Australian Woodsmith 10th March 2021
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Flattening a Worn Waterstone

The centre of a waterstone gets the most use no matter how careful you are to use the entire surface of the stone when sharpening. This means the stone is likely to get dished out in the centre after just a few sharpening sessions. One of the quickest and most effective methods I’ve found for flattening the surface is to “scrub” the stone using a sanding screen.

The set-up. Sanding screens can be found at most hardware stores. They are generally used for smoothing Gyprock joint compound. I used a 120-grit screen taped to a flat surface for my waterstones.

The method. Before starting, draw a wavy pencil line on the bottom of the stone (inset photos). This helps track your progress. Using a circular motion, rub the stone over the flat screen. If needed, sprinkle the screen with water occasionally to keep it from clogging up. When the pencil lines are gone, you’re done.

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SAFETY IN THE WORKSHOP Safety devices, such as riving knives, guards on table saws and guards over router bits have been deliberately left out of the line drawings in Australian Woodsmith projects in order to make them easier to follow. It goes without saying that where safety devices have been supplied by the manufacturers you should use them. We encourage the use of push sticks as good work practice.
    Exercise vigilance and the greatest of care when using power tools, whether stationary or portable. Keep all your tools sharp and well maintained. Wear protective eyewear, a dust mask and a hearing protector when appropriate. By limiting distractions and developing safe work practices you will go a long way to avoiding workshop accidents. So, work safe fellow woodworkers.  -Editor
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