There are those who use dimes in dry form without lubricants,there are those who use the WD-40 or like me who use vetril.
Important when using the dimes is to have the blade fixed well, it is very very important! so it is good to study or build supports or fixing systems to lock the blade well when using the blades.
Fondamentalmente c’è ne sono di tre tipologie di sanding block :
- Piatte (Flat Sanding Block),
- Curve (Radius Sanding Block) e
- Specifiche (Specific Sanding Block)
Depending on the type of beading as you can guess you need to use the correct dima or sanding block.
Flat for knives that have flat and curved beads for knives that have concave beading.
That’s why I want to call it dima for abrasive paper because it has to copy perfectly in particular with the connecting rod the radius of the wheel you used!
La gomma tra la dima e la carta abrasiva
It is important to use a 1.5-2 mm EPDM rubber placed between the dima and the abrasive paper because the paper must rest on a part that does not last a while as it does on the contact wheels of the sanders.
There are also those who use thicknesses of the major rubber and with different shore (hardness of the rubber), what I recommend is what I wrote.
This element that is between the rigid support (flat or curved) and the abrasive paper is very important because the “hard” rubber allows small imperfections of flatness, but very small.
Le dime per carta abrasiva piatte (Plane Sanding Block)
As you can guess according to the type of bead you need to have the right dima and in case it is flat it is a little more “simple”.
For the flat dima it is easier because a flat aluminum or wooden bar with rubber glued on top on it to rest the abrasive paper in the various grains.
The size of the plate can be more or less large depending on the size of the knife.
There are several types, sizes and shapes, each maker has his preferences, with systems that block abrasive paper, with handles at the simplest wooden block, you have to find the size that makes the satin operation easier with your own hands.
Surely it must be something comfortable and with a surface suitable for the size of the knife.
Test to see which way you’re better off!
Le dime per carta abrasiva raggiate (Radius Sending Block)
These are the abrasive paper dimes with the wheel radius that you used to perform concave beading on the knife blade.
As you can guess based on the wheel you used to do the bead you need to have the dima with the correct wheel diameter.
Again there are wooden, plastic, aluminum dimes but what matters is that the radius has to copy the wheel you used.
The thickness of the dima must also be not exaggerated to the maximum 6-8 mm but also there evaluate how you are better if you want increases the thickness of the dima but the important thing is that you copy the diameter of the contact wheel also considering the thickness of the rubber that you always have to interpose between the dima and abrasive paper.
Le dime per carta abrasiva specifiche (Tools Sanding Block)
It is the dimes for abrasive paper with those shapes that can come in handy to reach blade points such as guard, relapse, knurling, special rays, etc.
For example, in the relapse it is easy to see maker using a brass cylinder resting and pulling the abrasive paper, or wrap the paper in cylinders to review it in some small spokes for grip, or to finish the filework on the knife.
As you can imagine there are some dimes that need to be custom-built for the type of knife you have built because of the rays, geometry, etc.
Each maker usually has a set of shapes tailor-made to suit their needs.
Il sistema di blocco della lama
When performing blade satin or polishing operations through the dimes with abrasive paper it is essential to have a blade stability using a knife maker (Knife Maker Vise).
One of the most suitable systems in my opinion for this type of processing such as a sturdy top and three-point clamps (horizontal block tool) to lock on flat parts of the blade.
A simple, economical and effective method is a block of wood and a carpenter’s or plastic vice to fix it on the counter and then always use carpenter’s clamps or blocking tools fixed on the wooden block to use it whenever you need it.
Important! the knife must have a good support otherwise you have to create some dimes because the blade does not have to flex while you work it.
Il livello tecnico, il tempo e il prezzo
How can you guess all this translates into hours of work and indirect material cost that affects the final price of the knife and clearly it is also about the maker’s quest to get to a level of surface finish of the blade of the highest level, somehow the search for the technical executive /aesthetic perfection of its blade.
Surely the custom knife for some also means taking the knife to a level of finish of the highest level such as performing satin or mirror finish that some may not like but that is still difficult to execute and requires skills, patience that the maker never misses and knowledge.
A knife with finishes of a certain type changes not only the aesthetic appearance of the knife but also its final price as well as scoring points to the maker because also in this area there are “lines” to overcome in order to be considered a good maker or enter the circle of the best makers.
Abrasive paper dimes are fundamental in the blade finishing phase because they allow you to use abrasive paper correctly.
Personally I build them like many makers using materials such as aluminum or plastic using 3D printing but what is important is always to interpose the thin rubber between the dima and the abrasive paper.
It is also important to become a dime with more specific shapes for those hard-to-reach areas.
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