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Everything posted by NuggyBuggy

  1. I bought my X-01 about a little more than a year ago. I had never sharpened skates before. My biggest problem was figuring out why my edges were not coming out level. I just couldn't figure out how to adjust the holder - sometimes one edge would be high, then I'd adjust it, then the next pass would bring the other edge high. I spent months (maybe an hour at most a week) trying to figure it out, and I'd almost given up. I made a few posts here, and several users were very nice trying to help me, but I just couldn't get it. Finally figured out by myself that I was holding the skates while making my passes, since my holder does not have the knobs that are depicted on the Blackstone website. Once I figured this out, and started holding the base, everything was easy. From the outset my sharpenings felt just like the ones I got from my LHS, and I am usually pretty fussy. I've been skating on my own sharpenings for a while now. Never had so much as a burn. I just took my skates in for a profiling at my LHS, figuring that any poor technique might have messed up my profile. When they saw my edges and I told them I was doing them myself, they told me I was doing a good job. Actually, they did a double-take when I told them and even re-checked my edges, and seemed really, really surprised that I could get such a nice finish. I was surprised that after many sharpenings I didn't even need a re-profiling. The biggest problem I face now is remembering how to adjust the holder when one edge comes up a little high. The way my skates sit in the holder, I have to rotate the skate to put my Blademaster edge checker on the blade. Remembering whether I need to raise or lower the holder if the bottom or top edge is high or low gives me fits, and double that when I have to rotate the skate around some of the time. I'd say getting a good sharpening is easily within the grasp of just about anyone willing to spend some time to learn how to do a good job.
  2. That's the one I was referring to in my post; mine (also a Youth Tri-lie, but older) looks the same save for the knobs. I was just wondering if anything important has changed that might let me mount smaller skates on it. In fact, it comes within a few millimeters of not being able to mount my adult Grafs.
  3. Is there a new Youth Tri-Lie holder ? I bought mine about a little more than a year ago, and cannot mount the smaller, adjustable skates that my kids are using right now. Looking at the Blackstone website, mine doesn't have the big knobs on the base - wish it did though. As an aside, I took my skates to get them profiled at my LHS. The guys were both surprised and impressed when they found out I was doing my own skates - said they looked good.
  4. How many sharpenings are you guys getting out of each grinding wheel ? My first wheel (X-01) is getting to the point where I'm going to have to toss it, since soon it will no longer protrude through the covering slot. But it there's a lot more wheel left there. Is there a good reason for Blackstone to design the wheel this way ? I'm wondering whether the wheel could get too hot if worked down too much, but the cynic in me is also wondering whether maybe they will just sell more wheels this way. .
  5. Nice ! I was just going to work up the angles myself. So - to selfishly get back to my question - if I was at 90/75, liked it but wanted a bit more glide, tried 95/50 and wasn't get enough push but was fine in turns - then I'd want to retain my edge depth at 75 but could try a larger numbered edge angle - maybe 85/75 or 80/75 ? Crap ! Just checked, it seems like they don't have either FBV in a mini-spinner, but I'm sure they had other spinners on their website a few days ago - I KNOW they had the 95/50, because I ordered one. That's weird.
  6. AfftonDad - I was trying to gain a little more glide. I was more than happy with the bite I was getting. Right now I am satisfied with the performance in turns, stopping, etc, but not happy with the push I am getting. Your analysis suggests that what I want to do is increase my edge depth from 95/50 but keep the edge angle the same. Now I guess I just need to work up the edge angles for the full set of FBVs and figure out where to go next.
  7. JR, I think that is a great way for people to think about this. It has already helped me. Thanks. At the risk of being dense, can you define "bite" ? I'm asking because I had been skating on 90/75, and liked it. I decided I wanted to try the 95/50, and finally did, with the help of Steve's table. What I seemed to notice was that my skates felt great in turns and stops, but sprinting in a straight line, I felt slow, like I couldn't dig in. It wasn't that my edges weren't slipping, I just felt like I wasn't going anywhere. When I wasn't pushing, the glide felt fine. I would have thought that the ability to hold an edge in a turn and the ability to grab the ice in a straight line would have been correlated and that this was what someone would typically refer to as "bite". Does what I experienced make any sense ?
  8. The reason I wanted a chart is because, frankly, I wanted to get a little more glide than I'm getting out of my 90/75, but it wasn't clear to me where to go next. With ROH, it's clear where to go from, e.g. 5/8, but I just can't wrap my head around how the 2 parameters in an FBV specification combine. Now, maybe it is impossible to relate ROH directly to FBV, but what I needed was a heuristic to help me understand the relationship(s) between various FBVs. I think it is next to impossible for guys skating once or twice a week to do meaningful comparisons between different FBVs. I even doubt that most pros - with a sharpener, all the ice time in the world available, and huge incentives - would have the energy to do the full set of comparisons : what would most say to an equipment manager who said "try all these FBVs out and get back to me " ? This chart helps me understand how the different FBVs relate, and that's all I needed. AfftonDad - even if you are correct in identifying a 5-dimensional space, at least 2 of those dimensions (as pertains to edge strength and wearability) are now largely irrelevant to those of us who are doing our own skates. Aside: My 95/50 spinner came in and I am hoping to put that on my skates before I play tonight ;)
  9. I like it ! If I read this correctly, * in general * one would find that e.g. the 95/50 is faster but provides more grip relative to the 90/75 (as an example). If that's a more-or-less correct interpretation - I'm going to order a 95/50 spinner ASAP ! I also saved the page for perpetuity ;) Thanks Steve.
  10. When I used to skate 10-h a week, I could see that comparing different hollows could work. Now I get a single skate a week, making comparisons almost impossible to do. I'm never going to remember how my skates felt a week ago, so figuring out how to best combine the two FBV parameters to get the best results for me is something I'm never going to have time to do for myself from scratch. I appreciate the honesty, but Bob, even your website has a guide ! (And yes, I do see the disclaimer at the end). I understand that are no absolutes here, but guys like me need guidance, especially for the FBVs we might be interested in (in my case, thinking about 95/50, coming from 90/75), but which are not documented in existing charts (like Bob's). If equipment managers really can't figure out how to read the chart or deduce from the FBV nomenclature, it sounds to me like something needs to be done to make the system more understandable, for the regular guys for whom auditioning hollows/FBV is not going to work.
  11. Steve - when I ordered my X01 Gerrard was quoting off a sheet/table he said you guys use to help customers relate ROH to FBV. Couldn't you just post the contents of that sheet until you can work something up more elaborate ? I'm sure that table would be all many of us would need to see.
  12. I thought I had a page bookmarked that related FBV to regular hollows, but couldn't find it. Anybody know where I could find such a page, or know what a 95/50 might skate like ? Edit: I see that jimmy's page has a table of sorts, but there's no 95/50 on it.
  13. Great setup ! What's the white pad to the left of the grinding wheel do ?
  14. There's a small (2-1/2" I think ) dust port on the back of the machine, but this will only capture dust from dressing the wheel. Debris from the actual sharpenening will not be caught. I don't think the manual says much else about this. I did what someone else here suggested and bought a hood which I just lay to the right of the X-01 (http://store.workshopsupply.com/catalogue/product_info.php?products_id=2011). It catches some dust from sharpening, but not all of it. When I was hooking up the X-01 to dust collection I would connect the back port when I was dressing the wheel, then disconnected that and connected the "Big gulp" when I was actually sharpening. I planned to install a dust collection network with blast gates but never got around to it. If I get around to building and using a better dust collection setup I would probably split my dust collector line into two, put blast gates on each line, and run one line to the back dust port. Then I'd split the other line into two again and run one line to the Big Gulp and the other line would go to some articulating hose like this which I would position closer to the grinding wheel.
  15. Hey True North - I have the following: Festool CT-33. It's CFM is indeed low, because even though they call it a "dust extractor", it's really a very high end Shop-vac and remember that Shop-vacs are really designed to pick up debris and not fine dust. However, it works better than most because it is designed to work with Festool tools, which are designed for very good dust extraction. Also I bet they're more conservative with their CFM ratings than others. The dust collector I have is this one: http://busybeetools.ca/cgi-bin/picture10?NTITEM=CT029N. It's the biggest 110V dust collector I could find at my local woodworking supply store, rated for 825 CFM, but as I said it is idle because I my garage workshop does not have space for it. Then I have a Ridgid shop vac and a small Shop-vac. I have read that some of these Shop-vacs actually make things worse because they end up blowing a lot of air around. Bill Pentz is considered an authority on dust collection. He has an interesting story and he gives away his plans for free. IIRC, however, it's not cheap to build one of his dust collectors. As for the X-01, I'll probably continue to work on my deck and wear a respirator. When it gets cold, I'll hook it up to my little Shop-vac and still wear a respirator. I might get a white tarp to actually determine how far the dust disperses - I suspect it does not go nearly as far as wood dust. If it's a problem, maybe I'll build a little shroud for it to contain the dust.
  16. I only happen to know a bit about dust collection because I discovered I am extremely sensitive to wood dust and I have young children in the house. Truth is, though, my X-01 is not currently hooked up to my dust collector yet - that's in our second garage for lack of space. I brought my X-01 home (my woodworking shop is at our cottage), so right now I am just setting it up on our deck and blowing dust out into the air. I do have a portable Shop-vac which will fit the X-01 with an adapter but I am not using that either. I know I should do something about that. I don't find much metal dust being ejected into the air where I would breathe it, however. I have a Festool CT-33 vac, but I don't have the right fitting to go to the X-01, so that's just used for my Festool woodworking tools. Someone else asked me by PM about whether or not there is danger of metal sparks and particles from the X-01 possibly igniting dust/wood shavings/fabric bag in the dust collector or Festool vac, and I am not really sure. I hadn't thought about it much, although the stuff that comes off my X-01 is so small and the run of hose I have so large that I doubt it could ignite anything by the time it hits my vac. Edit: Note, a single sharpener would take a long, long time to fill the bag in a "real" dust collector, even a little 110V one.
  17. mckjim, you may already know all this, but I recently got into woodworking (sidetracked as I was building a bench for my X-01, :lol:). Dust is a major health concern for woodworkers, so a lot of those guys spend a lot of time worrying about it. Basically, conventional shop-vacs are not ideal for dust collection: they are designed to provide suction but to collect dust in the air you need higher volumes and velocity of air flow. Here's the first thread I could dig up on the issue: http://www.sawmillcreek.org/showthread.php?p=864346#poststop. Hence, woodworkers use fairly expensive dust collection systems (relative to Shop Vacs), e.g. http://busybeetools.ca/cgi-bin/product10?&...390525103153487 (all prices Canadian). Anyways, these devices are usually a little quieter than Shop-vacs - I believe owing to the type of motor, but are still very noisy. With a proper dust collection network (these machines can pull over longer distances) people often house the machine in a separate room and trigger it with a remote control, e.g. http://busybeetools.ca/cgi-bin/picture10?NTITEM=CT075, which wouldn't work so well with a Shop-vac. One advantage here is that you could buy a single machine and run a simple network of pipes with blast gates set depending on which machine you are using. Another suggestion is you could enclose your shop-vacs in a simple wood structure with insulation inside to absorb some of the sound. Final suggestion is you could buy an expensive vac like a Festool or Fein, which are much quieter than regular, $100 jobs at Home Depot. I have the Festool CT-33 but they aren't cheap. Then again, it looks like you have the budget for any of the above :lol:
  18. Well, since my first real attempt at sharpening my backup skates was fairly successful, I had a go at my regular skates and skated 4 times on it this weekend in a tournament. They felt great, subjectively no worse than when I would get my skates done at my LHS. I got my edges to within 1"/1000 (according to my Blademaster level), and the process is definitely getting much easier. It is a wonderful feeling knowing I can get my skates sharpened on a moment's notice without having to haul the toddlers out for a 45-min round trip to the LHS or negotiate with the wife. Thanks to everyone who offered advice to me here, in particular Afftondad, mnpucker, rachael7 and chiefs17.
  19. Update on my own trials and tribulations with my X-01. I finally was able to get close-to-level edges. Holding the base and not the boot did indeed make a big difference. I bought this portable stand and set it up on the deck in our yard since my dust collection setup is at my cottage. The edges were fractions of a pip mark off when viewed on my Blademaster level, but I was running out of time so couldn't make them "perfect". I skated with them at practice yesterday. I sharpened my backup skates with the 90/75 spinner. I had my "regular" 5/8 skates in my bag just in case I found the former unskateable. Had some adjustments as the boot, hollow and FBV/ROH had changed, but the good thing was I didn't go back to my regular skates as wasn't falling down all the time like I would if I had uneven edges. However, I didn't notice either extra bite or extra glide that people talk about - maybe even less bite. Again, I'm not exactly comparing apples and oranges as so much was different. One thing I struggled with though. I was easily able to mount the Mission Pitch holder on the X-01 Child Tri-lie holder without the holder interfering. But the Cobra 3000 holder on my Graf Ultra Gs really, really comes close to interfering with the clamps. Depending on how the skate is mounted, I have had the holders (lightly) stuck to each other after they were fully unclamped. I have since started visually trying to make sure they are not touching, and if I do so it looks like I have the slightest bit of clearance. Does anybody else have difficulty getting enough clearance with the X01 holders ? Does the regular Tri-lie holder work better for a wide range of skates ? The Blackstone people had assured me that the Child holder would mount adult skates equally well.
  20. What's the advantage of doing witness marks and checking level vs just doing a pass ? I can see that doing the latter is more likely to destroy the profile, but is there any other reason ? Also, I just read this article about sharpening. Is this how you guys read witness marks ? I had thought you used a level at the witness marks.
  21. Thanks again chiefs17 and rachael7 - you've both been very helpful. While working through my problems I did start stoning the blade thinking that might help, and also started pushing the blade lightly against a piece of wood. I do end up with a ton of micro-fiber hairs on my blade though. Also found out that you can some nasty slivers from running your finger on a just-sharpened skate. chiefs17 - I did fix the "no-clicking" problem on the height wheel with your suggestions. There was no Loc-tite on any of the set screws. However, I find that one screw seems to either vibrate loose or come loose its wheel is being rotated. I've since taken to using some needle-nosed pliers to tighten it once it comes completely out of the detents, but should I just put some Loc-tite on it and then set it as high as I can (while still being able to click it) ?
  22. chiefs17 - I owe a lot to the continued encouragement of you and others. Thank you, I probably would have given up without a steady stream of ideas that kept me thinking about this. As for the bat gage - I have that but I ended up buying the Blademaster tool as well. I found that I could get a range of readings with the bat gage - if I pushed one end up, I could get one reading, if I pushed the other end, I could get a different reading, etc. Can you offer suggestions as to how to properly use it and specifically, lay it on the blade ?
  23. chiefs17 - I only have the one child tri-lie holder, which Blackstone told me was equally usable on child and adult skates. Anyways, I have some good news. In bed last night I realized that I have been holding the boot while doing my passes - my holder does not have the handles that the Blackstone website shows. I realized a little weight on the boot could well cause the blade to not be square while passing over the wheel even if it is setup properly. This might have been obvious to the experienced sharpener but not to this newbie. I did a few passes today and was actually able to get things fairly close - in fact, I was able to get the *top* edge a little high, which I *never* was able to do. I took my sharpener home from the cottage and am hopefully going to work on it some more this week. I hope that this was, indeed, my problem. I am very, very happy about this. Which leads me to my next question: how close is close enough in terms of getting the edges level ? Will a pro make more passes if one edge is half a thousandth off ?
  24. Thanks Rachael. Arggh, that was my last idea. After spending another hour grinding down my blades :lol: I just can't get the edges even. I've checked that the skate is not interfering with the holder. The bottom edge of my blades keep ending up high, the instructions say that means the blade is too low, but no amount of raising the blade seems to fix the problem. I am just about to give up on this for now. I'm going to offer my sharpener to my coach and see if he can do anything with this thing. There's either something wrong with my machine or there's something wrong with me :lol:
  25. OK, so I was able to fix my the no-clicking issue, thanks guys. I was studying the manual for the X-01, and it says as regards to installing the mini spinner "Be certain to install the mini spinner so that the snap ring inside the mini spinner is visible; when the spinner screw is viewed from the threaded end". I have no idea what this means. I understand that the snap ring is the "C" shaped ring but find the rest of this to be rather hard to follow. I *think* they mean that the inscription on the spinner (e.g. Blackstone 90/75) needs to be visible when the spinner screw (only) is removed, i.e. the inscription should be facing upwards. Is this correct ?
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