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Question:

What type of scraper/tools are used when hand scraping?I am having a hard time achieving the proper look. The sample I'm trying to duplicate has a very smooth flowing look to it. The end result of my work looks very rough. It doesn't have that running water look.Any advice or direction on where I could get some help would be appretiated.

Rich

Answer:



Dear Rich

You can either use the normal paint scrapers with the replacable blades. They are easy to sharpen with a 10" mill bastard file. I personaly use the w-14 model made by Richard at www.richardtools.com. If you sharpen these with a slight rounding of the corners you can get a very smoooth scrape. It will still need a hand sanding, screening or vibrator machine sanding after.

But if you want to learn how to sharpen a cabinet scraper, you should be able to achieve a smooth surface right away, no sanding. I've just bought one made by Lee Valley tools especially made for doing floors. It's patterned after a version made almost 90 years ago. You can see it and order it at www.leevalley.com. It's prod. #05K21.01. But you have to order also a file, a file holder, and burnishing tool. And possibly an extra blade.

I spent about $100 CDN on all this, but you will also have to learn to sharpen such a tool. Either read the chapter on this matter in the book Understanding Wood Finishing, listed in the Hardwood Authority section. Or go to Lee Valley Tools again and check out his books and videos on sharpening. It's going to take me a while to sharpen these scrapers perfectly, but the results so far have been really encouraging. I'm sure I'll get the hang of it sometime this winter.

As always your Most humble servant, Joseph, the Wood Floor Doctor.

You may also find these articles helpful:

1. A Brief History Of Wood Floors

2. Plank And Strip Flooring

3. Plank Floor: What Special Considerations This Type Of Floor Raises

4. Floor Types And Finishes

5. How To Take Care Of Your Health And Safety when Installing, Finishing, Repairing or Cleaning your wood floors