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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Posts
    162

    Default Skinny tungsten sharpening?

    I'm not made of gold but I did buy a Dynasty 200DX because of features, therefore I cannot justify a $700 tungsten sharpener. I had been using a regular aluminum oxide grinding stone, dressed to remove iron with moderate success. But in combination with seeing a friend's grinder accident and the issue of thoriated tungsten dust potentially impacting my co-worker's health (he has MS), I had to find a better way.

    I had a bright idea. Dremel. Yeah, that pseudo-tool much maligned by purists but personally a valuable tool. They make a diamond grit wheel, minus would be the vents (holes) but it is worth a try. Well, for the $25 wallet-ectomy, I tried it on 0.040" 2% thoriated, outside to avoid the (minor) radiation issue. Wow! Smooth, fine finish and FAST. No pressure is needed to grind a fine point, even using the "down-hill" (pointed away from travel) to avoid hitting the vent holes. The grind marks are all proper and much finer than a bonded wheel.

    As an added bonus, it came in a nice little blister container which will keep it contaminant free!

    It isn't as easy as a purpose-built tungsten sharpener but it is fast. No concerns about contamination anymore.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    The Boonies of Texas
    Posts
    11

    Default

    There are acceptable substitutes for thoriated tungsten.

    Thurmond
    Miller Bobcat 3 Phase,
    26 series gas cooled TIG torch, setup for quick connect to Bobcat.
    Miller Suitcase X-Treme 12VS
    Lincoln 225A AC "Tombstone" Box welder.(for sale)
    Hobart Handler 187 Mig / Fluxcore
    EVERLAST PowerUltra 205P
    Oxy / Acetylene Torch Rig
    Mini Lathe and Mill

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Posts
    375

    Default

    See if you can search up SundownIII's thread on this topic. He has a good system using diamond-encrusted cabbing (stone grinding) wheels available on ebay. Having used his system, I can tell you it's simple, it's cheap and it works great.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Upstate SC
    Posts
    138

    Default

    Why are you using thoriated on that inverter?
    CG
    Old Miller Swinger 180 Buzzbox
    Miller Diversion 165
    Smithy Lathe/Mill

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Posts
    162

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by chewinggum View Post
    Why are you using thoriated on that inverter?
    CG
    Because it came with one 3/32" (haven't used) and I have nearly used up the single 0.040" that came with it. The LWS only had 2% thoriated in that diameter.

    The inverter cannot tell the difference between 2% Th or Ce. The fear of alpha particle emission from Th is what shifted the use to Ce.

  6. #6

    Default

    I use a 3" 3M roloc disk on a 1/4" angle grinder. Started this way due to funds not able to buy a grinder. Haven't had a problem so I never changed. On larger diameter tungsten I start with 60 grit and finish with 120 grit.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Hazelwood Mo USA
    Posts
    460

    Default Tungsten grinding

    Quote Originally Posted by Keith_J View Post
    I'm not made of gold but I did buy a Dynasty 200DX because of features, therefore I cannot justify a $700 tungsten sharpener. I had been using a regular aluminum oxide grinding stone, dressed to remove iron with moderate success. But in combination with seeing a friend's grinder accident and the issue of thoriated tungsten dust potentially impacting my co-worker's health (he has MS), I had to find a better way.

    I had a bright idea. Dremel. Yeah, that pseudo-tool much maligned by purists but personally a valuable tool. They make a diamond grit wheel, minus would be the vents (holes) but it is worth a try. Well, for the $25 wallet-ectomy, I tried it on 0.040" 2% thoriated, outside to avoid the (minor) radiation issue. Wow! Smooth, fine finish and FAST. No pressure is needed to grind a fine point, even using the "down-hill" (pointed away from travel) to avoid hitting the vent holes. The grind marks are all proper and much finer than a bonded wheel.

    As an added bonus, it came in a nice little blister container which will keep it contaminant free!

    It isn't as easy as a purpose-built tungsten sharpener but it is fast. No concerns about contamination anymore.
    I use a a 4" diamond wheel (a friend gave me some almost worn out ones), I made an arbor for it and mounted it on the bench grinder, it works beautifully and no dust either. I sharpen tungsten 5 to 20 times a day and there is no sign of wear on the wheel and it cuts quickly. The grit is about 320, works well on small tungsten, (.040).

    I also have the dremel with the diamond wheels from HF, they work well too but I needed a stand to hold the dremel, so I went the other route.

    I also have the Dynasty 200 dx, 245 hours on it and love the machine!
    Last edited by popspipes; 08-20-2011 at 06:15 AM. Reason: email setting
    mike sr

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