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In the pinch


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Where do you buy your rasps from?

I have found some sets on the internet but most are riffler style rasps I guess meant more for sculptors.

I find a few different size flat rasps handy as well as a cabinet rasp also in a few sizes.It's nice if you can find a flat rasp with a fine cut on one side and xtra fine on the other.

I picked up one of these diamond files recently just to give it a try--the cut on mine is too fine and shallow to use on maple or spruce but can be used on an ebony nut, however doesn't seem to get much bite on that,...I still prefer a fine rasp to get it down to size fast, then finish it with a fine file and sandpaper after that---a micromesh fingernail polisher is useful if you want a shine to it and to smooth the grooves out.

I do find the diamond file very useful for other things like making templates from metal or fiberglass sheet.

Let us know how it goes with the rasp making--it should be an interesting project. I just looked at the teeth on mine to get some idea of the shape of the punch tip they use and I think you should try some differnt ways.It looks like on these, at least the underside of the punch is ground to a V shape--possibly so it digs into the steel easier and then pushes up the tooth.I gave it a try in the rasp factory and realized how difficult it was what they were doing---amazing how they just naturally got each tooth aligned so accurately. However, it is actually better to have these teeth very random so the rasp doesn't leave grooves in the wood.

How do you plan on heat treating the steel? maybe a fireplace would do?

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Is that the voice of experience talking, Regis? I hope not....


Yes, but, in a different application. I've used these to cut custom steel plate and plexiglass for stamping and forming silver & gold. You must positively control direction 100% of the time and never rely on it following any track like you might(briefly) with a standard blade.

It is a very good suggestion but, just get the feel of it before you put it up in that scroll.

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  • 1 month later...

This has been an interesting thread as I'm presently finishing off two neck/scrolls and that pinch section has proved to be the most frustating, particularly as I don't own a bandsaw and rely on sundry saws, cheap chisels and a small diamond file set that takes forever to file Maple.

A small rasp as described would certainly make the job much quicker and easier.

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